Piece of the Puzzle

Piece of the Puzzle

Saturday, March 3, 2012

Let's Jam for Jamaica

Today was another God appointed day!! What started as a plan B, ended up being all a part of God's PERFECT plan!!!

We had been planning for the past several weeks to go to Lake Tahoe this weekend. The "plan" was to leave early - as soon as I got out of an orientation that was supposed to end at 11 am. Well of course a meeting full of women never ends of time! By the time I got of the meeting, we got back home and starting getting ready to go, it was already after 1 pm. The hotel that we wanted to stay in was booked. ARRGGHH!! It just didn't seem like our plans were falling into place. I really had to say a quick "Jesus help me to not get an attitude" prayer because I REALLY wanted to go to Tahoe!!

So we decided to put Tahoe on hold and take the girls to see a friend's art show in Auburn.  On the drive up there Fil and I start talking about putting together a benefit concert to raise money for the next stages of the adoption.  We toss a few ideas back and forth about location, venue, artists and then drifted off into another conversation.

We get to Auburn and share with our friend, Pierre, that we're thinking about doing a benefit show for our little guy. About 5 - 10 minutes later one of his friends walks in- another Jamaican brother - who is looking to start a t-shirt company. Pierre starts telling him about our adoption and he asks if WE WILL LET HIM make up some t-shirts for the concert to sell. Will we LET HIM??? Of course, we will. Then they start talking about all of their connections and their desire to really get behind a community event, especially one that would benefit a child in their home land and before we know it . . . they've narrowed down a location, made plans to get the event catered, started talking about artists & bands, promo plans - the works!!

What Fil and I had initially thought would be a small event where we could invite some friends, they had expanded into a full Jamaican festival with the potential of having 100's of attendees!! Oh man, when will I learn to stop putting God in a box?  We had been only thinking about what we could do within our own power, but God had a much bigger and better plan!! I am so excited. I can't wait to see what God is going to do! I know that something awesome, more than just raising money, is going to come from all of this!

So, look out . . . "Jam for Jamaica" will be coming this Spring!!

Friday, March 2, 2012

Rejoice in the Lord Always

The past few months of waiting have been so difficult! We have been calling and calling & emailing and doing more emailing to the Jamaica CDA since January with no results. Our phone calls have not been taken, our emails have not been returned - there has been no communication at all. It's so hard to be thousands of miles away just wondering if anything is happening on our behalf. In the meantime, we have taken our federal fingerprints, received our clearance, and had our paperwork sent to the Embassy in Jamaica and still SILENCE from the CDA.

I have cried to God, tantrumed, ranted & raved, been mad, felt hopeless, and downright orphaned by God myself because the CDA hasn't done anything.  It's been 3 months, THREE MONTHS, since I took our paperwork to Jamaica. They told us we would get our case number within 30 days and it's THREE MONTHS later.

Two weeks ago, we SKYPE'd Keddar for his birthday. After all the exuberant birthday wishes and with the most serious and sincere look on his face, Keddar asked us when we were coming to get him. How it broke my heart to have to tell him that we didn't know!! It's like being pregnant and preparing for the birth of your child, with no specific due date. What keeps most of us moms-to-be going through those difficult & uncomfortable months of pregnancy is that fact that we know that by a certain date, we WILL have our new bundle of joy. But with no end in sight, the waiting process just becomes agonizing!!

Last Sunday, I woke up in a funk (again), missing my son (again), angry that no word had come from Jamaica (again) and questioning God (again).  I stood in the choir loft, going through the motions, but not really "feeling it."  I just couldn't get past wondering "what about me God?" 

Midway through our choir set, Pastor stopped us and called forward those who needed prayer. Before he prayed, he talked about a very personal and sensitive situation that his own family is in the midst of battling. He then shared about another church member (who's son happens to work with me) who's wife is on her deathbed. As I watched nearly one hundred people come to the alter for prayer, I felt so convicted. There were a number of people that I had "meant to be" praying for, but because I had gotten so caught up in my own situation, I never prayed for them. In that moment, I clearly felt God tell me to stop praying for (& whining about) myself and to start interceding for other people. Tears blurred my eyes as my heart softened towards those whose needs & hurts are so much greater than mine. I promised God that I would focus more on lifting up others and less on complaining about my own situation. 

So on Monday, I set up a "prayer wall" in my bedroom. I listed out those who I had promised to pray for but never did. I asked the girls to help me list people/friends that they knew needed prayer. Family members who I have had strained relationships with also went on the wall.  Each day this week, I have gotten up and prayed over the wall. Each night before I have gone to bed, I have again lifted up those names. And in terms of the adoption, I have simply thanked God for what He is working out.

Today, Friday, we finally got the email from CDA that we have been waiting for!! We were given our case number and worker and told that our case is moving to the next stage. WOW!! It is such great news. It's also so amazing to see how God works. When I submitted myself to His will and stopped focusing on myself (& trying to "control" God and the situation), God took care of it - all by himself, without any help from me! LOL!

This is a huge lesson for me. God promised us over a year ago that this adoption was going to happen. But I allowed myself to be moved by the circumstances and not God's word. As long as I was in that mode of doubting God & feeling sorry for myself, nothing happened. When I laid MY burden at God's feet and picked up HIS yoke (His will for me), the heavens opened and God intervened.

Praise God!! His Word is true and I'm so thankful that His mercies are new every morning! He is so patient and loving towards me.  He extends such grace towards me.