His photo was taped to my computer monitor at work and to the refrigerator door at home—a three-year-old boy with olive skin, black hair, deep brown eyes, and a dimple above each cheek. He was a child of God with no earthly mama or baba to call his own, and I wanted so badly for him to be ours.
I’ve said that adoption feels as miraculous as childbirth, a million little pieces that must fall perfectly into place for that blessed homecoming to occur. It seemed all but impossible in the beginning—too much paperwork, too much money, too many unknowns. And then there was his heart. This image-bearer was created by God with a very special heart, one that somehow managed to channel blood throughout his small frame despite missing some very important vessels. He’s been a miracle from the start.
Somewhere in those early days of wondering if this beautiful, brokenhearted boy could be our son, I read a passage from Isaiah 41 that made my own heart beat loud and fast.
“I am the LORD, the God of Israel. I will not abandon them…
I will open rivers on the barren heights, and springs in the middle of the plains.
I will turn the desert into a pool and dry land into springs…
So that all may see and know, consider and understand,
that the hand of the LORD has done this,
the Holy One of Israel has created it” (Isaiah 41:17–18,20).
I taped those words to my computer monitor, right next to that dimpled smile. It was a promise from God to His people, and it became my prayer in the joy and hope and helplessness of the days and months ahead.
Lord, do what we cannot. Be who we cannot. Create vessels where there are none, and a road home for this boy of ours, if indeed he’s ours. Create what only you can create, as only You can. May all who see it know that You and You alone bring life and hope.
Psalm 119:89 says that God’s Word is forever, “firmly fixed in heaven.” But the concept of an unbreakable thing is difficult to understand when you yourself are broken. The idea that something lasts forever feels like fiction when the world we live in is filled with people, places, and promises that fade. But God’s Word is both unbreakable and everlasting. Tethering my heart to it changes the way I walk through this wounded, temporary world. So, I grabbed hold of that Isaiah passage, and I still haven’t let it go.
Our son did come home, despite all the obstacles. And after his first heart catheterization here, the surgeon showed us images we’d prayed for, but never dreamed we’d see: vessels where there once were none, tangible hope created from nothing. But would God have been good if that catheterization had found nothing new, no surgical path forward? A resounding, Yes. Because our hope is not in healed hearts or an oasis planted in the desert; our hope is in the One who speaks arteries and myrtle trees into existence, whose Word never fades or fails, even when our bodies most certainly will.
Those verses I stared at day after day in that season—the same ones I clung to by his hospital bed in the year that followed—do not guarantee an outcome. They guarantee God’s goodness. He is bigger than outcomes, even when our circumstances shift and our hearts ache. We can trust the God who makes all things new.
Written by Amanda Bible Williams