Paralyzing fear ... and the journey back again

by Kristi Van Dyk

This post has been sitting on my chest for a while now. I don't know that I could really put my finger on it - and thus came a long dry gap in our blog posting. We're working on paperwork and education - on doctor's visits and birth certificates, passports and financials. And it is SLOW ... But this passage of time hasn't been without deep emotion. 

Kayl, Benj and Mae have had the summer OF THEIR LIVES (I think every summer couldn't possibly get better and yet the next one always does), but it has been a journey. I didn't take stock to realize just how much our adoption process was changing the way we all approached life, until I heard the following phrases thrown around the trailer: 

  • What do you think Joshua will do at the Tab next summer? 
  • Mom, will Joshua like swimming? 
  • Mom, where will Joshua sleep? Can he sleep with me? He HAS to talk less than Mae. His file SAYS he's a good sleeper .. 
  • Mom, Josh will be in preschool when he comes. He can STILL HAVE Miss Julie and Miss Ally!!
  • "Jesus, please be with Joshua. He doesn't know that this place is the coolest place ever. Help him not to be scared when he first sees Maranatha (can be substituted by any number of nouns: the pool, the lake, the climbing wall, the Zipline, the classes, his teachers, the tab, etc)
  • And my personal tearjerker, "Jesus, watch over Joshua in his orphanage. I hope someone kisses him tonight; I pray someone hugged him today. Let him know we love him, Jesus. Amen."

And on and on and on it goes. Every day. 

Their voices stick with me ... resonate in my ears and in my heart ... Their commitment, their passion. Their love ... We love this little boy. We've pictured him in our lives and THAT .. THAT right there makes this process absolutely terrifying. We have something to lose ... As soon as I realized that, admitted that, this process became frightening ... Paralyzing in its weight ... 


One day, after a hot walk in the nearby dunes, I sat at the base of the steps and listened to the group song being rehearsed in the tab by at least 100 children. 

"Oh the depths of the riches of the wisdom and the knowledge of God
how unsearchable his judgments; how untraceable his paths.
Who knows the mind of our God and who can bring counsel to him? 
Who has given to God that God should repay
For from Him and through Him and to Him is everything!
To God be the glory for ever and ever
To God be the glory for ever Amen." 

As the tears filled my eyes, I saw each baby in my minds eye ... Their years in Maranatha preschool ... Each of them sang that song ...  

I watched Kayleigh meticulously mouthing each word; each motion in perfect precision.
I saw Benjamin with his giant smile and wide eyes, singing with so much gusto that he was dripping with sweat, enjoying each note.
I saw Madeleine mouth wide open, doing maybe half of the motions (its really not her thing) but forcefully and powerfully committing to the ones she did ... 
And then I pictured Joshua ... His tiny little face and body (imagining how he'd grow in a year) learning that same song, having that same experience (side by side with his new big sister.. she'd proudly haul him up the tab steps by hand, knowing her, and coach him through each step) performing in whatever way might be his ... something we can yet discover ...  

In that instant, those words carried so much weight.
They spoke to the place of fear in my heart ... the place of doubt.  

From Him --- absolutely. This journey, this plan, all of it is FROM HIM
Through Him -- by His grace, each dime He has collected for us, each provision made, each "perfectly timed phone call" is through Him alone
To Him is everything .... For His glory ... For HIS fame ... So that we can continue to tell HIS story ... 

To God be the glory for ever and ever ... To GOD be the glory for ever and ever ...

... that doubt and fear, I'll be honest ... it didn't leave. It still plagues my human heart ... (what am I missing? not doing? skipping? going to mess up?)

But in that moment I drew new strength ... rekindled afresh ... God has this. Its HIS plan, not ours. It's HIS child, not mine. His steps ...

my trust, my reliance, my utter dependence ...

so that all of the glory, and all of the credit can rest squarely with the one to whom it belongs. 

For from Him, and through Him, and to Him is everything!
To God be the Glory for Ever and Ever
To God be the Glory for Ever Amen.