I talk a lot about teaching kids how to work. I think we are designed to work. I think we need to give our kids responsibilities at home so they learn how to work wholeheartedly and without complaining.
I think I need to do the same. But do I hold myself to that standard as much as I hold them to it?
When the going gets tough in the adoption department, do I waste my time complaining or do I roll up my sleeves and get to work? More times than I care to admit I've been that squeaky, complaining wheel. I need to stop being that.
It's okay that I'm listening to the fourth screaming fit of the day and it's only 10:00 AM. I can do this.
It's okay that she's broken seven things this week. We can work with broken stuff.
It's okay that I've had to ask her to use kind words after every single sentence she has spoken today. Kindness just isn't her thing, yet.
None of those things are going to make it out of the first couple of years with her if I hold on tight and don't give up.
It's hard. Just handle it. It won't be hard forever.
When it comes to older child adoption, you have to keep your eyes on the big picture. If you look at the short term mess, discouragement and hopelessness may overtake you. Keep your eyes focused on the end of the long road ahead, because it is long. Some days it may feel like it wraps around the Earth 14,657 times. It doesn't. I promise.
What is the big picture? The big picture includes graduation. The big picture includes a bridal gown. The big picture includes your grandchildren. What do you want to see in her then?
I want to see my daughters being kind to those who can do nothing for them. I want to see them trust God with their futures and the men they may someday marry. I want to see them raise children who know Jesus. I want to see them sacrifice their own wants for those who could use a helping hand. I want to see them living the life God has designed especially for them.
That's what the big picture looks like to me.
What do I need to do today to make that picture a reality? I need to trust that God knows what He is doing. I need to focus on the hearts of my children rather than on the externals. I need to handle the screaming with patience, fix the broken stuff and remind her again to use kind words. That's what the big picture looks like today.
Basically, today just looks like a lot of work. But that's okay because tomorrow won't.
And that's what counts.