We have known, and have been convicted, that the Lord clearly states in His Word to care for the fatherless, widows and strangers of this world. James 1:27 - "Religion that God our Father accepts as pure and faultless is this: to look after orphans and widows in their distress..." For a long time we just didn't know what exactly this meant for our family, but we knew we needed to do something. Kent and I have always been open to adoption, whether we had problems conceiving or not... it didn't matter. It is beautiful, and we have always thought this. The way God orchestrates His sovereign plan in bringing parents THEIR child, biologically or from all the way around the world, is absolutely incredible and moving beyond words. I was ready for many months, but it wasn't God's perfect timing, because Kent wasn't there yet. I had a strong feeling God would bring Kent to this place, but I was really having to trust Him and wait on His timing for us. It obviously wasn't right yet... until a Saturday night, August 15, 2009.
On this Saturday evening, Brooks, for the first time, spoke his own prayer... out loud... without direction... without repeating, at the dinner table. It went something like this, "God, thank you for this food. Thank you for Mommy and Daddy, and help those without mommies and daddies in this world." Tear... seriously, it was SO sweet! We hadn't been talking about this much, although we had in the past. We know God put it in his heart and mind! Anyway, that night, Kent was praying during his quiet time that God would show him clearly in His Word. Kent says that he got through his time with God in the Word, and there was nothing new. He was disappointed and asked God again. Then he felt God was revealing to him..."I have already shown you in my Word. Tonight, I showed you through your son." Then he knew it was time to move forward and pursue our little girl!
I was still praying about this issue and had no idea for days that God had moved on Kent's heart to adopt. Through a series of ordained events, God confirmed it to both of us that adoption was how He was going to grow our family. Our hearts were not at peace until we began to follow His calling to adopt.
How did we know to adopt internationally?
If you know us at all you know this: we are passionate about the Great Commission and making His name famous... until all people groups hear. We are also made more aware the past few years of the orphan crisis around the world. God has revealed to us that we, as believers, are all called to care for the orphans, widows, and strangers of this world (all throughout His word). How are we to care for them? Well, one way is to adopt... and our family is called to this, but not all are. Other ways are through sponsorship of children, helping orphanages, going and serving, giving, etc... so many ways! (Recommended reading - Fields of the Fatherless)
God led us to Ethiopia and international adoption because that is where God has called us and made it known. Everything from length of trip to bring our child home (important considering our 2 boys), one trip only (which has since changed to 2, but God knew that), our passion for the lost and oppressed, the unreached and so many other details... were in place perfectly because that is where He has our little girl. He has put Ethiopia in our hearts for a reason. Right now, our hearts are with a little girl, between the age of 1-2 years. Who knows what God has in store? But we trust Him... and we know He will lead us to her. For the record, we absolutely believe domestic adoption is wonderful and equally important!
Please, please pray for us in this amazing journey. I know there will be surprises, good and bad days, and lots of waiting. We have presently been waiting 8 months... a wait that we know is worth it! Also, please pray for our little girl and her birth mother and father... their safety and provision, the birth mother's health and choices, and that she will seek the Father and find Him in her circumstances. Thank you for sharing in our joy and in this journey! We can't wait!