Denial is just a river in Egypt

So, here is much needed update….

We were waiting for many weeks for an approval letter from the orphanage we wanted to adopt from.(accepting our family to adopt from their orphanage) It was taking much longer that we expected. And to be honest I knew that we were going to get bad news. I felt it deep in my heart and let it get the best of me. Then I realized that being focused on something I thought was going to happen wasn’t going to change anything. So, I just started to pray and embrace what might happen. Again I went back to the question, “why are we adopting?” It was the same answer we have had the whole time. To show God’s love to his children. To inspire, teach, comfort, encourage, build hope, heal, overcome obstacles, share dreams, and embrace that we all have fallen short but there is a future that is beyond our dreams. So, I started getting involved in things around the community that would allow me to show God’s love. This helped me focus on the big vision God has for me  instead of the typical worldly plan I have . I can still show God’s perfect love even if my plan isn’t going the way I want it. So, April 30th came with a very disappointing letter…….we were denied (meaning our adoption from Colombia would not happen)…..but we could appeal the decision.

This was very upsetting news….however, I really truly believe God let me know this was going to happen. You see if I hadn’t already had time to mourn this decision, I definitely couldn’t have charged ahead with confidence to appeal the decision. Because I had already had time to sulk and cry, I was able to pick up the phone immediately and make things happen. Don’t get me wrong….there were tears involved but that deep sadness that just makes you want to stay in bed….that was not there. With the help of my AMAZING (like so amazing that this appeal happened because of her) case worker we got the letters ready for the appeal and mailed them off. So, again we WAITED……

I felt such peace in this process. It was like nothing I have ever experienced in such a time of disappointment. My husband and I were not worried or anxious about the result we would hear from the orphanage. We knew that we had put our best effort forward and if the approval didn’t happen then that was a way God was showing us to move a different direction. However, we felt in our heart that there was too much evidence that God wanted us here. As I think back or go back through our blog there is time and time again that God provided a way. So here we are again waiting to see God work. I can’t express enough how amazing this abundant peace was we had when we were waiting on this decision. The waiting did not come with anxiety…we waited by moving on with our daily life, making sure we were still holding on  to our vision of showing God’s love to the ones already around us.

Then you guessed it……May 28th  came with an exciting letter!!!! We are approved through a private orphanage in Colombia!! We are able to adopt a sibling group of two  ages 9  and under.

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This is a story that I just can’t keep quiet….God is so good! His plan will never fail! There is always hope and sometimes a plan or path that you don’t see coming.

One Step Closer

Facts about adoption:

1. Your lunch times turn into trips to the Post Office. These Postal workers become your friends. They are way more helpful than the kiosk in the lobby!

2. You pay for tracking, 2-day shipping, insurance, and other services you would otherwise probably never use. (but this paperwork that you send off is like gold…so you do anything to make sure it gets to it’s destination)

3. The copy machine is your friend. (make copies of EVERYTHING)

10959293_10205983166804072_5888990508825653809_nThe question asked by most of the people we know……so when will you meet your kids?

Our answer…..when God is ready to reveal who they are.

So, for now I am just going to keep updating you on where we are in this process until the day comes to tell you about our kids. We are so excited that we are checking things off our list and are at peace with the timing of this process.

On the last update, we told you that we were waiting on our FBI fingerprints to arrive.

Well, we got them!!!! It was one of those days that we prayed in the morning to claim that we would receive the prints that day and when we got home they were in the mailbox. Praise the Lord!

So the next step is getting those FBI results to Colombia. When they arrive in Colombia, they will be put with our Dossier and be ready for approval and matching!

I really can’t believe we are talking about these final steps.

Pray for us to continue to LISTEN to God and not set up our own plans. He has seen us all the way through this process and we are excited to watch the rest unfold.

 

Held

I have been surrounded by amazing people! I am constantly reminded that God is there through the trials we have in life. Sometimes He doesn’t take the situation away but He will hold you and encourage you through it if you listen. Satan has taken so many things from my family and friends however, God promises blessings and plans for our life that we couldn’t even imagine! I have friends who have had to bury their child or husband and they encourage me with their confidence that GOD is faithful! It is ok to tell God that you are hurt or angry. He wants you to be real. I have found that when I let my feelings out and listen to Him, I am overwhelmed with joy. It might not be the hop up and down kind of joy but that joy you feel when someone you love embraces you.
So, when I busted out my CD’s the other day….yes I said CD’s. There was this song that has always encouraged me when I was feeling down. I was just reminded yet again that if you allow Jesus to just embrace you He will. Your situation might be too big to see any light right now, but hang in there and look for the little joys in life.

This Natalie Grant: Held

Bless A Child

Bringing a child that is hurting/grieving into your home is not for everyone. However, I strongly believe you can support orphans on so many different levels.

  • give to a fundraiser
  • pray DAILY for the children and families involved
  • support a child overseas
  • give clothing or volunteer at a local shelter
  • provide a meal or babysitting for a foster/adoptive mom
  • pay a certain fee in a friend’s adoption
  • support a ministry or orphanage
  • read adoption books so you can have an understanding about how to help your friends who are adopting/fostering.
  • throw a shower for a foster/adoptive mom
  • buy items that give percentages to orphanages
  • cheer your friends on that are going through foster care/adoption
  • coordinate a fundraiser for a friend

Be creative and bless the children of God!

fan the flame and make me grow

When we had to put our adoption on hold it was difficult. I had built up so much excitement because things were moving along. However, through the wait I began realizing that it was for the best! I am a girl who loves check lists! I get things done! So, putting my paperwork checklist on hold was HARD and emotional. You see I have had A LOT of loss. Some things I think I have grieved and then it pops back up. So, putting the dream of my children coming home on hold was like a loss or disappointment but the best thing.

(seriously…I’m not just saying that)

During that time I gave all my attention to my husband, daughter and granddaughter. When your waiting for something you need to be careful you don’t forget the blessings in front of you! I also saw things that I needed to do like seeking God to know Him deeper. Like a friendship that needs more quality time. I also made time for Bible Studies, dug into scripture, read adoption books that are very thought-provoking and made sure I was making time for my marriage!

When it came time to start back up on the paperwork you would have thought I would have been jumping for this opportunity ! I knew the steps I needed to take but I just couldn’t do it. You can read more about the feelings to wait and the time to get back into the process HERE.

In some of the books that I was reading about children who have experienced loss I started to notice that I had some of those same fears. When I would get pregnant I would have hope for that sweet baby but also fear the worst because I had so many miscarriages. I have also noticed that with our grand baby I was fearing the worst. The books were saying that you can deal with your loss and grieve but there are still sometimes triggers. I can totally agree with this. I am in a very healthy place in my life when I talk about my miscarriages however, out of the blue something will remind me of one of the babies and I am just heartbroken. This also happens when I think about our children who are hurting daily because their family is broken.

So, fear is not of God so I have been saying these verses when I feel fearful!

“For God has not given us a spirit of fear and timidity, but of power, love,  and self-discipline.” ~2Timothy 1:7 NLT

“Do not give way to fear.” ~1Peter 3:6

Satan will use what works on you and I want to be joyful, confident, peaceful, and have wisdom with my family. So, it’s a choice every time I have a negative thought. Will I dwell in it or rebuke it. I am VERY excited about what God is doing in our lives. I can say that I love that he has given me time to prepare for our children who will be hurting when they come home. I have a deeper understanding of what is needed to help a child who has lost everything. I know I don’t have all the answers however, I believe that God will provide wisdom and will surround me with resources.

I also am not fearful because I know that if we share these things with our children, they will have hope for the future:

  • the healing power of Jesus Christ
  • the Father who can love them perfectly and will NEVER leave them
  • the knowledge and wisdom in scripture

I have an urgency about our life right now …..not sure what it means but I believe it will be a BIG change for our family. When I heard this song, it describes the fire I feel in my soul for our future! I am excited about the next step Christ has for us!

Please join our family in prayer as our adoption moves forward but also that we stay focused on Christ. We don’t want the adoption to consume us. We want to be open to the path Christ has for us. Pray against distractions and fear.

College Bound

Here I am VERY excited to attend a ceremony to watch my beautiful daughter graduate High School!

CLASS of 2014!!!!

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Graduation is such a special celebration for families! As I look back at the path I followed, this graduation just couldn’t make me prouder! I was a young mom….no I don’t recommend this path for anyone!!!! (it’s HARD!!!!)  However, I am here to tell you that if you find a friend going through this or you are a young mom, there is a great and exciting path in front of you! Never give up and keep positive people around you! My daughter graduated this year and I’m so excited to see what the future holds for her. She has big goals and is very determined!

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She just loves her mom’s kisses!

It's official!

It’s official!

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These are my parents that NEVER gave up on me! They are here to celebrate!

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This was the cute dress under the Cap and Gown! She is my little fashionista!

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My girls!!!!

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She surprised us with a grandchild this year and brought a lot of mixed emotions with it. Going through this myself, it brought back some of the feelings I had when I was in High School. After prayer and conversations with her, we chose to enjoy every minute of this blessing God has given our family. It was hard at first because those earthly emotions come over you and it would have been easy to be negative towards this situation. I was heart-broken for her to have to go through this hard journey and was also  sad that we had to put our adoption on hold. But those are the feelings that we should not cling too. Satan will take some beautiful things in your life and tell you that they are negative. Making you miss out on the most precious parts of your life. If you look at it from God’s perspective you will see the beauty in the unexpected turns life takes. When we chose joy it made our world turn around. I can’t express the blessings we have had since then. Our daughter is absolutely an amazing mom and our granddaughter makes us smile every single day!

So, today is my 3rd day of summer break and I have the most awesome opportunity! I get to babysit my granddaughter two days a week while my daughter goes to college!! We are going to have so much fun! And my daughter is beyond excited to start college. Actually she just called me on her break and couldn’t stop talking about how she loves class! I love seeing God work His plan. When I look at my path I see the times that I have fallen and not understood what was happening. However; I also look back and see miracles happening and things I just couldn’t see when I was right in the middle of them. When you choose to take the positive road, your life will have some unbelievable surprises. Love the ones around you …even if it is hard! My parents never gave up on me and I will never give up on my daughter!