We are at the end of a physically and mentally exhausting multiple-weeks-in-a-row stretch.
So preparing ourselves for an emotionally exhausting weekend just wasn’t in the cards for us.
And me, stepping into Spiritual Warfare twisted up into it has left me utterly drained.
I’m so thankful for the 3 hr nap I just took. It might’ve been the first time *ever* that I have fallen asleep within minutes of laying my head down.
There are several times in my life I can point to when God opened my eyes to the world hurting. Times when prior to it I thought, naively, “I can handle what I’m about to see…no big deal” and I’ve been straight-up wrecked.
One of those times was in Romania. Holding the first child I had ever held who did not have a family.
My friend, Tiffany, snagged this picture. She was with me this whole day. She is also my dear friend who discipled me through college, always pointing me to Christ when I would look to the world for answers. I thank God that TIffany was with me the day God opened my eyes to the orphan crisis.
I left that day wanting to adopt that child. Of course I did…my heart just doesn’t understand when to *stop bleeding already!* But I couldn’t. It didn’t take me long to start researching adoption in Romania to learn that I was a few years late. Romania had closed its doors to international adoption 3 years prior. I would step foot into that particular orphanage one more time and do the only tangible thing I could do for as long as God allowed me to do it: love that child.
From there, leave that orphanage in His hands.
There was another time years ago when I believed I was fully equipped to handle what I was stepping into and once I stepped into it, I had a greater culture shock than Romania ever gave me. It was driving 20 minutes away from my front door step into the projects to eat a meal with the families living there. To play with the kids, enter into their homes, and just spend a day with them. To let Ro and O, 3 and 1 at the time, run around fully clothed complete with socks and shoes with children barefoot on ground that would return to frost again within hours.
It took me days to wrap my head around how blind I’d been. It was during that time God was opening my eyes not only to the needs around me but also to the need for domestic adoption…that maybe our Baby Seals #3 was not across the ocean but perhaps in our own country.
Sometimes it takes my eyes more time than I’d like to admit to see what Jesus came for….this is a world full of brokenness that cannot heal without Him. WE are full of brokenness and WE cannot heal without Him.
But oh how I try to heal on my own.
The hardest of eye-openings for me is when I see something and I can’t fix it. When my hands are tied and someone is hurting and I.cannot.fix.it.
When there is a child who is clearly crying out for stability and security and *family* and all I can say is “God, use us for as long as you can use us in whatever way you can use us to love this child as You have loved us.”
After the hard and fast and too exhausting of multiple-weeks culminated in us doing respite care for a boy I love terribly this weekend the emotional and Spiritual exhaustion has kept at my heart. The “I can’t fix any of this” is reality. The ‘why’ from a boy who has this tough, hard shell around him at all times I’ve been with him before until Friday night when it came down briefly…and he just sat in my arms and I held him tight. And long. And when I had to take him back yesterday and he asked if he could stay with us and I had no answer but to just hold him and tell him I love him….friends, those are the moments where God opens my eyes and *carries me.* I can’t fix the situation for this boy I love so much. I can’t even fix my own soul. All I can do is cry out to Jesus to take this world and heal the brokenness….there is too much brokenness.
I think back over the weekend and I wonder did I love this child, this time, as fiercely and as purposefully as the Father loves me? Did I do/say/love enough?
This is the cost of having my eyes open to the needs around me.
I don’t want to be blind. But sometimes I do want to close my eyes.
Because when my eyes are open….I’m undone. I see how desperate I am; how deeply in need I am, and how I will always be in need, of Christ to carry me and sustain me and change me and HEAL me.
My heart cries Come, Lord Jesus, and while we wait for Christ to come and redeem all things to Himself, my heart cries carry me because I cannot carry myself.