How the heart of God must weep

October 26th, 2010

“Nothing exceeds thy power, nothing is too great for thee to do, nothing too good for thee to give.  I ask great things of a great God.”  ~The Valley of Vision

One of the uncomfortable blessings of this journey with Verity has been the opportunity to grow up.  Part of what has made it uncomfortable, and a blessing, is that God has been telling her story to a large audience.

Once in a while, He allows us a very rewarding glimpse into what He is doing with this story He is writing in our lives.  Once in a while we even get to hear that God has opened someone’s heart to a child with Down syndrome, either by birth or by adoption, or both.

All these elements–the discomfort, the growing up, the audience, Verity’s story, the opening of the heart–came together for me last night in a single devastating moment.  There is a God-ignited fire in my heart now, and may it never be snuffed out.

Do you remember what Joe told me the day after we heard the news of Verity’s Down syndrome and heart defect?

He told me that for all the years that we’d had the name Verity, meaning “truth,” chosen for our next daughter, he’d had an idea in the back of his mind that this child’s story would not be ordinary.  He wondered if it would be a picture to us of how Truth and this present world cannot peacefully co-exist.  He said that while we have talked about adopting children that nobody else wants, God knew that he probably would not ever have had the courage to take the first step. Maybe this was God’s way of preparing our family to do that someday.”

Honestly, the human side of me hesitates to continue writing.  What if…well…a whole bunch of things? But God has clearly decided to make this part of our story, so grow up, Susanna.

I wrote the following note less than two weeks ago to an online friend.  She was lamenting her small house and the great need for adoptive families for children who have been abandoned because they have Down syndrome.***

“Maybe just one child, C.  Could you fit just one more in your house?  I don’t know how big your house is, but I like thinking of the possibilities and not the obstacles.  I’ve seen God pour out money like water when He was good and ready, so I know He can do that, too.  If it’s in your heart, maybe there’s a reason for that.

Plus, if we wait for ideal, it may never come, and our situations are a lot closer to ideal than anything these little ones may ever know.

(How’s that for a pep talk!?  We’d love to do this someday.)”

Hear my light and bouncy tone at the end there?  That is the tone of one who doesn’t know, who has distance between herself and reality.

Please read what I read and see what I saw last night.  See the true result of godlessness in a place where there is insufficient money to whitewash the ugly horror of man’s sin against the least of these.  They are doing it to Jesus.

May our hearts break with His heart.  May He light a fire in us that never goes out.

P.S.  It is nothing for God to increase income or move people to bigger houses when He has a good reason for it.

<Deep breath.  Give it to God.  Click the Publish button.>


***Note:  The mom I wrote those words to went on to adopt a little boy with Down syndrome from Eastern Europe.

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18 Responses to “How the heart of God must weep”

  1. Joy Horton says:

    I sobbed as I watched and read, Susanna, and will share this with dh. I had NO idea this was going on. Thank you so much for sharing this.

  2. Ann Bremer says:

    Hey!  That was written by my good friend Leah.  She’s in the process of adopting two kids from Eastern Europe and is raising funds right now.  Know anyone who wants to win an iPad? 

  3. Shari~hotfudgecustard says:

    My own four-year-old skipped into the room and out again while I was watching the video.  He is free, nothing keeps him tied to his bed.  OH, OH, OH!  You’re right, how the heart of God must weep.  I will be praying about what our family needs to do.

  4. Tami Swaim says:

    On three separate occasions I went into such institutions in Romania.  You loose yourself when you walk into such a place.  You just jump right into the cribs with children and hold them, rock them, sing to them, talk to them.  It’s so hard to leave them.  There’s simply nothing more humbling than the fact that while we live our comfy lives so many infants, children, teens, adults live in abject poverty.  I’ve met humans who made their homes in train stations and underground sewers.  They claimed that it was much better than the staying at the orphanages and institutions.  Poland, were we lived for twelve years was a VERY rich country, compared to Romania (though they too have their “Dom Dziecka” (Children’s homes) galore filled with ‘unwanted’ children.  Two of the Polish families we knew would adopt children from the Polish Children’s homes.  It was neat getting to know their children and help to support them.  We weren’t allowed as foreigners to adopt, neither did we feel the Lord leading that way for US at that time.  Things can change :0) over time they always do!  But, yeah, it’s a sad sad world.  “Inasmuch…”

  5. Tami Swaim says:

    just a note:  I should clarify…we weren’t allowed to have the children come live with us as the Poles did.  We could have adopted officially through an organization at a high cost but the Polish believers were able to just take the children home and even get support from the government to do it.

  6. Qadoshyah says:

    We’ve been aware of RR for quite awhile and I talk about it very regularly on my blog, because the plight of these orphans is truly horrific. It’s so sad. Like this little girl who recently died (
    Over a year ago, my sister & I watched the full 20  minute segment on Serbia’s mental institutions (that’s the shorter-version you linked to, which still shows plenty!) and it was horrible. I don’t know that I can watch it again. Just thinking about it for too long will make me cry. One of the little boys in the video reminded me SO much of my brother….how could someone do that to a child? Put them in an institution because they are “imperfect”? May God come back quickly and bring His justice! I think this should have the full story on it, if you want to watch it all,

  7. Kisha says:

    Oh I’m so glad you are spreading the word about Reeces Rainbow.  It’s an organization that really gives these children a chance.  We never would have found Anna and Tanner nor been able to adopt them had we never been led to Reeces Rainbow.  They were amazing, and made the adoption process so much easier.  Not to mention how much prayer covered our family while in the process via the RR family.  They are truly Heaven sent.  God told me to adopt these two kids, and then after watching the Serbia video, He pressed the matter on my husband’s heart, and he agreed to do something I thought he would NEVER agree to.  Now we’ve been home nearly six months with our cuties.  God is Good!

  8. Anna T says:

    Thank you for sharing this, I knew that it would be painful to watch and to date have not watched it, however, today I watched the entire segment.  I am glad that the one Medical Director is putting himself on the line and continuing to speak out against the conditions and that the Government official agreed that the conditions are inhumane.  Also, kudos to the mom for keeping her child. 

    My Great Aunt has a son with Ds (he’s 45) and they told her after her son was born that, “You know Mrs. Last Name, you don’t have to take this baby home.”  When she told me this in July, we both had tears in our eyes. She did bring her son home and he is a delight to the family and “growing up” knowing him really helped me when I knew that our sweet LO has Ds.  I also met a Mom of a 20ish year old boy with Ds that helped to close down a sub-par “institution” in Ohio a few years ago (her son lived with her from birth and she was part of a board that was why she was involved with shutting the institution).  She told me that they had to “teach” the adult residents how “act” as they had not been treated like humans.    

    I have been crying and asking Jesus for what my response should be.  Yes, you said it best at the end, take a deep breath and give it to God.

  9. sabrina says:

    Thank you for sharing this too. You really feel like your heart could break if it lingers too long. We’ll be sharing the Christmas Angel information with everyone. It’s good to know that we can help others to adopt those little ones. Also good to see those little faces and read their names so we can pray for them specifically.

  10. Susanna says:

    Kisha, watching you go through your adoption journey now reminds me of watching my older sister’s birth video while I was pregnant with our oldest child.  :)

  11. Christie says:

    Susanna, I was just coming over here to share your story with another “friend” from Facebook who is campaigning for your sweet princess. They had no idea she had a family coming :) and then I saw your ***Note**** and the link to our blog. You make my heart smile.

  12. Susanna says:

    Christie, isn’t it the most amazing thing? Amazing. Neither one of us could have guessed we’d be where we are now.

    And now I really, really want to know WHO is campaigning for our girl!!!

  13. Christine says:

    Your story reminds me of my story!! Go read it at my blog… isn’t our Creator amazing? So glad to have found you on here!

  14. April Vernon says:

    This is the first time I have seen your blog (clicked on the link from your friend Patti’s blog). I was glued to it, praying for you. I am praying for your little bird to be home with you soon soon soon!

  15. Lorraine Cridge says:

    I am the adoptive parent of 4 wonderful daughters with Down Syndrome.  Without wishing to offend, if there was a great and all-powerful god then why would he allow such suffering of thousands of innocent children?  People credit a god with intervening in their ordinary everyday lives such as getting a new job etc. And yet they fail to see the irony of this same god ignoring the plight of the suffering.

  16. Susanna says:

    Lorraine, all throughout the Scriptures, especially in the Psalms but in many other places as well, God tells us that to be like Him, His people will be on the side of the widows and orphans, the weak, helpless, voiceless, powerless, and oppressed. When I look at the world and see suffering of little children, I see what makes sense as a result of sin in the world for many years and that includes the sin of God’s people who selfishly close their ears and eyes to the suffering or give enough of their extra to assuage their consciences so that they can go on living as they wish to live. The grace of God in intervening in spite of all the damage we humans have done with the world He made is stupendous. Because of my Biblical perspective on life, I am not amazed to see people cruelly mistreating people. That makes sense according to all I know from Scripture about human nature since the fall of Adam. What amazes me is when I get to see what God can do through those who wholeheartedly, unreservedly trust and obey Him.

    God is not ignoring suffering, His people are.

  17. Cindy says:

    Well put Susanna.  I have been faced with these questions, and try so hard to put answers into loving honest answers.  

  18. aaliyah kreeger says:

    hello this is aaliyah i sent you guys a card when you were in the hospital with kate  

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