I had a very vivid dream Saturday night…
I rescued 2 very tiny, helpless kittens from an extremely
vicious, scary dog. He didn't scare me, but I knew he would
tear those babies to pieces if I didn't risk being attacked myself
to save them. As always, I asked Holy Spirit if this was a dream
from Him, or merely something I ate the night before.
He revealed His answer that morning in church.
Those kittens were our youngest children - our adopted treasures.
Pastor Chad's topic in church?
That got my "I'm-mama-bear-hear-me-growl" juices flowing.
While any believer will struggle at one point, or many times with
their identity in the kingdom, we've seen a true "orphan mentality"
lived out in our home - It's a battle.
I didn't want to take this picture in China, but I felt I needed to.
This is his default. To retreat. Alone. Isolated. Defensive.
His first 6 months home - not. easy.
My normal Mother Jedi mind powers? useless.
We celebrate each open window & door into his soul
we've been blessed to glimpse.
Praise Jesus - Those moments of retreat are not the norm anymore.
This is a big week for him.
He will have first birthday celebration he's aware of ever having.
We asked him what he wanted for a gift.
"OK, so where do you want to go out to eat?"
chicken soup at home
Chicken soup and a flashlight?!
Um, at that moment I almost sold my 80's Swatch collection
and my vintage autographed Randolph Mantooth photo on ebay,
and contemplated picking up 2 part time jobs
to buy him the whole toy section at Target.
(My gift of mercy can often veer suddenly into unhealthy territory.)
Dear son, this is the land of the free, the home of the brave,
the society of Toys R Us Christmas dream catalogs
and stores where children register for birthday presents like they're getting married
and rent ginormous play/pizza centers to celebrate with 50 of their closest friends!
I'm not defending our culture of excess, and praying a spirit of
greed over my son. I want him to know what it means to be a Woodard.
We celebrate birthdays big in our home.
I want him to dream like a "normal" little boy about a present he's always
desired, and know what it feels like to be wanted, very wanted,
and celebrated, very celebrated.
For two of our children, this is a deeper struggle.
But I will war on their behalf.
The kindness of the Father will bring Gus
to repentance & believing faith in Jesus.
I want he and Gracie to know that
"No eye has seen nor ear has heard,
and no mind has imagined what God has prepared
for those who love Him.
But it was to us that God revealed these things by His Spirit.
For His Spirit searches out everything
and shows us God's deep secrets."
1 Corinthians 2:8-10
May this Truth set them free to know that in Christ they are:
Filled with the very Spirit of God. (Ephesians 1:13)
The righteousness of God in Christ Jesus. (2 Cor. 5:21)
Not condemned because they are in Christ. (Romans 8:1)
Chosen and royal. (1 Peter 2:9)
Fearfully and wonderfully made. (Psalm 139)
Alive with Christ and seated in the heavenlies. (Ephesians 2)
Alas, they are also Woodards,
where their birthdays will be obnoxiously celebrated
by a mother who becomes a possessed Martha Stewart on steroids
when it comes to such occasions.
We will have Gus' favorite chicken soup for his 12th birthday.
One of his presents will be a flashlight,
and we will also shower him with affirmation of his identity.