Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Questions for God....

Sorry to leave you all hanging there last night, we had a busy morning of organization and another family needing me to be ON TIME this morning...small feat considering those of you that know me.  Last night, I was busy getting pictures and videos to waiting Mum's of their babies we had seen, and also needing to organize many gifts that we were taking with us to Holt today for the office and also for Adah's foster mother whom we were meeting in person, and than leaving a bag of gifts for Narae's foster mother.

I ended my blog a little abruptly last night, because I was so very tired, and I wanted to do justice to the precious souls that I was able to lay my hands on yesterday and than today.  They are the disabled children and adults at Ilsan and some babies at the Seoul reception Center.  These are the questions that I will have for God.  This is where my faith shakes....in walking the halls of residents that are in wheelchairs, and sometimes stretchers, not on life support, but their only mobility was to follow me  with their eyes.  People, I don't have an answer for suffering and I don't want to say some words, or quote some scripture and try to tie it up in a pretty package to make everyone feel better.  We have seen God do incredible things in our Bekah's life who is termed 'disabled' and 'not perfect' in America. It's now an imperfection where couples today maybe counselled while their babies are in utero that their imperfection is just too great and the risks of CF are just too scary so these babies never take a breath this side of heaven.  Yesterday, the precious souls that I saw made my heart cry out.  All I could do was walk along side them, hold their hands, look into their eyes and tell them I believe in a God that loves them and sees them, yet through tears yesterday  and through tears now I admit that I don't understand.  I know there will be a day they will be whole, they will release the chains of their bodies,yet I have so many questions. Here, I have so much.  Harry Holt, left everything along with his wife, and his daughter Molly has dedicated her life to giving these individuals dignity.  I think the one house we were in was the one for some rather severely disabled and maybe I wasn't prepared.  I'm not one to turn from suffering but to look it straight on, and friends it hurts.  I wanted the precious individuals that looked at me with their eyes to see the light of hope in them. Not my tears. 
      I'll never forget our training in Bangkok, Thailand where we had no chance to speak to the women in the bars and strip clubs that lined the shopping district....Becky simply wanted us to walk by and love them with our eyes.  Oh, how I wrestled with God that nightin Bangkok.   For those of you that remember, the next morning I was physically sick from what I saw, and for asking where God was in the midst of it.  The wrestling of it came down to Him showing me that it was breaking His  heart as well, but for me to know that I don't have all the answers or need to have them.    Today at the baby reception center and yesterday at Ilsan I was struck with those gut wrenching pains.   Today at the baby reception center after meeing Adah's foster mother (that I will write about in another post) I saw a precious girl that just had hair jetting out like Narae.  I asked if I could picke her up, and she probably weighed close to what Hanna will, and I found out she was about her age.  The social worker than told me that she was almost completely blind, but could see close up, that she had brain damage they thought and than Cerebral Palsy.  Ughhh.....another GUT WRENCHING Why!  She felt SO good to hold in my arms, that to me she just seemed perfect.  She could definately see me when I was close up and was she ever strong.  I just sang to her as well, and sang through tears.  Oh, how I wish I could bring her back to a loving family that would give her everything she deserves.  The baby reception center is amazing though.  It is a peaceful serene place, with many volunteers for the babies, quiet music and an atmosphere of love.  I was told that this baby may be put up on a waiting child photo listing so keep your eyes out. We would have to wait until Bekah was out of the house to adopt her, but Mark's reply was we might just have to kick her out at 16 than!  (Just kidding Bekah)  
   As I sit here writing down my thoughst, I realize too,  I am perceiving things from  my life as I walk and breathe, and not that of the those disabled.  I have a daughter that is strong and vibrant BECAUSE of her 'disablility'.  As I think of those I saw yesterday that I was mourning for them because they couldn't  speak, they could smile with their eyes!  As I write I realize now that in that moment I did see a bit of heaven shining through.  I got to touch a glimpse of those that are God's most beloved.   One girl in particular, well she was a young woman, just looked at me and than had tears in her eyes.  I told her God loved her, I carressed her face and said she was beautiful.  She was having a very hard time breathing, it seemed and I just brushed her hair from her face as I would do any of my girls and sang to her.  The moment seemed like it was struck in time, and her face will be emblazoned upon my heart forever.  Perhaps her tears were because she was ministering to me as I sang and she joined in her own way.

    How we try to attain to perfection in our societies.  How many times do we just try to brush the ugly under the carpet or in a closet.   Ilsan is a place for those that society has thrown away.  I'm not saying that the western world is perfect, we know that it isn't, but here there is definately a greater prejudice for disabled.  I don't think I am going to look at a wheelchair ramp again the same at home.  To think that Ilsan is built on the side of a moutain with disabled people is kind of a juxtaposition, yet they adapt to it.  It's like the mountain makes them stronger, as if it's a picture of their strength.  One man in a wheelchair came whipping around so quickly I about had a heart attack.  He had learned though to survive and to thrive.  Maybe in the hearts and minds of those that were severely disabled they were thriving.  Maybe they see things that I cannot.  Perhaps they have glimpses of glory, because I believe they are precious to God.  It reminded me to be so grateful.  To be thankful for my breath, for my movement, for the ability to walk and talk, to simply sit up.  These are things that some of the residents I saw were not even able to do...and I admit I don't understand.  I know that I can leave my broken heart though in the hands of a God that sees them, loves them, knows all about them, and their lives are important to Him.

   At lunch today I was keeping the tears away and trying not to break down.  For the things that the Lord has allowed me to take part in that move His heart and also for looking at Narae and Adah across the table and think of lil' Hanna that we will have tomorrow at this time and to feel so overwhelmingly blessed!

     The following pictures are of some of the little guys we got to play with on the floor in the one house.  In one of the other houses I was able to sit and play with a girl that HAS AN ADOPTIVE FAMILY waiting for their travel call.  I can't post pictures of her since she has a forever family, but while I was singing to her, there were other woman sitting on the floor that looked like maybe they had down's syndrome or another syndrome, but OH how their faces lit up to music.  I could spend an eternity there.  The day in and day out though of that type of care is hard, it is tiring, and I know from talking to Molly that it is frustrating to get the help that they need.  However, Molly is an indominable spirit, that is a LOUD VOICE for those that don't have one.  As Becky McDonald is to Woman at Risk, Molly Holt is a voice to the disabled in Korea.  She will never back down, she will never stop advocating for them and she will keep loving them and working to give them a quality of life until the Lord calls her home.   If you see a disabled person today, take an extra moment to give them a hand.  If you see a non disabled person in a wheelchair space, feel free to run them over for me, to give them a reason for using that space in the first place! (okay, well not really....but you all know what I mean)  Reach out to those that need help.  Be strength for those that are weak and be a voice wherever you are placed for those that don't have one.  One thing I've seen over and over this last week is that God uses people to be His hands and feet.  Will you be available to be used by Him?  To pay it forward all that you have been blessed with.  If you are feeling depressed and bad about your place in life, I wish I could give you one moment with some of the precious souls I saw, and I promise you, there will be joy in the simple things. 

Enjoy these precious souls that God gave me the priviledge of loving on and I pray your heart is moved...once again I was changed. Also to any adoptive parents travelling to Korea. PLEASE put Ilsan on your list of things to do. There will always be palaces to see, and their are plenty of pictures of them, and markets that you can buy trinkets at, but these souls you can be a light that is extraordinary in their days, and you will be changed in the process. All you have to do is let your social worker know to communicate with Holt Korea that you would like to visit there and they will arrange it!

Residents have a gymnasium and they have won awards in the para olympics.  They have a champion basketball team as well.

Mark saw chickens and of course was so very excited.  They also grow food wherever they have the property to do it.

The following pictures of are of the workshop where residents find dignity in making different art, craft, pottery etc.  They make money as well for what they make.  Right now many of them are working on gift bags that are sold in Korea. 

The young girl in the picture below to the right is a Volunteer that just graduated from High School and is spending three months at Ilsan.  She lives in Eugene Oregon.

I laughed out loud at the tshirt the young man was wearing below.  "Running sucks"  is what it said.  I asked our volunteer if I could have one! 

I forgot to say that our THIRD MIRACLE yesterday was this upcoming little guy.  He is on the Holt Waiting Child Listing and someone had asked if I saw him if I could snap a few pics.  I had just checked in the with office to inquire about him and they let us know the possible place he may have been but there were no guarantees.  As soon as we came up to the top of the stairs from the office, the house mother walked by with.......you guessed it, this little guy!  Out of almost 300 residents on a sprawling campus, our paths met at that time and that place!

The little boy near me is blind.

One of my bloggin friends had visited Ilsan back in May and in her pictures she posted a woman that I met back in 2002.  She started hugging me and didn't let go.  I saw that she was still hugging visitors as I saw her hugging Mary Leigh.  I was so excited to see her down in the workshop area, and you guessed it, she saw me and came running over for some sweet hugs!

She is an ageless beauty, and I definately have more wrinkles to show for the last ten years!

Mark playing with the little girl who is blind at Molly's House.
She loved his voice.

This morning was when we were at the Baby Reception Center and this was the little girl I was writing about earliar.

I definately walked away feeling like I had tasted a bit of heaven today!

Mark and I just had to come out of the reception center feeling like we had touched the heart of God.  It took awhile before we could speak, but we took a few moments to just thank God for all He has done by letting us get a part in these special places and for thanking Him for the blessings of our girls.

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