Monday

The blessed agony


Wait for the LORD;
Be strong and let your heart take courage;
Yes, wait for the LORD.


We are the legal parents of a child who is 8,009 miles away. If you wonder why I say 8,009 miles and not 8,000 it is because for us, 9 miles matter. If that makes no sense to you, then you are not a mommy or daddy and I cannot explain it.

His name is Joseph and he is our son. He turned 8 months old yesterday.  And we cannot hold or touch or smell or feel or taste him. We cannot experience or love him in any way we are accustomed. We pray for him daily. He is an echo to all our thoughts. We kiss the down soft cheeks of our other children and wonder what his cheeks feel like.

He is in a town called Mbuji-Mayi. Soon he will travel 586 miles by flight to Kinshasa, where we must go to get him. He will travel without us. Feel the disconcerting weight and weightlessness of flight without us. He is our son, legally, and yet he is so terribly far away.
When we began this process I had concerns about bonding with the child. Dads sometimes struggle bonding with their kids until they are born – we need contact, interaction, experience. Those concerns are now laughable. I ache for a son I have never heard or held, never tickled or soothed, never felt the warmth of his breath upon my neck.

We must navigate myriad steps to obtain a visa for our son because you cannot just fly in, grab him, and take him back home. Governments want to make sure the right child goes to the right people and that process just takes awhile. We received notice that the process could possibly be extended another 3-6 months. Possibly.

I waited patiently for the LORD;
He inclined to me and heard my cry

We have waited before. We’ve even waited a long time. But we’ve never had our 8 month old 8,009 miles away and been unable to get him. Had to wait to get him. Had someone tell us we may need to wait longer.

And so I am thankful that the God who put all this in motion, inclines to hear our cries.

My soul, wait in silence for God only,
For my hope is from Him.
He only is my rock and my salvation,
My stronghold: I shall not be greatly shaken.

And I am thankful that we have a son for whom we ache, for whom we agonize a blessed agony. And for a Lord who holds my soul and comforts me as I pray and ask Him to comfort and feed and sunscreen and clothe and love our son until our hope be realized and we be the blessed hands that do all those things.

1 comment:

Tim Hayes said...

Brandon -

What a beautiful post. It is not my intent to stray from the joy of your words, but I, too, am thankful to have a son for whom I ache. It is obviously different (and indescribably painful), but I trust God watches over him until I can hold him in my arms as well.

Congrats to your family! I pray you are all together soon.