Tuesday, December 23, 2014


Here it is!  The post I have been waiting to share with you since we announced {nearly} four years ago that we were adopting….

We've been matched with a little boy, and we're headed to Ethiopia……..China!??!! 

Just before Thanksgiving, the file of a little 16-month old boy with moderate cerebral palsy, a world away in China, popped up in my inbox.  Normally, we don't qualify for waiting children due to the ages of our biological kiddos, so naturally, he caught my eye….

Those beautiful, dark, almond-shaped eyes looking up at the camera.
His little pouty, down-turned lips.  

Those chubby little cheeks that just BEGGED for kisses.  

I didn't see his disability, only a little boy who desperately needed a family.  

I was in love.

We had talked China before, and it always went the same way…. No, Ethiopia is where our heart is, and…..we feel so invested…..and surely we're close, why switch now….and….and….and……

And a diagnosis of cerebral palsy at that?  What did we even KNOW about cerebral palsy?

So as I texted his picture over to Charles that afternoon, I didn't really think it would materialize into much….


An hour later, there we were, and there we remained for several more days, in a whirlwind of medical records, phone calls, paperwork, and deadlines.  Neo-natologists.  CHOP doctors.  Parents of other CP kids.  I've never talked so much on the phone IN. MY. ENTIRE. LIFE.  And in the midst of it all, we received an email from our agency's Ethiopia program:  If the state of adoptions didn't change within the next six months in that country, our agency would be closing down their Ethiopia program for good.
{Deep breath}

And so as we talked, and prayed, and wept, and allowed ourselves to dream, we felt a sense of peace come over us that compelled us to move forward.  So with trembling hearts, we submitted our file to China.  And we waited…...for news of whether or not our family could adopt this little boy.  During that time, our emotions were all over the place.  Elated. Hopeful.  Scared out of our freaking minds. But ever praying, that although we didn't technically qualify for a China adoption, that if this were the road God wanted us to continue down, He would open the door.

And open it He did.

On December 3rd we received a phone call officially welcoming us to the China program.  And along with it, welcoming us into a whole lot of unknowns.  As Charles correctly put it, he feels like he's back at the top of the zipline this summer with Kaya.  Excited nervousness all at the same time.

And you know what I've learned a bit over the past couple weeks?  I've learned that it's ok to live in the unknown.  I didn't think so at first, but I'm learning to say, "Lord, I don't know what you have in store for me, but I'll trust you with the unknown."  I've learned it's ok to step out not knowing how the story will end.  And as I sit and ponder this idea, I'm certain another young mother felt similar thoughts as she cradled her newborn baby 2,000 years ago.  I imagine her leaning her face down to soak in every ounce of that newborn scent.  Gently caressing his little fingers.  Counting each tiny toe.  The world held it's breath, and all was silent.  And I'm certain that God in His great mercy didn't reveal to her His full plan for her baby boy on that night.  Instead, that young mother took a step out into the unknown, not fully understanding or comprehending where this road would take her, but trusting in the One who would take her there.

We are not nearly as remarkable as she, but in our own little way, we are saying yes to what we believe is His calling in our lives and taking one shaky step after another into the unknown.  One foot in front of the other.  Although we do not know what the future holds for our SON, we do know that he was fearfully and wonderfully made in the image of God. And more importantly, we know that our God is a God who delights in making beauty out of ashes…who uses the foolish things of this world to confound the wise….who takes what was meant for evil, and uses it for good.  We know that our God is a God who places the lonely in families.  He is a Father to the fatherless and a defender of the weak.

I don't know about you, but many days I feel inadequate and unqualified for the responsibilities He has placed before me.  Daily I fall short.  But lately I sense that, somehow, that's ok too.  That perhaps that's where grace finds us.  In a place where we are forced to lift our arms in surrender and admit that we can't (and never were supposed to) do this on our own.

"'My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.' Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ's power may rest on me…For when I am weak, then I am strong."

2 Corinthians 12: 8-9

My prayer this Christmas season is that God would give us (you also, my friend) the courage to step out into the unknown, as well as grace upon grace to accomplish His purposes in our lives daily.  We will fail at times.  So will you.  Yet it is in this place of surrender where He receives the most glory.  What is He asking your family to do?  Let's make 2015 the year we step out in faith together.

We love you all!!  Merry Christmas from our family to yours!!

Christmas 2014



1 comment:

  1. How wonderful! Love reading this news. What an amazing journey you all have been on and so many surprises are ahead of you. Prayers for all of you and this little boy. If you ever need anything or want to talk (about CP or anything else) you've got a special needs mommy friend right here :)