First court date: Check.

Amber Joy's first court hearing was last night at 9:40 p.m. (central time), 10:40 a.m. Taiwan time.  I was up much later than that, just waiting to hear something from the missionary who is our power of attorney about how it went, or any decisions that may have been made.  I finally turned over and went to sleep around 1 a.m., having heard nothing.  It was excruciating.  We weren't even sure what we were waiting to hear, but to have no word whatsoever was much harder than I thought it would be.  I woke up again at 5:30 a.m., exhausted emotionally and physically.  Sleeping on our sofa seems comfortable at the time, but when you wake up after 4 unrestful hours, it is painfully obvious that it is NOT a bed.  After Justin left for work, I went to our bed and slept until 11:30 this morning.  I needed it.  When I woke up, I checked e-mail again and finally, there was news about court. 

Court went well.  Amber Joy and her birthmom were there.  Before court, the social worker took Amber Joy and her birthmom to apply for Amber Joy's passport.  Apparently, her birthmom had to confirm the baby's identity in order to apply for a passport.  The passport should be ready next week!  Also, the judge did not ask for any additional information about Justin and me, so she must have had everything she needed.  We are also waiting for a social work report to be turned into the court, hopefully next week.  As far as timing goes, we are hoping that our first ruling will be by the middle of September, and the second ruling will be close after.  From my understanding, our travel date could be within weeks of the second ruling. 

I told my mom yesterday that lately, I have felt dragged along on this journey...I am unable to keep up with what God is doing, so it's as if he just tied me to the back of the truck and said, 'Just c'mon...I've got this.  Stay out of my way.'  He just needed us to be willing.  We are willing, and now, things are moving so fast...it's almost unbelievable.  There's not one thing we can do or that we have control over, but it sure is nice to know we don't have to.  God is so obviously in control.  I also always thought that I needed to be close to God in order to see where he was working in my life, or for him to even WANT to work in my life.  I'm finding out that is not true either.  I wish I could say that my personal relationship with God feels close and secure right now, but I'm in a valley where that is concerned.  I am relying on the verse that says "But the spirit prays for us when we do not know what to pray for."  God is moving in our lives in ways that we could not have imagined and in ways that are unmistakably His.  He is blessing us in spite of our lack of faith...in spite of our humanity.  During this entire adoption process, we have done what we could and tried to stay open.  God has taken that little mustard seed of faith and has turned it into something far beyond us. 

We are so grateful that he is choosing to use us to show his glory.  We love our daughter and we are thankful that her story is moving those who hear it. 

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