2013 will be a year I never forget because it was quite the year.

Last year was full of ups and downs. There were a lot of good things that happened, as well as a few rough things. I’m grateful to Jesus for the time we had.

At the beginning of 2013, we were just beginning the process of adopting. When Jesus gave us this new mandate for our family, we quickly said yes. What we did not totally realize was that saying yes to Jesus did not mean it would be easy.

Of course, I had preached that before. I’m sure I had even told people that before. But for my own life, I had no clue.

Up until this point, anytime we had said yes to Jesus, the outcome was relatively smooth, without any major bumps. But this time it would be different.

Long story short, we were matched with an adoption situation of a little girl. When the birth mom had picked us, we prayed about it and sought counsel. All signs were pointing to us taking this situation. We were elated.

Over the next few months, the situation was a bit up and down. It was the biggest emotional roller coaster we’d ever ridden. We continued to pray, trust and have faith. I would say the level of confidence I felt was the surest I’d ever been about something.

But then we got the call. It was the call I didn’t think would ever happen. The call that the stated the mom had changed her mind.

Needless to say, we were devastated.

The questions of why and how and what and when began pouring out of our minds and hearts. The emotions… the pain… the confusion.

We had said yes to Jesus. We felt confirmation to take this situation. So why did it not actually happen?

This didn’t work very well in conjunction with the overwhelming assurance I had had about the situation. I just didn’t get it. My faith was rocked.

I was now in a place of pain that I had only experienced via other people’s lamentations. I had counseled people through loss, but here I was the one now needing the counsel.

It was quite the struggle.

The infamous passage from Ecclesiastes seemed to be even more real and was quite comforting during this season of pain:

For everything there is a season, and a time for every matter under heaven:

a time to be born, and a time to die;
a time to plant, and a time to pluck up what is planted;
a time to kill, and a time to heal;
a time to break down, and a time to build up;
a time to weep, and a time to laugh;
a time to mourn, and a time to dance;
a time to cast away stones, and a time to gather stones together;
a time to embrace, and a time to refrain from embracing;
a time to seek, and a time to lose;
a time to keep, and a time to cast away;
a time to tear, and a time to sew;
a time to keep silence, and a time to speak;
a time to love, and a time to hate;
a time for war, and a time for peace.

I’m glad that season came to an end.

Thankfully, that’s not the end of the story. As usual, God showed Himself faithful. Faithful to provide finances to adopt. Faithful to finish what He started. Faithful to heal and restore.

If we hadn’t experience that loss, we would not have our son Enoch. I’ll spare you the details, but because of the failed adoption situation, it placed us in the right place at the right time to meet a wonderful woman and man who was wanting to place their baby for adoption.

Enoch is an amazing little guy and we’re so honored to have him be a part of our family. I would not undo anything to have him. He is worth every tear and every heart ache.

As I sit here and look back on 2013, it was a year of weeping and a time of laughing. It truly was a time to mourn and a time to dance.

And it was a year I will never forget.