notesbynora

Walking by Faith Alone

…then I prayed

with 4 comments


I worked in international and domestic adoption and humanitarian aid for close to eleven years – a decade of emotions: joy, tears, fears, anxiety, hope and despair. There was one particular adoption which to this day I marvel at the presence of God and His abilities. In the beginning, the parents wanted a little girl – there were none to be found. It is hard to imagine a “shortage” of baby girls but such was the case. Looking back I realize we were blinded by God because within minutes of this family accepting a healthy 2 day old baby boy with the most beautiful lips we’d ever seen, four girls became available. When I told the adoptive Mom of the baby girl possibilities she said defiantly “No!” like a woman in the delivery room. She knew he was her baby. And this baby boy was special. I knew it the moment I saw him.

The process seemed smooth – everything in place; documents just the way they should be – the parents happy, the government happy, U.S. immigration happy – I honestly believed the obstacle in this adoption was Mom agreeing to a boy. Somewhere in between the fourth and fifth month, the last and final anticipated signature of the Birth Mom, days from a hearing and finality, Birth Mom disappeared, leaving no trace. All of our internal investigation proved it was her intent to “leave no trail” for it was as if she never existed. Suddenly, this simple adoption turned into a two year abandonment, heavily battled in court, huge expense, nightmare to bring a little boy home to his parents in the United States.

There is a story in the Bible about an Israelite who worked as a slave for King Artaxerxes of Persia. His brother came to visit him and when he asks about Judah, the news he hears upsets him. Jerusalem’s wall is broken down and the people are in a great amount of danger. During this time period, a city with no walls was vulnerable to attack. Nehemiah prays for several weeks wondering what he should do to help his family and people.

Nehemiah was the cupbearer to the king. One evening when instructed to bring the king his wine, Artaxerxes notices that Nehemiah is sad, “Why does your face look so sad when you are not ill? This can be nothing but sadness of heart.” (Nehemiah 2: 1)

Sometimes God answers our prayers by giving us windows of opportunities to respond when asked particular questions. (Nehemiah 2:2-6) “I was very much afraid, but I said to the king, ‘May the king live forever! Why should my face not look sad when the city where my fathers are buried lies in ruins, and its gates have been destroyed by fire?’ The king said to me, ‘What is it you want?Then I prayed to the God of heaven…”

Courage comes when we least expect it. There are times when God puts us in the middle of something we cannot understand. Whether it is our own doing or the consequences of someone else’s mistake, trials come into our lives for reasons that do not make sense. I remember the day I received a call from one of  my adoption team members, “We found her.” All of us knew who “her” was. We’d spent the last two years in pursuit of her. We’d battled the Guatemalan Government, the court, the records bureau. My breath left my body for we were days away from winning the case and bringing our paperwork to the United States Embassy to process for Immigration. “You found her?”

“She is sitting in my office now.”

I had made an unexpected trip to Guatemala that weekend with two of my children just to ‘get away’ from the issues that confronted me at home. A window of opportunity had opened and I was very much afraid.  Her presence now could harm two years of effort and what if she had decided she wanted him back? Or wanted money in exchange for disappearing again? What if her plan was to once again mess things up? It was difficult to understand her motives.

My children and I walked from our apartment in Guatemala City the few blocks it took to get to our office.  As we walked we prayed, for they had grown to love this baby boy, now toddler, as much as his parents and I did.

The king graciously provides a way for Nehemiah to return to his home and rebuild the walls of Jerusalem. (Nehemiah 2: 8) “And because the gracious hand of my God was upon me, the king granted my requests.”

When I walked into the office, I noticed her lips, beautiful and full, just like his. My heart sank for I knew she was his birth mother. As I sat and listened to her story, I felt the gracious hand of my God upon me. God can handle any problem in my life. She came because she was no longer going to run. She came to do what was right and sign over the baby she had birthed to his rightful parents.

I was very much afraid…then I prayed.

I keep a victory shout out list on paper and in my head. When evil attempts to cripple me, I voice the “wins” of my God. I verbalize the double-overtime, miraculous triumphs of my Father and King. When things seem “out of control” and there appears to be no possible way, I remember a little baby boy, with beautiful lips, born in Guatemala and his courageous parents who never gave up on bringing him home.

God has your solution. Wait for it to come in His time.

As for that precious baby boy with the beautiful lips? I talked with his Mom just yesterday. He will be the ring bearer in my wedding.  God is always on time.

Written by Nora Hatchett Almazan

February 26, 2012 at 1:36 pm

4 Responses

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  1. Nora…what a great story…brought tears to my eyes….and so sweet that he will be your ring bearer in your wedding….How blessed we are at times…and some of us dont even realize it

    Connie Barfoot Daniel

    February 26, 2012 at 1:49 pm

  2. Nora. again thanks for another great story. I wish the best for your new relationship and venture in the future. GOD know’s who has the faith and believes. Our church (Church @The Springs In Ocala, Fl.) is closing this weekend on a 4 week series and Nehemiah is used for subject referencing the most.

    Best to you and your family.

    Bob

    February 26, 2012 at 2:59 pm

  3. Nora,
    Thanks for such a moving story! Who is this little boy? Anyone I was with when I was getting Siena? Siena is the joy of my life now! I wish we could see you sometime! All the way on the Idaho/Washington border now…long way from Guatemala! Congrats to your new marriage! I’m excited and happy for you! Love, Sue and Siena

    Sue Hoffmann

    February 26, 2012 at 3:45 pm

  4. Nora, He still has beautiful lips. There were so many times over those two years and even before while we were starting the process where we saw God’s hand at work. We can’t Thank You enough for your tireless efforts and support during that time. We can’t imagine our world without him. We are so happy for you and Rolando. You both mean so much to us. Congratulations, we will see you soon.

    Steve

    February 27, 2012 at 2:20 am


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