Awhile back I believed the Lord was using the journey of Moses to teach me about this adoption journey we are on. I was recognizing that the Promised Land is embarrassingly close to Egypt and yet it took the Israelites 40 years to make the trek. I said that I believe one of the reasons it took so long (aside from the obvious disobedience) was because God had more to teach them than how to get from point A to point B; He established Himself as their provider, their leader, their King. He taught them how to be a people group, His chosen. He softened their hearts and they learned to hear His voice. I acknowledged that as we pursue adopting God has more to teach us than just a quick add-on to our family.
That is ringing true this week. When we decided to put an application in to adopt we were open to any type of adoption from any country. Ultimately we narrowed it down to Ethiopia because we loved what we learned about it as a country, as a people, and we knew it was where Lance & Jasmine were going to adopt from. We liked that we could all go through the same agency and process together. We've prayed for God to open and close doors and move us in the direction best for our family. We've hit a lot of roadblocks financially, which has been frustrating. At the same time I have felt like God would make the next phase clear when we needed to take the next step.
This past week I was sicker than I've been in probably a couple years; with a nasty head cold and an infected wisdom tooth that knocked me flat for the week. As I sucked on ice chips on the couch for some sleepless nights I did some praying & thinking. I remembered that we ruled out getting a foster license because 1. We didn't want a revolving door in our home. We want to adopt, not foster. 2. The state requires a lot of training and after 8 years at a job where S. was busy evenings and weekends, we couldn't start to think about adding more evening commitments to our plate.
Sitting on the couch I realized our situation has changed quite a bit in past months. It's no longer overwhelming to go through foster training. We still don't want a revolving door but we are patient enough to wait for a child who is legally free to adopt. As I started thinking through that option I prayed that God would give S. and I the same mind. He's been excited about Ethiopia and I wondered what his response would be to my out of the blue idea.
As I began sharing my thoughts with S. he was immediately on board. In fact, as I talked it out it started making more sense than it did in my head. S. was the one that said, "I know we both have a heart for the fatherless, regardless of the country- but we definitely have had a lot of experience with kids having rough starts in life here in the U.S."
I inquired about making a detour and applying for domestic adoption. We found that instead of waiting for more funds...we already have what we need! What our adoption jar holds is enough for the whole adoption! We can put all our fund raising efforts toward Lance & Jasmine's adoption. Ironically, this week we were given 2 monetary gifts to put towards one of a few needs; one of the needs being adoption. I added it up and told S., "With these 2 checks we pretty much have what we need to send in our Ethiopia packet. What do you think?" Simultaneously we looked at each other and shook our heads. We both felt like money aside, U.S. adoption is what we want to do. By the time S. left for work this morning I was downright giddy.
All that being said, we covet your prayers as we meander through the wilderness. Our next step is adjusting our application and setting a time for a home study. We'll also be enrolling in DSHS classes. Where an Ethiopian baby would face challenges culturally and may face health problems due to poverty (lice, scabies, malnutrition, etc) many babies in U.S. foster care have faced neglect, abuse, or drug exposure. It's all daunting and we aren't completely naive about the possible challenges. Today we are simply thankful for a faithful God who accepts us full of bugs, drugs, beat up and needing Him.
Just throwing myself out there a bit...