"'For My thoughts are not your thoughts,
nor are your ways My ways,' declares the Lord.
'For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are My ways higher than your ways and My thoughts than your thoughts.'"
For the last two and a half years, God has been teaching me that His ways are higher than my ways, His plans better than mine. Usually that cause me grief in the beginning. This time was no different.
Early last Wednesday morning (Tuesday afternoon in SC), we began our journey home from China. There was nothing I wanted more than to be HOME, with my boys, to have all of my babies together at last. It was going to be a very long journey, over 30 hours travel time, to finally have my arms around my boys. We had to fly from Guangzhou to Beijing, Beijing to Detroit, and our last leg was from Detroit to Greenville, AKA, HOME. The lay-over in Detroit was less than two hours, and we knew the timing was going to have to be perfect to get through immigration and customs, claiming luggage and re-checking luggage, to make it on that flight.
But our idea of perfect timing and God's perfect timing were different. Our flight did not arrive on time. It was 30 minutes late. Then, we waited another 15 minutes because the door of the airplane was stuck and they couldn't get it open. Needless to say, even after the heroic effort of a wonderful immigration officer who whisked us through immigration and customs, who asked a Delta representative to call the boarding gate to ask them to hold the plane, and who ran ahead to the gate to be sure they didn't close it before we got there, God's plan was different, and we did not make our flight. I was close to hysterics, begging the Delta people to get us home. They found a flight leaving for Charlotte within minutes and whisked us away to that gate, with us arriving just as the last passenger boarded the plane.
I made a quick call to my mom to let her know that we had missed our flight, and much to my surprise, she already knew and knew we were headed to Charlotte. (That's my wonderful mom.) And then she said the sweetest words I could imagine, "We are on our way to Charlotte with the boys and will meet you when you get off the plane." It was going to be okay. My boys were going to be waiting.
My seat was a middle seat, right between the two sweetest ladies I could have imagined. I was still a wreck and apologized to them for being so emotional. They were very kind, helping me with Meili while I changed her diaper and got her bottle ready. And then God gave me the most incredible opportunity to share our amazing story with the lady on my right, named Kim. She listened as I shared about all the miracles God had done to bring us to that moment. She listened as I shared how much my eyes had been opened to God's love for me as His adopted daughter through my love for my new babies. She listened as I shared how hard this journey had been but how it had made me realize how much more Jesus had sacrificed to adopt me. She listened as I poured out my heart to her. Toward the end of the flight, I wrote down my blog address for her on a napkin and gave it to her.
Then she began to share with me. She shared with me how she was going through a rough time in her life and how much she needed to hear this amazing story of our amazing God. She said she knew that God had put me beside her and that us being on that flight was not a coincident. I was able to share with her that our God is Jehovah-jireh, our Provider and how He had provided every single thing we needed for this adoption. How He had made a way when there seemed to be no way. How His plans were different than ours, but SO much better. How we can trust Him with every detail of our lives because He is good and faithful. How I knew He had good plans for her, to prosper her and not to harm her, to give her a hope and a future.
By the time we landed, I knew that I was right where I was supposed to be. I knew God was at work, and I was truly thankful that His ways were higher than mine.
And when I laid my eyes on my boys, there were no words to describe the joy in my heart. Oh, how I had missed them.
God's plans are sometimes different than ours, and many times not what we ourselves would choose, but they are so much better. I am thankful that He keeps teaching me that I can trust Him and His plan for me. Praise His name!
And, btw, we are all doing great and very glad to be home!
|First Glimpse of Mom, Dad, Meili & Aaron Li|