Right after our first foster placement came to live with us construction was started to rebuild a bridge on one of our main roads to town. First the shoulder was repaved on one side so that the bridge could go down to a single lane. After the shoulder was deemed drivable drivers could cross on the narrow side as the other half of the bridge was torn down. A stop light was set up so that two lanes of traffic could safely go down to the one. This at times added at least three minutes to our commute. Our new family member has been the one to openly voice the most complaints about this inconvenience. After months one side was finally completed then it was time to open the new side and tear down the old half that remained. This project has taken seven months. Both lanes are now new, smooth, and much safer to cross over.
The bridge has been very symbolic to me of the bridges we have been crossing as a family. As we cross bridge after bridge with this life that has been so wounded it has been hard, narrow, felt a bit scary, has taken a lot of waiting, has taken patience, and with each cross to the other side there has been relief for all of us. It is amazing that as the bridge of this road neared completion we were finally starting to really see progress with this young life. It has started with the mom relationship first. Now as I give instruction and guidance I am not met with all the resistance. There is not the scary feeling of walking along and the bridge is just going to completely crumble beneath. As the foundation was laid for this new bridge structurally there has been a foundation being laid relationally in our home.
The relationship and understanding between the child and I is now trickling out to the rest of our family. There are more glimmers of hope that this wounded person is starting to heal and gain control of the chaos within. We are seeing more and more of who the real child is. There are more and more opportunities to praise, compliment, and encourage. We are getting to see the awesome potential that God placed into this human being long before he was even born. We have many, many, MANY more bridges to cross. Winter is coming and the actual bridge might get icy. With the child there will be slippery times ahead as well.
No matter what the future holds with “forever family” status. We are now all forever in each other’s hearts. There is a strong foundation that has been laid.
Family and relationships are tough no matter what. Being a parent is tough no matter what. My motto has now become cross each bridge with care and confidence. God does provide the way to cross and there is blessing on the other side.
The cross Jesus died on for us was the toughest bridge ever to be constructed. God made a way between us and Him. The cross is the bridge. Once we have chosen to trust Jesus and cross over that bridge there is tremendous blessing and relief on the other side.
There are always bridges in life to cross, but with the foundation of Jesus they are secure and we can move forward with confidence.