Ok, so I do not blog, this is more for documenting our family's journey to bring home our little girl from China. That being said, WE ARE BRINGING HOME OUR LITTLE GIRL FROM CHINA!!!!!!
Bare with me, this may be gratuitously long!
My husband and I have always known that God wasn't done with our family yet, even though biologically he was, we knew we wanted to offer our home to children without hope, or children in tricky life situations so we considered foster care. We knew that God wanted us to wait for the right time and when our children were at an age that they understood what was happening and could actually be involved as well. Then my Dear amazing grandmother recommended a book for me to read a few months ago (we share books) and it was Jodi Picoults Handle With Care. I read it quickly and was sucked in at the first page, if you want to feel emotions.....read this book....so well written!! The long and short of the plot, without this becoming a book review, is that it is written in many perspectives of the people that surround this little girl willow who was born with Osteogenesis Imperfecta (brittle bone disease). There are many moral battles in this book about quality of life and it is beautifully written to capture all of these complex thoughts and internal battles we have as humans. I was so moved by this book I just had to go to my grandmas house and discuss it with her, my heart ached for this fictional family and this fictional little girl. Crazy, I know! So I had an amazing coffee chat with my grandma about children in the world who don't have the same loving family to surround them and I spoke to her about my heart to help but feeling like I had no idea where to begin so I end up doing nothing instead which is not where God wants me, he had something else in mind!
I went home feeling blessed to have such an amazing grandma with such a like heart and sat down to check my emails, start some homework and of course peruse facebook! ha! When I clicked on my facebook notifications my amazing friend Stacey had tagged me in a beautiful video about a couple who were about to meet their new born adoptive son, right at the hospital! It was so moving and I was already ripe with emotions at this point. After watching that video I felt my first tug, the kind of tug that you have to listen to every so carefully, that may point to a major life decision guided by God, but by the end of the series of "light tugs" there are actual slaps in the face if your not quite getting the message! haha! We will get to those, on with tugs..........I go back to my home page and see another notification which happened to be a post by my sweet sweet friend Amiee who was publicly announcing their second adoption was approved!!!! It was a beautiful post about their amazing faithfulness, you know, listening to the tugs all along, and God blessing them with yet another opportunity to adopt another child from China! They had adopted a little girl a few years ago from China, both of these amazing kiddos have spina bifida which makes Steve and Amiee the most obeidient and inspirational children of God that I have yet to meet! So I am reading her blog, a hot mess of tears streaming down my face as I watch their story continue and feel a more substantial tug, the kind of tug that makes me open google and begin searching for waiting children in China websites. As I looked over all the pictures and read about each of their needs ranging from birthmarks, to blood disorders, to downs syndrom, cerebral palsy, spina bifida, blindness, deafness, albinism, and just was heartbroken, all of these sweet babies were discarded, left on the sides of roads, under trees, on doorsteps. As I was praying a silent prayer in my head, questioning why God would want me to even look when he knows how overwhelmed I would get, how can you choose just one? And if you do, how do you pick ONLY one!? After a few more tears, prayers and looking for guidance I came across a little girl, Ruyika (Ru), and i was immediately drawn into her little sweet eyes, she had me. I then read her special need........she has OI!!!!! she has brittle bone disease, a disease that up until finishing that book that morning I was not aware of......a special need that I had not yet come across in the hundreds of pics that I had seen up until that moment....that is when I felt something slightly more powerful than a tug but not yet a full slap....that is next. later that evening I was picking up my daughter from her friends church event and was talking to her in the car hypothetically;
me: So how would you feel if did adoption instead of foster care?
me: yes, I know we talked about foster care but how about adoption, from another country even?
lou: You mean like the book I brought home from school TODAY called When Will We Be Sisters?
Did you feel it?? I did, that was the slap......the gentle yet forceful slap that said "This is what I want you to do, be faithful, follow me, I will provide a way, TRUST ME." She brought a book home, that day!!!!
Oh Lord in heaven, did I ever have such an obvious day with the Lord.....calling me to do something, and asking me to be brave enough to call my husband to agree to the same.......Oh boy this had to be a God thing cause my dear hubby does not like financial compilations......this would be a spiritual journey for our whole family. God wanted us to stop talking about the life we wanted, how we wanted to help but just didn't see how, he was calling us audibly to this particular little girl but my husband wouldn't be where I was in that moment for quite a few weeks........
Ok Lord, help me prepare my husbands heart for this calling........so that night he got home super late from work, like 10:00 and I was riding a spiritual high.........I was wanting to lock her documents immediately so I was little more than bummed but totally understood why my husband said "no way, I don't even know how to process this." Little did he know that the Lord was working on him now.....he even tried to fight it a few times haha! God in his infinite wisdom knew back in January what would open Matt's heart and mostly his faith in Gods ability to provide financially during this process. It was a trip to the Gautreaux's for spring break. It must be noted that this trip to Mississippi where they are stationed was planned about 3 months before this day I had with the Lord.....coincidence? I know it isn't! As I had mentioned before, Amiee and Steve had adopted before, a sweet little girl to add to their already full of love house, four children, all the same ages as ours and lifelong buddies! But it was apparent to Amiee and I from the first day that God was going to use Ellie to speak to Mr. Matt! From that day till the day we left she was Matt's shadow, "hold me please" with a huge smile that Matt couldn't say no to! "Shoulder ride please" again with the smile, "color with me Mr. Matt"!
|Sweet Ellie and Mr. Matt crafting|
|Wrapped around his finger!!!|
All with a melt-able smile and giggles to match and a heart that started the tug at Matt, he could now see and have no doubts that he could indeed love another child as he was pretty sure he wanted to take Miss Ellie home with us!
In our time down in Mississippi I began to learn alot about the international adoption community and the sites you can go to to view waiting children, agency info and much much more all because of my Adoption Fairy Godmother (AFG) Mrs. Amiee!! I learned so much about patience as well since my little Ru's file was taken down and no agency knew where she was......I was heartbroken but Amiee kept me grounded and focused.....maybe Ru was just the little girl God was going to use to get us to be open to adoption to begin with? I just couldn't shake the feeling that she was to be so much more but by the end of our trip she was still no where to be found by any agency, I dreaded the thought that she was being adopted by someone else but at the same time knew that if she was, it was Gods plan and she was with who he designed from the beginning. On the long drive home Matt and I discussed many things, moving, adoptions and life. I finally told him I will let Ru go for a few months and if she pops back up after her file has been re-released to a shared list then that is Gods timing. God clearly wanted me to verbally speak that I "let her go and put her in Gods hands" because no sooner did we pull into our driveway after a long 20 hours straight on the road did my AFG tell me that they had her back on the thread, some agency had her file after all!!
So with lots of prayer we and coming off of a refreshing amazing vacation we took a leap of faith, together, and sent our Letter of Intent (LOI) to China to adopt this sweet girl!! Now we begin a year long journey to get her home!! We found out Today that we have Pre-Approval from China! She is ours to adopt! This journey, i know in my heart is going to test and strengthen my spiritual issues, mainly patience and my husbands spiritual weakness, faith that God will provide the finances and everything else that a strong man of God knows he needs to keep his family afloat! My children will be tested in their
spiritual walks as well, they are excited, but not sure how it will effect them yet please keep them and us in your prayers as we begin something amazing and epic in God! I am so thankful that we felt his tugging and even more thankful for his "slap"!
|This is on our fridge, we call it our prayer picture, the words to the right are the lyrics to "Oceans" by Hillsong|