The Story (Part 3)2
This is a continuation of Lee and Amy Coleman's adoption story. To read the first parts of their story, click here.
THE STORY, pt. 3 The Turning Point
I am not good at being quiet. I'm not good at being still. I am a doer, a talker, a mover and shaker. Not a rester. Lee used to call me "Daughter of Thunder" after James and John in the Bible being called "Sons of Thunder." I don't think this was meant as a compliment… But God is working on that as part of my sanctification process. Lee hasn't called me that in a while. At least a few months.
So for me to be quiet on a subject, is, well, not exactly in my nature. I have opinions. Strong ones. I am a woman after all. Being quiet for almost a year? Unheard of!
God had been calling my heart to adoption for a solid year. I had not spoken to anyone about this. Including Lee. I would research on the internet, then erase my history. Over and over. I would share stories of people adopting with Lee and we would both be so encouraged by that, but the conversation stopped there. The only knowledge I had of Lee's thoughts on our family adopting was from several years prior. "Nope, not for me!" We both thought adoption was totally amazing, and believed those following the call to adopt were truly bold in Christ. But again, not for us. Right?
I finally prayed to God and asked told him (rather audacious, I know) that if He wanted this for our family then He was going to have to do the work. Not ME!!! I was not going to speak a word about adoption to my husband. I didn't ever want to it feel like I had talked him into something that wasn't directed by God. So therefore I was silent.
But God wasn't.
He was speaking. Loudly. To both of us. We weren't telling the other about it, but God was busy. He had some mighty big plans that He was unfolding.
It was during the Sunday school class that I mentioned earlier that God brought everything to a head.
I can remember the particular Sunday. It was a communion Sunday. I cried during the prayers. I cried during communion. I cried during the sermon. I cried during Sunday school. You see a battle was raging in my heart that Sunday. The voice was telling me to say something. "Bring it up," it said. "Just ask," it said. "TODAY," it said. "No! No! NO!" I said.
As I drove home from church I remember talking myself into saying something. Today was the day. I was just going to mention it to Lee very loosely. Just test the waters. Ease into it. Gently. Slowly. I got home and promptly chickened out. Nothing. I couldn’t do it. NO WAY! I spent the rest of the day just being quiet.
Then, that evening, I learned that the Holy Spirit is what kept me quiet, not myself. God wanted the discussion about adoption to be opened a different way. Not by the daughter of thunder, but by the gentle, quiet, calm spiritual leader of the household. You see, on that very same day that I was battling with approaching Lee with the possibility, God was telling Lee, “Today is the day you ask your wife if she is willing to adopt.”
It is a night I will never forget. My heart was so heavy, so tired, so moved with the urging of God to adopt, but so unsure as to whether or not we were BOTH being called to it. That evening we sat on the sofa enjoying a peaceful moment, glass of wine in hand, the kids quiet upstairs.
And then Lee spoke the words. Words that are forever etched on my heart. Words that prove to me that the Holy Spirit is so alive. So real. So present. Jesus told us He would ask the Father to send a Helper, to be with us forever. A helper that will dwell with us and will be in us. (John 14:16-17 paraphrased) This very Spirit, the Helper, placed the burden on Lee’s heart to speak the words.
“I have something to ask you,” he said. “Ok,” I replied, somewhat nervous as I could tell this wasn’t a light “gotta question” kind of ask you.
“So, I was just wondering,” (and then it came), “Have you ever thought about us adopting?” Lee asked me.
He asked me… Don’t let that pass too quickly. He asked me. The very same Helper, Spirit, that was at work in me had been hard at work in him. Remember, the last conversation we had in regards to us adopting was firmly left at never. So, HE asked ME if I had ever thought about adopting. Are you kidding me?
From there Lee says all he saw was my face wrinkle into an unrecognizable mess, my eyes fill up, my words become indistinguishable as all I could do was sit and be wrecked. Wrecked by the gift my loving Father had just given me. Wrecked by an undeniable answer to prayer. And wrecked by the fact that Lee wanted to adopt. I didn’t talk him into it. God did. I didn’t even ask him to consider it. God did.
This was God’s story. God’s plan. God’s timing. This was ALL God.
...to be continued.