We (my husband and I, along with our 20 mos yr old son) recently fostered a young 7 mos old African American little girl. As quickly as she came one night with a phone call, she very unexpectedly left with the news that her birth mother was awarded custody of her again. After almost 2 weeks of figuring out her schedule, loving her, and bonding with her, we had to give her back within 2 hrs of the call.
My husband and I knew going into this process that fostering to adopt would be a process and a challenge; but we were also both convicted about knowing that what is often best for the child is to be reunified with birth family. We knew that it required a level of brokenness, an intentional giving of ourselves, and that the outcome may not be what we hope for.
Despite different parenting styles, culture of life, and circumstances in our minds between us and the birth mother, we know that God is in in control. But when what feels like tragedy hits, all I feel is pain, anger, emptiness and sorrow. I don’t denounce my faith but recognize that I am allowed to feel these emotions still knowing that God is there and is with me. I say this because I think the culture of the church at times can be that if I identify with sorrow or grief, then we are left with the possible judgement that our faith is weak and that we do not trust God. But i know that there is a duality of feelings, emotions, and that our God is much greater and bigger than I. I trust Him with all of me, yet still feel such sadness...and my conclusion is that is OK. That to grapple and to feel what is real, rather than to hurry into the next is not reality. And that by doing so, I neglect a process that is needed for refining me.
I recently heard that in the original Hebrew language, there was no word for “tragedy” because it simply met that God was not done. That despite the circumstance the work was still unfinished. I love that because I know that in our brokenness, God always has a way of redeeming, refining and make His creation beautiful and whole again.
So to you the reader, give permission to be. That whatever situation you may be in, that God's work is still being done in us.