Tuesday, July 12, 2011
Unless the Lord builds the house,
it's builders labor in vain.
Unless the Lord watches over the city,
the watchmen stand guard in vain.
In vain you rise early and stay up late
toiling for food to eat-
for he grants sleep to those he loves.
Sons are a heritage from the Lord,
children a reward from him.
Like arrows in the hands of the warrior
are sons born in one's youth.
Blessed is the man
whose quiver is full of them.
They will not be put to shame
when they contend with their
enemies in the gate.
This Psalm spoke to me where I sit this morning. I awoke with a start and a knot in my stomach. I went to the refrigerator to take my Typhoid immunization pill. I go back to my white board and add three more things to my to-do list. It just keeps getting longer but nothing seems to get scratched off.
Last night we learned of three more government forms that have to be done perfectly to pull this off. It is a miracle we got this far, because the paperwork always makes me want to cry. I have great respect for every person I know that has done international adoption, because the paperwork and hoops to jump through seem endless to me!
There is so much to do between now and when we leave. Stress. It's sitting on me, feeling heavier and heavier.
Rusty and I prayed together last night that we wouldn't stress but would trust God. So I'm getting my coffee this morning, trying to remember that prayer, thinking of more things to write in red marker on my white board, and make myself sit down in my white Bible reading chair to visit with the Lord. I know I need a dose of His good Word this morning. But part of me would rather dive into the white board list instead.
But no, I go back and sit down. I wander to the Psalms. Do you ever have days you just need the Psalms? I depart from Ephesians 1 where I've been camping out, and go to the Psalms.
"Unless the Lord builds the house, its builders labor in vain. Unless the Lord watches over the city, the watchmen stand guard in vain. In vain you rise early and stay up late- (like I was up until midnight getting "stuff done") toiling for food to eat- for he grants sleep to those he loves."
In vain...in vain...he grants sleep. I love sleep!
My footnote says "A good harvest is not the result of endless toil, but of God's blessing."
O Lord, I need you to help me not toil endlessly, but to trust you as I work! To rest in You!
Sons are a heritage...children are a reward...Blessed is the man...
This is so counter-culture for us. We don't see children as a blessing, but a liability, a burden.
This becomes more evident to me when we are in process with an adoption.
People tell us how amazing we are, how there's a special place in heaven for us, how lucky our daughter is, etc.
I feel uncomfortable in these moments, and probably never respond the way I should. But what I want to convey each time is,
Children are a blessing and a reward. Children from our womb, children in an orphanage in Africa, they are a blessing and a reward.
We all know they're a lot of work. True. I'm a lot of work too. Most everything wonderful and good that God calls us to is also really hard. But what a blessing! What a gift!
And just keep in mind, when my kids hear people say that to us, it sends the direct message to their little brains that they are not a blessing, but a burden.
I know those comments are meant in kindness. Thank you. But I hope our family is conveying that we are the blessed ones to have these little people. Just as you are blessed to have your little people, if you are parents.
I am guilty of thinking wrongly about this when I am annoyed, when I am flustered, when they make big messes, and my house goes from clean to post-frat party in minutes. Deep breath.
I pray He is re-shaping my thinking and yours on the blessing and reward our children are. We cannot wait to bring home blessing #5, Ella Bacak.