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"Fun never was part of the deal."

We say this all the time in our home. (I think it's a movie quote, but heck if I know what movie. My husband has all kinds of quirky one-liners I've embraced as my own with no concept of the actual origin of the saying...probably dangerous on my part, but anyhoo...)

"Fun never was part of the deal." Usually we are saying it to our kids, in the midst of whining or complaining about a task or situation, as we remind them we never promised them a rose garden. (See, I did it again...that one's a song, right?...)

While adoption and the whole process of adopting is chock full of blessing, I can't really say "fun" is the word that comes to mind for me when I think about the last 10 months. It has been grueling at times, testing my perseverance and my trust, as well as my sanity.

Lately, that testing has come in the form of delays. With our paperwork. Not to bore you, but more for fun*--so one day I can look back and read this and remember with clarity the hurdles we faced--here's a list:

  • Miscommunication with our home study agency delayed our process there for a good two months
  • Lack of fundamental math skills on my part resulted in a miscalculation of monies due for our FBI clearances, resulting in delay...resent with credit card the 2 weeks that took for them to process that, my credit card was canceled due to an attempted fraudulent charge...delay again...
  • My I600A application was denied because a statement in my home study needed to be modified---very particular, nuanced wording had to be adjusted...DELAY. Fixed and resent...
  • My dossier docs, when sent to the capital of Florida to be authenticated, were rejected because of improper notaries on documents that had been checked and double checked. DELAY. They got returned to me on a 4-day holiday weekend, the day after which my husband was flying to San Diego--leaving us one hour on this past Tuesday morning to redo these documents before taking him to the airport. Resent and scheduled to arrive back to me today...
(*Maybe fun IS part of the deal, after all! : ))

Because we are soooo close, these delays are excruciatingly painful. The last one--the dossier docs--that one was a blow. I lost it. I had tears and pent up frustration that overflowed in a wave like a dam had broken. I knew it wasn't a
huge deal. I knew some people face way more difficult delays than we have. I knew some of my mistakes and holdups would help my friends who are adopting avoid the same delays...but, frankly, that did not make me feel any better. I was sick of being the guinea pig who couldn't seem to do anything right the first time!

I am ready to have this paperwork phase behind me. But apparently, God is not. In His timing, in His way, He has sovereignly overseen this whole process, and ultimately, I know it is He who is making me wait. Asking me to trust. Developing character and patience (that I apparently do not already possess) in me. And accomplishing exactly what He has purposed for our adoption. It is His work to complete.

We did not choose to adopt because we thought it would be FUN or easy. We chose to adopt because we were called to do so. Because we want to be a family to a child who does not have one. Because this is the heart of the message the gospel, and we wanted to reflect that. And also because, deep down, we know that walking a path of trust and obedience leads to great joy and fulfillment as we go deeper with Jesus...and we long for that.

And, this week, I am reminded that the hard part of adoption doesn't end when your child is home. If anything, it intensifies.Three awesome posts I read really hit home with me as I mentally prepare for what is ahead: Please read these and anticipate with me what is to come. I confess to you: I feel inadequate and ill-prepared, not only for today's struggles but also for what lies ahead. I am praying (and would you pray with me?) that these minor tests will equip me for the days and months and even years ahead, where I'm sure there will be times that I will cling to My Savior for strength just to make it through the day. My hope is in Him alone--not in the competency or accuracy of human beings, including myself. There is no way to know how to be ready for all that I will face, except to trust in Him and Him alone. This is HIS process, in me and through me, and I am along for the ride. And the goal, ultimately, is His glory magnified through it all.
For this light momentary affliction is preparing for us an eternal weight of glory beyond all comparison, as we look not to the things that are seen but to the things that are unseen. For the things that are seen are transient, but the things that are unseen are eternal. 1 Corinthians 4:17
Pressing on in faith,


Lara said...

I'm glad I read this. I just sent out our application and this is a good reality check for the paper chase ahead!

Connie said...

Hi Rachel...thanks for the post, and the links to others that spoke to you. After reading them all, I sit here and thank Jesus for enduring the cross (which was NOT fun) for the joy set before Him. We too have crosses before our crowns, but His promises of eternal life, accompanied by His promise to never leave us nor forsake us, plus knowing His grace is sufficient every day, carry us through the "cross" times. Oh let us keep our eyes fixed on Him as He perfects our faith. The alternative is not an option. Pressing on with you Sis!

Erica said...

During our adoption of Silas the Lord gave me this verse:

For still the vision awaits its appointed time;
it hastens to the end—it will not lie.
If it seems slow, wait for it; it will surely come; it will not delay. Habakkuk 2:3

It really hit home for me and has remained a favorite.

Love you sister.

Christy said...

DEFINITELY praying! And very excited to hear your news when it comes! :) Did you see Andrea's post today? It will encourage you - it was so good! :)

WhitneyandScott said...

Such a true statement . . . especially for me at this moment as we just finished cleaning and Lysol-ing our whole kitchen after our new 10-month-old just projectile vomited everything he ate in the last 8 hours all over himself, highchair, Scott and me, and pretty much everything within a 4-foot radius. . . . you know, one of those cleanups where you have to just keep repeating Matthew 25:40 in your head.:)

Dustin & Megan said...

it is so nice to know that i am not alone and there is someone else breaking down over something that really isn't that big of a deal, i have already done that and we're not even as far along as you are. know that god is preparing us for something great :)

Jaime & Kelly said...

I recently wrote a post about facing the not so easy parts of our adoption. We have to continue to be real with our emotions and allow God to work on us. Jaime