Last night was my night-shift sweetie’s first night back at work after a month off! We’ve enjoyed this time of bonding with Kiffanie as a whole family and the relaxed pace of having Ken home. Today, we eased closer to our usual daily rhythm and even did light school. (We’ll be keeping only the lightest school routine through the summer–just enough to keep a nice pattern to our days.)
Meanwhile, amid the joys and daily buzz of activity, Kivren was on my mind–for today she turns one year old! Please join us today in praying for her, wherever she may be–that God’s hand of protection will cover her throughout her life, and that she will know Him as her Heavenly Father.
So many mothers have a child in their hearts, yet not beneath their protective wing. We must trust those children (as well as those living in apparent “safety” in our own care) to our loving heavenly Father who created them, and cares for them. It should not be hard to trust, for He is a better parent than we could ever be; but still we miss the privilege of raising and loving them, and in our humanity, and frail faith we occasionally let our hearts toy with questions even though we know the answers lay outside our sphere. I’ve been very blessed. I have six vibrant children whom God has has granted me to tend, train, and love today. Only one child of my heart never arrived in my arms; she is elsewhere–living a life I may never glimpse, but she is not beyond our God’s grasp or outside His loving and ever-present knowledge. He holds her safely in His hand.
Our tiny piece of Kivren’s story: One year ago today, on May 29, 2011, a little girl was born in the Democratic Republic of Congo. She was abandoned near a hospital in dire condition, where the nurses christened her Marie Claire. Just days after her birth, Ken and I heard about her. Within a week or so, we’d committed to covering her hospital care so she could have life-saving treatment, and we began the adoption process to bring her home. It’s clear to us even now, that God has a special plan for her life. Her recovery was amazing, and soon she was thriving in the care of Pastor Didier. My first post about this precious baby (several weeks after we’d committed to her) is here. We began to think of her as our Kivren. We will always cherish the way God placed her in our hearts, but He had a plan for her outside our family, not within it. For those not familiar with our adoption journey, you can link over to read my post about the difficult news we received concerning her. As most who read here know, even before Kivren was removed from our reach, we’d hoped to bring home another little girl as well, but were told we could only adopt one at a time–that other little girl was to be our Kiffanie! Through Kivren, we heard of Compassion for Congo, and Kiffanie, and you can read the beginning of Kiffanie’s story here.
I may never know the rest of Kivren’s story this side of Heaven. She may never know that a family in Wyoming thinks of her as “Kivren” and prays for her by that name. A few days ago, Kiffanie recognized Kivren’s picture on our prayer board, and pointed to her, calling her by the nickname Pastor Didier’s family gave her, “Béni” meaning, “Blessed”. How wondrous to think that Kiffanie has held the little one we will never hold! How amazing that Kiffanie knew her and remembers her!
Today, I wear an emerald ring (emerald is the May birth stone), and my favorite pendant. Amid the joy of tending and training my six, my prayers turn to Kivren with a touch of sorrow, but also with joy, hope, and gratefulness for God’s divine plan.
About my favorite pendant: Last Mother’s Day, just weeks before God would surprise us by guiding us toward adoption, I was given a little nest pendant symbolizing our family. I blogged about it here. If you click and look at that pendant, you’ll notice it is similar to the pendant pictured below–with two differences. I now have another pearl, representing our Kiffanie (boy eggs are blue and girl eggs are white), but there is also a little leaf on the new pendant. Although the leaf appears prominent in this photo, it usually barely shows because it slips behind the nest pendant when I wear the necklace. It’s stamped with an “M” for the name given to our little Kivren at the hospital.