God certainly likes to surprise me. Not even 24 hours after I was struggling so badly with whether or not we did the right thing, I got closure. Finally. I can now put this all behind me with no regrets.
I found a pair of the little girl's sandals in Emma's toybox. I had no idea if she would need them or not. We are almost out of sandal season, but - if she was still with her mom, I figured she might need them. But if she was with an adoptive family, I figured she wouldn't need them. So yesterday, I e-mailed our social worker to ask if she wanted me to send them to her.
The response I got surprised me:
You can toss the sandals. Things are better in the mom’s world, which trickles down to the kids.
My mind went nuts. Is the mom going to keep them? So I e-mailed back and asked if she was. Then I walked away from the computer and went to take a shower.
While in the shower, a thought popped into my head. 'Maybe she was never going to give them up for adoption after all. Maybe the kids needed to come here so she could get herself back together so she could care for the kids again. Maybe the reason we had to say no was so that we didn't say yes - and then have them taken from us. Maybe God was protecting our family - while helping the kids and their mom.'
I had NEVER thought about things from that perspective before. My thoughts have always centered around, 'What will happen to the kids? Did we let them down? Did we make the right decision for them - and for us?'
Just as I had that new thought, a sunbeam came through the skylight in the bathroom. Not an unusual occurance - BUT - yesterday was a rainy, dreary day. I hadn't seen the sun before then - and I didn't see it again for HOURS after that.
Just a simple, glorious sunbeam. Kind of like a God smile.
At that moment, I said outloud, "I don't know why this all had to happen, God, but you do. You know."
Later I checked my e-mail again. The social worker's response:
Only God knows.
Honestly, I could 'what if' this situation all day long. Believe me, I have - for 6 weeks now. But whether I was given some sort of insight - or whether that smiling sunbeam was just to let me know that God IS taking care of us, and things DID have to happen the way that they did, and we ARE under His protection - I'll never know.
But I do know that God does hear our prayers, and answers them in the most unexpected ways.
Walking with God is never what I expect.
But it is definitely always so much more than I could ever imagine.