As I was getting ready this morning Luke asked me where I was going and I told him Linnea had a doctors appointment and his words were "AGAIN??!!" and my reply was "yes again" and later I realized I had a "missed opportunity" in those moments. A missed opportunity because I had the perfect moment to teach about being grateful. Yes lately it seems like we go to a lot of appointments - we do - and I am sure not only is she tired of them but the boys are probably tired of them as well. However in the grand scheme of things a lot of appointments don't matter!!! I have four children who are relatively healthy. The only life threatening disease they have is their sinfulness and we all are born with that and Praise God there is a cure!! I am so thankful that my boys have stayed healthy and have only had a few minor emergencies - again nothing life threatening. And while Linnea does have some health related issues they are all treatable and she will go on to live a full life Lord willing. I am grateful that we live in a place where treatment is provided and we have access to numerous facilities that provide such care. It is because of that care that we are able to go to food and speech therapies and to have audiologist perform hearing tests like today. I am thankful that God gently reminded me of this valuable lesson through my son.
Speech went as well as it could have gone at 7:15 in the morning on Tuesday. That was the only available time slot to get us started so I took it just so I could get our feet in the door - but that is clearly not Linnea's favorite time of the day (mine either). It took her awhile to warm up to the therapist and she wasn't really as responsive as I know she can be. Our next appointments are either mid morning or afternoon so I am hoping that will help things along. It was suggested at her speech eval she have speech twice a week. Insurance only covers so many visits so we are just going once a week right now and I have contacted the Babies Can't Wait program to see if she would qualify for that. This program is free and has the therapist come right to your home - they are coming out on June 11 to see if we qualify. Hopefully this will work out and she will be able to have two sessions a week one from CHOA (children's healthcare of Atlanta) and one from Babies Can't Wait.
She did really well at the audiologist hearing screening today - not too much crying. We found out that she has a hole in her right ear and some possible fluid back up in her left - resulting in some hearing loss. She had actually had her hearing tested in China and a friend of mine was able to see from the graphs that she did have hearing loss we just didn't know why or to what extent. At one of our evaluations when we had the Cantonese interpreter I had her look over Linnea's medical records (which are all in Chinese) and she was able to indicate to us that she had been to the emergency room for an ear infection at one time. So these results were not a complete surprise to me and as crazy as it sounds I was rather thankful for this diagnosis. Thankful because while not all of her speech related issues are due to this - some of them are. And maybe the reason she is waking up in the middle of the night every night crying is because she might be in some pain. I am grateful because while this doesn't explain all things - it at least gives us an answer to some things. We are scheduled for an appointment with a pediatric ENT June 19. I am hoping to be able to have that moved up because if she is hurting from her ears I certainly want to get it corrected so she doesn't have that pain.
Overall Linnea is doing well. We are still concentrating hard on attachment and bonding. We want her to know that we will care for her forever and she can trust us. We are seeing her take hold of this truth little bits at a time. We love this little girl - she is our own. God chose her for us. I am consistently in awe of adoption and what it truly means just like God chose her for us he chose us to be His. It is a beautiful picture of the gospel. Our friends Wade and Nat (the couple who is in China right now, the blog I have been
J.I. Packer’s words:
What is a Christian? The richest answer I know is that a Christian is one who has God as Father. If you want to [know] how well a person understands Christianity, find out how much he makes of the thought of being God’s child, and having God as his Father. If this is not the thought that prompts and controls his worship and prayers and his whole outlook on life, it means that he does not understand Christianity very well at all.
To know God as Father and the privilege that such is - is truly mind boggling! I would encourage you to let this thought sink in for a minute. Know that your relationship with God is only possible because He has adopted you. God planned to adopt you, He pursued you, and He has paid the price for you to become His child (see Ephesians 1:3-14). This reality, this pleasure should prompt and control every Christian.
This is why Packer goes on to say:
Adoption is the highest privilege that the Gospel offers: higher even than justification. This may cause raising of eyebrows, for justification is the gift of God on which since Luther evangelicals have laid the greatest stress, and we are accustomed to say, almost without thinking, that free justification is God’s supreme blessing to us sinners. Nonetheless, careful thought will show the truth of the statement we have just made.That justification – by which we mean God’s forgiveness of the past together with his acceptance for the future – is the primary and fundamental blessing of the Gospel is not in question. Justification is the primary blessing, because it meets our primary spiritual need. We all stand by nature under God’s judgment. His law convicts us, guilt gnaws at us, making us restless, miserable, and in our lucid moments afraid. We have no peace in ourselves because we have no peace with our Maker. So we need the forgiveness of our sins, and assurance of a restored relationship with God, more than we need anything else in the world. And this the Gospel offers us before it offers us anything else. But this is not to say that justification is the highest blessing of the gospel. Adoption is higher, because of the richer relationship with God that it involves.
To think of it…in Christ, we have not only been declared right before God the Judge (as if that were not enough). But we have also been loved by God the Father. Indeed, salvation is not about reciting a superstitious prayer; it’s about receiving the position of a son.
Packer’s words, and the truth of Scripture beckon each of us to ask, “Do we know God as Father?” Not, “Do you read your Bible? Do you go to church? Have you prayed the prayer? Have you made the decision?” But, “Do you know that you are a child of God, and does His reality as your Father prompt and control your entire being—your thinking, your talking, your feeling, your working, dreaming, your spending, your praying, your studying, your loving, and your living?”