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Like a Waterfall

May 14, 2014

Today we took a 2-hour road trip out into the Guizhou countryside to see the Huangguoshu Waterfall.  It is the largest waterfall in China.

This trip today was the first time that we have ever ventured out into the Chinese countryside.  During Grace’s journey, all of our sightseeing took place in the city.  So far, all of our sightseeing during Haven’s journey has taken place in the city as well.

So, this was a new experience for us.  An authentic experience. It was one that took us through an undeveloped area of China.  In addition to seeing this untouched area and the beauty of the waterfall, we also got to sit down and enjoy a lunch consisting of only local cuisine.  A true Chinese meal that wasn’t westernized in the least.  We also had the unique pleasure of using squatty potties on several occasions during our adventure….because we had no other options.  A unique pleasure, indeed.  Anyone who has visited China and encountered them – along with the complete absence of toilet paper – will surely agree : )

When we first arrived at the park in Huangguoshu, we walked through a large, beautiful Bonsai garden.  From there, we took a long hike that offered us several wonderful views of the waterfall.  We even had the opportunity to walk into a cave that led us behind the falling water.

The scenery was absolutely incredible!  And the sound of the rushing water was so peaceful and calming.

Haven did great on the 2-hour trip out there.  He played on Grandpa’s lap for an hour, and then he fell asleep for an hour.  But, once we got there, he entered into shutdown mode.

So far, I have discovered that he has two modes.  He is either in shutdown mode or silly/smiley mode.  He either gets very quiet and limp…with a faraway look in his eyes, or he is giggling, babbling, and smiling.  It’s so hard to know exactly what is going on in that little mind of his.  I can only imagine how difficult a transition like this must be for someone like him.  I can remember that it sure took its toll on Grace.  And it has taken its toll on Haven, too.  However, he has already given us some beautiful glimpses into who the real Haven is.  When he is in silly/smiley mode, he babbles and looks at me directly.  He interacts.  He smiles and laughs, and just loves to be silly.  But, in an instant, that can change.  And he enters into a place where I can’t seem to reach him.

For the entire duration of our hike around the waterfall, he was in shutdown mode (as you can see from the photos).  But, then, as soon as we sat down for lunch at the local Chinese restaurant just outside of the park, he came alive.  He ate a big meal.  He smiled.  He laughed.  He hit us on our heads with our water bottles.  He babbled.  And he remained that way for the entire ride home.

It’s hard to understand at this point what sends him into either of those modes.  There isn’t one consistent trigger that I can see.  But, I have faith that as the days go by, we will see him enter into shutdown mode less and less….and the real Haven will slowly continue to emerge.

I love him so much already.  Today, for the first time, he actually stuck up his tiny little arms and reached for me.  Man, that was an awesome feeling!

As I took in the sights and sounds of that incredible waterfall today, with sweat pouring down my back from hiking with a limp, vulnerable child clutching onto me, I couldn’t seem to get the lyrics of Chris Tomlin’s new song out of my head.  The song is entitled “Waterfall”.

How thankful I am that God’s love is steady and powerful…like the flow of those mighty waters that I witnessed today.  No matter where we are at, or what situation we are facing, we are covered by the steadily falling waters of grace.  Changes and transitions – that can sometimes be difficult – may come our way, but His love is unchanging.  Like a waterfall, it runs wild and free.  It runs down on me.  It runs down on Haven.  And, because of that, I know that everything will be alright.


Your love is like a waterfall, waterfall,
Running wild and free!
You hear my heart when I call, when I call.
Deep calls to deep!
Your love is like a waterfall, waterfall,
Raining down on me!

O God, my God, I seek You
In this dry and desert land.
You lead me to streams of mercy once again.
You’re an ocean to my soul,
To my soul.

It’s coming like a flood.
I’m dancing in the rain.
Everything I’ve done is covered in rivers of grace!

It’s coming like a flood .
I’m dancing in the rain.
I lift up my hands.
Your love never changes!

Your love is like a waterfall, waterfall,
Running wild and free!
You hear my heart when I call, when I call.
Deep calls to deep!
Your love is like a waterfall, waterfall,
Raining down on me!


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3 Comments leave one →
  1. May 14, 2014 3:51 pm

    The close-up of Grace on the stone steps might be my favorite photo in this bunch, but the one of Haven and your mom is adorable, too. I love to see his smile!

  2. uncle skippy permalink
    May 14, 2014 5:57 pm

    What a sweet face on that boy. I like the waterfall close up of you two. Be safe, love u guys!

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