Ten years ago we lived in Haiti and our friends there would ask when we would have children. At that point, we were in our second year of marriage and hope was still bright, despite the doctor’s comments, so we’d shrug and tell them, “Whenever God wills it.”
For years after we came home, those same friends would call and chat. One of their first questions was always whether our children had arrived.
Our answers got less hopeful.
No, we’d tell them. No babies. Still. After all these years.
For years I thought we’d already followed the thread of redemption to the very end. Our sorrow ended in bringing home two adopted children and it was beautiful.
We talked a lot about taking our new family back to Haiti to visit and let our children meet the friends and fellow believers that we loved and missed. It took time and loads of paperwork to get things in order enough to make an overseas trip, but eventually it was time.
We had no idea that when the trip we’d planned for several years finally came together this July—I would miraculously be five months pregnant.
And we had no idea how our friends in Haiti would celebrate when we showed up with our two half-grown munchkins and one very pregnant belly. Word travels fast in a small village, I’ll tell you.
After one walk around the block and a couple short conversations, people started showing up at the mission house. “Amos!” One called as he walked onto the compound. “Your wife is pregnant? You have your adopted children here? My wife says this is true. Is this true?”
Their joy and excitement for us spilled out and all the years—all the tears I cried in that place, begging God to heal me—they all felt brushed with wide sweeps of grace.
It was right there, on that same porch, where Amos once shared about how God’s goodness could always be found, even in want. How we could trust Him without and so could all those who were struggling. And it was that long ago day when the term pain redeemed came to me. When the whisper of my first book was written into my story.
And now here it was, on that same porch, that I found myself sitting ten years later with a baby kicking inside me and my heart filled with joy. Yes, for me and for this priceless gift, but mostly for the way that this baby was being celebrated by so many who had prayed for us through the years.
Not just because we’re getting what we’ve spent twelve years longing for—but because God’s kindness was on display in such a vivid and spectacular way.
Without He was so good.
And with He is so good.
Always, always good. From one end of my story to the next.
The thread of redemption had spun all the way around, circling back to the place where I once sat and chose to trust without.
On to the place where I was now privileged to sit with hope fulfilled growing inside me.
Dearest friends—wherever you are on the journey of redemption, know this truth: He is good.
It can be scary, to trust the thinness of a single thread. For almost 12 years I’ve tugged on and tested the promise of redemption–and for most of those years it didn’t look like I expected.
I didn’t expect the number of years that piled up, the arrival of our adopted children, the loss of Annie, our almost-adopted-baby. I didn’t expect God to write books into me and build a platform for me to speak from. I didn’t expect the emails and letters from women all over the world who have been encouraged and who have found hope again, even without the babies we all longed for.
And even now… I didn’t expect this! I didn’t expect the turn of the thread and circling back and the beauty of visiting Haiti again with a biological child growing inside me.
I have no idea where your thread of redemption will lead–but I know that it’s present and it will take you where you never expected. But no matter where it leads you, whether it circles back or just continues indefinitely into a future you never thought would be yours–God’s goodness will be unchanging.
The thread won’t break.
It’s safe to embrace it. To trust the One who promised redemption to those who follow Him.
Every story will look different but the thread will lead us all to the same place: the feet of the One who loves us, breathes life into us, and is always, only, ever good.
:: a few Haiti pictures ::