Thursday, July 22, 2010


My agency emailed me yesterday that the adoption process in Nepal is changing slightly. The USCIS now wants to perform the investigations on orphan status before the adoptive parents travel to Nepal. Currently, once parents accept a referral, they wait for travel approval from Nepal. Once in Nepal, the first part of the trip is wrapping up the legal issues on the Nepali side of the adoption. The second half of the trip consists of the USCIS conducting an investigation into the orphan status of the child before issuing the USA visa and paperwork to finalize the adoption. I view this change in procedure as a good thing for several reasons: first, it eliminates the possible heartbreak if once the adoptive parents are there and bonding with the child only to find that the child is "unadoptable." Secondly, it lessens the time spent in country while waiting for clearance. So now, once the adoptive parents receive travel clearance, it's basically sliding into home base!

Now onto the challenging things. I've struggled with how to deal with the financial part of the adoption and how much to share. According to all of the adoption books I've read and training I've done, you're not supposed to talk about costs. You're not buying a baby, you are paying for legal services in order to complete the adoption. My friend told me that her boss, who adopted a little girl from Guatemala, used to tell people that the baby was free, it was the shipping and handling that was expensive:) I will remember that one! Anyway, I've found that talking about money makes people uncomfortable, feel awkward and just plain weird. I've also found that, at least for myself, the stress of money is unlike any other stress.

From the beginning of this adoption process, I've prayed that it would bring glory to God, that people would see him in a different way; that they would see his amazing love and incredible power. So far, the battles I've encountered in this process have been about timing. And God has answered every single prayer. People have written notes of encouragement, emailed me prayers and others who doubt God and his love for them, have told me that they are starting to see him in a new way. Before I took the official plunge into the adoption process, I had major concerns because I knew I couldn't afford to pay for the entire adoption on my own. I prayed and prayed about this and continually heard God answer me that it's not about me, it's about him. This is his gig. He is orchestrating it from beginning to end and I get to stand by, watch and be amazed. Now, in the spirit of transparency so that he can receive all the glory when it comes to fruition, I'm going to put it out there. Please, please do not think that I am asking for money. I am NOT!!! I'm simply letting everyone in on what in my human mind, will be the biggest answered prayer. In order to complete the adoption and travel to get her, I still need $15k. I want those who are praying for me, those who are on the sidelines quietly watching, those who are doubting, those who've never seen God move mountains, to know BEFORE it happens that when God has his hands on something, he finishes it. I wrestled with whether or not I should disclose this information and was seeking advice from one of my girlfriends who has been praying with me since the beginning. This is what she said to me, "Absolutely you should tell! We already know God is going to provide it so you shouldn't deprive people of seeing how God performs miracles and you shouldn't deprive God of receiving the glory for doing this great thing!" love her!

As I've stated before, I've been spending a lot of time in the old testament. Talk about seeing God perform miracles! While praying about this, God gave me these two verses. King Jehosaphat was about to be invaded by a very powerful army, one that would clearly annihilate Judah. He sought God and implored God to save his people. This is what God told him:

"Do not be afraid! Don't be afraid by this mighty army, for the battle is not yours, but God's...You will not even need to fight. Take your positions; then stand still and watch the Lord's victory. He is with you, do not be afraid or discouraged." - 2 Chronicles 20: 15-17

How great to know that God is fighting this battle for me! I know that he is the creator of everything. And being a creator means he is creative! He made manna rain down from heaven when Israel was hungry; water rush out of a rock when they were thirsty; protected Shadrack, Meshack and Abednego from the fire so that not even the hairs on their heads were singed; he protected Daniel from the lions' den, Noah from the flood, parted the red sea to make a pathway, kept Jonah alive in a whale for 3 days before it barfed him up on shore.... I mean, he gets creative! I'm looking forward to see how creative he gets in his answer to this prayer:)

After God won the battle for Jehosaphat and the kingdom of Judah, they returned to Jerusalum praising him all the way. Their praises were so loud that the neighboring kingdoms heard them. It says,

"When all the surrounding kingdoms heard that the Lord himself had fought against the enemies of Israel, the fear of God came over them." 2 Chronicles 20:29

I can't wait for everyone to hear how God answers this prayer! I can't wait for people to have reverence for him because he is mighty! I can't wait until I get to post that He came through AGAIN and is worthy to be praised!!!

Thank you for all your prayers and encouragement. I truly hope that you too, are experiencing God's love in amazing ways!


Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Getting Closer!!

Yes! I just received news from my agency that my dossier has been officially accepted by the Ministry of Women and Children and assigned a registration number and queue number!!! I am soooo excited! My queue number is 101! The queue number gives me a clear indicator of where I am in the dossier line. Let me put this number into perspective. For the year 2009, there were 3001 children adopted from China to the USA and 2277 children adopted from Ethiopia to the USA. I site these two countries since they are the most popular countries for international adoptions in the USA. So, in regards to my adoption, there are only 100 families ahead of me. I can't wipe the smile off of my face!!! She's gonna be here before I know it!!! God is so good:)


Monday, July 12, 2010

From Ordinary to Extraordinary

Several people have been asking me if I've heard any news on Baby Sofía and the short answer is no. My dossier was shipped on June 23rd to Nepal. It is being processed and translated, which my agency said they expect to take between 6-8 weeks to complete. After this is completed, it will be sent to a matching committee. This is when the "fun" wait will begin since these are the people who are responsible for matching families with available orphans. Once it is in the hands of the matching committee, it could be 1 month or 6 months before I would get "THE" call. In the meantime, I have been keeping myself busy doing all of the things that I know I won't be able to do once she gets here, like....sleeping in, taking long walks with the puppy dogs, reading books for hours at a time, meeting my friends last minute for cocktails, indulging myself in reality tv (I'm a sucker for the Kardashian family:), taking naps, shopping, staying out late and pulling all-nighters, laying out by the pool, basically- being selfish:)

There are times when I get really anxious thinking about everything that still needs to take place before she gets here. I start to freak out a little bit and find myself once again, trying to control the situation and playing "what if" games. This is not good because it makes me crazy. If there was a class in worrying, I'm telling you I would get an A+! So, I've been trying to really surrender all of this to God and relax. I've been reading through the old testament and psalms the last couple of months. I never realized how interesting the O.T. was! God did some crazy things back in the day! One of the verses I read really struck me and I thought a lot about it.

"For He divided the sea and led them through making the water stand up like walls! In the daytime he led them by a cloud and all night by a pillar of fire. He split open rocks in the wilderness to give them water, as from a gushing stream. He made streams pour from the rock making the waters flow down like a river." - Psalm 78:13-16

When the Isrealites were running for their lives from the Egyptians, they must have been really discouraged when God led them to the red sea. I tried to imagine myself in their shoes and I'm pretty sure that I would have thought that God had a sick sense of humor. I mean, he led them to the edge of a sea! Talk about a dead end! I would have been so scared, frustrated, disappointed and angry that I trusted him for what? to lead me to a dead end? But, God had something else in mind. Not only did he part the red sea so that their escape route would place them safely on the other side, but he also took care of their enemies in the process by allowing the sea to swallow them up! When they were walking through the desert, nothing but sunny skies and a big old cloud leading the way. At night, a fireball. And when they got thirsty? no problem. Just use your staff and bang on this rock and guess what? Better than Evian comes pouring out! Even when Jesus fed the 5,000, all he had was basically a can of Chicken of the Sea and a loaf of Wonderbread. But every one of those 5,000 got fed. Then it hit me. God likes to take the ordinary and make it extraordinary. I know that in my mind I would have never of thought, "hey, let's make this rock pour out water so we can drink! or Let's part the red sea and then drown everyone who tries to follow us!"

I bet God has a lot of fun taking these ordinary things and making them extraordinary. But I noticed something else too. Not only did he provide a way out for them, but he also challenged them in their faith. I mean, think about it. You're standing on the edge of the sea and it parts creating two gigantic walls of water. And he wants you to walk through it. It took some serious faith on their part, not to mention nerves of steel, to take those steps. It's not like they were just crossing the street... it was MILES of walking through that corridor of water walls. When I think about that story it reminds me that not only is God going to provide for me everything I need to complete this adoption: the rest of the financial means, travel plans, time off from work, legal paperwork, etc., but he's also going to challenge me and my faith in him. When I catch myself doubting or starting to worry, I remind myself, "From the ordinary to the extraordinary!"

Thanks to everyone who is praying for Sofía, me, and this whole process. Your support means more than you know:)