Here you will find the chronicles of the crazy crook crew...enjoy!

Here you will find the chronicles of the crazy crook crew...enjoy!
I want to live in each season fully, celebrate the chapters as they end, and anticipate the next with only joy! God gets all the glory for the story He's written for our family! A family designed and defined by Him through foster care and adoption. If you've got some time, stay a while...and grab a kleenex;) Each chapter is beautiful and heart wrenching and breathtaking and God is ALWAYS good!

Monday, June 5, 2017

Falling madly in love...3 years later

3 years. I'm really writing this. While it's not hard to find myself frustrated that we're still counting the days our baby girl is part of a very broken foster care system, I have to rejoice and dance and Praise the Lord about the fact that we are HERE this summer. A full family of a totally different life than we were last summer. Do you remember last summer? I don't want to relive it...or make you relive it with me, but it was impossible and agonizing and devastating. A summer spent pleading with God for a rescue, a summer that ended with a goodbye that completely broke what was left of me. But that goodbye only lasted for 3 dark days. I know you remember. And then she came safely back into my arms. Redemption! The rescue did come and God's shown me time and time again that His mighty hands are all over her life. When will I learn? When will I find the rest that comes from the faith and knowledge God has worked so hard to instill in me? Back in April, the judge changed her reunification plan to adoption. It was a day where victory and tragedy danced together. It was a day that should have helped to heal the short, stifled breaths I've been taking for years now. And I think it did...for a week or so. But things have been moving slow, our caseworker left her job, and approximately zero progress has been made apart from the huge progress of the plan change. And after months of never leaving her side, I've been missing her for 2 hours every week...and I think that alone has stirred up doubt and fear and anxiety I thought I had put behind me. I understand that a plan change to adoption could motivate a person to do better and be better and try. But 3 years. I can't elaborate on details...but please know we still need prayer. And our baby girl needs protection over her heart and mind. Dealing with the ramifications of putting her in circumstances I have no control hard. 

1096 days ago, we said hello to a beautiful brown eyed six week old baby girl. We've now celebrated 3 birthdays with her, 3 Christmases, taken 3 crazy crook family vacations. We're entering into our 4th summer together. That's a lot of life. All but the 1st six weeks of her be exact. And for the longest time, that's what my heart has fixated on. She has no idea that she's a "foster child". And shouldn't it be that way? Or should we have raised her from infancy explaining that we're not her family? Should we have corrected her 1st words..."mama and dada"? Should we have made sure she understood that what she knows to be true, really isn't? These questions are absurd. And to me...they explain why no child...I don't care how old...should linger in foster care for 3 years. I long for the confidence that her adoption into our forever family is in the near and definite future. I trust you Jesus. I say that to myself over and over and over because it's true and He can be trusted and LOOK WHAT HE'S BROUGHT HER THROUGH. Some of these last 365 days have been the hardest of my life. And He lifted me up out of that valley with His mighty arms and tucked His sweet baby girl back safely into my arms. I've gotta get this "rest" thing figured out. I want this to be a summer of rejoicing and rest, but I feel like maybe the rest part will come next summer...because I'm human. Or maybe rest never comes...because I'm a mom. What I do know, is that I'm the mom of 4 beautiful and amazing children. They're a responsibility and gift I'll never take for granted. God has trusted me...little, unqualified, flaw filled me...with precious lives I played no part in creating. But He created them and in His complete sovereignty knew I'd belong to them. That's huge and heavy and miraculous to me. He can be trusted. In my soul, I own this truth. I think it's my head that needs the work. But He loves me through it. I can just picture Him patting me on my weary head..."Oh dear one, when will you learn? I love your baby girl infinitely more than you do. I loved her when I had her on my mind...creating her, fashioning her in all her sweetness and spice and naughtiness. Turn off your fear and find rest in me. Trust me." I think that's what I would hear Him say...honestly:) 

So here we are...3 years...1096 days, after 1st laying eyes on our sweet baby girl. We opened our hearts and home thinking her stay with us would lead to healing for her biological family. And for over a year we fought for them. Our hearts have shifted what feels like a million times in this 3 year an effort to emotionally survive it. This calling will never not be hard. I read something on Jason Johnson's blog today...he said "we love out of our poverty, not our abundance". He equates the poor widow, who gave all she had, 2 small copper coins into the offering box (Luke 21)...with the sacrifice of the foster family. There's so much truth there. We aren't wealthy, we have no super strength hero powers. We just have ourselves...our hearts...and our yes. We give it all. And His strength is made perfect in our weakness. Please continue to pray with us, for hearts to heart in particular, for judges and caseworkers, and for her adoption into our family to be complete in 2017. It seems out of reach, but I've felt that way before only to be lifted up and put on my Father's shoulders. It could happen:) Thank you for joining us on this journey through your prayers and encouragement and hugs and tears. There aren't enough thank you's that could be offered for the army of prayer warriors that have fought and fought for her. I hope you all can see what I've seen...the incredible power of prayer and the faithfulness of our loving a real, tangible, fall on our knees with thanksgiving kind of way.

He has this. I trust Him. I'm so thankful. That's where my rest is, if I could just park my spirit there and run out of gas so pulling back out isn't an option. That would be perfect. But he loves me despite my shortcomings...maybe even more for them, I think:) The Gospel really does come alive in this ministry. Thank you for reading the 4th installment of my "Falling madly in love..." series. Perhaps this will be the last? With all my heart, thank you for praying. I thank God for you.

In His amazing love,