Friday, December 03, 2010

Broken hearts but not a broken God

We asked you to pray for us that God's will would be done regarding the adoption of a little boy from Malawi (yep, Malawi. No need now to keep it a secret). We know with confidence that God has heard and answered our prayers. We made our plans but it is now clear that God has redirected our paths.
Wednesday morning we had the privilege of visiting and playing with Ernest, the boy we intended to adopt. Though he was sweet and affectionate, it quickly became clear to us, as well as my parents who had accompanied us, that Ernest has significant mental disabilities. After consulting with his nannies and school teacher, and my dad, Chris, who was a physician, we came to the conclusion that Ernest likely has Cerebral Palsy, and is likely older than the 3 years of age we had been told. He does not speak, does not engage with his peers and would likely require lifelong personal care. Though we were prepared for the normal challenges of bringing home an institutionalized child, and even open to parenting a host of special needs, neurological disabilities were not something we feel comfortable choosing for our family. The director of Ernest’s orphanage had represented him over the course of the entire adoption process to be a very healthy normal boy – a “leader” in his school. Needless to say, we were then shocked by the challenges we faced upon meeting him, and came to question other details we had been told, including his HIV status. Through much prayer and counsel, we decided Ernest and our family would be best served by leaving him in his current loving home and expert care.
The Judge who sits on His throne in heaven has ordained before the beginning of the world that we would travel to Malawi, but apparently not that we would adopt a little boy. We don't know why God would have us travel and have our hearts broken, but we hold tightly to the truth that God has caused ALL things to work together for His good. We are reminded that our time on earth is intended to bring glory to His name.
The past 48 hours has been the longest of our entire lives, but as we were lying in bed last night thinking of all of the events that had occurred, we noticed a consistent theme: God provided the perfect amount of grace for each moment. We left Blantyre yesterday and traveled 400km to the home of our dear friends, the Biedebachs, in Lilongwe where we are being loved on. This morning we attended African Bible College chapel service where we sang "Blessed be the name of the Lord." We have sung that song numerous times at home, but we were all in tears as we were reminded of the truth that the Lord gives and takes away. We are blessed to be able to trust in His plans and His ways.
Please pray for our children that they will be comforted as they learn that Ernest isn't coming home. Pray that we will be able to arrange to travel home earlier than planned without significant extra cost. Pray that God will continue to comfort our broken hearts. Praise God that Danny and I are united in this trial. Praise God for his goodness to provide a multitude of graces at the perfect moment to assist us in this trial. Thanks friends!

29 comments:

Rebekah said...

I'm so sorry. I'll be praying for you. May you sense God's presence and peace as He binds up your broken hearts.

Elizabeth said...

At a loss for words. You are in my prayers.

By the Brook said...

We love you guys! Relying on our Sovereign God and so encouraged by your trust in Him. WE LOVE having you here!

Annemarie said...

I am praying for you all right now. I can't imagine the difficulty of this.

~Annemarie

Lisa writes... said...

Oh, friend. I am so sorry. I am praying for you. May you rest in the Lord's grace. He is sovereign and He is good.

Jason and Erin said...

I am so sorry. Thinking of you all.

Elizabeth said...

I, too, am so sorry and am at a loss for words. Glad Ernest is in a nurturing place as he continues to develop. Hugs to all.

Barbara Coyle said...

I am so, so sorry. We too lost a little girl in Africa after traveling to get her and spending three weeks with her. You have my fervent prayers for the peace of God and his comfort.

Jenny M. said...

Oh Laura, I'm so sorry. You are definitely in my prayers and I am so encouraged by how you and Dan are so trusting of our great God.

Much love to you all...

Jenny and Brian

A Complete Thought said...

Your post title says it all. May the faithfulness of our Lord and Savior be your most intimate comfort. May His Name be praised at every turn.

Lori said...

How heartbreaking for all of you. I pray that God will hold all of you up, continue to take care of Ernest and lead you in peaceful paths. Hang on to His hand, as I know you are doing. Love to all of you from France

Chris and Michelle said...

Tears fall in our home at your loss. We lift you and your children up to the Lord with our prayers.

Meredith said...

Oh, Laura, I am so sorry for your loss. It is a profound sadness that few people can truly grasp. Be kind to yourself as you grieve for this boy, who you believed would be your son. You, your family and Ernest will be in my prayers.

natalie craig said...

Laura that's so hard, we will be praying for your sweet family!

NHP said...

I am sorry to read about your loss. God is holding your family and has a good plan for you all and for him.
Blessings.

erinlo said...

My heart hurts for you. I can't begin to imagine what a gut wrenching situation you were in. Praying for peace and comfort for all of you.

Neil, Amy and The Girls said...

I am so sorry. What a sad situation. Praying for your family and for Ernest.

Heather said...

I'm so sorry guys. Praying for all the travel details and for your family to deal with the news.

InTheRefinersFire said...

Oh, Laura, I am so sorry to hear this. I am also so shocked. I could hardly believe what I was reading. My heart breaks for you and I will prayer for your comfort and peace. Lisa (Madalitso's mom)

Dan said...

Laura I am so sorry. I am praying for you, Ernest and your family as you grieve. While our circumstances are different when we were unable to bring home our sweet Andrew the Lord gave us Emma and his plan is perfect!

Praying!
Elisabeth

Anonymous said...

Hi:
Praying for you all.I know this was not a easy decision to make but God never steers us wrong.I will be praying for a family for this little guy and for you as God leads you and directs you to where He wants you to go.
Leveta-Dillon Mom to Sam 14 and Kaitrin 11 both from India and Chad 18 (bio)

Anonymous said...

Praying for you all. Thankfully God's grace is so very deep and sufficient. You can cling to Him for He is your Rock your Shield and your Sronghold. When you cry out to Him He will hear you and He will answer you perfectly - Ps 18.
Much love, the Nesheims

Heather said...

I can't imagine...I will be praying for you all.

Laura said...

Thank you all for your kind words and prayers!

Annonymous, thank you for your thoughtful but unfortunately misled post. I've deleted it because it was based on too many wrong assumptions, but I would be happy to respond to you privately if you let me know who you are.

Sharon said...

This is Brian Biedebach's sister. My heart goes out to your family right now. Especially praying you will be reunited soon with your precious three at home if you are not already. Thank you for sharing this heartbreak.

Sharon Harty

Heather M. said...

Oh Laura...I am so very sorry for your family's loss. I hope your other three kiddos are doing ok & isn't it wonderful to know that God will heal your hearts in time. I will be in prayer for you all. Heather

Kelli said...

Laura, So sorry to hear this news. I have had to learn over the last 2 years that God is Sovereign and sometimes it happens when we won't understand what He was doing this side of heaven. I will be lifting your family up in prayer as you decide what your steps will be, I'll pray for your kids. God is good all the time. I know you know that. That doesn't mean that it doesn't hurt really bad sometimes as you continue to trust Him.

Nancy said...

Oh Laura, I am so very sorry for your your sorrow. God's path is so very hard to decipher sometimes. I have no words that I think are sufficient. except to say that you and Earnest are in my prayers this evening.
Nancy-of the crazy 8

Photographer: Rebecca Pierce said...

Wow, that is so sad! It sounds like you were guided to the right choice for you all, and I'm glad you got to get home to your awesome babies, you are so blessed and so are they!