Life for me for the past several months has formed a pattern. I begin to feel almost normal, then something happens, a different trigger every time, and I’m a mess all over again.
Thoughts and feelings I didn’t even know were in there come out bringing along all the grief for all the many losses, then they have to be lived through and wrestled with and sorted out into piles of truth and lies, then the truth has to be accepted and the lies have to be answered.
Then I’m exhausted and have to pull back and rest for several days, literally, mostly doing a whole lot of reading both with the children during the day and by myself in the evenings.
The reading is always calling to me in my search for more meanings of suffering.
He is gently hand-feeding me His richest spiritual food there.
We’re not doing much extra in life right now.
During the down times I could almost think that life was normal, except I seem to be exceedingly fragile.
From the outside, I might appear that all is well, as long as we keep our conversation on a surface level. If we don’t…
“Can you handle floods of tears? I’m warning you.“
And of course, I’m always waiting for the next storm to hit, praying that I will endure it with longsuffering and without sinning or charging God with wrong.
In all the stripping away my Heavenly Father has been doing in my life, He has left me so much. I want to hold this lightly in my hand, knowing He could strip it away as well for His own good reasons.
I’m thankful to know that while He could take everything else away, He will never take Himself from me. Never.
Christmas was a quiet, hurting, sad season for me, as it was for countless others.
Still reeling from the latest emotional storm triggered by making a mistake that could have badly hurt someone I dearly love…
…I lost my last grandmom and went to her burial.
Hurting with a dear friend as the cancer she’s been fighting for many years quickly gains ground in her body. Grieving with several friends who lost adopted children to death or disruption or suffered other personal tragedies over the past year. Standing with those of my adoptive mom friends who are enduring very hard times. Sorrowing with all of them.
The tears remain just under the surface of ordinary life, even of laughter.
Arms full of love, Penny and Katie~
This present life is so transient and this present world is so far from being my home.
Every moment of every day is accompanied by an awareness of the terrible suffering of humanity in its terrible brokenness.
When God pushes us out of our comfort zones into the front lines of battle, the comfortable cushion that shelters us from real suffering is taken away, and we begin to enter into the suffering, as He did.
Outside the Holocaust Museum, Orlando, Florida~
If we don’t harden our hearts against it, we hear more and more of the outcry of agony that goes up to His ears from the writhing world. We couldn’t survive hearing what He hears, the God who suffers with and yearns over His self-destructive creation.
He gives some of us the privilege of being His hands and feet to partly relieve some suffering for a short time.
We as adoptive parents can sacrifice and try to absorb into ourselves the sins done to our hurt children, but the pain is always there. It never goes away, even in laughter.
And our precious ones don’t belong to us, but truly to God; He has trusted us with the charge of loving and accepting and nurturing their precious damaged bodies and minds and emotions, without condition, just as He loves us who don’t give anything back to Him that He needs.
We only truly have brokenness to offer Him.
I look at every child adopted from neglect and mourn inside, even while I rejoice for a little redemption for them for a brief time.
Now we see in a glass darkly, and the redemption of adoption, as profoundly as it affects each person involved, is still just a dim reflection of what God has done in adopting us.
Did I ever have eyes to see the real Christmas so bluntly, so starkly, before?
The birth of the Man of sorrows was about His suffering and death to bring the hope of eternal life to dying people in a dying world.
It makes the thought of His final victory all the more sweet.
It’s why Jesus needed to come. His birth was a game changer. Now, it’s not about us failing, it’s about Him winning.
“Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who according to His abundant mercy has begotten us again to a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, to an inheritance incorruptible and undefiled and that does not fade away, reserved in heaven for you, who are kept by the power of God through faith for salvation ready to be revealed in the last time.
“In this you greatly rejoice, though now for a little while, if need be, you have been grieved by various trials, that the genuineness of your faith, being much more precious than gold that perishes, though it is tested by fire, may be found to praise, honor, and glory at the revelation of Jesus Christ, whom having not seen you love.
“Though now you do not see Him, yet believing, you rejoice with joy inexpressible and full of glory.”