Me: Does God always answer our prayers exactly how we think? When we started our adoption I asked God for a little girl.
Levi: I'm glad God gave us a boy because I'm a HE-Man women hater!
Family: *Hysterical laughter*
I appreciate these moments of honesty and humor in my day because though my writing may give you the impression that I am a very serious person, I am NOT. I am sarcastic and funny and striving to never be too serious UNLESS the situation calls for it. With that said I find my thoughts are awfully serious lately and that the lightheartedness in my spirit is just not there.
Our struggles with our "little answer to prayer" are many and they are real and they call for serious action. Mostly I need to pray, but often I fret. I need to be loving, but I am unkind and harsh. I need to be forgiving, but I am reluctant.
On the outside looking in our adopted son Toby is doing quite well and he seems adjusted to family life. Then we go and do something out of the ordinary like go camping or have a sleepover with friends or go out for dinner or school ends for the year and all normal is thrown out the window. After reading this blog post about a heart of stone I felt a little less crazy. We are not alone in this struggle and perhaps the things I thought were the real struggle are only symptoms to the REAL struggle.
Unlike the blog post I mentioned no vision has been cast for what future lays ahead for my son. He may not be destined to be a speaker to nations or even to a small crowd. This does not change the truth that God has called him to be his own. I can be bold in making this claim because God choose our family to adopt him. God choose a flawed, but saved family to adopt Toby therefore I make the bold claim that Toby too has been chosen by God to be HIS child.
Now this is what the LORD says-the One who created you, Jacob, and the One who formed you, Israel, "Do not fear, for I have redeemed you; I have called you by your name; you are Mine." Isaiah 43:1
It is this truth that stands at odds with what the Liar of all Liars (John 8:44) would want to happen. He is a destroyer of families, a liar and the lord of death. His name is Satan and he has no claim on my son, but this does not stop him from trying. A battle is going on for the heart of my son. If he is given the opportunity to lie or tell the truth he will more than likely lie. If he has to obey or disobey, he will likely disobey. You may be thinking that is not all too different than your child and that may be true. I can see a difference in my other children's disobedience. I have one who is stubborn and determined that he is right no matter what I have said. I have one who lacks self control and therefore struggles to obey. I have one who is 3(enough said). He is a blog post to himself! Then there is Toby he seems to not even understand himself why he lies or why he will not listen. He beats his fists against his forehead and clenches his eyes shut and will not tell me why. He chooses to be by himself rather than the family. He will play with strangers, but not his own brothers. He can be affectionate towards those he sees from time to time, but not his own parents. So much of this goes unseen and yet the battle rages on.
There is a battle going on for his heart. And so I hold onto these promises from God.....
Everyone the Father gives Me[Jesus], and the one who comes to Me I will never cast out.
"If you continue in My word, you really are My disciples. You will know the truth, and the truth will set you free. John 8:31b-32
For the promise is for you and for your children, and for all who are far off, as many as the Lord our God will call. Acts 2:39
These words I am giving you today are to be in your heart. Repeat them to your children. Talk about them when you sit in your house and when you walk along the road, when you lie down an when you get up. Deuteronomy 6:6-7
......and I teach them to my children both adopted and biological. I hold onto them because they are the very life I breath. I am tired and I am struggling, but of this I am sure, God will win this battle for ALL my children.