But then, as God is so often prone to doing, He sent me a little kick in the butt in the form of a friend who needed prayer from me. Karyn e-mailed me a while back, asking me to pray for her regarding a trip she was contemplating to Sierra Leon, Africa. In praying for her and "advising" her (not sure she actually asked for my opinion, but as is so tempting to do, when people ask you to pray, I imparted my "wisdom" along with my prayers... yuck.... sorry Kar.) Anyway, she is two parts into a three part story at this point about the path God has lead her down in trying to discern His voice over this trip. And be darned if it wasn't actually ME He was trying to make a point to. Ever hear a sermon and swear God spoke those words directly to your pew and that the same words were not meant for anyone in the room but you? Well, when I read Kar's post, I swore that God had sent her all along this thorny road just to scream at me since I seemed to be missing the point.
See, Kar laid out her fleece before the Lord and it came back dry every time. She was getting the message that she was not to take the next steps toward this trip. However, she didn't just sit there on her butt feeling sorry for herself. She picked up some tools and started packing up birthing kits to send to Africa with the folks who are going. She started praying for the people she desperately wanted to serve. And she is being transformed in the process. And isn't that usually the point with God? He sends you into situations feeling like you are going to help someone else, only to find out you are actually the one He is helping! :)
So, what does this have to do with me... after I've drug you through all that story in a very convoluted way? Well, this.... contrary to what everyone seemed to read a few weeks ago when I posted this post, I do not feel God calling us to adopt at this particular time in our lives. But I do feel him working and moving and I do know He's not done with us and orphans. But what I did learn this week is that I don't have to be looking for something BIG and glamorous to start serving Him and them. I can be folding and cutting bags for birthing kits. I can be helping Gwen post her MASSIVE amount of stuff on Craig's List to draw people to her yard sale (seriously, this girl is overrun with nice stuff to sell to help finish the final push for Abigail and Joseph.) And most of all, I can be serving the former orphans that are living in my home now who need specific things in their little hearts and minds specifically because they were orphans at one point. My obligation to God on their behalf did not end when they entered my home, it had only just begun. That is one thing I tend to forget. I tend to look at parenting as just something that I have chosen, I forget that it's a mission field in and of itself. And I forget that there are long lasting affects and effects of orphanage life, toxic exposures, and abandonment that will need to be addressed over and over again at various points in their little lives, continually reaffirming them and God's love for them and our commitment to them. So, thanks Karyn for reminding me! And I'll just leave you with this verse from the Message translation of the Bible that really was the final kick in the booty this morning! I can identify with this verse because I do this so many times during the day... take my children firmly by the hand and lead them toward what's good for them, specifically because of my great love for them. I hope you all have a great weekend!
"In kindness He takes us firmly by the hand and leads us into a radical life-change."