Most that know me (or us) know that we really like baseball. OK, truth is that I love baseball, Gabe is getting close to that, and then the other three have varying, constantly changing levels that range from like to tolerate. It averages out to we really like baseball in our family. That has led us to ending up in St. Louis on more than one occasion to go to a ballgame or two during a getaway weekend, etc. Since ballgames only last a couple of hours, and are usually at night, we have to entertain the mini-Scotts during the day.
In the St. Louis area, there are a few options, but we almost always have to go to Grant’s farm. It’s really more of a small zoo with varying wild animals, with the major attraction being able to go through the Clydesdale stables. But, when ours were really little, they had another favorite there – feeding the baby goats.
These things were hilarious. There are probably 30-40 goats roaming around in a pen designed for a few less. And amongst them were usually 10-15 small children holding four ounce milk bottles they had acquired for $1. The entertainment was watching how 5-7 goats would attack one three-year old until his bottle was empty, then move on to another one. Kids either shrieked with joy or fear, sometimes to the point that you might not be able to tell the difference. And these goats ran around with bellies that nearly dragged the ground from the all-day feast. I’m sure they rotated them to keep from drowning these poor goats, but you couldn’t tell that any of them had ever missed a single ounce of milk.
I cannot imagine a goat on that property that would just sit in the corner and starve to death. I can’t even imagine a goat that would just get up every now and then and take a drink or two and go back to the shade. No, these goats even at such a young age already had it figured out – everything they would ever need was right there in the hands of the small humans. And they didn’t just take some or enough, they took every drop from anyone that would hold it out for them – never satisfied, and always wanting and desiring more.
Segue into our past several days. If you read the post from last week, you know that we have spiritually and mentally regrouped. I won’t re-post, but take a second to read it if you need to. . .
Well, getting back into the middle of God’s will is an amazing thing. Don’t misread the next few lines – simply being obedient, which we are all called to do, doesn’t equate to God turning over the keys to whatever we want on Earth. Not by a long shot. Sorry, Joel Osteen. Obedience does mean that God now has the freedom to accomplish through us what He has planned, for His glory. Sometimes that means we get what we desire, sometimes it does not.
I last posted on Monday morning. On Wednesday afternoon, I received an email from the agency in Arizona with another birth mother to review. We needed to respond quickly, as they were presenting profiles to her that night. It isn’t the first time that the agency has sent us something since our first situation came to an end. We have declined a few, and we have agreed to be shown a couple of times as well. So, we looked it over, agreed to be shown, and I headed to church.
Leaving school on Thursday afternoon (yes, while administration has a couple of advantages over teaching, the 12-month contract isn’t one of them – I work all summer), I got a phone call from our case worker in Arizona. When I saw her name pop up on my phone, I knew what she was going to say. Here we go again. Indeed, she had the news that this particular mother, Jennifer, had chosen our profile and would like to meet us.
If we weren’t over 1500 miles apart, an actual meeting would be expected. But, just as we did back in February, we “met” via modern technology. So, Friday afternoon, sitting in a hotel room in Memphis (we took the kids to the Redbirds’ game on Friday night), with the kids being “quiet” on the other bed, we met Jennifer via FaceTime. The first attempted hookup had splotchy service, so they went outside in Phoenix to make things go a little more smoothly. So, we actually only spent around 10 minutes chatting with Jennifer and her case worker, as she tried not to melt in what was 110 degree Arizona heat. We left immediately afterwards for the game and found ourselves feeling more like skeptical seasoned veterans this time around that giddy little rookies. Within an hour, we had gotten word that Jennifer had given us the thumbs up, and was awaiting our response.
So, for the past two days we have prayed, talked a little, but done some analyzing about Jennifer’s situation. I won’t go into details, but it isn’t great. But, we don’t expect that ever. Is there a guarantee that this one will stick, unlike the last? No, but we won’t expect that either. So, Monday around lunchtime, I will call Kelly and either say “thanks, but no thanks,” or “yes, let’s proceed.” Our flesh tells us that we can’t afford another heartbreak, spiritually or financially. But, in prayerful consideration, we know that God will take care of us regardless.
So, in other words, Bro. Greg’s reminder this morning hopefully applies to our faith walk. Just as Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego did when King Nebuchadnezzar (spelled that right without spell check – the first time) questioned whether their “god” would deliver them from the furnace. Their answer was (paraphrased): He has the ability, but we will serve Him regardless of what He chooses to do. So, whether our answer tomorrow is a yes or a no, we won’t go forward through this process needing to see how it turns out before knowing if we are going to be faithful. We want to be faithful and trust in Him, knowing He will get the glory at the end of our adoption journey, regardless of the time or cost at our expense.
So, to tie it all together neatly, shouldn’t we be like those Grant’s Farm goats? We know where the supply of peace, grace, mercy, and joy is located. We know what it takes to gain access to it – simply go to it. Not only that, but we can have not only enough, but beyond that – all we can handle. But yet, we often sit over in the shade, watching others, saying “yeah, I would love to have that, but. . . it’s so comfy over here in the shade.” I get so frustrated with myself when I realize that it actually describes me pretty well. I just sit there, knowing where the source is, knowing it costs nothing, and knowing it is exactly what my soul desires, but won’t stay the course. I know that probably only describes me, and not you all reading this, but my prayer is to become fat with the things of Christ.
Pray that we make the decision God has for us to make, and pray that God continues to bless our journey. Praise to Him for his faithfulness in showing just how quickly He can respond when we allow it.
You prepare a table before me in the presence of my enemies. You anoint my head with oil; my cup overflows. – Psalms 23:5