The Adoption Chronicles: Sanding Floors and Preparing Hearts
Entry #2: Adoption Preparation– Home and Hearts
I am a list maker. Grocery Lists, To-Do Lists, Reading Lists, Goals Lists, Cleaning Lists… writing these lists helps me focus and frees up my mind to think of other things instead of always trying to remember what needs to be accomplished. Plus, there’s something so satisfying about crossing off a completed task!
Finish basement floor (insert contented sigh here)
The basement floor has been sanded, stained and sealed– progress! It feels great to have this big part of the project completed and officially crossed off the list. (Though it doesn’t seem quite fair that my husband did all the work and I’m feeling all satisfied with crossing things off The List!)
Not only do we like the look, but keeping it as cement seemed (to us) like a much better choice for a basement than installing another type of flooring. There’s no chance of ruining carpeting if moisture ever becomes a problem. It should also hold up well through kid traffic and games.– bonus!
We’re relieved this counts as “flooring” for our licensing approval, though sealing it is all we’d really ‘have’ to do for licensing. In the event any bodily fluids end up on the floor, the sealer will prevent it from seeping into the concrete. (Apparently, that’s considered a “hazard” 😉 )
The first part of the process (not pictured) required renting a machine to sand down the concrete in preparation for the stain and seal– a noisy, dusty project!
During this part of preparing our home for adoption, my thoughts turned toward the process of preparing my heart.
As the concrete was being prepped by sanding away several years worth of miscellaneous stains, I couldn’t help but wonder how many stains in my life and heart need to be removed before I’ll be prepared to parent another wounded child.
While listening to the loud hum of the machine grinding away the imperfections on the floor I began to think of all my flaws and imperfections.
Suddenly, my selfish longings for comfort and convenience were embarrassingly obvious. I know this road requires sacrifice and hard work. Will I be ready?
Next, the fear, anxiety, frustration, and impatience that I still deal were highlighted in my mind. Raising wounded children takes calm persistence, and loads of patience– I know this from experience. I’ve researched and learned so much, yet I still have a tendency to overreact when I’m overwhelmed with my son’s meltdowns and behaviors! Will I be ready?
And then there are the lingering scars from my own traumatic experiences. Has enough healing taken place? Will I be ready?
Another “list” has formed in my mind…
I’m painfully aware of how far I have to go and realize that I will NOT be ready. No matter what I do or how “prepared” I am, I will never be fully prepared.
But at the same time, I’m gratefully aware of the power of God to work in me and through me even as He continues to transform my heart.
For I am confident of this, that He who began a good work in you (me) will continue to perfect it until the day of Christ Jesus. –Philippians 1:6
So with the sound of grinding filling the house, I whispered in the quiet of my soul, “ Lord, let me be soft and pliable—let my heart be clay and not concrete in your hands. Please, remove whatever stubborn stains need to be gone before we bring home another child! Do what needs to be done in this time of preparation. Please help me to remember it’s an ongoing process, and that You will be with us, leading and guiding through each and every step– despite our imperfections.”
Even though there is plenty of work to be done in my heart I can breathe a sigh of relief.
I will never be fully prepared, but I am walking with the One who IS.
The One who already knows the beginning from the end has got this journey to adoption in His hands. He knows where I’ve been and where I’m going. He knows what to prepare my heart for in advance and what I’ll just need to walk through as it comes. After all, it was His idea to set us down this road.
I choose to trust that He is preparing our hearts and the heart(s) of any child(ren) that may join our family.
I choose to trust that God is using each step of the process to accomplish what needs to be done– even if I can’t cross it neatly off a list! He’s got this, and that’s infinitely more satisfying than crossing anything off a list!
Recently crossed off the Reading-List:
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The Adoption Chronicles: Entry 1, Entry 2