Ah, Saturday morning…
…when my husband and I flop onto the couch in our South China highrise, gulping down as much coffee as possible, and feigning as though we have all the time and no cares in the world.
Sure I came in last night on the train late from Guilin, my body covered with bites from God knows what that lives somewhere there in the orphanage, my pack on my back and my heart heavy with signs of hope and despair among the children in foster care and within the orphanage walls.
And here now we sit in the mess of our half-packed apartment…
…but–deep breath–all that can wait for another moment.
For now it is Saturday morning in sunny South China, our second to last one, in fact, and I’m turning my thoughts to the ones that let giant hope leap into my heavy heart.
As in I’m thinking and praying about the children with Down Syndrome who I met, so happy in foster care with their foster mother, and being put on the list for international adoption. Praise God!
And the little eight-year old autistic girl I met on the last visit of the week on Thursday, down a little country road, where in view of the setting sun she pronounced characters so clearly and deliberately, reading and knitting for us, with her foster mother looking on, proudly grinning from ear to ear, and going on and on about how gifted her child is.
Gifted. Not disabled, not strange, not marred. Gifted, good, and beautifully and wonderfully made.
And that’s when the tears came, plump stinging ones, the kind that are impossible to control because you’ve been reminded so deeply, so palpably in your gut what love is again, and it’s so beyond our human capability, and yet so plainly visible in our midst. And you’ve been reminded of our limits as humans but of God’s ability to do great things with our smallness.
And so I might be sitting on my couch here, wondering how I scarcely lived without coffee this past week, how I went without a mirror, how I endured the bug bites and the dirt and the grime, not to mention the heartache of these children, but I also know in a matter of just a few weeks I’ll be somewhere else wondering how I will be able to live without China.
God, make me to breathe deep this breath of God in all its goodness, because all things are for a season, and in this season I have been richly blessed by China, these families, and your goodness in a world of suffering. Amen.