Monday, July 23, 2012

Adoption News!

The wait is over.  After two loooonnnnggggg weeks of waiting for a decision regarding the possible termination of our adoption, we heard back from our case worker today. was the good news we had hoped for. :)

Our adoption agency has determined that we are still in good financial standing to continue on with our adoption.  They are granting us a 90-day grace period to secure employment and health insurance for our entire family. We will not lose our position on the wait list, and will continue to move down on the list as new referrals are assigned each month.  Such a HUGE, HUGE answer to prayer!!

Obviously, the hurdles are not finished for us.  In order to meet our end of the deal, Charles still needs to find a job that meets the income requirements for the Ethiopia program; all the while, being careful not to drain our savings, as this will reflect poorly on our financial status.  Time is ticking.  We also need to keep our dossier up-to-date, as many of our documents are beginning to expire.  So, the future holds more fingerprint appointments, criminal and child abuse clearances, and physical exams, but that is OK with me. :)  BRING IT!

As of today, we have moved down THREE more spots to #67.  We are expecting to move again, as the end of the month is rapidly approaching (can it be almost August ALREADY??!?!?).  

Thanks everyone for praying us through this obstacle.  If there is one thing the Lord is teaching me through this trial, it is that the body of Christ is exactly that, a body.  We were never meant to live this life alone.  We were never meant to bear the weight of our struggles independent from others.  We were meant for community.  A community of believers who bands together to lift each other up when they fall.  This is where we have lived this week.  Groceries have shown up on our doorstep.  Meals.  Thoughtful cards and emails.  Bible verses.  Prayers offered up on our behalf.  

"All of the believers were one in heart and mind.  No one claimed that any of his possessions was his own, but they shared everything they had."
~Acts 4:32

"Just as each of us has one body with many members, and these members do not all have the same function, so in Christ we who are many form one body, and each member belongs to all the others.  We have different gifts, according to the grace given us."
~Romans 12:4-6

"The body is a unit, though it is made up of different parts, and though all its parts are many, they form one body.  So it is with Christ."
~ 1 Corinthians 12:12

We are beyond grateful for your friendships and humbled by the love we have received over the past several weeks.  Thank you for being the hands and feet of Jesus, the body of Christ.  Please continue to pray for us, if you would.  Pray specifically for Charles to find a job within the next 90 days (preferably sooner!! :).  We anticipate the day when we can share what God has done.  What ONLY He is capable of doing!  He is so good, and so worthy of our praise.  


Friday, July 13, 2012

We Need Your Prayers! :)

Well, it's been some time since I last posted, and a lot has transpired since then.  Let me try and bring you up to speed......

It all started three weeks ago, when my husband came home from work with the news that he had lost his job.  The following day, my Mimi, the matriarch of our family, passed away.  It was not a surprise; she had been on hospice for about a week.  But still, it was a very, very sad day for our entire family.  A sad weekend, I suppose.

The next week was a little bit of a blur.  It was spent making funeral arrangements, sorting through unemployment procedures, and figuring out a plan to continue receiving insurance for our kids.  All along, I was dreading the discussion that would inevitably have to take place with our case worker regarding Charles' recent status to unemployed.  What would it mean for our adoption??  Surely, it couldn't be good. :(

As expected, losing our sole income will have an impact on our pending adoption.  What kind of an impact?  That we do not know yet.  As of right now, we need to fill out a financial statement that is to be evaluated next week by a team of social workers at our agency.  Depending on their findings, it will determine whether we will be allowed to continue, or not, in the Ethiopia program.

Through it all, I must say, God has been so faithful to us.   He has rallied friends and family around us, and has given both Charles and I a peace that passes all understanding.  As we look back over the past few years, we see how our experiences, both good and bad, have been preparing us for this current trial we find ourselves in.  A few things I know, that I know, that I know about God....

1.  God is good.  All the time.  In every circumstance, good and bad.  He is good.
2.  God is sovereign and in control of ALL things.  Not a single hair on our heads can be touched without Him allowing it.
3.  God is all-powerful and certainly ABLE to change situations.
4.  Prayer WORKS!!
5.  Often God allows everything to be stripped away before showing up BIG, thus bringing Him the most glory (example, Anna).

We do not know what the future holds, but we are confident in the One who holds the future.  2,000 years ago, on an unassuming Friday afternoon, a stone was rolled in front of a tomb, and the Roman soldiers and chief priests who stood by watching declared it finished.  But God had other plans, as He so often does.

"As the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than 
your ways and my thoughts than your thoughts."    
~Isaiah 55:9

Three days later, as the disciples were hiding away in a room, confused and saddened by the weekend's events, God's plan was unfolding.  A plan to redeem the world.  A plan to bring beauty from the ashes.

And so it was on that day, that Jesus rose and conquered death and sin forevermore.  God's plan, perhaps not making sense at the time to the mere minds of humans, was the only thing that could rescue the world.  

Although, this is not the way WE would have ever chosen to write OUR life story, we trust that God's ways are better.  That He sees the whole picture, and works accordingly.  We know that the call to adopt that was placed on our hearts two years ago, is still very real to this day and cannot be thwarted by human hands.  We ask you to join us in praying that God would make a way, where man says it is impossible.  Here are some specific, tangible ways in which you can pray for us this upcoming week:

1.  Charles would find a new job quickly (and smoothly!!).
2.  The financial statement that we are busy preparing would favorably describe our family.
3.  When the case workers gather next week to review our case, that we would find favor in their eyes and would be allowed to continue with our adoption.
4.  Continued peace and endurance for Charles and I during this trial.
5.  Grace to accept plans that may be different than what we had envisioned.

Thank you so much for your prayers!!  We have already begun to feel them.  We are blessed beyond measure to call you friends.  

Much love,