Today’s guest post is by a very soon-to-be adoptive mommy named Jillian. They are days away from wrapping their son in the arms and bringing home FOREVER!
September 26, 2011. I was sitting in bed, beside my husband, with my computer on my lap when I saw it. My son’s face. I saw him for the very first time. I don’t know what it was about his picture. His beautiful eyes. The fullness of his tiny lips. Or maybe it was his profile. The way he was described as quiet and affectionate. But as I was scrolling through a list of waiting children, I found my baby. And somehow, I knew it.
I didn’t know in the absolutely positively guaranteed sort of way, but I knew in the somewhere in my soul an empty space was filled sort of way. I remember staring at my computer screen and whispering to God, “Is this my son?”
I turned my computer over toward my husband. “John. Look.” My husband’s breath caught as he saw the beautiful child before him and I can still hear his breathy, “Ohh!” exclamation.
It was already late when we saw our son’s picture, but before I went to sleep that night I had an inquiry email sent out to see how we could pursue him and I had a draft of our fundraising letter written too. My husband John and I had spent the past few months praying about adoption and discerning our call, but something changed in us that night. Our journey went from a journey of adoption to journey to our son. That night our concerns about affording adoption and whether or not we should pursue the fertility treatments we had been considering were put to rest. Our son was out there. He was in Russia, actually. And we would do whatever it took to get to him.
Today as I write this post it is November 8 and we are 10 days away from fetching our son and driving away from his orphanage together, forever. Over the last 14 months I have been pushed to places both literally and spiritually that I thought I’d never be able to go. What I’ve learned most in our adoption journey is not just the strength of a mother’s love, but the perfect provision of the Father’s plan.
My mother’s heart has experienced the depths of emotion during this journey. I have been scared, sad, worried, anxious, desperate, and lonely. Yet in those depths I have experienced the heights of provision from our Father. He has given me courage, joy, peace, calm, hope, and fellowship. My mother’s heart has promised my son, “I will go to the ends of the earth for you!” The Father’s provision has said, “At the ends of the earth and at the end of yourself- I will meet you there.”
When John and I started our adoption journey I remember telling God that I was ready to handle almost everything in the adoption; all I needed from him was that he would provide the funding, because that- that we did not have. He provided all the money for us, but when every penny was earned I realized that I would need a lot more than just money to complete this adoption. I would need… well, everything.
I have been to the end of myself. 14 months ago I might have thought the end of myself would be the worst place to be. A place of emptiness and devastation. As it turns out, the end of myself is where I found God and his grace in a fullness I have never known before. The end of myself is a place where I would never go willingly, but at the same time I would go there all over again- both for my son and for the amazing work God is doing in my life. He is shaping me to be a mother and to conformed to his image. A painful, beautiful process.
I often ask other adoptive mothers for their advice in this journey. Today I will give my best advice for you: allow this journey to take you into the depths and determine to find God there. You will be tempted to rely on your mother (or father) love to bring you to your child. It is not enough. Lean into the Father. Seek his perfect provision. Wherever you go, trust that his grace will meet you there.
(Bio) Jillian Burden is a soon-to-be adoptive mama, blogging about her adoption journey and the blessing, lament, joy, and conviction that happen along the way. Follow her adoption journey at addingaburden.com