James 1:27, “Religion that God our Father accepts as pure and faultless is this: to look after orphans and widows in their distress and to keep oneself from being polluted by the world.”

I have been desiring to write about this for almost a week now, but finding the right combination of time, words, and strength has been tough to come by.

Last Thursday, I was having lunch with a good friend of mine at Doc Chey’s in downtown Athens.  I was enjoying our conversation and some spicy orange chicken.  I had my phone on vibrate as I normally do when I am having a conversation with someone.  (disclosure: I have a pet peave about incoming phone calls being more important than the current conversation between two face to face humans.)  The phone in my pocket rang once, it rang twice, a third time, and then a forth.  At that point, I had to say sorry man but something is going on here.  It turns out that Pepe in Mexico was trying to get a hold of me.  He had tried to call me first, but when I didn’t answer he made the smart move to start emailing and calling anyone else in Athens who may be able to track me down.  So still at the table I call down to Mexico, “Hola Pepe!”  He tells me that a lady had a baby the night before that she did not want, and would we want to adopt this baby little boy?  Wow, my heart lept, “I have to tell Claire!”

I called her office which is right downtown, but I was told she was at a meeting on campus.  So my friend and I go to the building she is in.  It turns out that she is in a meeting that happens once a year that has about 50 people in it…lots of UGA big shots.  I interrupt having come from ripping the gutters off my house and lunch – jeans and not showered.  Turns out she is on the other side of the room and I can’t find her so, “Claire, I need to speak to Claire.”  She hops up and comes outside giving me one of those, “Do you know what you just interrupted?  This had better be really important,” looks

I told her Pepe called about a little baby boy that could be ours.  She could not stand.  She just fell to her knees, crying with joy, weeping, heaving.  I kneeled down and held her and we prayed. It was beautiful.  The lights were on.  The cameras were rolling.  This was our moment.

Later, I got home and called Pepe again to find out more details.  The first words out of our mouth were, “Chet I’m really sorry.  She changed her mind.”   News like this feels like a punch in the stomach.  I felt bad for him to have share that news.  I felt worse for my wife and wondered how I would tell her.  I sat for a couple of minutes, prayed, asked God for help, and then made the call.  As soon as I say “hey.” She says, “Oh the ladies here are so great they have already decorated my office for me.”  I say, “Claire, can you get alone? I need to talk to you.”  She says, “No it’s okay go ahead, I think I know what that means.”

And the roller coaster continues with more twists, turns, loopty loops, and abrupt stops.  God’s grace is sufficient, and on the Rock of Jesus we stand.  It is anything but easy, our since of loss is at times very difficult to deal with.  But we are more determined than ever to see this through.  I am so thanful that even though she hurts, the Lord has given my wife a rare strength.  I am thanful for the many friends who love us and pray for us.  I am thankful beyond words for the compassion of my Savior, King, Priest, and Lord – Jesus Christ.  Regardless of our circumstances, we will praise Him!

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