Like most newlyweds, Emily and I got married with big, almost scripted, plans for our future. One such plan involved birthing three kids and then adopting a child of another ethnicity as a tangible expression of our hope in the power of the Gospel to tear down the dividing wall of hostility between people of other races and unite them under the blood and banner of Jesus Christ. As young marrieds with very little life experience behind us to test our theological convictions, we were blissfully unaware of how presumptuous our plans were. I confess that I remember thinking about birth planning as something that we ultimately controlled rather than the Father. This is such a worldly way of thinking, and I’m now ashamed at how little regard I had for God’s plans and ways of working in the world as a newlywed.
Yes, I knew on a theological level that God opened and closed the womb, but frankly, I never considered the possibility that we might not be able to have children. I was never concerned about that possibility. Unlike some of our friends who has suffered through the indignity and grief of infertility, Emily and I have experienced the mercy and gift of birthing children. In fact, conception seemed to come all to easily for our family. Within 6 years we had 4 children! It was almost as if all I had to do was hold Emily’s hand and she would get pregnant (yes, we know it doesn’t work that way).
I am perplexed as to why our journey to parenthood has been so effortless in contrast with some of our friends who have walked a trail of tears through infertility, miscarriage, stillborn births, and agonizingly long waits for their adoptions to be finalized. What I do know is that God is writing our story, and the story of us all, and we can trust him when the journey is smooth and carefree, as well as when it is treacherous and dark.
Josie (child #4) was the big surprise to our plans. Her arrival in our world was such a shock that it put the the idea of adopting on the back burner of our hearts and minds, where it stayed for more about 5 years. But in recent months the Spirit has awakened in us that long flickering desire to adopt.
At the end of last year we rebooted our pursuit of adoption through Lifeline Children’s Services. Several weeks ago we made it official. We sent Lifeline some cold, hard cash. That investment makes the adoption journey all too real. Our home study begins in 2 weeks.
It’s strange and exciting to think that Emily and I have more children somewhere in the world. We think that “somewhere” is probably Costa Rica. And by children we’re saying we’re open to adopting more than 1 child. We’re open to adopting siblings, but that’s not definite. Wow. We might have 6 kids in the near future. That’s crazy. Does that mean we will have to purchase one of those Nissan NV passenger vans?
It’s our hope that you will join us by being a part of our adoption story. We will try to keep this blog updated as we have news.
A side story you might find fun. The other day Josie (5 years old) came into our bedroom and handed her mom $7 dollars. Emily asked her what it was for and she said, “We’re going to need a lot of money to fly on a plane to get our other kids.” What a sweet gesture of faith and generosity. Of course, just a few days later she wanted a little bit of her money back to buy some gum!