I think that's where I left off :) Some thoughts have been rolling around in my mind, but I haven't had time to write them so I'm sort of going to cop out and link to a post on Linny's blog which I agree with. This doesn't just deal with older child adoption but adoption in general and the isolation that is often involved.
Some of you may have incredibly supportive family and friends who 'get it,' and that is awesome! But some of us do not, and we finally come to a place where we must choose to obey God or try to please family or 'fit the mold' of our societal standards.
Last April when our dossier went to China we were waiting for our referral and God shared several messages with me. One was the necessity to always choose Him over man. We can never, nor should we, try to please man over God. It's comforting to have 'skin-on' support in His plans, but that does not always happen. In fact, some may turn completely away from us because we choose to obey. I won't even go into the reasons for this, but the point is that serving Him faithfully may lead to periods of isolation.
Of course, the weeks following confirmed the reason the Lord so clearly spoke this message into my heart when on April 13 He revealed His plans that we adopt an aging-out child. This did not bode well with family, generally.
The isolation comes in the journey and the 'real life' following. There were so many times we were going through horrible trials that I wanted to call family members I love and just cry on their shoulder. Instead, our immediate family grew closer and relied on the Almighty Comforter.
And let's face it, if you have more than two or three kids, nobody wants to invite you over :) We don't get a lot of invitations (except for a few very gracious friends!), but hey, we're a pretty good-sized crowd here! It's true that I can't share our journey with most family members and expect encouragement; in fact, some family would rather we never come around. That saddens my heart, but I am not having a pity party over it because they have no idea what they're missing! Our lives are full. Our vocabulary doesn't include the word 'retirement' (and where is that in the Bible anyway???), but we are surrendered to His plans, whatever that looks like.
We don't choose the Jesus smorgasbord: 'give me a heap of blessing; hold the suffering; let me hang onto that habit (cuz everybody else is doing it); I'll take a little prayer; I'll have some obedience when it fits my schedule.'
We're certainly not ALL THAT; we're just a work in progress, but we have finally come to understand that this life is not at all about us and is ALL about Him.
So our new motto is ~ even if we aren't blessed to have that supportive family, let's BE THAT FAMILY!
And once and for all I will answer the question we always get: Are you done yet?
I don't know; I doubt it; as long as we are living and breathing we are not DONE!