"I consider my life worth nothing to me, if only I may finish the race and complete the task the Lord Jesus has given me - the task of testifying to the gospel of God's grace." Acts 20:24

To Tell of His Grace

Adoption Story- Part 4

In January, we got another referral that we were submitting our Letter of Intent (LOI) on and just as we were about to send it we were told that the chinese govt gave her file to another family. (Now we know that the facilitator of our first agency was doing something against chinese policy and it most likely wasn't the govt who puller her file but our facilitator had offered her file to two families and the other family got their LOI to her first. Right away (although we were sad again) we praised Jesus, knowing that HE WILL LEAD US to our Kaylee Grace as He chose her from the beginning of time to be ours! Then we didn't hear anything....till June (that is a very long time to hear nothing in SN adoption!)

In June I had a dream that I knew was from God. I was in a room with a bunch of kids who all had the same shirts on. I realized that they were all orphans and in my dream I heard God say to me, "Will you take care of the least of these for Me? The very least of these... and show them My love." In my dream I began to cry and I said, "Yes, Lord, just show me what to do." Then I woke up.

The name on their shirts kept coming back to my mind all day the next day so I finally looked it up to see if it was a real organization - I had not heard of it before. Well, it IS a real organization...and not only that, it is a home for special needs orphans in China! I was blown away so I called Brod and told him all about my dream. He looked it up and called. The most wonderful lady answered and was so helpful to him. From listening to where we were at in the process and how long we'd been waiting, she sensed that something was up and encouraged us to find out about a couple of things.

Well, our facilitator was going to be in town 2 days later and she agreed to meet with us regarding some of our concerns. This spurred our agency on to meet with us beforehand and let us know that they had recently found out that our agency had been on probation and unable to lock any children's files since around January. We were shocked! But immediately we knew and trusted that God was up to something and still ENTIRELY in control. So, we called the helpful lady back from the organization in my dream and asked her where she thought we should go from here. She had 3 GREAT (almost too great because it was hard to decide) agencies for us to look into. We loved them all but ultimately felt a bit more led to one so we switched (to Lifeline) we LOVE them!!! We know and trust that God has a great plan...He has already chosen our daughter since before time began and nothing can stop His perfect plan from unfolding.

Lifeline had JUST been granted a partnership with 8 different orphanages in China where they take a team of doctors and social workers over and get the kids paperwork ready and evaluate them so that they are "paper ready" to be adopted. China has so many orphans that MANY of these sweet children would never even have the chance to get adopted if someone didn't get their paperwork ready and orphanages often don't have the ability to prepare that many files. SO, we began to WAIT some more ;)

On November 6 we received a call from Logan, our AWESOME social worker!!! We really knew in our hearts that once we received a file it would be our child. I had been feeling God tell me for the few months prior to receive whatever child He gives us. At first we had a lot of fear with some of her needs listed (and the doctors that we talked with here locally were very apprehensive and discouraged us based on what they read in her file). HOWEVER...God is good and He provided many CLEAR encouragements for us to move forward with her as our daughter (in our hearts we really knew she was ours but we needed a clear word in order to have PEACE that this was the child HE created to be ours). Here are some of the ways He spoke clearly to us:
1. BRODIE PRAYED... right before we opened her file as a family and saw her picture for the first time...and I felt in my heart as if the Lord asked, "Will you be My Hands and Feet to her?"
2. OUR KIDS...they are our heros in this process! They NEVER wavered!!! The second they saw her face they knew she was their sister - even when the discouraging reports from doctors came back those reports only made them MORE SURE that we were to adopt her! 
3. MY PARENTS...they too were surprisingly supportive. One night on the phone they told me, "Well, we don't want to sway your decision in any way, but we are fully in for helping out in any way - no matter how difficult it may be." This is surprising because my parents are always concerned with us taking on too much or things that are difficult (even though I'm all grown up, they still don't want to see things be hard for us ;). They are ready to be Christ's Hands and Feet to Kaylee Grace, too!
4. OUR FRIENDS, BEN AND ALESE...Ben is a doctor and in his residency. We always call "Dr. Ben" with any medical questions and we always call Ben and Alese for prayer ;)  So we called them right away. From a medical side, Ben brought up all of the same concerns that the doctors here locally mentioned. But then he said, "Well, it seems like you guys are hearing all of these potentially "scary" outcomes and you're still feeling God press her on your hearts - faith trumps any medical expert's opinion and it seems like He is leading you to her." We talked for many hours late into the night with Ben and Alese (with Brodie fading in and out of sleep ;) and ultimately knew that we just needed to trust God with all the "unknowns".
5. OUR MORNING OF PRAYER...Brodie and I woke up early the next morning and really just cried out to God for clarity and peace...that we would know for certain that very day. You can read about what God showed us HERE
6. THE INTERNATIONAL ADOPTION DOCTOR... WOW!!! What a blessing she was! As we talked with someone who had actually evaluated Kaylee Grace herself we just knew that we were to trust God and truly all the fears turned to great JOY and EXCITEMENT!!! She had such high hopes and such great encouragement about this sweet child!!! (We also talked with the Social worker who went with the doctor - she also had great encouragement for us...she mentioned that our sweet girl and another sweet little one really stood out to her and she found herself praying so intently over them ;)

As I mentioned, we really knew all along that she was the child we had been waiting for...but all the fears and unknowns (from the enemy) crept in so quickly that we just needed His peace!!! This all happened in a matter of 48 hours...He just kept confirming over and over that she is the one He chose as our sweet daughter :)

And now we are resting in the Lord's timing- praying day and night for her (as we really have for the last year and a half). Can't wait to get there and pour the LOVE of Jesus into her!!!

As we wait I have had the blessing of talking with some other adoptive moms through our agency. All 3 have been SO helpful. It is SO encouraging to hear from them (2 of them had similar situations of special needs, neglectful environment, etc) My encouragement has been this: YES, it will be a lot of work- but GOOD work!- and VERY different from parenting biological children BUT it will be so glorious and they all have said that never have they seen God's glory in such miraculous ways. There will be a ton of work in pouring into her and loving on her so that she can learn to trust and feel loved and safe...but the blessing of her knowing and understanding the love of a family and MOST OF ALL, the LOVE of JESUS will be more than we can ask for or imagine!!!

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