Peace is such a big little-big word. You know, a little word with a big meaning? Like L-O-V-E. Such a small word with a whole lot of power.
Today I sat in the church service and listened as our pastor finished up the series on the names of Christ. Isaiah 9:6: For unto us a child is born, to us a Son is given; and the government shall be upon his shoulder, and his name shall be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.
I sat there today, tears stinging the back of my eyes as I realized that this is exactly what Jesus has been for me this year - even when I didn't acknowledge it - or really realize it.
This year has felt like a whirlwind in every way. When I flipped the calendar over to December, I remember thinking "Wow, that sure happened fast!" And during the year I can't tell you how many times I thought "If we can just make it to Sunday night" - and we did - almost 52 times already!
I just want to take a minute to be thankful for all the ways I/we have been sustained and encouraged this year.
I am thankful that in January, Nate was courageous enough to take a giant leap of faith and leave UPS after more than 10 years. I was terrified. Everything we had ever known, and ever planned for - revolved around his job. The stability, the plans we had for the future, our livelihood - in my mind -was coming from UPS. Yes, I realize it was a job given to Nate by God to provide for our family and it is He alone who meets our needs, but in that moment, making a "once we leave we are gone" decision for a job that was so different, a job that would be a huge adjustment for our family and was going to take all the security that I could see right out from under our feet - I thought - what are we thinking? But Nate just did it - he prayed, thought and prayed some more - and then he just trusted, and we both had peace.
When it came to the decision to put Skylar in school - I had been really really reeeeaallllyyy on the fence. What is best for her? Does she need to be in school? Should I keep her home and home school? Should I send her here - or there? And we prayed, and prayed and prayed - made a decision - and we had peace.
And in between a new job, new schedule for work for both of us, new school, new church - two weddings (third one on the way) - our hearts were being led to start the adoption process. In a year that was already overwhelming and hard to balance - we knew God was calling us. As soon as we listened and obeyed - we had peace.
Yet, in the middle of this entire adoption process - a process full of paperwork, training, waiting, financial investment - I have had more peace about God's provision in our life that I think I have ever had. All the logistics that would normally worry me sick have been easy to overlook compared to the total lack of control that has come with knowing our baby is halfway across the world and there is not a blessed thing I can do about that. I feel like I am searching for peace about this one thing - constantly praying that God will protect her and bring her home sooner than later. I know it sounds so stinking crazy - because I don't know her - who she is, how old she is, where she is, or what she looks like, but my heart literally aches for her. It's a feeling that is so hard to put in to words. I remember being pregnant with Skylar and Wyatt and wanting desperately to hold them - but it wasn't a painful ache - because they were with me, safe - and I knew.
But this is a whole new realm of emotions, a whole new level of peace needed. I have to fight back tears when I think about her - not knowing who is holding her - or if she is even being held. Is she sad, cold, hungry, lonely - or does she have wonderful caretakers who play with her, pray over her and let her know her mom and dad will be there for her soon? I pray desperately she knows she is loved and wanted.
But this one thing I know - and was reminded of again today at church - when the chaos and worries of life surround me, I can have peace because of who my Heavenly Father is - and I know that He cares for her even more than I do. This give me peace.
As the holiday season goes on - I am praying for peace. I am praying that I will know that God's timing is best. That He is still working on me, and preparing me to be her mom. If the time was right, she would be here already. I pray that I will not rush through or wish away this phase of waiting - but instead relax in the peace that only He can give me, that I will enjoy my time with Skylar and Wyatt, and that I will be still and know that He holds my baby even when Nate and I can't.
This song has been an encouragement to me lately - knowing Jesus, Only Jesus can sustain me.