Our journey to finally go meet C has been, well.. bumpy. We expected that, just maybe not to the degree of difficulty we’ve already been facing. Covid testing requirements that seemed impossible to meet, foreign political instability threatening our travel, non-material things we have no control of looming over us (as if we have control over anything in life: a constant illusion I struggle to avoid).
In my prayer time, a passage came ALIVE for me like it never has before. As I’m struggling not to worry or be anxious about our trip and the details of it, I read in Tim Keller’s book “Prayer” about praising God and how doing this regularly and frequently can right the attitude of my heart and align it with truth. One question useful in propelling this type of thinking is, as I’m going down my list of things to be thankful for, thinking “What kind of God create this AND give it to me?”
As I’m praising God, for my family, for my incredible life, my heart turns to the cross and the amazing sacrifice of Jesus. Not only did God make a way for me to spend eternity in glory because of that precious sacrifice, planned before the very first dawn of time, but He has also extended his love and provision to me this side of Heaven. He cares for my needs, now, regardless the size, not leaving me to fend for myself until death and THEN experiencing his goodness to me. I’m experiencing it this instant and every instant on Earth.
As for the Scripture that came alive, Matt. 7:7-11.
7 “Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you. 8 For everyone who asks receives; the one who seeks finds; and to the one who knocks, the door will be opened.
9 “Which of you, if your son asks for bread, will give him a stone? 10 Or if he asks for a fish, will give him a snake? 11 If you, then, though you are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father in heaven give good gifts to those who ask him!
God is not idle or absent, and because I can praise him for the things He’s given me I can then shift my focus to what kind of God would create this and give this? An inconceivably good God. And would that God do anything cruel in my life or be complacent? No chance. So my worries and anxieties are pointless: the inconceivably good God who loves me and has provided everything for me this side of Heaven and beyond is in control. Many Christians know this, as in they would choose right on a multiple choice test. But as it so often is with faith, knowing it and living it out can be two very different things all together.
So we are pressing on, trusting the Lord to pave our way, knowing He is perfectly good. He has brought about provided many tangible answers to the problems we’ve faced recently. And we will still encounter challenges, but our aim will be to praise Him first to align our hearts with the truth: that He has already provided everything we need in Jesus and is with us even now. As Tim Keller said in his book, “That is what prayer does— it takes something you believe about God that is ignorable and detached from how you live your life and makes it VIVID (emphasis mine)… Prayer plunges is into the fullness of who He is, and His love becomes more real than the rejection or disappointment we are experiencing.”
We will take these truths, and will step on a plane to go meet our daughter for the first time with confidence, not fear. And while you can’t join us physically, you can join us in spirit and truth, praying to our Father with us for all the things He desires to fulfill.
C knows we are coming and seems excited! We know all the “new” will be overwhelming at times, but we are praying that God would prepare her heart even now for her forever family. That she will be open to our love and care and a supernatural trust of these “strangers” would give her peace. Pray that with us! She has drawn a picture of an airplane, a rain cloud and five very, um, abstract people to represent our family- ha! Her smile is infectious, and I cannot wait until we can not only share her full name here, but also her whole self. She is already a JOY to us, and we are thankful God is bringing us together now!