Friday, March 21, 2014


Yesterday we went to a botanical gardens-y type place. They also served wine, so I don't know what that qualifies as, but it was awesome.

And big.

(Side Note: For those just checking in...we (being me and Nosipho) are still in South Africa. Erik and I left for South Africa on February 11th and Erik headed back home to the States on March 12th. Nosipho and I are waiting for her unabridged birth certificate and temporary passport to be able to leave the country. Time of departure? Unknown.)

Back to our adventure. 
The gardens were big enough to need a map to walk around it. And since it seems that we have added a daughter to our family who is strong-willed, independent, and adventurous...she controlled the map. 

At first, I was trying to explain that you have to hold it right side up in order to really know where you are going. After a few minutes, I just gave up and decided to trust her (and the people in yellow shirts that actually knew where we were supposed to go).
I should learn to trust more because even though the map was upside down, she seemed to know exactly where we needed to go.

What looked upside down to me made complete sense to her. 
And though our journey took maybe a bit/way longer than I would have liked, we stumbled upon places that we never would have seen had I been in control of the map. 
Do you see where I'm going with this?

I've been struggling quite a bit with understanding why God isn't making things happen faster here on this end. If it were up to me and my AWESOME navigational skills, we would have been out of South Africa yesterday. 
But I'm starting to see little glimpses of the blessings that come from long journeys. (You would have thought this lesson would have been learned in that whole 3 year journey to adopt Nosipho, yeah? #slowlearner #foolmeonce?)

But even when I'm kicking, screaming, and awkwardly crying to old episodes of Hawaii Five-O by myself after sweet girl is asleep, I'm starting to hear God's voice a bit clearer. 

The map may look upside down, and this path may not have been the one you would have chosen if you were in control...
But the journey will be beautiful.
And I promise, I'll bring you safely to the exit. 


  1. You never cease to amaze me with your blog. I love how you can see life lessons in the hard places. We can all learn from that! Step by Step....God will get you both home in His Perfect timing. Love you much and can't wait for this chapter in your life to have a final period and exclamation mark.

  2. beautiful photos! so glad you're doing well. congratulations, sweet Anderson family!

  3. Hi Jessa,
    I stumbled upon your blog as I was searching the net for others like us - in the middle of adoption - I didn't know I'd find one so similar! We are in the process of adopting from South Africa as well, through Bethany, and we are also from MN (about an hour south of the Twin Cities).

    I just had to comment because your daughter is beautiful! I am so happy that she is finally in your arms! I will be praying for you as you finish your time in South Africa and for safe travels home to start your new life together (hopefully soon!).

    Many blessing to you and your family,


    1. Jen,
      Thank you so much for your message! We are so excited for you guys and can't wait to see where the Lord takes your journey as you move steps closer to bringing home your sweet child/children from South Africa! I'd love to chat more with you if you have any questions! We just got back from South Africa last Saturday and are settling into life back in the States in a whole different light! It has been a challenge, but a good one. Please let me know if there is anything that I can help with as you walk through the process and ESPECIALLY once you get to the point of traveling! We've got some good recommendations! :)
      Many blessings to you all as well!