What We Do When Our Naysayers Are Proved Right

I don’t know. Do you? I’m really tempted to just keep crying and find someone else much wiser and much more mature who can tell me. What do we do when our naysayers are proved right? What do we do when we finally “get” what they meant, when we finally see the pain they foretold?

We see ourselves as dreamers. Hopers. Big-time believers. We feel called. We don’t want to waste our lives just doing what’s easy, what’s normal. Nope, we have to pick the tallest mountain to climb. And not to gain attention, but because deep inside we have a sense that fully living means forgetting the status quo and living from our hearts. We have a sense that fully living means taking the words of Jesus as literally as we can figure out how to.

But yes, there’s a piece of this kind of person that is easily fooled, too. The naysayers see with complete clarity what we cannot. The passion and zeal and ideas and hope are so strong that no matter how many times we nod our heads in the beginning, saying, “Yes, of course I know this may fail and I’m okay with that, but I just have to try”, we really don’t know that. We really don’t accept the possibility. And if we genuinely do realize the possibility of failure, we aren’t in touch with just how painful and devastating it could be. The naysayers are feeling that for us. In advance. Thanks so much!

So when they’re proved right, that can only mean one thing: it happened. The worst, or close to it, happened. We find out we don’t have what it takes. We find out the path is steeper than we imagined. Maybe we will quit…maybe we can’t, because we’re in too deep. Maybe there will be miracles…maybe there will be regret. Maybe we’ll get over it, maybe we truly never will.

What do we do? Well, like I said, I don’t really know. But here’s a start…

*We grieve.

We grieve the dream or at least the version of the dream we had in mind, the process we expected. In grieving will come acceptance. Eventually. Acceptance of what is rather than what we hoped would be. Grief isn’t quick or easy. His disciples never need to grieve without hope, though. Hope that we’ll get what we’re aiming for? No, sadly. It may be time to die to that. We do have hope that He is good though, hope that He is with us, and hope that He hasn’t forgotten our story…no risk in this. It’s true, even if it doesn’t feel true.

*We take courage.

We get up every day and say, “I can do all things through Christ who gives me strength.” (Philippians 4:13) We put one foot in front of the other, and focus on what is in our lap, given by God, for that day, for that moment. Do we pout and rage? No. We dig deep and find that bravery that seemed to force us to take the risk in the first place, and we use that courage to do the work at hand whether it is the work we planned to do or not. We are still the same people! Our fire inside must be used for something else instead.

*We learn.

We are willing to be honest with ourselves and others about it, no matter how many excuses we want to make or how stupid we feel. We’re willing to learn specific things from mistakes. We’re not embittered by the naysayers. We learn to see the value in their gifts, in a spirit of humility.

*We live.

Maybe our head is hanging low and our heart is broken and the tears won’t stop flowing…but we recognize that’s fully living, too.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

February Adoption Update

I wanted to take a few minutes and blog about what is going on in our adoption!

First of all, it’s been almost a year since our dossier was accepted by the Haitian government. We hope that in the next six months we’ll receive our referral, which means pictures and info about the children we will be adopting. We have been matched but until we get a referral, it’s not official or sure, and so it is illegal for them to tell us much at all. We love our adoption agency (All Blessings International, in Owensboro, KY) and Haiti coordinator, who travels regularly to Haiti. It means a lot to us that she herself was a big part of making this match, after getting to know these children personally. We are so excited about the day that she will call us and tell us we can come visit!

When we go visit, it will be all four Taylors making the trip, for 15 days. Then we’ll come home for about 6 months and wait…We can make small trips to visit the children, but ultimately we won’t be able to bring them home until they say we can. So, we are easily looking at another year of our adoption journey if not more.

While I wish it would happen today, I have such peace in God’s timing. These kids could be up to 6 years old and God knows what needs to happen in their hearts and lives while they wait. It will be a big transition for them, unlike the transition for a young infant. God knows the time they need. Our family is going through changes and challenges as well, and God knows what we need to learn to prepare for the new arrivals. God’s writing this story. I don’t even WANT to jump in and change it. He has these Haitian children in the palm of His hand, just as much as He has Selah and Yemi in the palm of His hand.

And in my prayer time today I had this thought: “If God can orchestrate the incredible generosity that has been poured out on us from members of His body, He definitely has His eye on those precious children and will orchestrate every step of this process for them.” He has been faithful in our finances, how much more so will He be faithful in these lives being rescued?

So that does bring me to money, and I have awesome news.

We started out this adoption of two siblings knowing we would need $50,000 approximately. To those who have given financially, I will be sending out (when our adoption is drawing to a close) information about how that money was spent/used AND where that money came from (certain fundraisers, our savings, our extra jobs we took on, giving-not who gave of course but the sum of all donations, plus grants, etc.) But just for this blog, I will tell you this amazing news:

We are now down to just needing $10,450!

It’s mind blowing. And I know for sure that people’s generosity, God’s generosity, grant foundations’ generosity, was not about or for Jack and Lyndsay Taylor. It wasn’t even for the two children who will someday be in our family! This generosity was poured out unto Jesus. Every penny, our’s or your’s or whoever’s, has been because our hearts are aligned with the heart of the Father, we’re joining Him in His love for justice and compassion. His heart for the fatherless has been deposited in us, and we are honored and thankful for the opportunity to bless Jesus as we bless the least of these. It’s a joy. And we don’t take it lightly that we get to be a part of that.

We do not take it lightly that SO MANY have chosen to be a part of this with us!

Thank you!

Who Is Really Doing the Waiting?

We adopted Yemisrach, who is now six years old, in 2009. By 2011, I was asking my husband when we could start the process again. Much like labor, the pain and agony of the scary and expensive process was completely erased, and I was ready to do it again. In 2013, God put Jack in the place where he was ready to jump in, too, and within hours of him telling me (the third most exciting news ever) –that we could add to our family again– I had our application (already filled out, I sheepishly admit) in the mailbox.

That was one year ago. Our dossier was officially received on February 27, 2014, and the wait began for a referral. We have no real time frame to go by and since we are adopting from Haiti, a country whose adoption laws have went through major changes this year (all for the good), there aren’t any real guidelines to go by or other families to stalk and compare with in hopes our journey will be better or worse! In fact, I have purposely stayed out of the loop regarding other families, because every case is different and there’s just. no. telling.

But there are two things on my mind today regarding our adoption, two things I’d like to share.

One, God has been so awesome to keep me in peace and free from anxiety. He gave me this verse, from Exodus 33: “My Presence will go with you and I will give you rest.” He said this to Moses, when Moses was freaking out about something and had said, “Lord, if you are not going to go with us, then please don’t send us!” And the Lord came in a cloud that hovered over the Tent of Meeting, and that was around the time Moses face started to glow after spending time in the Presence, too. I think the Lord answered that prayer exponentially for Moses, don’t you? That was exactly my prayer in starting this adoption. And He has really done it. My attitude has been, “Thank You, Lord, that someday I get to bring more kids into our home. I’m just happy to be in the process, do it Your way.” That has been a gift, and pretty different than how I felt in our journey to Yemi…I was a basket case!

But that brings me to the second thing. For one of the very first times, now that it’s been a year, and also as there have just been so few referrals coming out of Haiti this entire year, I was feeling discouraged. I was starting to feel frustrated that our kids (even though we don’t know who they are, probably our agency does) were getting older sitting in an orphanage. I started to think about paperwork and if they were going to ask us to change the ages of preference so that those children would still fit our criteria. I started to think about how those children must feel, wondering if there is anyone who wants them or at least anyone who is physically able to take care of them, wondering if a soft bed, enough dinner, a pet, a Christmas gift, a good school, or most of all parents were going to be part of their future. I wonder, Do they have hope? Do they know what I know- that they are daily prayed for, and sought after, and that many adults are working on their behalf to get them from where they are to where they can’t even dream of yet? Do they know I have empty picture frames waiting for their sweet faces, and that my heart has an empty spot, too, that will only be filled by them in God’s redeeming plan?

In this time of prayer and thoughts, I sort of said to myself, in an effort to ease some of the hurt, “Well, this gives me more time to fundraise, and get well, and get this or that figured out, and have more time with the kids we have.” All true. Totally fine. But my heart had made a major shift. I don’t like having to wait, sure, but I’m not sad and slightly angry and praying hard for ME, a mom waiting for her children. I’m sad and slightly angry and praying hard from the perspective of these children. Not a mom waiting for children…but children waiting for a mom. There’s a big difference. I can pretty easily calm the hurt as a mom waiting for her children, because I have a wonderful, purposeful, and hope filled life right here and now. But can I calm the hurt that I am choosing to share with those kids who are waiting for parents and safety and home and enough? I really cannot.

Adoption exercises the faith muscle in a major way, just like any time you see a child in need when you can’t do anything more than what you are already doing for them. We decide in that moment that we have no choice but to completely entrust them to the Lord and place them in His hands. When we let go of something that precious, that priceless, as innocent children, into the care of the Father (who gave us this love and fierce determination to rescue in the first place), that is faith– that is the bloody, tender flesh of faith. And it hurts. And it should. And it’s okay to hurt. It’s more than okay.

He sits with the lowly, is near to the brokenhearted. Of that, we can be sure…and so His presence, that I so cherish, must be with them as well. He will always be their home and their hope, not me. He is their answer, not me. So He is showing me that my most urgent prayer for my kids, or the kids stuck in the Congo, or even kids stuck in an abusive home or bad situation, shouldn’t be a cry of “get them to their forever family, Lord” but a cry of “Lord, bring them to You.”

He is at work in the waiting.