Thursday, May 21, 2009

Walk and Not Faint (Encouraging Bible verses)

As many of you know, we committed to adopting Steven on May 31, 2008. At that time I believed that we would be able to hurriedly assemble another dossier and quickly rescue him from the institution to which he had just been transferred. But that was not to be. Though we had our SDA appointment back in December 2008 we have not yet been assigned a court date to finalize our adoption. We are quickly approaching the 1 year mark.

2 or 3 days ago I opened my NIV Study Bible and it opened--as it often has in the past--to Isaiah 41:10
"So do not fear, for I am with you;
do not be dismayed, for I am your God.
I will strengthen you and help you;
I will uphold you with my righteous right hand."

Wow, I could just put a strangle-hold on that verse.

I was also reminded that Isaiah 40:31 is on the opposite page:
"But those who hope in the LORD will renew their strength.
They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and
not be faint."

I was thinking there is a time to fly, to run and to walk. I love the soaring times when God just flies me over the troubles and zooms me through the obstacles. But maybe the epitome of showing His strength is when we walk and don't faint. Not exciting. No applause. Pretty monotonous and slow. But we just keep trudging along, trustingly putting one foot in front of the other. The only way we lose is if we quit. If we just keep going, we will win.

Of course, I'm thinking of Steven's never-ending adoption. I haven't soared; I've done very little running. And honestly, there have been plenty of times when I haven't trusted (I am so ashamed to say this.) I've moaned and groaned. But we haven't given up.

I'm reminded of the verse that says: "Let us not become weary in doing good, for at the proper time we'll reap a harvest if we don't give up." (Galatians 6:9)

Here are some other related verses that also encouraged me.

2 Corinthians 4:1 "Therefore since through God's mercy we have this ministry, we do not lose

Hebrews 12:1-3 "Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us
throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles, and let us run with
perseverance the race marked out for us. Let us fix our eyes on Jesus, the author and
perfecter of our faith, who for the joy set before him endured the cross, scorning its shame
and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God. Consider him who endured such
opposition from sinful men, so that you will not grow weary and lose heart."

I Corinthians 15:58 "Therefore, my dear brothers, stand firm. Let nothing move you. Always
give yourselves fully to the work of the Lord, because you know that your labor in the Lord
is not in vain."

So tomorrow is preliminary court!! Truthfully, I have such mixed feelings. I am cautiously excited. On the one hand, I can't believe the day has (almost) finally arrived. On the other hand, I'm afraid something will happen to postpone our hearing. I HOPE our actual adoption court will be set to take place very soon afterwards but nearly everything else has moved at such a snail's pace that I know further delay is possible. Once we get that court date we can make travel plans to be present. (Please remember this is not the usual way that the Ukrainian adoption process goes, so please don't let our experience worry anyone.)

However, in light of all the above verses, I have to remind myself that God will be with us no matter what. I strongly believe that adoption is a "ministry" that God has called our family to participate in. It is a vital part of the "race marked out for us." It is a portion of our personal "labor in the Lord." So at some point we WILL be excitedly scrambling for airline tickets, breathlessly emailing back and forth making an apartment selection, joyfully packing suitcases--IF WE DON'T GIVE UP.

Thank you so much for all of your prayers and encouragement during this long, long process. They make all the difference in the world.


Lyndi said...

Praying that court goes well tomorrow and they are able to give you a court date in the very near future. I would love for you to be over there with us! Keep your eyes on the Lord, friend, for He is faithful!

Hi~I'm Alysha said...

Once again your honesty is refreshing and encouraging,my friend! In this call God has given it hard to always be uplifed. But He is our refuge! I'll be praying tonight and tomorrow as your case is presented. I know it's in God's hands and His perfect will, will privale!

The Keno Family said...

We too have been on a long slow adventure Joy. Frustrating for sure, but as we hopefully near the end, I can see God's timing is perfect. I will be praying for Steven and your family as you trust in God to join you together in His perfect time.
Mary Ellen