When we arrived, there were over a hundred people already waiting for their chance, just like we were. The difference that quickly became obvious to me was that everyone else had a confirmation page for their actual appointment time, the one piece of paper that happened to elude us in our carefully planned-out day. As we inched closer to the front of the line, I continually battled doubting thoughts with prayers for divine intervention. The man we finally approached did not seem particularly friendly, but I had come a long way and paid a lot of money, and I Really, Really wanted Wilson to get a visa. So I explained what had happened, I may have done a little pleading, and he checked his master list to see if Wilson indeed had a visa appointment today. No dice. So I shot up another prayer and asked him to please look again. This time, Wilson’s name was on the list! I was so excited that I practically ran past the man to get in the building, only to be stopped because apparently I was not allowed to go with Wilson. But that was okay, God had just shown us He was in control. We wouldn’t be successful because of our planning, we wouldn’t be successful because of anything I would say or because of any special privilege I might have as an American, we would be successful only because God willed us to be.
Today was the big day: Wilson’s Visa Appointment!
Before we left the guesthouse this morning, we went online to see if we could move our appointment up a little earlier. Every time we put in the confirmation code, however, it said that no appointment could be found. I started getting a little panicky but didn’t let myself go down that path. God would overcome whatever glitch or mistake was in our way.
And so began three hours of sitting on a little rock in the dirt across the street from the embassy, surrounded by other hopeful family members and friends, waiting for Wilson to emerge jubilantly from the door I couldn’t take my eyes off of. I was impatient, but I wasn’t anxious. God was in control. In the moments that I looked away from the door, I noticed a sign for a Dominoes Pizza about a block down the road. That would be our celebratory lunch. I started seeing people come out who had been near us in line and knew it wouldn’t be long.
At the end of those long three hours, Wilson appeared across from me, but the look on his face was not the one I had imagined. He had not been granted a visa. Though I wanted to, I still couldn’t deny that God’s hand was in the process. It just meant that he had said, “Not now.” I would be lying to say I’m content with that answer, but I do still trust that God is sovereign. Even though when we walked down the street for some consoling Dominoes Pizza, the restaurant no longer existed. Bummer Day 😦