Thursday, January 13, 2011
Recently we received what I consider "Miracle Pictures." When I asked my daughter last night what she thought a miracle meant she replied, "When something you think couldn't happen, happens."
That pretty much sums up why I think getting these pictures is a miracle. One of the pictures is shared in this blog for you.
That is a picture of my daughter, Scout, BEFORE I even knew I was adopting her from China. She is standing in an orphanage seven years ago.
We have no pictures of Scout's earlier years other than one picture of her as a baby for her original passport. When school projects come up asking for photos of her past, we always struggle and try to make the best of piecing together memories for her and stories of when we first met her. You see, she was almost four years old at the time of her adoption.
So having any pictures of her prior to the year we adopted her is a huge deal for her and us. It is like a sonogram for those of you who were able to have children.
It is quite unusual how this all happened. My husband was wondering what happened to the orphanage in China where Scout lived for so long. Going on the internet he chanced upon a website of parents in the country who had adopted from this same orphanage over the years.
One parent from Virginia, for some unknown reason, saw his inquiry and contacted him. He asked if my husband knew whatever happened to this little girl who was older when they visited and quite precious. This parent and several of his friends kept taking pictures of her during their visit for adopting their babies. They said they had even talked recently about this little unknown girl, hoping she had been adopted.
They sent the pictures of her, and it was our very own SCOUT! Yes, she was adopted, and yes, she is dearly loved!
You can not imagine the feelings I had seeing the pictures they sent. I thanked God for keeping her safe, for giving her love and protection as He prepared our hearts and home for her.
I also was reminded of our first day together with Scout in China. Because she was older, we were warned she would not bond with us immediately and to be patient. How hard after waiting two years for her, not to hold her and kiss her. She was frightened and confused when she met us. We had studied a little Mandarin to prepare to communicate with her only to learn she spoke Cantonese and understood nothing of what we said.
Those first eight hours broke my heart many times over as she cried and screamed to return to the orphange, the place she knew and the people she understood. Patiently, we repeated, "Mama, Baba" over and over to her to help her understand we were her new parents. As the government officials tried to take our passport pictures, she kicked and screamed as I have never heard a child do, and I've seen plenty of crying children in my lifetime.
Finally, after we settled into our hotel room, exhausted, after trying every toy I had brought, every soothing tone and smile, I thought, this is just so painful. Please, God, open her heart to understand our love. I pulled out a "Hello Kitty" flashlight to show her as the sun set on our first day. She squealed with laughter as the magic light went on and off. Then, I took out our finger puppets and we played all night long, laughing and giggling together. I knew she would be mine as we shared those hours together.
The next morning, she awoke calling us "Mama! Baba!" Everyone, including the officials, were shocked. No child had bonded that quickly with their adopted parents ever before in their history. Parents on the bus watched in fascination as Scout loved saying our new names over and over.
What does this have to do with our devotional today? As I read Phillipians this morning, I saw how Paul wrote about learning to be content no matter what his circumstance. I thought how like Scout I have been in this season of life. I have been kicking and screaming about not having direction, feeling like I have no purpose, feeling useless. I have been complaining about aging and the loss of my parents.
Phillipians continues by telling me to forget the past and move forward toward the goal of pleasing God, of His call.
Perhaps these pictures are a miracle so Scout will have some pictures of before she came to America and into our hearts, but perhaps these pictures are a miracle reminder of how much like Scout we often are. We resist something that is wonderful because we do not yet understand how much love God has for us and His plan is better than ours. We resist the unknown, change, and long to stay where we are or go back to what we knew even though the past is not the best thing for us.
It is what He has on my heart to day. I am going to try, like Scout, to move forward into the unknown with God today and thank Him for His gift of a new season of life, even though it is uncomfortable.
Thanks for listening to my adoption story. God has offered Jesus so we may each be adopted into His great love, His plan for our lives.
So....what is YOUR adoption story? Have you been like my daughter's first day, fighting something great because it is unknown? Trust Him. He loves you far more than anyone on this earth ever will.
For His glory,