My friend and I are going to read a book together and do a study on it, she’s come up with lots of good options… now I have to pick which one. I stink at decisions – I’m always afraid I’ll make the wrong one. But then I heard about this book Grace for the Good Girl by Emily Freeman. This was the description:
Many of us believe that we are saved by grace–but for too many, that’s the last time grace defines our life. Instead of clinging to grace, we strive for good and believe that the Christian life means hard work and a sweet disposition. As good girls, we focus on the things we can handle, our disciplined lives, and our unshakable good moods. When we fail to measure up to our own impossible standards, we hide behind our good girl masks, determined to keep our weakness a secret.
So I think that might be what we have to go with because well that sums up my week, my weak week. Where to start. hmm. So we are at one of those points where we are totally confident in the decision to adopt. We have no doubt that it is God’s plan for our family. We also wanted to make sure that we did it debt free. We are so thankful for our financial situation and if we need to tighten up here and there well then that is just what we need to do. We had lived with my inlaws for a little over a year and saved a good nest egg for the adoption – we were intentional about it when we were buying our house not to touch it. But we still have a lot left to pay from this point on in the adoption and my flesh was begining to come in. What can I do to make some money, I should homeschool again to save money, or maybe I should get a full time job, or I can start selling the things I’ve been making. I knew from the moment we decided to do the adoption that we’d have a big yard sale, I read so many blog posts of families and friends donating their unneeded items and families raising 1000s of dollars – sweet I’m in and we started putting stuff in our garage.
Fast forward to September. I joined a women’s group where we started to read Jen Hatmaker’s book 7: An experimental mutiny on excess. I love the book, it’s everything my husband and I have been trying to do in our lives and it doesn’t hurt that she was in the process of adopting from Ethiopia like we are. At the first meeting an amazing friend, Sarah, was completely touched by the book. With a passion as beautiful as she is, Sarah began a journey to go on a missions trip to Haiti as well as organize our group to have one huge Garage Sale 4 Orphans through Help One Now. We were all psyched, what a beautiful culmination of all that we are trying to institute in our lives… giving up excess so others can have a chance. But then there was a little part of me that got worried. If I gave all that I was saving to this garage sale there wouldn’t be anything left for me to sell, how would we raise money? What about our orphan? Oh how a part of me that I’m not psyched about came out… a jealous, self-interest looking, not God-trusting part came out. So much of the situation made me think of Ananias and Sapphira from Acts. In Acts 2 there is this beautiful picture of a community that shared all things in common. A community dedicated to the cause of eachother and those who are the least in need. Then here is a couple that comes along and holds some of the money they got from the sale of their house back for themselves. They don’t trust the community to look after their needs, really it comes down to the fact that they didn’t trust God. The story doesn’t end well.
Fast Forward again to this week. On Monday I find out that a tooth that got hit by a lacrosse ball when I was 16 is now dead and the root canal on it has broken and I need an implant or my tooth might fall out. This is expensive. Wait what? Now? Really? Then Wednesday night we found out that we were a little mistaken in what our next adoption payment should be. We thought it was half the price it really was. We can do it, just don’t pay this, wait on that, take some out of the savings for other stuff – don’t get an implant until the end of the year. But I began to worry. Thursday is the meeting for my women’s group, maybe I can ask them if I can sell my stuff separately at the sale. It’s hard to get super excited about all the planning for the garage sale because of my fears and worries – if I give all to this, if I ask all my friends to donate stuff to this event, will they want to donate to our garage sale for our adoption. Well then God says tsk tsk Kelly. At the end Sarah and Megan (our group leader) say that they had decided (in September) that half of the proceeds will go to Garage Sale for Orphans and half will go to our adoption. Oh God why am I so selfish, why didn’t I trust, why can’t I give wholly without worring about consequent, why haven’t I learned that you have a plan that you are the one in charge, that you will help us through. God took me through these couple of months giving me times when I wanted to be obedient to His call, but then also being there for me when I was concentrating on our own issues. I cried, I cried because He is God, He is good, and He really does have a plan. But I also cried in realization of my sinful nature. I cried knowing that in these 14 years of knowing Jesus intimately that I have not come as far as I thought, I am still sliding back putting my hopes and dreams on the throne of my heart, not God, not His will, not his plans for my future. But then I cried a little more knowing that He still loves me, He still gave us this amazing blessing through these amazing woman even though my heart was not fully giving even though I was holding back, I cried because of His Grace.
Today is almost a week later and I just read this post by Walking by the Way – on how God always has a plan and how they are going to pay for their adoption debt free. God you are so good – all the time.