In only a few short days, we will begin the long trip from Detroit, Michigan to Addis Ababa, Ethiopia. Finally, all of the paperwork and waiting will culminate in a visit with our new five-year-old son. As our departure date approaches our anxiety builds. Will some silly oversight in our travel preparations trip us up? (We are scrambling to get our yellow fever vaccinations at this very moment). Will Ethiopia get caught up in the Christian-Muslim conflicts that have been increasingly plaguing the Middle East? Will there be an unexpected government shutdown or delay? Or much, much worse, what will his reaction be to us—will he smile warmly in response to our expectant, hopeful faces, or will he recoil in fear?
Certainly, this process is an exercise in trust in our Lord. In His sovereignty. In His ability to answer prayers. In His timing. In His love for each and every one of his children. I forcefully remind myself that He can deliver this little boy into our arms without delay. Unfortunately, I am also reminded that God, at times, also appears to take His sweet old time. I try to push from my memory that, as part of one of God’s great plans, Joseph spent many years in Egypt. In prison. Forgotten. Waiting for apparently no purpose at all whatsoever.
But, God’s timing was perfect then and it remains perfect now. I tell myself that over and over and over. While we wait, we paint rooms, rearrange furniture. We pray, we talk, we dream. While he waits our son learns English. While he waits he grows and his personality blossoms. He has been described as “playful and charming,” “eager to learn new things,” he is “bold,” “he asks innumerable questions.” Who knows what else God has in store for His children?
For now, we must trust that God’s plan is to forever bring together this little boy and us in His perfect timing.