Another sweet piece of our adoption story…
What a joy and a blessing to be able to retreat this weekend at a Cup of Joy (www.cupofjoy.org) ministry retreat, yet I really missed writing about my daily scripture reading (BUT it was SOOOOO good this weekend if you are reading along, wasn’t it?!). Jesus retreated away from his disciples and all those he loved so that He could spend some time with the Lord…and what a good example of what *I* personally need…REALLY NEED…in my own life! As mommies, we can get so busy with the day to day—and before you know it…we’re tired, empty and more tired. But you know what? Our time in the Word this year had prepared my heart to meet with my Savior. Really meet with Him…and I couldn’t wait! OK…this is the part if you are coming to my blog to read my scripture commentary—bear with me. This entry today is more for my son than anyone else as I want him to be able to one day read our journey to him and see the Lord’s constant affirmation that, indeed, he was part of our family and hearts long before we saw one another face to face.
Did you know geese never fly alone? Two are better than one right? We were not created to be alone. Being such, you’ll never see geese flying in odd numbers. Crazy huh? Part of God’s design…and I guess we can learn something from even God’s creation the geese. It just takes slowing down to see things some time and to really listen. Go ahead…count them for yourself;)
Even the mountains declare His righteousness. Even the mountains bring glory to God (isn’t this a beautiful place to retreat to?!)…The CREATOR of these mountains…and even the geese—He has my life in His hands…our children a part of His plan and our baby safely protected. What do we have to fear or worry about when the creator of this is the One writing our stories?
One of the most AMAZING parts of the weekend was the women were all asked to sign up for a 15 minute aloud scripture reading the chapel (all in between sessions) of Psalms. Scripture would be continuously read aloud as an act of worship. Some ladies would even come in and sit just to listen to someone read–while some times there was only the reader…but it was so powerful. I randomly signed up for an open spot on Saturday at 4:30pm–one of the few spots left when I got there on Friday. Of course I had no idea what chapters in Psalms I would read, I would just pick right up where the lady in front of me finished after her 15 minutes was up.
Prior to this, in worship–I began to pray to the Lord. “Lord, here are my hands—they are open to You. I have felt your call to bring home our son in Ethiopia–but I open my hands again…oh Lord–we’re open to Haiti, Uganda, anything for Your glory! But I continue to feel we are right where we should be Lord.” The Lord listened, and I know He just looks down and smiles (and probably shakes His head an awful lot too) because He knows our future and how the rest of our story looks. As I thought about this throughout the day, I showed up at my appointed time at 4:30pm on Saturday to read…and OPPS…I forgot my Bible:). SO…I just picked up the New Living Translation that was left on a table (for me I know to read as you’ll soon see;).
The lady ahead told me where to start, and my reading began. What scripture did the Lord set aside for me to read as I retreated to Him? Psalm 82…
uphold the rights of the destitute.
Rescue the poor and helpless…
Tears. Lots of tears. The Lord had set aside these exact verses just for me to read today. “You are in my will my child. Stay right where you are–and continue to follow me.” There were two other women sitting in the back listening to my reading–and they must now think I’m crazy as I continue to read–and it’s very apparent that I can barely get through the reading because of my tears. I read on…Psalm 83…and then Psalm 84…
O Lord of Heaven Armies.
I long, yes, I faint with longing to enter the courts of the Lord.
With my whole being, body and soul,
I will shout joyfully to the living God.
Even the sparrows finds a home,
and the swallows builds her nest and raises her young
at a place near your alter,…
What joy for those whose
strength comes from the Lord,
who have set their minds on a
pilgrimage to Jerusalem.
When they walk through the Valley of Weeping,
it will become a place of refreshing springs…
I continued to read–Psalm 85…and Psalm 86. I could barely make it through Psalm 86 as my heart felt every word to it’s core…I am devoted to you…I serve you and trust you…You are my God…I give myself to you…Oh Lord, you are so good, so ready to forgive, so full of unfailing love for all who ask for your help…listen closely to my prayer Lord…you will answer…Grant me purity of heart…teach me your ways…I will give glory to your name forever…you are a God of compassion and mercy filled with unfailing love and faithfulness… And then almost to the end of my time–Psalm 87.
What a beautiful reminder how the Lord is calling His children from ALL over. And Ethiopia–appears just ONCE in the entire book of Psalm—a beautiful reminder of God’s love for these people…and I felt like He was reminding me that He loves my baby and is the One protecting him! Yes, the One who created the mountains above…the One who created my very own life…He even finds the sparrow a home…and doesn’t let the geese fly alone…He is protecting the life of my baby–He is the One who has written my beautiful story…it is all in His hands, and He just wanted to remind me of that…simply because He loves me. As I thought about 200 women reading and how He perfectly orchestrated my reading of those particular chapters, I couldn’t help but be blown away by the beauty and magnificance of God!!! I not only believed that He had set aside those chapters for ME to read…but that God had actually inspired David to write those in the ancient days for me to read them as well! Do you believe His Word is for you?! Do you believe He is still speaking today?! Do you believe He loves you deeply and every detail is orchestrated by Him?! As soon as I read the word Ethiopia, which by the way is the word choice for the New Living Standard…which I would have missed had I remembered to bring my Bible to the chapel or chosen a different time to read…I was in tears again.
And to end on this Psalm 89…
the joyful call to worship,
for they walk in the presence of your light, O Lord…
(18) Yes, our protection comes from the Lord,
and he, the Holy One of Israel,
has given us our king.
How sweet it is to meet with the Lord. How precious it is when He not only meets you there–but confirms so evidently that He is with you. And how excited I was to share how the Lord had met me. I actually ran back to my room to tell my sweet sister, April, the verses the Lord had so sweetly set aside for me…
It is amazing how the Lord wants to speak and encourage our hearts?! He is NOT a confusing God. He is NOT a God of disorder, but order. He will always lead you–and confirm His plan for you over and over again. May your heart be opened to hear His sweet voice this week dear friends.
And I can’t WAIT to jot down everything that I learned in our scripture reading…I’ll be jotting down the WOWs from my journal on Genesis chapters 42-50…and I’ll be back rollin’ again! How you all have blessed me in our reading and our commitment to read through the Word this year. I hope you all had a blessed weekend!
[All images taken with Canon 5D, 70-200 1:4L at 4.0 fstop, 1/400 shutterspeed, 250 ISO)]