"To every thing there is a season, and a time to every purpose under the heaven."
"If you are lucky enough to find a way of life you love, you have to find the courage to live it."
- John Irving
"Whenever the rainbow appears in the clouds, I will see it and remember the everlasting covenant between God and all living creatures of every kind on the earth."
[In talking about others having the right to be supported in their ministry, the apostle Paul says] But I have not used any of these rights. And I am not writing this in the hope that you will do such things for me. I would rather die than have anyone deprive me of this boast. — 1 Corinthians 9:15
The time has come. The last 5.5 years have changed my life in so many ways, but now my life is coming into a new season. I have decided to resign from my position with Adoption Advocates International, effective September 28th, 2012.
There are a lot of contributing factors, not all of which I'll go into on this public forum, but the primary reason is my family. This is my first year to really homeschool all four of my kids. They aren't doing online curriculum this year and they need more of my attention than in the past. OF COURSE my two kindergartners need me to teach them the entire time! More than that, I *want* to be in the classroom with my kids, fully aware of what's going on with their education. I can no longer give 70 hours a week to adoption and humanitarian work. The reward is no longer worth the cost. My children need me, and I need them.
Another factor in my decision is my Christianity. I am a Christian! I am a Christ-follower! Woo-hoo! Praise God! For the past 5.5 years I've worked successfully for a secular agency. I CHOSE THAT--don't get me wrong. But the seasons have changed. My spirit is just bursting to be able to do my work in a Christian environment, ministering in all the ways that Christ has to offer. I feel all bottled up inside and about to burst! Can't hold me back any longer! Whatever the Lord has in store for me, I just KNOW it's going to be with a Christian agency/organization/foundation (whatever!).
I know some might think that I've been planning this for a while--especially after my big blow-up in June. Actually, that's not true. We came up with a great plan in June. My mom was going to come on as my assistant at AAI in February 2013. I was so excited! That would have solved some of the time-constraint issues, and also given me some behind-the-scenes support I needed. Just knowing that help was coming built me up quite a bit. I was going along and doing my thing on auto-pilot even the beginning of last week. Something small happened mid-week that just made me realize, "I don't have to continue this. That's it. My time with AAI has come to an end."
As soon as the realization came to me, I began to see confirmations of this ALL OVER THE PLACE!
Incredibly, of 26 families who currently have referral, 20 of them are in the I-600/visa phase of the adoption process. Do you know how unlikely that is?! That just doesn't happen. Only God does that. Twenty of those twenty-six families are going to be home with their kids in the next few months! It is like God created a natural "break" in the program.
The morning after I decided to resign, as I had been thinking about what I would do when I left AAI, I received Corinthians 9:15 (above) in my inbox. Here I am, praying about whether I can "afford" to continue to work with The Ripley Foundation for no pay or if I must seek out a Christian agency to do a *small* Ghana program, and the Lord sends that verse of the day! Ha!
That night I have a dream about rainbows. First I see one rainbow. Then it's a double rainbow. Then I see six rainbows stacked on top of each other. I remember this dream the next morning when I wake up to the Genesis 9:16 verse! Umm...do you THINK the Lord might be giving me His promise that this is all going to be okay? Wow.
Confirmation after confirmation that this is going to be okay. Of course, as a human, I want to have one thing lined up before I even make the first thing official, right? I'm someone who was always flirting with one boy before I broke up with the other. Why not look and see what agencies are out there before I even resign? BUT NO. I got a clear NO on that one.
The Lord has made it clear that He needs me to LEAP before He will show me what's next for my life. And aren't blind leaps of faith the most exciting kind?! Who knows what sort of humanitarian/ministry/adoption/missions opportunities may be laying around out there that could never be revealed if I didn't resign from AAI *and* leave Him time to work before trying to arrange the next thing on my own.
Just between you and me (ha!), our bring-home income will be reduced by 40% in a few weeks. LEAP! We have done the numbers and we think we can make it. It will represent a big change of lifestyle for us. LEAP! Ironically, we also went down 40% when I quit teaching in order to be a stay at home mom. He carried us through that, and I have faith that he will carry us through this. LEAP!
I feel this great sense of excitement in my heart. I know that everything possible has been done to take care of my AAI families. [They know they can come to me privately regardless of whether there is a paycheck involved.] I'm excited that I will be able to continue assisting with adoption and family preservation work with The Ripley Foundation (Joha/Muna), being their representative here in the U.S.! [For now, this means independent adoptions.] I know that I will have MUCH more time to devote to my children! And I feel in my heart that the Lord has something else coming up for me that He hasn't yet revealed!!!