Am I glad that neglected blog pages don't collect dust and cobwebs, otherwise I would've had plenty of cleaning to do before starting this post! I can't believe it's been 3 months since my bathtub dream, but days turn into weeks and now we're a few months further into our waiting.
It's been a little over 13 months since our dossier was submitted to our adoption agency's office in Ethiopia and added to the list of waiting families within the SOSEE orphanage system. We're now at the place in our wait where things need to be updated and resubmitted through the United States Immigration offices. A few weeks ago, we went to have our FBI fingerprinting completed again for our home study agency. Last week, we visited our physicians' offices to have our physicals completed and medical paperwork filled out again...we also optimistically chose to have our travel vaccinations done...my Typhoid vaccine is good for 2 years and I'm praying we have our boys home before that "expires." (2 more years of waiting...yikes!) Last Friday, we travelled to have our official "immigration" fingerprints taken again. Thankfully it didn't snow this year (remember that little fiasco?). Within the next couple months, our home study will need to be updated to submit to USCIS for an extension to our file.
There are so many things that we would've never anticipated at the start of this journey, but we're trying to view them as minor inconveniences along the way to meeting our children. After talking to our case worker last week, she encouraged me that after a few months of little or no movement with referrals in their Ethiopia program, this past month they have received several referrals for families who have been waiting around the same amount of time that we have been waiting. She has reassured me that nothing in our file is cause for any type of hold on our case. Every case across the board is just moving slowly at this point because of so many changes to the Ethiopian adoption filing, investigations, and approval processes over the past year.
So we press on. Day by day, we continue to put our wait, our emotions, our journey, our boys' lives in the hands of Our Lord. Daily we pray for His will in all of this, especially the stuff we don't understand (or at least don't understand yet). Daily we pray for His provision for our little babies. Some days our prayers are the same, other days we find ourselves asking Him for specific things as they are laid on our hearts: full bellies, physical heath/adequate medical care as it's needed, someone to play with them, someone to give them an extra long hug, someone sent to sing to them, a restful night's sleep. My list goes on and on some days, at times sounding more like a child's Christmas list than a prayer, but I know the Maker of the Stars wants His love to be conveyed to these children (His children) even before I can demonstrate it toward them. I'm convinced He is able to send someone into the orphanage to sing a soft lullaby and hold them close in the moments when those requests burn deep within me.
During this past year of uncertainty, God has shown me several verses of promise and encouragement to keep my eyes fixed on Him and His glory in my waiting. Two passages have become particularly special reminders for me, and daily I find myself repeating them out loud to give voice to the truth He has shown me.
"Let us hold tightly without wavering to the hope we affirm, for God can be trusted to keep His promise." Hebrews 10:23 NLT (emphasis mine)
"I am still confident of this: I will see the goodness of the Lord in the land of the living. Wait for the Lord; Be strong, take heart and wait for the Lord." Psalm 27:13-14 NIV (emphasis mine)
Please join me in believing these promises, whatever journey you're on right now. God is faithful, He will make a way for you. He is able to provide a way out of the darkness and into His light.
Trust Him. Hold Tightly to Him.
Be Strong, take heart and Wait for Him.