Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Don't Turn Back

"... forgetting what lies behind and straining forward to what lies ahead," -- Phillipians 3:13

"No, no no!" The new orphanage caregiver shouted. "No strangers allowed in the house!"

My nine year old daughter froze in uncharacteristic stone-cold silence. For two years of her life she had lived within these walls. She had called it home and the 12 year old autistic girl, Angela, who stood beside her, had been her roommate.

"Angela," the caregiver scolded, doubtlessly with the best of intentions, "You know you can't bring strangers in here!"

Strangers? Niki's brow furrowed. How could she be a stranger here at the orphanage, her orphanage?

The two girls edged their way back outside and rejoined the games of the Easter program, but for the rest of day Niki wallowed in a funk. It was incomprehensible that her old life had forgotten her, but the experience declared all too eloquently that she no longer belonged there.

Perhaps we all can relate to Niki's experience last weekend. A certain amount of our identity is wrapped up in our old life. And we want to hold onto it. But God has called us to a new life, a better life, a place where He can meet our deepest needs. He has called us to push forward in it, still we tend to turn back and perhaps even long for things that are not in our best interest. Sometimes He has to bring us to that painful place where we realize we no longer belong there. It is a paring away of ourselves in order to help us embrace the better place he has for us.

So let's stop looking back. Stop living in what would have, could have or even should have been. Let's let go of the old life and embrace the life Christ has brought us into, for hard as this life might be at times, God has designed it to ultimately be good in His great plan.

At times when Niki must face punishment for disobedience or even when she simply longs for her biological or foster mother, her life with us does not feel so good from her perspective. But in the grand scheme of things, having witnessed how she has blossomed over the past 3 and half years with us, there's no doubt, God is working His good in her.

So we can be assured in our own adoption in God's family, that He is working His good in us, even in the painful places as we let go of all that's behind.

Angela and Niki


gyorgyi said...

wow, this is shocking that she was called stranger, and also good I guess... 'cause now she has the Chun identity as we have Christ's.:))) I love this idea so much !!!

Anonymous said...

~NINE~ years old??

lu said...

that must have been intense for nikki. great thoughts indeed :)