Nothing is Impossible with God

Angelika in the Philippines,
so delighted to be starting school there.
Today of last year, Angelika, with me and her little sister, Ella, left for the Philippines, never knowing that it would take a year for her to come back. We didn't know then that she would go to school there, spend some considerable time without a mother, be left in the care of her doting grandparents, spend a birthday without even one of her immediate family, see the home and the school she  had come to love destroyed and broken, witness both her grandparents being taken away by a destructive storm, be left on her own in the water with no one to help, and being rescued by an unlikely hero, a ten-year old boy, and a little later, a total stranger with a brave, soft heart. And all the while, she was hoping and waiting for her mother to come and take her home.

When I started this blog almost a couple of years ago, I never thought that this would become my little girl's blog too. I didn't know then that I would be writing her story. But as it turned out, her story is so full of wonder, with a heroine full of delight and courage, one couldn't help but wonder where she gets all these to be so strong and yet stay so sweet.

Angelika is my second child and my first daughter. When I had her older brother, I was so in love with him that I wondered when Angelika came if I could love her just as much. God in His infinite wisdom made sure that I do. He never leaves even one of His little lambs unloved. And so, through circumstances quite beyond my imagination's grasp, the Good Shepherd engraved my daughter into my heart deeply, so deeply that my every breath is love.

At almost one...

At just one month after I gave birth to her, I was forced to put my little baby into the hands of another, while I had to go back to work, because my husband at that time had only a few part time jobs and was at a loss about taking care of a newborn baby. I worried the whole time I was at work. I regretted leaving her with somebody. Guilt set in. I spent most of my non-working hours with my children to make up for lost time that I wasn't with them. All the time I was conscious that I wanted to have more time, alone, with my daughter, Angelika. 

Finding out that I couldn't be with my family in Russia because of my status was really distressing. So we worked at it. Knowing I was coming back for her and that she would be under my parents' care while I was gone to work out my stay in Russia, sort of assured me that she would be okay. I never knew then what it really means to give back a child to God fully until typhoon Haiyan. And as it was before when I would go to work and leave her in the care of another, I worried, regretted, and guilt washed over me. 

She always brings a ray of sunlight...
Thank God, He knows exactly what both me and my daughter need. I needed to give my child wholly to Him, and in the course of the storm and after it, when I didn't know if she was still alive, I learned to give her back to Him and He gave her lovingly back to me. If I loved her before, oh, how I treasure her now. She is a gift twice given to me, which I am not entitled to have but is entrusted to me with all the love that the Ultimate Parent has for her. And just as He would willingly (and He did) gave His life for her, I can say I would give my life too to see she make it home to Him. 

My daughter needed to know that she is loved, not because she is part of the family, but because she is a person, a specially created being, just the way God made her. And we both need that time together--- to learn and grow, to affirm our love for each other and be bonded as God wants every parent and child to be bonded with Him.

To a child with no absolute sense of time yet, Angelika showed grit in the waiting period. A year of being away from her family, the one she calls home, with storms within and without, made her grow up. But through it all, I can sense her sweetness more clearly (not only me but a host of other people), her heart is softened (she is so much patient with her younger sister now and really pleasant to be with as her brother can attest), her understanding has broadened, her strength amplified, all because she now knows there's One who can carry her through. And that One has carried her home... to us.

Allow me to welcome home my little lamb, Angelika, and rejoice with me and the Good Shepherd in His promises fulfilled. He has said, "I will say to the north, "Give them up!" And to the south, "Do not keep them back!" Bring my sons from afar, and daughters from the ends of the earth---" (Isaiah 43:6).

Time will come when all of God's children will come home and there will be so much rejoicing. That great homecoming is near. It may seem so long and we may feel upset or angry, just as my daughter was, especially in the troubles that we go through far from home and waiting, but it will soon come. And during these troublous time, we will know the One who carries us through. He is carrying us Home... to the arms of our Ultimate Parent, the Good Shepherd, the only One who guards us with His very life. John 10:7, 9,11, "Therefore, Jesus said again, 'Very truly I tell you, I am the gate for the sheep… I am the gate, whoever enters through me will be saved… I am the good shepherd. The good shepherd lays down His life for His sheep.'"

Her only request after typhoon Haiyan--- ice cream!
As for me, it has almost been two years since I had to live out of my suitcases. Barely had I put away my things in a closet, when I had to go again. After a few trips, I had stopped taking out my things out of my suitcases and had lugged my bags around wherever I needed to be. In some ways, my world has shrunk to a couple of suitcases, and in other ways, it has expanded to include more places and people that I am glad to be with and have met. After waiting and working for so long, now my family is back together. It just feels SO good. And all the way, I have seen how there really is nothing impossible with God. 

Before traveling by air pregnant as I am (I was 31 weeks pregnant during my flight), I was concerned about making it through without any problem. This pregnancy has had a lot of stressful moments even from the start and I guess, I have forgotten how not to let the stress get through me and the baby. I'm glad we made it. People were helpful and nice and I believe a big part of the credit goes to God. 

There is nothing special about me to have been treated so well compared to the way Mary, the mother of Jesus, had to go through late in her pregnancy with the Savior. She had to travel a long way mostly on foot and had nowhere to go after they made it to Bethlehem. Then she had to give birth in a stable. That reminds me, I haven't seen a doctor yet and don't even know where and who will help me give birth. Oh, well, as the messenger from heaven has stressed it out to Mary, and of which my life has fully depended on for years now, "... with God nothing shall be impossible" (Luke 1:37).

Back in Russia. Home with us.
If I have to mention all the things that God has made possible for me and my family, I would run out of words. And so, if you are stuck, on a dead-end, or in a seemingly hopeless situation, God can see you through it all. In fact, He will carry you through. Know that He was willing to lay down His life for you and as the Good Shepherd, He is guarding you with His very own life. Take Him at His Word. Let Him fill you with confidence even in the most uncertain times, and watch Him work, fulfilling His promises in you. Yes, nothing is impossible with Him. Even the trials that we go through are meant to sweeten or soften our hearts, just as it did to my little survivor, stamping in us the image of Jesus. And soon, very soon it'll be homecoming time. Oh, what a celebration it would be! I would greatly rejoice to see you there. 
I'll see you Home!

You may also like to read…

Beyond the Storm: Hope

Beyond the Storm: Faith
Simply God-made (Happy birthday, Sunshine!) 


Popular posts from this blog

Who Is Like God? (Happy birthday, my Little Captain!)

7 Tips for a Joy-filled Parenting

God Rules! (Happy birthday, Raindrops!)

Beyond the Storm: Hope

Beyond the Storm: Faith