We are a family of 6 - so far.... Four kids may seem like enough, but we feel we have some other children God has created for us to bring home - and we can't just leave them out there somewhere. The process of them becoming a part of our family will be different than the other 4, but they are no less ours - they just haven't come to us yet. We have felt God leading us toward adoption for a while, and now we are taking the necessary steps to make it a reality. This blog was created as a record of our journey to adopt from Ethiopia - how we receive our gifts from afar. We hope you will join us for the adventure!
(Following posts originally published 01.02.10)Our journey actually began years ago when we were first married with a “maybe someday” attitude about adoption. That’s all it was. Over the years we had our 4 biological kids, and adoption wasn’t really considered during that time at all. We were busy. Busy doing all the “stuff” that comes with babies and little ones.
Fast forward to a couple of years ago. I (Melinda) began to feel that adoption was something we were supposed to do. Wherever I looked, whatever I read, all kinds of things kept bringing it up. Adoption was everywhere. I started to seriously considerer it as an option of something that actually “could” be done.
The kids all thought it was a great idea – especially Mattea, who has always been outnumbered by the boys. (She had a sister in mind, of course!) Michael was a different story, however. He always wants all the facts and all the details to be lined up before he agrees to anything. I brought it up a few times and didn’t get a warm response to it. But I didn’t push it. I just prayed. I quietly researched all I could about adoption and prayed the prayer that I have prayed during other times when we didn’t see eye to eye on things: “Dear God, please change his heart or change mine.” Then one night, he unexpectedly brought up the subject! Yeah! We were still a long way from action, but it now was a subject that we talked about occasionally. That’s when I believe it became more than just a “maybe” that we would adopt – it was only a matter of “when”.
Over the next few months we talked about it more and more. Still, there were so many unknowns. We prayed that God would work it all out, but things sure didn’t seem to be moving forward. There are so many unknowns with adoption, but money seemed to be the hurdle that we couldn’t move past. But God is powerful and always knows how to remind us of that…
One morning while I was walking in the neighborhood, I was meditating on a verse of Scripture that I had chosen before I went. It was James 4:17: “Anyone, then, who knows the good he ought to do and doesn't do it, sins.” As I walked, I was also praying off and on about money for adoption. As I came around a traffic circle, I saw some trash in the street. It was a tied up Subway bag with some trash inside it. I thought about picking it up. I could take it to our trash can at home – it wasn’t really that far - but I really didn’t want to touch it. But as I argued with myself about whether to pick it up, James 4:17 just kept coming back to my mind! So, I did it. I walked a little way further and I heard a jingling coming from the bag. There was money in it! God said, “This is the first part of your adoption fund, and the promise for the rest.”
I love it when God uses the unexpected to teach us invaluable lessons! He’s so amazing! There were so many lessons in that one simple, crazy event. Here are just a few:
1) God has a plan. (It was no accident that bag was there when I came by.)
2) God wants to meet the needs of others through us. (Someone threw out some money with their trash.)
3) God has it all under control, and He wants us to KNOW that He has it all under control. (That money was a tangible reminder that He will meet our needs in ways we never expected.)
4) Obedience, even in small things, is blessed by God. (If I hadn’t been obedient in that one little thing, I would have missed God’s message to me.)
So… 44 cents (that’s the amount that was jingling around in that bag) isn’t exactly enough to adopt. But it was a promise that God has provisions in place even before we get to the point of being able to receive them. And that obedience, even in small things, is the key to unlocking God’s blessings in our lives.
Later that day I e-mailed my “adoption fund” story to our Sunday morning Bible study class. A couple in the class with small kids of their own gave us a very generous gift to add to our adoption fund. What a blessing! And Mattea brought me $10 of her own money a few days ago. I know that God is going to do it in His time and in His ways. We are believing in faith that He will.
After all, “faith is believing God is who He says He is.”
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