(This is your fair warning that you are about to follow a lengthy rabbit trail of thoughts)
So onto the topic of this post... prayers for our sweet girl... prayers that are actually pretty hard for me to pray as they remind me that she is out there yet without us... We are 99.9 % certain that she is alive... I had to leave a point of a percent open for God to do something crazy but based on our timeline at lifeline, we believe she is alive. It is exciting to picture her, but when my next thought goes to what she is doing right now, it gets kind of hard/ gut-wrenching...
Everything she is going through right now, the care she is receiving, the care she is needing but not receiving is all shaping who she is and what she will struggle with as she grows up. I mentioned a while back that we had required reading that was super informative albeit a bit disturbing.... and what stuck out to me most was how so many connections in a babies' brain are directly related to the baby being touched, held, etc. as a newborn... connections are also made as the baby sees its needs being met... i.e. our babies cry, so we feed them, change their diaper, rock them.... and as their needs are consistently met, our babies develop trust and a bond with their parents that can effect all future relationships...I think my emotions were heightened as I read about all the effects on a baby when these needs are NOT met and the connections in their brains are NOT made because all year long I have had a baby. Henry just turned one and over the past months, as I changed his diapers, held him when he had ear infections and didn't want to be put down, fed him at every cry when he was a newborn....I couldn't help but think that somewhere in China was my little girl who was missing out on all of this TLC... and while I KNOW God is in control and He chose this path for her life, it still makes a part of my heart deeply saddened... to know that we cannot be there when she is so little and so needy...
That whole thought process has shaped how I want to pray for her in the waiting...
I have prayed normal prayers.... that God would keep her safe, protect her...that He would provide a caregiver who just thinks she is the greatest baby in the orphanage and will make the extra effort to hold her.... that she'd perhaps be in foster care....
Through it all though, my mind continues to dwell on the fact that God chose her, before the foundations of the world, to be our daughter. With that said, He is the only one who has always been with her and will always be.... He is the only one who has heard her every cry and is intimately acquainted with every detail of her first days of life... who her birth parents are, why they had to leave her... and HE WAS WITH HER THROUGH IT ALL. Seriously, what better comfort can I have to know that my daughter is being taken care of by the creator of the universe at every twist and turn.
Those thoughts led to my wanting to pray for God to meet her needs in supernatural ways since He is obviously with her now. I asked friends for a little help a while back on biblical examples of God supernaturally meeting the needs of His people. I wanted Old Testament examples of when they couldn't see God face to face, yet He moved in mighty ways... just wanted to be able to claim His word as truth and be able to come before the throne in boldness... to proclaim "You moved in mighty ways for your people then, move for my little girl now!"
So, 3 examples... very briefly..
1. the manna which God provided every day as food for the Israelites as they wandered in the desert... God caused it to rain down from heaven....I can't help but think that must have been a crazy sight to see your food pouring down from heaven.... a supernatural solution to the problem...and also cool that God moved like that when they didn't even come before Him praising but came complaining!
2. 1 Kings 17- God provided food for Elijah twice a day by causing ravens to bring him meat and bread...again, a supernatural solution.
3. Jonah 4: 6- At the end of the book of Jonah, it says "God appointed a plant and it grew over Jonah to be a shade over his head to deliver him from discomfort."
These scriptures reminded me not to put God in a box in the ways He can provide for her... so if you wonder what I am praying when God wakes me up in the wee hours of the night....
"Lord, if her tummy is aching because she is hungry, cause the pain to subside until they can get to her. Lord, if her bottle is propped, would you please hold it for her, so she won't drop it and can drink? Lord, if she has a poopie diaper, please protect her bottom from diaper rash until they can get it changed... " You think I'm kidding/ crazy, I'm not.
And what gives me greatest comfort is when I pray "Lord, I ask that you would surround her crib with a legion of angels. Let them guard over her and protect her. Lord, be in her crib with her and let her literally feel your heartbeat, feel your breath on her face, hold her in your arms and let her feel the warmth of your embrace. Lord, if she is crying, sing songs of joy over her and quiet her with your love." He is real and He is able to meet her needs.
I know she will experience great loss even when we go to get her and she is taken away from all that she has ever known... but my HOPE is that if she can feel God's presence in a VERY real way as a baby, then there will be some comfort in leaving the orphanage because she will continue to feel His presence in a real way, she won't leave that piece of her past at the orphanage with everything else, but will carry it with her for the rest of her life... kind of like God is her really big security blankie....I think of the verse in the Bible about how God will give back the years that the locusts have stolen and I have confidence that as we fight for her and love on her, He will restore her. I love that there is HOPE.... after all the scary scenarios I had to read about, there is real and true hope for our little girl because we know Jesus as our savior. On an aside, won't it be fun one day to sit before the throne of God and ask Him to tell me all the ways He moved on her behalf when she was half a world away?!
I fear I have rambled.... if you are still reading you deserve a prize!!
The kids love to pray for her too. Rollins the other night prayed "please don't let her worry because we will come to adopt her. Keep her warm and let her friends be nice to her and let her have a few toys." Anne Rainey chimed in "and let her not have the chicken pox!"
We welcome all prayers... simple and "crazy" :)