The Five of Us, Spring 2014

The Five of Us, Spring 2014

Can I Get a Neon Arrow Here, Please?

"Where there is no vision, the people perish." (Prov. 29:18a)

I have heard this Scripture quoted numerous times throughout my life, always referring to the idea that without a specific direction for the future, a dream to work toward, human beings are lost and drying up. But, digging a little deeper, I'm not sure that's really, or at least not totally, what it means. Generally I like the book of Proverbs, but it bugs me that there is often insufficient context for interpretation. In this case, the quote above isn't a complete sentence. The whole sentiment is: "Where there is no vision, the people perish: but he that keepeth the law, happy is he." Vision seems closely related to the law somehow. And, of the other proverbs surrounding this one (whatever they're worth in interpreting this one), several deal with discipline (of children and servants). I'm still trying to sort out the connections.

The original word translated here as "vision" really does mean a mental image, a dream, a revelation. But the word "perish" has a lot of different meanings from the unbraiding/freeing of hair to making someone unruly, undisciplined. Given the end of the Proverb, it seems that the latter is probably closest to the writer's intention. In fact, in contrast to the KJV quoted above, the NKJV reads: "Where there is no revelation, the people cast off restraint; But happy is he who keeps the law."

That makes a little more sense to me. Perhaps the author is driving at the fact that we need to remain faithful in doing what we know is right (instead of "casting off restraint") even in the darkness when we feel "shelved" and don't know what God is up to?

Or, maybe I'm reading my own circumstances and feelings into it! I certainly feel a little adrift, a bit shelved, sort of useless, a little like flowing hair that has been unbraided and now is going every which way. I feel like vision has abandoned me. It's like I don't know who I am, how I fit into this new life. And that is a very loose, unrestrained feeling. What am I supposed to be doing here? Why am I here? I know God said He has me where He wants me back in November. He gave me the confidence that He's doing something new with me here, but that almost throws me deeper into the feelings of being cut loose. Old ways of defining myself, old directions, old purposes, old visions, old strengths, old gifts, they all seem void, empty, unhelpful for making present/future decisions. Things that may have impassioned me in the past now leave me lifeless. It all just begs the question again, Why am I here? What am I supposed to be doing?

So, do I go back to the law as the proverb seems to suggest? Obviously, I'm not going back to the law as in religion that doesn't engage the whole believer, but maybe it's time to revisit the basics, shore up the foundation, return to the disciplines that bring order to the spiritual life. It'd be easier if He would just give me the vision, but I suspect that He's waiting for me to "straighten up the house" a little bit first. Not that I would somehow earn His grace, but rather prepare for it.

Funny, the biggest motivator for me to clean my house is the proximity of a friend or family member's visit. If you were to just pop over, you'd have to step over toys and such; not to mention overlooking dust and dirt--maybe even a ring in the toilet! But, if you're on the calendar, things are pretty well ordered and clean by the time you get here. Ironically, as I've been begging God to visit me with clarity of purpose and mission in my new home here in NC, I haven't been tidying my insides. There's some dust here and there, clutter. Nothing major, just the stuff that accumulates in life. Busyness. Lack of discipline. Procrastination. Maybe I should give Him the courtesy I give my dinner and house guests, hmm?

Now... where did I leave my self-discipline?


My Man and Me

My Man and Me
married 7/7/2001


ours through biology, born 7/25/2004, home 8/1/2004


ours through adoption from Liberia, West Africa, born 7/15/2005, home 10/25/2007


ours through domestic adoption, born 1/15/2011, home 2/10/2011, final 8/3/2011

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Round Two Timeline

  • 9/24/08 Home study update home visit for Ghana adoption
  • 10/15/08 Dossier sent to AOHG
  • 10/15/08 I600A application sent to USCIS
  • 10/30/08 First heard about possible domestic private adoption
  • 11/18/08 Last spoke with contact about possible domestic adoption; expected to hear back about meeting with birthmother
  • 12/3/08 Withdrew application from AOHG
  • 1/6/09 Found out another family had been chosen for possible domestic adoption
  • 1/21/09 USCIS fingerprinting appointment
  • 1/8/09 Received USCIS fingerprinting appointment notice
  • 4/11/09 Sent Pre-Application to Covenant Care Adoptions for Domestic Infant Adoption program
  • 6/8/09 Social worker visit to update home study from International to Domestic
  • 7/24/09 Received completed home study update
  • 8/25/09 Went "on the list" for birthfamilies to choose from
  • 4/28/10 Found out a birth mom had chosen us
  • 5/8/10 Met the birth mom
  • 5/11/10 Got the call that birth mom changed her mind
  • 5/19/10 Birth mom's scheduled c-section
  • 11/30/10 Visit from DSS sw about foster parenting
  • 11/30/10 Got the call that another birth mom had chosen us
  • 12/21/10 Met with the birth mom
  • 1/15/11 @1:42 PM BB was born!
  • 1/19/11 ICPC (interstate) paperwork sent to GA for approval
  • 1/31/11 ICPC Clearance Approved
  • 2/10/11 Placement Ceremony and Pup comes home!!!!
  • 8/3/11 It's Official! Pup's Adoption Decree was issued