Joy Comes in the Morning

But let all who take refuge in You be glad, Let them ever sing for joy; And may You shelter them, That those who love Your name may exult in You. Psalm 5:11

I can sing with joy this morning. This week as been an emotional roller coaster but God has kept me close and as I reflect and process it this morning I am filled with praise.

We were initially told Monday that we were not chosen to be one of the families interviewed for the boys who we had previously given foster care to for two weeks because of our spiritual differences. The committee couldn’t understand how that big of a difference could work and not be a hindrance in our home for the boys. The adoption committee is made up of people from DSS Family Services and it rotates. It’s not always the same people that decide each case. Our case worker was not happy with their decision and was surprised as well. We have always been upfront about this, it is in our profile that was signed by the director and the state board that gave us our license to foster and adopt so our initial reaction was confusion. We were asked to foster the boys only if we would consider adopting them and we agreed to that and now we weren’t being considered as a family for them. Again confusion, which produced many other emotions ranging from sadness to anger.

So many questions now. Do we continue working with DSS? If this particular committee saw that as a weakness why were we given a license? It is not something we can work on or change, it is just who we are so if that is seen as a problem then why are we here? Why were we allowed to foster them? My husband sent an email to our case worker and asked for a meeting with her and her boss stating our case and how the process seemed inequitable since our bond and time with the boys in our home wasn’t even considered in allowing us an opportunity to tell our story and show them how “it works” in our home. This caused a conversation in the department and with the committee and they agreed it was the wrong decision and we now have an interview Friday at 10:00. I’m proud of my husband for fighting for the boys, amidst a whirlwind of emotions. I am reminded that God is not a God of confusion but of peace. I want our interview Friday to be surrounded by God’s peace, not confusion. I want the committee to see that we are the exception. Yes in general spiritual unequal marriages aren’t the best, they can be filled with bitterness and resentment and nagging and hurt. I have many women introduced to me in a SUM and I know my husband and I are the exception. We talk about the hard stuff, the “elephant” in the room. We don’t keep things from each other, I don’t try to change him but plead in prayer for his salvation. He doesn’t try to keep me from church activities but instead encourages and supports me in them. We are the exception. I praise God that I get to show this committee and tell them our story so they can see what the mighty hand of God can do. So they can see when he pours his grace and mercy on us and tells us to stay, and to not leave the marriage that it can work, that it does work. I want to show them that my husband is a kind, loving, man who loves these boys fiercely already and seeing that makes me love him so much more. I praise God that this has caused me to reflect on the many ways my husband sacrificed and compromised and loved and supported me because he knows my faith is my number one priority. When I was tempted to stay home from Lifegroup when the boys were here because I didn’t want to leave him alone with the three kids for another night he told me to go. He knows it is what I need, God is what I need, and he supports that. It doesn’t make sense. It seems strange, that if he is an atheist why would he be okay with encouraging my relationship with God and the body of Christ. It is because he fiercely loves me as well. And I have a powerful sovereign God who loves me even more. I also praise God for how he has changed the view of the word “atheist” by many who know him. A friend recently admitted she too thought very poorly of anyone who identified as an atheist before she met him. Most people think it means a satan worshiper or a really mad angry evil person. My husband is a kind man. A patient loving giving selfless man. He is a hardworking man with an immense work ethic and great integrity. He does not believe in God. His intellect is telling him God doesn’t exists. This does not make him evil. It does not make him a worse person or less. It makes him blind to God’s truth. His heart is not open to God’s truth. Just as mine wasn’t until I was saved. So I praise God for opening the eyes of others on how they should view an atheist; as a child of God, needing a Savior. Not a monster needing to be shunned.

Because of this decision and reversal of the decision my husband and I have had many great conversations. About our differences, about our family, about our strengths and weaknesses, about my faith, about his feelings towards Christianity, about atheism, about parenting, just so many great conversations, again not making the “elephant” in the room of our SUM an uncomfortable thing but something we are comfortable taking about. We have held each other, cried together, had a great family night after Monday’s news. We are most definitely stronger because of this. He told me last night he has “prayer warriors” at his job who will be praying for us during our interview. These are friends of his who know his beliefs, and tell him they are praying for him. Even in his friendships, God is providing a way for others to love on the atheist and for him to allow it and not resist it. Thank you to all of you who are praying for our family. I love our story. I love every day that God has written. I love that I get to be a part of this. Declaring the end from the beginning, And from ancient times things which have not been done, Saying ‘My purpose will be established, And I will accomplish all My good pleasure’ Isaiah 46:10.

I am so thankful God turned this around and is letting us go in to that room to sit with a committee and tell our story. We are like no other family. You can’t get to know us on a piece of paper. I’m glad my husband fought for that chance we now have. I am so at peace as well. If the decision is still made that the boys won’t be ours I I will praise God for the endless ways we have been blessed by this situation. The end goal is that God be glorified, not Holly gets what she wants. Whatever you ask in My name, that will I do, so that the Father may be glorified in the Son. John 14:13.

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