Religion that God our Father accepts as pure and faultless is this: to look after orphans and widows in their distress and to keep oneself from being polluted by the world.
He predestined us for adoption to sonship through Jesus Christ, in accordance with His pleasure and will— to the praise of his glorious grace, which He has freely given us in the One He loves.
Learn to do good. Seek justice. Help the oppressed. Defend the cause of orphans. Fight for the rights of widows.
Wednesday, November 28, 2012
Sunday, November 25, 2012
Well on a date I may never forget we got our pre-approval for a little 2 ½ girl,!!!! I was afraid to say it out loud that we had gotten her file and moved forward to adopt her in fear that we would not be able to bring her home, but alas, the race is on!!! Though the wait would have been at least 1 or 2 weeks as I said before, it was 5 days! And to make it even sweeter, I had mentioned to a friend how cool it would be to get our pre-approval on November 1st since that marked the first day of National Adoption Month. I was almost afraid to say those words out loud, it fear that I would really get myself hoping that it would happen on that day, but alas our God is so good, and gives us reminders of His sweet love all the time. And they didn’t ask us anything about us not meeting the financial requirement! Now we race to raise the money and get the paperwork in, and try not to go crazy while waiting to go get her. She truly is already a Noll in my heart and I am the mother of 5 precious children! One just happens to be a lot less work at the moment.
On another note, we did have our first fundraiser this weekend at our community wide garage sale and we made $500!!! Way beyond what I’ve ever made at a garage sale before!!! The girls set up a lemonade and water stand and made $60 dollars them selves!!! Cuteness sells I suppose. ;) A big thank you to our neighbor girl who helped push the lemonade with the girls! And her mother for the donation and allowing us to borrow her all day!. And my mom for taking care of the 2 little kids while we ran the sale! Thank you to all of our many many great friends and family who gave us their garage sale items to sell! Your support and love mean more than you know!!! One down many to go!
I'm in the process of getting a 31 fundraising catalog party going before Christmas and in the new year hopefully a Mary Kay catalog party. We are also in the process of setting up a store for adoption shirts!!! I'm VERY excited about this because the company we are going through are WONDERFUL! But I will tell you more about all the details of these things when they are ready. Also hoping to find a race to run in and find sponsors to raise money and eventually a silent auction! ;) So much to do, but it will keep me busy while I wait to get things together.
Thank you all for reading, and please please make yourself a permanent visitor!! It would be great to show our sweet girl all the faces who helped bring her home!
Oh by the way...I haven't told you her name yet have I????
Well I hope you all had a blessed Thanksgiving with family and friends and too much food! I know I did!
Monday, November 19, 2012
Here's another back post to catch you up on our crazy ride! Please feel to comment and join!!! ;)
October 29, 2012
Well….we started our paper work. We talked to an agency, annnnd we have talked to a woman to do our home study. All these things guided by a friend who I’ve known forever, who has gone before me. My husband and I told the agency, we wanted a boy younger than Levi, under a year, or a girl younger than Elli, 4 and under. MY husband and I started leaning more towards a boy to give Levi some boy action in his life, but before we could tell our agency they sent a file of a sweet girl. Josh and I looked at her and smiled. Well, how can we say no to a child that needs help? That’s why we were doing this. She was under Elli’s age and she had epilepsy, we really didn’t feel we had any reason to say no…so we emailed our agency back and said alright, we will move forward. Well in the world of adopting, our agency had locked the child in for us so that no other agency could match her to someone else. That gives you 72 hours to make up your mind and send in the necessary paperwork. YIKES!!! My thoughts too! But we went ahead and did it. We sent in the paper work, and since we had already started the paperwork we had seen that, well, we do NOT have $80,000 worth of stuff in our home. We don’t own our house, so we don’t have home owners insurance, and most of what we have isn’t worth much, even if we were being generous with the value of it, we still didn’t make it. Many told us China doesn’t check to make sure your numbers are right, but we didn’t feel right about saying we had more than we did. Many will say but the government is corrupt, these children need families, and they don’t care about you so who cares if you need to lie to bring them home. ALL of that is true, and for those who feel they have every reason to fib a little to bring a child home, I am in NO WAY judging, I too totally understand that way of thinking, but my husband didn’t feel comfortable with it. He said if this is something God really wants to happen, it can happen despite us. And he is right, though everything in me want s to scream but what if?!, he is totally right. I knew from the beginning that this was God’s plan and not mine, so I needed to trust my God, trust my husband and lean on them both to follow. It has not been easy. I see her face and think what will her future be if things don’t go through. She is very cute, young, a girl and she only has epilepsy, so maybe her chances are good that someone will come get her, but what if they don’t, what will happen to her? But my God is bigger than me and He can and will walk with her in her life. I'm trying very hard not to attach myself because of the what if's, but even if she is not ours, she still needs prayers from a mommy out there, even if she is not ours to bring home.
I can see how much this process is growing me though. Even with all the unknowns, and the lack of faith I feel I have. A year ago I would have never had this kind of security in myself that God could possibly call me to step out in such a big way. That my faith would be strong enough that I would literally almost hear God whispering, it’s time to move. And that when I would finally give into that call, I would feel such an undeniable almost physical, peace that this was His voice, not mine, speaking. I know this is going to be a LONG, hard road, before and after. But I’m really excited to see where God is going to bring me, because I’ve seen how far I’ve come even in this last year of my life.
Another little tib-bit I wanted to share was a couple weeks ago, somewhere I was listening to the story of Gideon and how he kept laying out the fleeces and saying, prove to me that your God, okay one more time, okay just one more time. I listen to that story and thought, ya know, I have never asked God to show me anything so that HE had to prove He was who he said He was. I just have always believed. But I thought to myself, how cool would it be, to say I’ve seen a miracle on earth? Something I couldn’t deny was totally God. That thought came to me the other day as I was crying at the thought that there was this chance that I may not be able to bring this little girl to a brighter life. But then I thought, what if this was God’s way of showing me a miracle. What if, despite the fact that the woman working on my case said, it may be possible to be pre -approved despite not meeting the $80,000, but she hasn't seen or heard of it happening, that God shows up and makes it happen?! Anyway, maybe I’m getting ahead of myself. It will be at least one to two weeks before I ever find out if were pre-approved…so I will wait. I will TRY to be patient…but I can’t promise anything. Because though my faith may look strong reading this…I promise you I am definitely a work in process!!!
Friday, November 16, 2012
October 15, 2012
Well, I will first give you a glimpse into our lives. As a young child I had always loved kids. Always thought and dreamed about being a mommy. And adoption was always on my heart, though I still wanted very much to bare my own children too, my heart ached for those who were brought into the world with no one to love them and kiss them goodnight. Fast forward many years later and while in college I met the love of my life. He too shared in my interest for adding onto our family with children who needed love. We always said, we’d get married, have a few years as a couple, have kids, they would get a little older, then we would start looking into growing our family through adoption. Wellll, God had other plans, other BIGGER plans that did not include our own plans…Josh and I were married for 2 weeks when God blessed us with Anna. Though it was an exciting time, I was also unsure of how things were going to work, Josh was still in college, I still had college to finish, it just didn't seem like my plan. But we loved it anyway because we knew it was what God wanted for our lives. A year later Emma was born and then a year and a half later Elli and three years after that Levi was born into our family. Remember when I said we wanted to wait til our youngest was a little older to adopt? Yeah that wasn't in God’s plan either. I've been blessed to have a few friends around me who have been through the process of adopting, internationally and domestically. Watching the joy of being with their new child ALWAYS brings tears to my eyes and makes my heart so full. Though these children don’t quit understand the gravity this love from these parents will have on their little lives, it gives me chills to know what these little people will grow up to be a great person in society because these parents were given the gift of changing these little people. I started feeling this nudge when a friend of mine posted a story of this woman in China who had been gathering children out of boxes and trashcans and in parks benches, and bringing them into her home and taking care of them for years. My heart ached for these parents in China, who couldn’t fight against the government to keep the children they bore. Or couldn’t take care of the needs they so desperately needed. I felt this tug get stronger and stronger as I watch another friend of mine go to Russia to bring home another little boy with down syndrome. I wept as I watched the videos of her with him, and the other children standing in the background, never knowing the love of a mothers kisses or hugs. I wanted to reach through the screen and bring them all home! I felt God telling me, you can start. But could I? Me? I’m not brave like these women Lord. Surely you still mean wait. My youngest isn’t even out of diapers yet, surely you mean wait? We aren’t even in a house we own yet, surely you mean wait? We aren’t even a little close to having anything saved for an adoption, surely you mean wait? But God said, you saw what I did for your friends. You saw their faith and you saw what I can do, so why wait? I prayed and I prayed and I PRAYED! I prayed Lord, I’m not sure why your giving this to me so early, but if this is what you want only make this passion stronger! So, after the feelings growing stronger and stronger, I gave into to the peace that this is what God wants for us. And oh what peace did I have when I surrendered to that calling! I am not kidding when I say it literally felt like a physical peace like I have NEVER felt before!! Now you may ask, like we did...Why now? I don’t know why now, but I feel a push, no a SHOVE, to move forward that is impossible to really put into words. I talked to my friend who had adopted from China already and she gave me the name of someone to do out home study. While I was excited about the peace I felt to move forward, I was also very very scared! What if I was wrong, what if they did a home study and they told us we weren’t good enough parents and that they were going to take our biological children away! -Now I know I’m exaggerating emotions, but the thoughts did cross my mind.- Anyway, I knew I needed to make that first step, though not a huge one because nothing would be set in ink, I needed to unfreeze, and move. So in my Bible study group, without wanting to disclose everything, I gave a prayer request and…disclosed everything. I’m not kidding you when I say I was sick to my stomach and shaking, because once it’s out there, it’s out there. A day later and I had still not called, though it was on my to do list for the day, I kept putting it til after "I get this done first". Then a friend of mine called-you know who you are-and told me what’s the worst that can happen, really. After that I felt my body start to thaw. I mean, really, how lucky am I that I have such good friends to back me up, to stand behind me, even when I myself think we might be nuts, she gave me the push I really needed. So I made the call and that call led to some questions being answered and another number to call. All the while God had something else crazy going on. When we looked on the websites of orphanages and their requirements to adopt we saw that you had to make X amount of money and X amount of money per person living in the house hold. We when we started feeling these feelings we did not have that. But in the middle of all this, God was working on a promotion for my husband, one that was bigger than he was expecting. And then they told him what his new salary would be… EXACTLY what we would need to adopt from China. Seeing God work in all these ways just gives me such joy. Now we wait. We wait for God to bring the right child or children into out lives. I have never ever ever ever been very good at waiting on ANYTHING! I have friends tell me I must be so patient because I home school, the answer is, nope but I’m trying. This is the reason I am typing this at 1:30am. Because I can't stop thinking about that little person half way across the world waiting for us to claim them as their own. I don’t know when and I don’t know how, but I know the peace like no other that I have is reassurance that God has it all mapped out for us, so I will sit back and watch Him work an amazing picture and road map for our lives and live His plan, not ours...
Hope you have a blessed day!