Saturday, April 16, 2016

Amazing Friends!!

One of the things that we have always been thankful for during our adoption journey is that we have amazing friends and community support. We have shared before some of the ways that they have taken care of us during our adoption journeys, and we will never be able to express how much we appreciate them.

Three of our friends from church are supporting us in a new and wonderful way, and I am excited to share it. Sarah, Jamie, and Megan are all running races in two weeks, and they have decided to dedicate these races to Jonathan. They have set up a gofundme page and are asking people to sponsor their races to benefit Jonathan's adoption.

I am always impressed by runners to begin with. I can't even run a full mile, so the idea of running 13 or 26 miles is just more than I can imagine. These are three very special women, and I thank God for allowing me to be friends with them. I admire them and treasure their friendship.

Thank you to all three of you, and to everyone who is supporting you as you run for our son, Jonathan.

Wednesday, April 13, 2016

Good news, prayer request, and another broken bone

No, I'm not kidding. We really do have another broken bone. Our kids were upstairs playing "swimming pool" today, and when Matthias pretended to do a cannon ball, he landed right on Isabelle's leg. She cried pretty hard, but I assumed she was just scared. I held her for a few minutes, and she seemed fine, so I left the room. A little bit later, Greg told her to use the bathroom, and as soon as she stood on it, she burst into tears again. It turns out that she broke the bone in her lower leg, and she will now be in a cast for four weeks. I guess having one child in a cast just wasn't enough. :-) We keep trying to remind ourselves that it could be a lot worse, and at least our girls are home with us so that we can care for them during this time. It just seems unreal.

The good news is that we got our Article 5. Yay! The next step will be our travel letter from China, and that should come in about a week.

And that brings us to the prayer request. As you know from our last update, we are still about $19,000 short of the money we need. We really do believe that God is going to provide all that we need, but we don't have any idea when or how. Once we get the travel letter, we will have a three month window in which we can travel to China to bring Jonathan home. From what we understand, we can travel as early or late as we want in that window, but we have to choose dates very soon after we get the travel letter. For Jonathan's sake, we want to travel as early as possible. But we feel like we can't choose an early date when we don't have the funds yet. Please continue to pray that God will provide for us soon and that we will have peace while we wait. But in addition to those things, we need you to pray that God will give us wisdom. We are willing to follow wherever He leads, and we are willing to travel as early or late as He wants us to. But we don't have any idea how to know what He wants, and we need His help to discern His will. We know that He delights to give wisdom to His children when they ask, so please join us in asking for that now.

Saturday, April 9, 2016

Prayer requests and Praise

As always, we thank you so much for your prayers and support. We have seen God answer many of those prayers along the way, and we are still waiting for Him to answer the others.

Our first item of praise is that Hallie is doing great! She had surgery just over two weeks ago to repair her broken finger, and she is in a bright pink cast up over her elbow. Leading up to her surgery, I was actually sick to my stomach because I was so worried about her. I wished so much that I could take the pain for her! For about 48 hours after surgery, she was clearly in pain. She never cried, but she couldn't get comfortable and was very clingy with me. I hate the fact that she can't express the things she is feeling! It makes me feel so helpless as a parent. Since getting through those first few days, she has been fine. She loves to have people sign her cast, and she is eager to show it off. We put a "cast" on her Baby Cinderella, and then she insisted that her Care Bear needed one too. For a non-verbal child, she can be pretty bossy. :-) She will go back to the doctor in two weeks to have the cast removed and the pins pulled out of her finger. We would appreciate prayers for that, because I think she is going to be terrified of the cast saw. I plan to watch some YouTube videos of cast removals before she goes, and we will probably practice taking Baby Cinderella's cast off, but I still think it will be hard for her.

Second item of praise is that we have all the money we need for our matching grant. Yay!! We don't know who the donors are, but we know that we have met our total. To anyone who gave toward that, thank you, thank you, thank you!!

And now for the prayer requests. We are just over a month away from travel, and we are still about $19,000 short of the total amount we need. That is terrifying!! Whenever we look at that total, Greg and I can both feel our hearts begin to panic. It truly seems impossible to raise that amount of money in one month. But we are both thankful that we serve a God who can do "immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine"! We know that He has called us to this work, and He will provide everything we need to accomplish it. Please pray that our hearts and minds will stay fixed on Him. We are waiting to hear back about two grant applications, and we are nearly ready to submit another. Please pray that God will grant us favor with these organizations. And please pray that He will move the hearts of people to help us in this work. Again, we want to say thank you to all of you who have already given to help us with this. We have raised more than half the money we need for this adoption, and many of you have helped us get to that point. Please just don't stop praying for us now! We are both striving to thank and praise Him for His provision, even though we can't see it yet. Also, please pray for our new son. In just over a month, he will lose everything in the world that is familiar to him, and he will have to start over with a new family, new country, new language, new culture, etc. We know that this will be a huge blessing to him, but I feel pretty certain that it won't feel like a blessing at first. Pray that God will prepare his heart and help him through that difficult transition.