It is just so so so good to REMEMBER.
Remembering the goodness and greatness of our God and how He is faithful to work in and around us for HIS glory!
I shared Ephesians 3:14-21 a few days ago because it was what our church studied last Sunday. Our pastor asked, "What is the next great challenge of faith God is bringing to you?" My first thought was, "Oh no. I just got over my last... not... yet... ready....!"
But the words say...
"Now to him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work within us, to him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, for ever and ever! Amen."
And immediately what came to mind was the events that took place to get our Thea home... amazing, mind-boggling, and none other than a God who does "immeasurably more than we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work with in us."
So here is a little more depth to my first 2 days back and how things perfectly fell into place in allowing us to bring Thea into our family! Not for our benefit (nor her's) but for the glory of God as he works in and around us!
The Story of Court and an Answered Prayer
I was - totally and completely petrified in fear. Mainly because I had just got done doing it all with Allan and knew ALL the issues that could/potentially/commonly arise. And I knew I had to do it all again... but this time all on my own.
Things were - not getting "easier". And by that I don't mean "better", because I knew what the courts and embassy were doing/trying to do was RIGHT... yet still, this is not easy for parents like me who had tried very much to do the right thing all along. I was still horribly fearful that the truth might not be see-able by others on the outside. There is much suspicion that it is often what is looked for and assumed, even if it isn't the truth.
Recently someone asked a group I was in "What is the bravest thing you have ever done..." Immediately I knew... the bravest thing I have ever done is gotten on that flight back to Uganda and did the things that brought Thea home... nearly alone. I spoke about how far fear got to me during the days before I made it back, here. It was just so so so hard. Mainly, because we were told that the judge we were to see had unfortunately had a death in his family... when that happens it is very common for judges to not even come to work for a week as travel or services need to be attended. We were advised by many people not to even go to Uganda as he was unlikely to even show up... which was exactly what had taken place the month prior when our case wasn't seen. BUT, we were told by our lawyer that we should still come... and just see what happens... "in case he did show up."
Now I don't know about you, but flying 1/2 way around the world, with a hope that someone will show up isn't a very comfortable thing. I just knew it would be a wasted trip! I just knew that it was a fool's errand.
When I did land, there was a friend (actually a sweet neighbor of mine... well she upped and moved now) who was in the process of bringing home her sweet littlest daughter. She knew what was at stake... she was doing it too! The morning I was bumping out on red dirt roads to get Thea and then head to court my cell phone rang. It was her and she had called to pray for me. She prayed for many things... most I can't remember exactly... but one thing she did pray for sort of took me back. She prayed, "Lord, we pray that you take out all the fire in this judge. We pray that he is weary and only willing to hear the case as it is."
I thought... "She is praying that the judge I am only hopeful I will get to see today is 'weary'... that is not really a good thing..." But she prayed on and it was probably one of the most welcomed prayers someone has ever prayed for me. Little did she know that it was a prayer that was prophetic (or at least very specifically answered by God).
That day, two amazing and really sort of miraculous things happened. Things that I can only attribute to the power of God.
We got there and waited and waited and waited and waited... (we weren't even sure he would show up). Then we got word that he had arrived. When I heard that I actually thought, "We might just have a chance... just might!" We then learned...he was ONLY there to sign some paper work and he refused to hear any cases that day, because he was so tired and weary.
But we waited. And our lawyer was able to go before him. She and another attorney asked if the judge would be gracious enough to hear our case and another young couple with their hopeful daughter.
Our attorney came out and said, "He didn't say no... that is a good sign... but he didn't say yes either. We will wait longer."
So we waited...
Before long we were quickly rushed in before him. We went first and he read our case. He interviewed our witnesses and people involved in our case. He asked some questions and then what I feared most and knew would happen... He brought me up to testify. This is what I was most terrified about. My husband/hero wasn't with me to help me be bold. But what he said shocked me, he said, "I wasn't planning on seeing anyone today. I am very tired." I said that I knew that (internal chagrin) and I was sorry for his loss, but was thankful he was willing to see us that day. He smiled and said, "So. You come back and forth, back and forth?" I said, that yes, I did. He said, "That is good... we want our children to have parents that love Uganda and to come back often." I said, I very much did and we planned to return many times. He said, "I have heard your case and see that there is no solution for this child outside of a home or the care of strangers. Please come back in one week for your ruling."
That was it?
All my struggles and sleepless nights, for my only question of... "You come back and forth, back and forth..."
He was weary.
He did hear our case exactly as it was. He was thorough and exact, but not suspicious.
He did what was best for our girl.
Court was a trial in more ways than one... but it was also to prove one important fact to me...
God's will cannot be thwarted!
He will do immeasurably more than we ask or imagine.
It is ALL about His glory... as his power works out in us.
|As Thea and I left the baby home for good! |
Me looking over-joyed, her nanny looking sad, and Thea looking
completely overwhelmed... The reality of adoption.
|Thea our first night together!|
Other stories to come... most likely.