ADOPTION: Blog Post #43 – Duty Beyond Death
This week’s blog is not about my ADOPTION: Encouragement and Advice for a Hopeful Journey book but concerns my three long days in court this week. My adoption journey continues even beyond my daughter Destiny’s death. I am still her mom. I still love her. I still continue to be an attentive and proactive parent beyond her death. This new season of my life of parenting her is about my duty to seek justice for her murder. It is about spending hard time on a hard bench in court for two murder case proceedings.
Destiny, I firmly believe, was a committed Christian who bore righteous fruit in her life. Simultaneously, she struggled with her traumatic childhood even as a hopeful 18 y.o. trying to find her way to independent adulthood. Shortly after being invasively contacted by her birth mother a little over a year ago, Destiny returned to the comfort of her infant brain which knew the life of dysfuntional drug culture. Instead of continuing to do well in her college class, be a safe and fun childcare provider, show love to our family as daughter and sister, she took one step off the straight and narrow path she had been raised on as a member of our family, and fell quickly into a deep pit of drugs and violence from which she would never return.
This week I sat in a courtroom for three long days of evidence presentation by our District Attorney and several law enforcement investigators. It was a pre-trial hearing for one of the two young men accused of her murder (and the murder of the man she had been with at the time). Two of my adult sons sat with me. Together we heard heartbreaking testimony of how my beloved daughter, their sister through adoption, who was a vital young lady in our community, met her end at the butt and blade of a large knife machete. Her body was dumped in a remote barn to never be found. But by God’s grace and providence, a Christian family found her remains. A skilled forensic anthropologist figured out the circumstances surrounding her death. Diligent local sheriff and police officers mapped out the gps, cell phone, and Intoxalock records of the perpetrators to show compelling circumstantial evidence that a trial by jury should be called, and the judge agreed. This week was difficult but God orchestrated the beginnings of justice being served.
Never in my life would I have have foreseen myself sitting in a courtroom listening to exhaustive testimony that my talented and accomplished daughter would choose to associate with probable drug cartel members whose ways of life were so violent that she would become collateral damage in capital one murders.
God’s ways are certainly not ours. I have not fought with God over why He chose to take my daughter from this earth. I saw His hand protecting her from choices she made as a vulnerable, troubled young lady. He spared her from a ‘fate worse than death’ in taking her to Him for eternity in Heaven. He continues to protect and provide for our family beyond her death.
She no longer suffers from the hurt and loss of her early childhood trauma. As a family, we no longer suffer from the hurt of not knowing how to help her. God is merciful. He was with me in that court room this week. He had prepared me to hear the worst and when I did hear it, over and over again, I had His peace that passes all understanding. He is that great and good of a God.
In three days we will celebrate the birth of the one and only son of that great God. The one born a Savior in a lowly manger for those who trust and believe in Him. I am thankful that Jesus Christ was born, crucified, and lives again for the penalty of my sins, the sins of my daughter, the sins of her murderers, and all mankind. Just as I trust in Him beyond His death on the cross, I trust that He has a plan for me beyond my daughter’s death.
In the long months that will inevitably pass as two separate murder trials unfold for the two defendants, I will continue to trust Him that justice will be served – if not on earth – certainly in Heaven. One day, I will see my daughter again and she will be dancing with me on streets of gold. Our life on earth is only a vapor. Our death means the entry to our eternal home. Much as I covet more years with my family on earth, I can’t wait to spend eternity with Jesus and my beloved ones beyond my own death. Until then, I will do my duty as her parent because that is what responsible and loving parents do.