I am a recovering addict to certainty. And trying to remain so is counter-cultural.
We answer (or don’t answer) phone calls only after seeing what name and number appear on the screen.
I know that if my bus hits traffic, the ticker will adjust its estimated arrival time from 8 minutes to 11.
If I want to know where my kids are at this exact moment, I can simply ping out a text message and be reassured by a typing… within seconds.
We rely on GPS devices to coach us through every turn of a new route.
We schedule, plan, block and permit, filter just about everything, with the false objective of maintaining control and seeking comfort in certainty.
A term I throw around a lot (just ask my kids) is unnecessary risk. You won’t ever find me going bungee jumping. Unnecessary risk. I’ve never tried taking drugs. Unnecessary risk. I am intentional about not having road rage, even in the traffic-laden city where I live. Unnecessary risk.
But I think it's a small minority that doesn't believe venturing beyond certainty is an unnecessary risk as well.
Everybody knows the ever-postable Philippians 4:13. It was the first verse I ever memorized, and I’ve even got it framed in the office at home. But the couple of preceding verses beg our attention and our application.
Not that I speak in regard to need, for I have learned in whatever state I am, to be content: I know how to be abased, and I know how to abound. Everywhere and in all things I have learned both to be full and to be hungry, both to abound and to suffer need. I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me. (Philippians 4:11-13)
Believing that last line in our core feeds the truth of the first part. Being at peace when it’s great and when it sucks. Can we seriously do all these things? Can we redefine our own survival mode and ease up on the controls and let Jesus lead us through them instead? Thrive in both surety and unpredictability? Walk through failure? Quietly blaze trails in a world that tells you it’s not as great as having more and being a superstar?
As we are sharing our news with more and more people, this thing is becoming more and more real to me. And the more I read up on related issues, the more variables emerge in the vision I have of what it's going to be like. The view is getting increasingly sharper, but also much wider. Waiting to be matched could take 6 months or 6 years, I tell people, but really I’m banking on 6 months. Because a lot of things can happen in 6 years and can we be a family that simultaneously remains expectant for this growth but doesn’t feel unfinished after that long? What if we have our child and for the first 2 years he has nothing that resembles the innate affection for me that my bio kids have? Am I strong enough to be persistent through that, unscarred? What if God sends us two?
Friends are using words like lucky and brave and the nervous giggle comes out because all I am thinking is me, brave? Um, no, but I’m trying. Because, frankly, I can’t not do this. He asked me to. To step out of the boat and walk, away from what is comfortable and safe and sure.
The water is so very, very big, but I know that Jesus is there and He is calling me to come out. How could I not choose the water?