How do we see?

One Saturday morning, my son was sitting on my lap as he often does on Saturday mornings.  He loves my glasses, even a bit obsessed, particularly because he broke them… it’s often a conversation that goes like this:

“momma glasses broke?”

“yes buddy”

“me do!?”

“yes, buddy, you broke momma’s glasses”

But this particular morning, he was more intrigued with actually putting the glasses on. As I’m wrestling with my 2 and a half year old I think, “Oh man, please don’t let him break the other arm, I won’t have any glasses then!” But as he got the glasses closer to his face, he winced and turned away handing them back to me realizing that he really didn’t like what he saw.  To him I’m sure things were blurry, but for me, without the glasses everything is blurry. I need my glasses in order to see.  I then realized that I was trying to explain to my 2 and a half year old what glasses were, why I needed to wear them, and why he didn’t need them. I then further realized that I actually did not have a good explanation, because in all honestly, I have no clue how glasses actually work.  Even if he were 8.5 and could comprehend what I was saying, I still wouldn’t be able to fully explain to him how they work, but I put them on every morning when I wake up, and then again every night to be able to see.

And then I thought about my contacts.  I put them in my eyes every morning.  Actually put these things on my eyeball. And all I know is that from my experiences, they work. From the very first moment that I was given glasses and contacts, I could see more clearly and realized how much I wasn’t seeing without. The optometrist gave me the glasses, I put them on, and it was a whole new world for me.  And then I thought. I put trust every single day into these objects that I put on my face or into my eyes that I truly don’t know exactly how they work, but that I have full trust that they are going to work.

And then I asked myself….do I have that kind of trust in God? My answer was no, no I don’t.  I have way more doubt, fear, and anxiety about God’s plan for me than I do about an object I don’t even know how they fully work! But I do feel confident that I do know how God’s plans work.

Then it got me really thinking of ‘what can I do differently to put my full trust in God and His plan for me.’ Then I realized I trust my glasses because they work, my view of the world is clearer with them. Then I began to reflect on a time that I was able to see things more clearly for God’s plan for me. It brought me back to God’s plan for me to become a parent.

When my husband and I struggled with infertility, it was very dark and very, very hard to see clearly. We didn’t see much more than what was in front of us, which was heartache, pain, and suffering; and the fear of never becoming a parent.  The scariest place I had been.

In October 2014, after 2 years of trying to build our family and a very clear sign from God, we decided to move forward with adoption.  Our outlook on our road to parenthood became about wanting to be parents, not how we got there. It no longer needed to be about DNA, it became just about wanting to be parents.

May 12, 2015. We got the phone call we had been waiting for – we were matched with an expectant parent.

A few days after the excitement began to calm down and we shared with our family and friends, I decided to go back to my Woman’s Devotional “out of curiosity” [Let’s be honest here, this was a nudge from the Lord] and read May 12th’s devotion.

Samuel is Born.

The title of the devotion.

The whole devotion was about Hannah and her trust in the Lord to provide her with a child. [I prayed for this child, and the LORD has granted me what I asked of him. 1 Samuel 1:27]. And the godly Man that Samuel became [And the boy Samuel continued to grow in stature and in favor with the LORD and with people. 1 Samuel 2:26].  I found this to be interesting. But knowing my faith in the Lord, this wasn’t coincidental, this was planned. The very day that we get a call that we were potentially matched to move forward with becoming parents, my daily devotion was about Hannah who had trust that The Lord would make her a mother? No coincidence.

At the end of the devotion was a prayer: Lord, if You should make me a mother, guide me as You guided Hannah—to sincere faithfulness.

Sincere faithfulness…what does that even mean? How do I have sincere faithfulness?  So the only thing I could do was cling to those words and the rest of HIS words.  Every day I prayed and tried my hardest to read His words and promises. But the thing I did the most was held onto the words “sincere faithfulness”. I knew moving forward that I would need those words. His words, that I felt were strongly meant for me to have.

And boy was I right…

About two months before the expectant mother was to give birth to this child that we had been preparing for, our adoption started to fall apart.  Ultimately in the end we had to make the decision to walk away. We prayed a lot and felt that for the best interest of everyone [including this unborn child] that we needed to respectfully walk away…

We obviously were left heartbroken and sad, but I repeatedly went back to those words—sincere faithfulness. So I found comfort in our decision and knew that if not this child, then at some point, there would be a child. I truly experienced sincere faithfulness.

About a month later I received a text message…the expectant mother had missed us tremendously and had made the decision that she did indeed wanted to place her child and if it wasn’t with us, it would be with another family. She needed that space. She needed to truly know if the decision to place was hers. So with a guarded heart, we moved forward with rekindling our relationship with her and moved forward with an adoption plan. This obviously was a scary place to be, but we remained faithful moving forward. Knowing that whatever God had in store, He had our backs–sincere faithfulness.

On November 24, 2015 at 6:10pm, Samuel was born.  And 3 days later, he was released into our care.

From that moment on, my view of God’s plan and what He’s capable of, completely changed. That doesn’t mean that I don’t find myself not trusting or being full of fear, doubt, and worries, because I find myself there often.

But just like I put on my glasses every day and trust that my vision will be clearer, I have to put trust back in to the Lord that He has a clear vision for me. I have to go back to what I know….

As a counselor, I often ask clients “what has worked well for you in the past?” in hopes of them being reminded of times that they were able to be successful in managing whatever stressor that was going on.  Sometimes we need a reminder, even when it comes to regaining faith.  So I ask you, when have you seen God’s plan come to fruition in your life? What worked well for you in that situation?  God’s word? Sincere faithfulness?

So the next time you lose sight of the truth…go back to what has worked in the past. What’s going to make your vision clearer and put your focus back on God?

“For I know the plans for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans give you hope and a future” Jeremiah 29:11

holding samuel
Photo cred: Christine Neeley Photography

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