Two years ago, Daniel and I sat on the couch after Sydney and Ben went to bed. I popped in a DVD that came in the mail earlier that day from an adoption agency. It went through their programs and opportunities. As we watched it, we wept because for the FIRST time God was showing us that this wasn’t something for some other family to do, but that it was something we were to do.
I had spent my life with blinders on. If you are anything like me, I saw many needs over the course of my life, but because I felt that I couldn’t do it all, I didn’t do anything. Since, I couldn’t extinguish world hunger single handedly then that wasn’t something I thought I needed to worry about. Because I couldn’t adopt a million children, I didn’t need to adopt one. The world was too big, and I was too small. Unfortunately, that was my thought process.
Over time, I have come to realize how silly and unlike Christ that way of thinking truly is. Because I can’t do everything – do nothing. It’s really laughable. It makes absolutely no sense.
Maybe I’m the only one that’s ever felt that way. I hope that I am. I hope there aren’t thousands and thousands of others thinking that exact same way, but I would bet my house that I’m not the only one. I would guarantee that some of you reading this have felt the exact same way.
That night, as we watched the video, something changed in us and in our family, and we would never be the same. Little did I know what God was about to do in our hearts and spirits. He moved in our hearts that day like never before.
For the first time, they weren’t just nameless children. The Lord was showing me that I could have been one of them.
What if that had been me? Why was I so lucky to be born to my parents? Why was I so fortunate to be raised in a loving home where I was never thirsty and never hungry. I never thought for one second that no one loved me. Do you know what a blessing that is? Do you realize how many children don’t even know what love is?
I hope you understand why I blogged this journey. I didn’t blog it for your entertainment. I didn’t do it to lay my soul bare for the world to see. I certainly didn’t do it to embarrass Eliza or to draw unwanted attention to her. I did it with the hope that somebody somewhere might see our journey and gain strength. That somebody somewhere would be encouraged to move forward with whatever it is God has placed on their hearts to do. That somebody somewhere might find the courage to pull up their bootstraps and tell the enemy to beat it and to go do something amazing for the Lord without fear.
I’m so thankful that God gave me eyes to see people in a new way. Praise God that He brought me out of nothing and is making me something.
One day at church, a man who I have known a very long time and have a deep amount of respect for, was introducing me to someone new. He said, “Jenna, this is so and so and she has recently gone through a divorce.” Then he looked at the lady, recently divorced, and said, “So and so, Jenna’s parents went through a divorce when she was much younger. And I think that going through that has given her a real heart of compassion.” Hmmm, I had never really thought about it that way before. But, once he said that, I could see that so much of my life and my circumstances had literally been what made my heart tender for these kids without families.
Sometimes, I sit in Eliza’s room and I feel completely unworthy of this calling on my life. God could have easily found a mother more patient. He could have found a mother more kind. He could have found a mother less sarcastic. He could have found someone more crafty, more energetic or who keeps her house more clean.
But I think He knew He couldn’t find a mother who would love her more than I do. That’s why He picked me. And if He picks you for something special, don’t let the what ifs and the scary mountains keep you from climbing. He needs someone who will say – yes to Him, not someone who doesn’t have dishes in the sink.
Most of all, I want this blog to show you how much He loves you. This journey has shown me how much He loves me. I thought I knew before…but boy do I know now that His love runs so deep. His goodness is like nothing else. He loves you so much.