One of the first outfits that was purchased for our baby boy is a precious little gown that has the words, "Brave, strong, honest" on it. The birthmother loved it as much as me I think, so we decided to put him in it today for his hospital pictures. He looked SO handsome in it! It also made me think of the meaning of his name: "Gabriel: My God is my might." Not only does he look like a strong little boy, but I'm reminded of the strength that God is giving us as we all go through this very intense journey.
I can say with all honesty that today has been one of the most difficult and emotionally draining days that I have ever been through. I have so many emotions running through my head. Don't get me wrong--everything is going great! But adoption isn't a risk-free journey by any stretch of the imagination, and the emotions are so very raw and unlike anything else I've ever experienced that I'm not even sure I fully understand what is running through my head and traipsing over my heartstrings. I see this precious, beautiful, healthy baby boy who, as much as I have tried to guard against, I am so very in love with...and then I see the most amazing, strong and beautiful woman sitting next to him, and my heart just breaks in so many different ways. My heart aches at the thought of not getting to call him mine, and my heart breaks at the thought of her not getting to keep him as hers...it's such a mess of emotions that I just can't sort through. So, today, armed with emotions and little sleep, I became very frightened at the thought of all of the possible outcomes of this situation. My sensitive heart began to crumble, and reality began to sink in.
So, in an effort to get our minds off the intense emotions, to give the birthmom an opportunity to rest and have some special time with Gabriel, and also to do something fun with Lucy (who has been exceptionally well-behaved for a four year old stuck in a hospital for the past two days), we went to see the movie BRAVE tonight. I will preface this all to say while it was an entertaining movie in many ways, I'm not so sure I would recommend it just because I'm really not big on witch craft, which I didn't realize before seeing it that it had so much in it. (DH was quick to point out that Little Mermaid-my fave Disney movie-isn't exactly folklore-free.) All of that aside, towards the end of the movie I suddenly was struck by the movie's title: BRAVE. This girl had to find the courage to face the situation placed before her, embrace it, and just be brave. I was reminded of sweet baby Gabriel in his precious outfit this morning, and then I was struck by my sudden timidity in the whole situation, but God was calling me to brave. I felt Him whispering to my soul, "PB, are you willing to trust me in the situation I've placed before you? Are you willing to surrender to the outcome you desire and trust my perfect plan?" You see, I was reminded that being brave doesn't always mean going out for the fight. Sometimes, it means stepping back, surrendering, and trusting the One who is in control of the outcome. It doesn't just take a brave soul to face the fight, but it also takes a brave person to be willing to surrender. Bravery is so much more than stepping in and taking control-it also means stepping away and surrendering that control. So, tomorrow, I am faced with a choice to be brave. Yes, I may be given the opportunity to step up to a new role in life, or I may be told it is my season to surrender, but either way I am called to be brave--as in facing the situation head on with confidence in my Jesus, who is going before us.
Joshua 1:9 tells us this wonderful truth:
"Have I not commanded you? Be STRONG and COURAGEOUS. Do not be frightened, and do not be dismayed, for the LORD your God is with you wherever you go."
And then my mother reminded me of such a wonderful verse this evening,
"The LORD will fight this battle for you; you need only to be still."
So tonight, we COVET your prayers that all of us can be brave, strong and courageous--not just us, but also our precious baby's birthmother who has already shown so much courage. I am praying God's will be done in each of our lives.
Thank you for your excitement, encouragement, and prayers for our family! Be strong; be courageous; be brave; be willing to surrender...