One of the dogs discovered a little baby fawn, crouched down, hiding in some weeds in the backyard. We all quietly and cautiously went out to see if we could catch a peek of the little thing before it darted away. Well, not only did we catch a peek, but we got so close we could have touched it's white spotted fur! Now, if you know me at all, you know that everything in me wanted to pick-up that little baby, warm up a nice bottle of milk, and take it home as the newest member of our family, haha! Don't worry, I restrained myself. But, I definitely entertained the thought.
When a fawn is born, the mother will lick it clean to try to remove all the "scent" off her baby. Then, the mother will hide her young for the first few weeks, moving them to different locations every few days. Often the fawn wants to go with their mother and the mother has to gently use her foot to push the fawn down into it's hiding place (talk about tough love). The mother then places herself far enough away to deter any predators from following her scent to the fawn, but close enough to keep a watchful eye. This fawn had captivated me; it was such a tiny, helpless, and beautiful creature. All day I kept asking my husband, "you're sure that mother will come back, right?" It wasn't until we were on a walk later that it dawned on me...that little fawn was just like our babies in Ethiopia...far away, hiding, at risk to all kinds of predators, helpless, and afraid. In one instant my heart broke in a new way for our little ones. The paralyzed look of fear in that fawn's eyes so reminded me of the look I've seen in many of the pictures of orphans in Ethiopia. As evening approached, I found myself fervently praying that God would send that mother deer to rescue the little fawn; hoping that I'd wake up in the morning to find the place where it had been...empty.
That night, Nate and I decided to go out spotting. We drove around for awhile and spotted several deer. But, my heart and mind kept wandering back to a tiny spot in the woods, where a little fawn waited to be found. As we pulled in the driveway, I asked Nate to pull a little further in so I could spot the backyard. Clicking on the spotlight, my heart leapt as I saw a beautiful mother deer carefully bending over her baby. She of course jolted her head up and ran for the tree line as fast as she could, afraid of giving her baby's hiding spot away. We quickly went inside to ensure the mother felt comfortable again. Lying in bed that night my heart was so full; they'd found each other. The following morning, we found nothing where the fawn had laid, but a soft matted down bed of weeds that was...empty.
The mother had to come in the night. Some might have called it delayed, some might have said, why couldn't she just keep her young with her from birth. But, she was protecting her baby the way God had created her to. And we're doing the same with our little ones right now. All we can do is look up to the sky and pray and pray and then pray some more. Some days, it doesn't seem like enough. We want to hold them, kiss them, and protect them. We want to have pictures to show people, stories to tell, memories to share. But, we're faithfully waiting where God has placed us. And we have to believe that praying for these little ones right now is exactly what they need. And when the time comes, we will find each other. It may be in the dead of the night, it may be delayed. But, I know that when we do, there will be 2 more orphan beds...empty!
Look carefully in the left corner and you see the white spots.