Friday, July 3, 2009

Feeling Attacked

For some reason, it has been a challenging week. George has generally been continuing to take steps forward. Yet, my heart has been very distant from him. As I looked back at the previous week, I was struck by how there was one night that we cuddled on the couch and I just stared at George's face and started really loving.

Then...wham...I am suddenly cold and have very little feeling. It has to be the enemy. The one who wants nothing more than to keep this little boy in a place of fear and anger. I realized this last night and am determined to fight. Today, I am putting on the armor of God!!

Last night, Joe and I had a chance to reflect on how things are progressing and we both agreed that something significant has changed. In the beginning we disciplined George purely out of intentions of correcting/stopping behaviors. Now, we are disciplining because we care about the boy George is becoming. There is a big difference, at least in our hearts! We now want to see him being kind to others, taking turns, sharing...all those traits we teach our toddlers day after day so that when they are children they know how to treat other people. We have the challenge of teaching those traits to a 6 year old who doesn't share our language.

But, now we CARE! Our heart now breaks about sending him to school without the tools he needs to be a good listening, a good friend and a good boy. So, we continue to work and pour into George for the remaining two months of the summer.

He is learning so much! George now speaks in almost-complete sentences. It is fun listening to him string words together into a single thought. George loves cars, shoes, and his bike. Most of his sentences revolve around those three things - ha!

Yesterday, our neighbor decided to wash his truck. George had been over there playing with all the kids when he raced home and grabbed my hand, pulling me to come outside with him. As he pointed to our neighbor's driveway, his jumped up and down squealing! Dan was washing the car!!!

I walked George back over and told Dan that George was so excited about the truck being washed. Dan handed him a towel and George got to work. Two things struck me; most American children would complain about helping Dad wash the car - not George! He was all smiles. Second; the most simple things bring George joy. I don't know why washing a car was so exciting to him - I don't even know why cars are so fascinating. But, like Joe said, I have a ready made helper next time I want to wash my van.

This morning, as I was finishing reading the paper, George brought a book to me to read! This is big, big progress! George has never done that before. He brought a Fisher Price lift-the-flap book of colors, shapes and, of course, vehicles. We looked at the book together for about 30 minutes and George repeated all the English words as I pointed to different things.

In a few hours, we will be going to George's first zoo trip. We are very excited to see what will happen. I have heard stories of some Ethiopian children being very, very nervous about seeing certain animals. What our children find cool, African children have seen first hand kill and destroy. I am sure a little perspective will be gained.

So...I am reminded of my ever-present need to arm myself each morning. I am also reminded of how much God cares about little George; that He would use us to get him out of Ethiopia and into America where he has nutrition, safety and education. Yet, the enemy still wants to keep his grip on George's life. We can't ever underestimate the battle being waged over each and every soul on earth. We must work, as disciples of Christ, to win as many souls for the good side. In our case, it means we can't grow weary or want to give up. We must be armed. Today, I will.


MzzLily said...

I'm joyous to read about the progress George is making! He can come help wash my car anytime...

Bear Creek Mama said...

Go girl! Arm yourself and do battle on His behalf. Also remember that love is a choice. We don't always feel love, but we can always choose love. This alone conquers the enemy - the author of fear.
Be sure to visit A Bushel and a Peck. You will find lots of insight and encouragement on her pages labeled My Learning Curve::Attatchment and Trauma
Also, I just wanted to praise with you for the peace that you have found. I hear in your 'voice'. He is good.