This song was going through my head while in Phoenix. We were there to deliver our foster baby to his forever family.
Sitting in a living room in Arizona, meeting the family for the first time. They are kind. They are relaxed. They are unpretentious.
They are very similar to our family. Imagine that.
Little G is nonplused. He roams around the open floor plan with curiosity and confidence. It seems surreal, really, that we will be leaving him here.
I have to believe the calm I feel is due to the prayers of family and friends, and even strangers, washing over us. Imagine that.
The first night I tell Carlos, through tears, how grateful I am that they are believers. I am still almost incredulous. He responds with gratitude that we would show so much care for his family.
For little G is his nephew – they are actually, truly, family. G will grow up knowing his great-grandma, and playing with his many cousins. Imagine that.
After a warm visit, we head out of the chill of the air-conditioned house and into the 100-degree heat. We buckle G into the car seat for the second-to-last time, a milestone I mark only mentally, as we purposefully determined to not countdown all the things we would be doing for the last time.
But it is the second-to-last time we would buckle him in to that seat. Imagine that.
We don’t end up using the porta-crib from the hotel, which I am fairly sure they ran out and purchased after giving the one we requested to someone else. Instead, that precious little boy sleeps nestled in between us.
It would be the last night we spent together. Imagine that.
The next day we leave G with Mary and Madison, and go exploring. Their day goes so well, we all decide he should spend the night.
And we don’t end up curled in fetal positions, sobbing in our hotel room. Imagine that.
G is a trooper. He acts as if he’s known this family all his life. The next day, when I mention to Carlos that I believe God had been working in G’s little heart, preparing him for this, he tells me that is exactly what their church had been requesting God do.
God listened, and He acquiesced. Imagine that.
The night before we flew home, without little G, this wonderful family had a church meeting in their home. We eat together. Carlos shares some scripture. We take communion. Little G toddles around the middle of the circle as we pray together, clutching the blanket Laurie had made for him, and sucking his thumb.
It all seems so oddly normal, even comfortable. Imagine that.
As we leave, G kisses Laurie a few times and waves goodbye. With each step towards the car, with each step away from that little boy, we dissolve into tears – my beautiful bride’s quiet, controlled sobs become louder, until, in the car, she buries her face in her hands, weeping uncontrollably.
But it wasn’t long before she was able to speak through the tears, something somewhat surprising – “I am so happy. I am so happy about how that went…” Imagine that.
Mary sends us pictures of G occasionally. Of a trip to the zoo with cousins. Laughing while sitting on the floor in their sunday school room. Being naughty, stepping into the rocks in the backyard after being told not to.
He kisses pictures of Laurie when he sees them. And cried out for her when he had a cold. But he is doing so well.
We are still a bit tender, but we are doing well, too. Imagine that.
We are comforted by the fact that we have been placed in this life, in this time, and in this place. On this timeline, this continuum. You have been placed here as well. I want to remind you that the Creator of the universe who placed you here – Abba Father, Papa God – is watching over you, just as he watches over little G. He has a plan to take you from a scary place into a place of security and health, just like He had for little G. He listens. He sees. He cares. And He acts. He loves you. He protects you. He has a really cool plan, He has something for you to do.