Isaiah 40:31 But those who wait on the LORD shall renew their strength; They shall mount up with wings like eagles, They shall run and not be weary, They shall walk and not faint.
Chris and I have completed the homestudy!!! I have an inch-tall stack of photocopied documents that went into this process. We had a 3 hour interview with the Social Worker. We had 10 credit hours of classes (which took us probably closer to 30 to complete) and we had people all over the country writing letters on our behalf...and it all boils down to a 6 page report. Our whole life, all three of us - in 6 pages. Wow! Have I never felt so insignificant! :)
Finally when the report is finished, we kept our momentum going so that we could finish our dossier just as quickly. Well, here we are nearly a month later, and we're still working on it. I have learned some valuable lessons...first, the enemy will interfere with God's good work. No matter what you do, Satan is there to frustrate you, to make you want to give up and stand up road blocks to keep your pace going. If he make you feel that you can't handle something, can't persevere through something or can't tolerate something, he can keep you from God's blessings and diminish your faith. The dossier is much more tricky, because there are probably between 80-100 documents, and the Russians are extremely particular! Even the abbreviation of a state can completely invalidate a dossier document! We must practice extreme patience with this process!
I had a situation with my CPA... well, what was my CPA. I had them prepare my taxes from 2005 to 2007, but I did our own in 2008. I needed a CPA to certify our assets - or really just state that I certify that these are our assets. I contacted them, and they told me in no uncertain terms that since I did not use them last year, they would not do this for me. I was appalled! There was no, "Well, it will cost this much" or "Let's see what you have and we'll let you know if we can help you" It was just "No". Well, after I let them know in no uncertain terms that they have lost this customer for life, I felt so rejected and angry! But God provided another way, a connection to a childhood friend that said he would take care of it for us.
Second, many, many things are out of your control. There are documents that you take extreme care with, have notarized, and then send off to some third party, and trust that they will provide you the proper information in a timely fashion. Some documents have taken weeks to return! Some we are still waiting on. Others returned to us very quickly. But the bottom line is that we cannot worry for the things about which we have no control. I have experienced a lot of stress in getting the forms from our Doctors completed. I have to bring a notary, I have to convince them to write letters (on the spot) and I have to trust that they will have their medical license with them, and also trust that the medical license does not expire within 6 months! I was able to mitigate some of this by social engineering some letterhead from a doctor's nurse for these letters so I could draft them on their behalf ahead of time, but the front office is so trained to "protect" the doctors, that getting a question answered like "When does the Doctor's medical license expire" is almost impossible!
All this leads to the third lesson - All things through prayer and petition! I was trying to complete all these things on my own. Getting rather pious with my husband about the tasks I would delegate to him. Ride heard on everything and worry about the events to come. But I am learning that God knows the timing and we must one - trust that if we have a roadblock, there may be a reason for it and two - we need to be praying to keep the enemy attacks down and for discernment about which roadblocks are attacks and which are of God. I realize now that we are close to the end of the waiting list, God wants to match us to the perfect child for us! He already knows who that is, and a little longer wait or a little push to get things through will divinely line us up with that perfect gift.
Our dossier is almost complete. I am praying that we will have everything by next week done that we can do, and that everything that we can't do will fall into place by the end of August. Our next step is a baby referral and a whirlwind trip to Russia to meet the precious baby!
Romans 12:12 Be joyful in hope, patient in affliction, faithful in prayer.