Updated: Oct 16
“For nothing will be impossible with God.”
Luke 1:37 (ESV)
Motherhood can feel impossible at times. For me, this has never felt more true than in recent months. Our family’s story is complex filled with incredible twists and turns. There have been high moments and moments where you feel like you are scraping by, barely surviving.
Fourteen years into this journey of motherhood, I have felt both many times. We have eight children; five of them are biological, and three we have adopted with special needs from Ukraine. We have also been local foster parents, and refugee foster parents. We have done everything from hosting children in our home from orphanages in both Ukraine and Colombia to visiting orphanages in the Amazon jungle of Peru and Honduras. And, we have done it all as a family. It’s our conviction to walk as family, to minister as family, and to love as family. We have seen God take impossible situations, like taking eight kids, one with cerebral palsy, on a plane ride across the equator for a mission trip.]! From hosting and fostering children all these years, there are so many stories of God's faithfulness.
So, when I tell you we have seen the impossible made possible, I mean it. However, it is often in the daily things that the impossible can really feel, well, impossible… like the continual yes to loving the one in front of you. Whether you are a biological mom, a foster mom, or an adoptive mom, loving the child in front of you can feel hard at times. The endless tantrum, the angry faces, potty training, bullying at school, or the rebellion and bad decisions-they can all feel impossible.
One of these situations occurred when we had brought our son Nikita home from Ukraine for the first time. After 11 years of drinking broth, he had a real desire to eat! This proved to be challenging over the next few years as they discovered the medical reason his institution could never feed him. He had a very tight esophagus, which meant food going down wouldn’t all make it out into his digestive system. So that meant one thing; most of it came up instead.
As a mom to my first four biological kiddos, plus Nikita, you would think I would be thrilled at the chance to love my newest son. I wasn’t. I felt nothing… AND I was being vomited on daily. To make matters worse, in this daily struggle of eat, vomit, and repeat, I would eventually have to take his food away from him. Naturally, this did not make me his favorite person.
I would cry out to God to let me “feel” love for my newest son. Even though I wanted to, it seemed impossible as I wrestled with him daily, trying to teach him to become a functioning person after so many years of institutionalization. But, the Lord unraveled me one day when He challenged me with my perspective. I had asked for a feeling of love. And, Jesus, in His grace and mercy, showed me that I was, in fact, loving him. The Lord reminded me that love wasn’t a feeling, it was a choice. Love was getting up to do the thing I had no desire to do, over and over. Love was being consistent, kind, and patient. I could feel the opposite of love, and still choose to love.
The gospel was simple. Love was simple. While deciding to do it was a choice, and not always an easy one, my journey to saying 'yes' to love in action daily would eventually bring those feelings of love, too. Three years later, feeling love has grown on top of the choice to love, and God did what I thought was impossible, yet again. I loved my son, and now, as God had established love in his heart, he loved me too.
Motherhood can look impossible; but thank God that He starts His most glorious work in the impossible. Impossible is not in Heaven’s vocabulary. The gospel breaks down the hardest of hearts, the wounds, and the gunk. God’s love changes us as mothers as well as our children. Nothing is impossible.
Your fellow able mom,
“God, I thank you that you do impossible things. In our daily lives and in our big decisions, nothing, truly nothing, is impossible as daughters of You. Teach us to walk this out with you, in Jesus’ name, Amen.”
Connect with Monica:
FB: RichardnMonica Sotolongo
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