While Ken was away on the men’s mission trip to Mexico (see Monday’s post), Lindsey and I had an opportunity to do a little ministry of our own. We were invited to speak at a regional foster parent training conference, held last Saturday. Lindsey’s former caseworker Lamar introduced us, and then we shared our adoption story. Lindsey and I both talked of the importance of permanence in a child’s life, and I was so proud of how she willingly shared her heart on the subject. We didn’t candy-coat any of our challenges, but even with those challenges, we have a very positive story to share. We opened the floor to questions; the foster parents had more questions for Lindsey than for me, and she did a great job answering them.
I’m always wary of making Lindsey feel like a “show pony” just because she was adopted, but over the past few months she has realized how very much God was involved in every bit of her adoption, and I think she is beginning to understand what a huge opportunity she has to be a living, breathing, walking, talking testimony for adoption. (But really, aren’t all Christians suppose to be living testimonies of our Lord?)
After we’d finished, Lamar told Lindsey that she is becoming a strong, poised, confident young woman. He remembered when she “mumbled and stared at her toes” but now she makes eye contact and speaks confidently. In introducing us, Lamar defined expert before asserting that Lindsey is truly an expert on the importance of permanency. I don’t remember the exact definition he used, but my dictionary says this: an expert is someone having, involving, or displaying special skill or knowledge derived from training or experience.
Lindsey has lived a life of challenges, but…
“the Father of mercies… comforts us in all our affliction, so that we may be able to comfort those who are in any kind of affliction, through the comfort we ourselves receive from God. For as the sufferings of Christ overflow to us, so our comfort overflows through Christ.” 2 Corinthians 1:3-5
What Lindsey has been through — her afflictions — gives her a special ability to let that comfort overflow from Christ, through her, and into others who are suffering. I hope she will be able to grasp this amazing truth fully!
We sang a song in church on Sunday that brought me to tears. Lindsey and Deanna, both girls who have lived lives that most of us can’t even fathom, were both standing with arms raised singing and worshiping our Lord and Savior. The lyrics of the song, All Things New were exactly what I was thinking: their hope is not lost, their past is being redeemed, God is giving them beauty for their ashes…
You give beauty for our ashes
in a hope that’s everlasting
The past has been redeemed
Now forever we will sing…
You can make all things new
Only Your love can save us
All hope is not lost…
’cause You make all things new
I feel blessed that I am able be part of what God is going to do through Lindsey and Deanna.