Saturday, November 28, 2009

A Season of Praise

Wow, I haven’t blogged since EASTER! I look at those pics of Grace and Ella (two former orphans who now know the love of a family) and I feel all the emotions of what God has been doing in my heart welling up…

Want to hear more? This is a post that is a long time in coming…

Several weeks ago I was having an official pity party (actually I have had more than I want to admit over the past few months). I was tired (still am) and tiredness is often the gateway to self pity… I was home alone because Grace was spending the night at my sister’s house so I could go to my early class without having to wake her and I was laying in bed crying and praying and crying some more… I told God that I don’t know how I can do it, be a Mommy (not just a Mommy but a really dynamic Godly Mommy who fixes healthy meals so my daughter never has to struggle with her relationship with Christ or her weight like I have), be a student and get high enough grades in every class (including chemistry) to actually be able to get into the very competitive Dental Hygiene program, keep my house clean, find time for family and friends, and why did I gain all the weight back that I worked so hard to lose…. You get the idea. I was also really upset with God for making me such a passionate person and laying things on my heart that I can do nothing about and calling me to do things that are years out and I have to feel this heavy load of sadness that my hands are tied… Yadda yadda yadda. I finally fell asleep.

The next morning I arrived at school a bit early and had the rare opportunity to visit some of my favorite blogs before class. I “happened” across an older post on Carolyn’s blog which was a letter from a friend of hers Everything I had been questioning God about the night before was gently being answered by a woman whom I had never met nor even read her blog for that matter! Lol! I sat there with my lap top in front of me not even trying to hide the tears that streamed down my face as I read, I only wiped them when my vision got too blurry to read… God is good. Even when I am weary and have no idea what I will do if I do not get into the Dental Hygiene program, God is good, and He knows the plans for my life.

I have shared with many that I feel God is calling me to adopt again. This time from Ethiopia, and this time a little girl who is HIV+. It feels weird to say God is calling me… I am not saying He talked to me in a burning bush or anything like that, but I do have this unquenchable burning passion that I can not explain away. I want to be a Dental Hygienist so that I can afford to adopt again as well as have good working hours for a single Mom. I want to take one or two months off every year and volunteer with dental teams working with widows and orphans in countries like Ethiopia… I feel this PASSION! Yet it all seems so unattainable.

A couple weeks ago I thought that chemistry was going to keep me out of the program for sure and then I found out my grade was way better than I thought and my hope was renewed. Two days ago I got a letter in the mail telling me I had to turn in all my transcripts including those from when I went to college right out of high school. (I was previously told I did not have to use those) Well needless to say, grades from my younger years are going to destroy my current 3.87 GPA, so once again I am afraid I will not be able to get into the program… This roller coaster is KILLING me!

In the midst of all of it God continues to calm my spirit. I have been praying that God will help me leave all these things in His hands… I have also been praying for whoever this little girl will be… I know that I will not be financially ready to adopt again until Grace is 7 or 8 but just the same I have been praying about a name for this special little girl who will become a part of our family. Grace’s name is full of meaning as she is definitely an unmerited gift from God. Gracelyn JoAnn, the lyn from my sister Lynda and JoAnn after my Mom, two amazing people in my (and Grace’s) life. So what name would be equally as special for my new daughter? I know that to most of you it sounds crazy but I wanted my daughter to have a name even though I will not even meet her for a few years!

On November 14th during Saturday night worship service we were singing a song (can’t even remember which one) but the word PRAISE kept hitting me…. Praise that is IT! Her name will be Praise =) Then the doubt set it, it is an odd name and I don’t want her to have a weird name. I hopped on Face Book that night and was led to another of Carolyn’s friends whom I have never met and a video of their daughter adopted from Ethiopia named PRAISE! Such an ADORABLE video!!! So she won’t be the only Praise out there =) Now for a middle name… I will shorten this storey and just tell you… Her name is Stacey Praise and we will call her Praise… What a beautiful name and I know Stacey would be so pleased to have a precious child from Ethiopia named after her. So for my friend who lived a life of praise I will name my daughter Stacey Praise.

Now that she has a name, my prayers for her have become even more fervent. I don’t completely understand why it has worked that way but it has. Thanksgiving became a day of mixed emotions for me as I played with Grace and watched her enjoy time with our family. She got more hugs than one could count, she laughed hysterically as G-Ma gave her horsy rides, and of course there was an abundance of food all day! Grace had a WONDERFUL day =) My mind kept wondering back to Stacey Praise… If she comes to us as a 5 to 7 year old when Grace is about eight then she has already been born. Is she already an orphan or does she have a family? Does she have enough food? Is anyone hugging her? I prayed for one daughter as I delighted in the other…

God continues to work in my heart… I just need to trust that He is in control and will use me (even me) to accomplish His will

I hope your Holiday season is truly the best ever! As you thank God for sending His son, and as you sing praises to Him with your family and give a prayer of thanks, if you think of it, please also pray for a little girl, a little girl named Praise…


Jill said...

Carol, Thanks for the update. This is a lot more detail than you gave me the other night. Wonderful story! I will join you in praying for this special child somewhere in Ethiopia. I love you!

Jeanine said...

Sheesh! My heart is bursting with excitement for you...for your plans now and in the future. Stacy Praise is one lucky little girl! And the name...LOVE IT! Grace is so fortunately to have you for a mom and Stacy Praise...well...she's just got so much to look forward to with you and her big sister.
I loved this story. I so badly want to adopt a child. It has been on my heart since before my children were born. For some reason I would like a child from Haiti. Even better would be twins. husband is content with our am I...but there is room in my heart for more. I have to accept that if this is truly part of God's plan, he will lead my husband's heart to make room for more, or my heart to be 100% content.
You have so much on your plate right now...and I'm not talking about what you ate for Thanksgiving! I'm so impressed with how you are turning over to God.
Keep up the great a mom, as a student, as a trusting child of YOU!
Peace and blessings to your day!

(Oh....and welcome back to the blog world...I've missed you!)

Carol said...

Jeanine thank you so much for your kind words =) I know of several wives who have prayed an adopted child right into their husband's heart =)God will answer your prayers with either a change in your heart or your hubby's... Even though you know which heart I am going to pray He changes! lol! I hope your Christmas season is a wonderful one and give those sweet little blessings of yours a hug for me! ;)

Hey Jill you know me, I only share till I get a lump in my throat cuz once the tears start I can't seem to stop them... So I write... I am a pansy I KNOW! Love me anyway?

Jeanine said...

Never thought of praying in into his heart or praying it out of mine.
I'm so happy you're back. I have missed hearing about both you and Grace.
I'll hug mine for hug yours for me.

Evie said...

go to this adress to go to my blog hope you will have a safe trip home miss you

Wendi said...

I am sorry to hear that you have been struggling so much. I will be praying for you and your potential daughter, that is so cool!

Keep you head up and remember God loves you! He wants the best for you. You are a great mom, don't be so hard on yourself.

Take care, and I think you are here for Christmas? I was home with Ty who is sick on sunday. Hopefully I will see you before you go. Take care.