In light of National Adoption Awareness Month, I felt led to share how adoption has touched our lives and correct some misconceptions. I really don't know how many "truth's" I plan to do this month, but this one has been lain (very heavily) upon my heart and I would like to get rid of it, so to speak.
I don't believe that everyone is called to adopt. There are some that are meant to adopt, and some that are meant to pray for those who adopt and some are meant to financially support or help those that are called to adopt. All are beautiful.
I feel many are called to adopt, but discount that calling. Many things can pop up and steal the faith that it takes to start the process. One of those things is . . . the money. Everyone needs money. You have to have it to survive. Some people have a lot of it and some don't have enough. One lie that most believe is that only those who have a lot of money can adopt. NOT TRUE. Does it take a lot of money to adopt? It can. Depends on where you adopt from.
Now, I know nothing about people's circumstances. All I know is our circumstances went against the "only the rich can adopt" theory. We are self employed and live a VERY simple life. We didn't have the money laying around to start Joye's adoption. In fact, we put the first fees on our credit card. Which was about $4,000. Was that smart? Not entirely. Our CC company hiked the fees and made it really hard to pay back. However, I can say with certainty that we no longer have that Credit Card and that it was paid off. Not sure how though, I don't remember. (I am not advocating going into debt to pay for an adoption - just stating our journey and how it all worked out.) We then opened up a savings account and got to work praying daily for God's Mighty provision. We did a few fundraisers. Raised about $4,000 and were touched so deeply by our community who helped out A LOT. Where did the rest come from? I have no idea. Our savings account just kept growing and growing and growing. When we received the phone call that changed our lives forever, all the money was in there to accept Joye's referral. Actually, we had a whopping $.69 left over.
Then we were wondering if we could afford to go to Korea. All we had was $.69! Again, by the time we were ready to travel, we had saved enough to go and pick up our baby girl. To recall, I really don't know where the money came from. I know we saved here and there, used a tax return or two, but does it make ANY sense that we (we didn't; HE did) had accumulated $20,000+ in a little over a year? Not one iota.
He knew, right down to the nickels and dimes.
I know that if you step out in faith and trust Him, he will provide. I know it!
So that is my Truth for today. If God calls you to adopt, trust that He will provide EVERYTHING you need to get you through. Because He will. I promise. If you read any of the Gospels you will see how enamored Jesus is with the act faith. It's the only thing that shocks him! The Bible says "you cannot serve two masters . . . you cannot love both God and money." (Matt. 6:24) Who are you going to believe and love more? I LOVE the verse that is just a few above, which I think is eloquently placed together with the money verse, "store up your treasures in heaven" Matt. 6:20. You can't take money with you to heaven, it's no good there. But you can take some beautiful children. Amen?
In case you blow up the picture, yes, my neck is red. I was really nervous with the third-degree questioning I received about being Joye's forever mom. (Not really, but he did ask some really weird questions, none that I expected, but legit.) My neck gets red when I get nervous and I HATE it! Just so you know. :)
Chad "swearing" to take good care of Joye.
"Our Day" in court.
The three Amigos.
Kaleb and Tootsie.
We were scheduled for Finalization on Friday. I got a call yesterday that there was a "conflict" and that they had an opening for today at 4:30 or we could possibly reschedule for next week. Since they had an opening, we took the 4:30! Sooooo, it's official! She's ours! Forever!
Today, she also turns 18 months AND it was this day a year ago that we formally accepted!!! How cool is THAT!?
Speaking of official, she has officially started walking and chooses that mode of transportation about 85% of the time. It's really cute to see her walk. The last two days she just decided that it was time!
See the pic of her and I? Cute, right? Well, she and I didn't get along today. At. All. It took me THREE HOURS to feed her breakfast. It was oatmeal, for crying out LOUD! I have fed her oatmeal for the past 2-3 weeks. Loves oatmeal. Never a problem. She woke up yesterday morning ready to rumble in the eating department. And rumble we did. Same thing for lunch. She sits with a mouth full of food and won't swallow! She will, when she darn-well feels like it! Seriously! She's sat up to 30 minutes with a bite STILL in her mouth. One thing that she knows only SHE can control, I guess. Highly frustrating - to say the least. Like I have time to sit around in the kitchen for three hours! I think her appetite has shrunk, so for the meantime, I think I will feed her when she shows signs of being hungry. I honestly do NOT have the slightest idea of what is going on in her little noggin. It's a battle, that's all I know. One of many in the career of parenting, I'm afraid. So we look like buds for the camera, but it's a facade. Hate to say it, but oh-so-true.
Love her to death, my little Tootsie, but the terrible two's have came earlier than expected. Oy.
"LORD GOD, I desire that these things will be remembered before you: my work produced by faith, my labor prompted by love, and my endurance inspired by hope in my Lord Jesus Christ." 1 Thessalonians 1:3
I am just a sheep, trying to follow the voice of my Shepherd, Jesus. I feel my purpose in this life is to educate my children in the strong foundation of Jesus Christ, and to help those that are fatherless. Adoption, homeschooling, cloth diapering, are just some of the things that I love to talk about.
My husband of eleven years and I have four blessings: two "homegrown" boys and two daughters that were born in South Korea. Joye came home in June of 2010 and we felt led to add another little girl to our family. Judaya should be home in summer of 2012. Life is exciting and always filled with joy.
K is our oldest. He loves baseball, camping and his little sister. He has a heart for Jesus and we see him live that out regularly.
Abe is our little engineer. He thrives on abstract thinking and creativity is his passion. We are amazed at what his little mind comes up with on a daily basis.
Joye SeoYeon (2)
Joye was born in South Korea and we brought her home June 16th 2010. She is our spicy, typical two-year old. Adopting her has been the most difficultly rewarding experience of our lives. She loves her daddy and mimicking everything I do.
Judaya - in Korea - our fourth child.
As per our agency, pictures of our newest addition aren't allowed to be shared. She will turn one in July, and will probably be home before her 2nd birthday. We pray for her daily and can't wait for her to join us and fill us with MORE joy!
Judaya's Adoption Timeline:
November 2010: On the list again!
1/24/11: Verbal Acceptance
2/15/11: Mailed off Lifesong application.
2/21/11: HS Update meeting with Social Worker.
2/22/11: Heard from Lifesong. Trying to expedite application because they know we are in an hurry. YAY!
3/1/11: Lifesong gives us a covenant loan and a matching grant!! Praise Jesus!
3/9/11: Another grant for $2000! Unexpected but totally God!
5/6/11: Heard the news that EP's are filled for this year. Looking at bringing Judaya home summer of 2012.
6/23/11: ATK: Acceptance To Korea.
7/1/2011: Judaya turns ONE!
Joye's Adoption Timeline
8/4: Sent in our Formal Application
8/12: Officially an AAC Family
8/14: #25 on the Girls List!
10/1: SW called, start HS in Nov.
11/10: Boys' and I had Health Eval.
12/1: #18 on list.
12/7: 1st HS Meeting - Home Visit
12/13: 2nd HS Meeting
12/17: C's Medical Eval.
3/4: Individual Interview's for H.S.
4/1: Lucky #10!
5/2: Our precious Joye is born!!!
9/21: #3!!!! Finally moving again!
11/2: Officially Accepted - Baby Joye is 6 months old!
11/3: Recieved Acceptance Packet from AAC
11/4: Signed and Notarized Acceptance Packet and overnighted BACK to AAC
11/10: Sent First Care Package to AAC for baby sister
11/12: Care package arrives at AAC - ready to ship to Korea
12/5: Recieved updated pictures of our girl and a video.
12/7: State Approval (YAY!)
12/14: Rec'd Legals in the mail.
12/23: Recieved I-797C
1/7: More pictures!
1/13: Fingerprint Letter!!
1/14: Fingerprints Done.
2/16: I600 Approved! YAY!
2/20: Received I-171H in the mail.
2/22: NVC in!
2/25: NVC out!
2/26: P3 out!
4/16: Signed Class B
5/6: Notified that we were submitted for EP
5/24: P3 Returned and EA
5/25: Visa Interview
6/1: TRAVEL CALL!!!
6/9: Leave for Seoul!!
6/15: "Forever Day" The day we received Joye forever.
6/16: Home from Korea.
6/17: Family Day. The day the boys met baby sister and we became a Family of 5.
There was a man who was walking along a sandy beach where thousands of starfish had been washed up on the shore. As he looked down the beach he noticed a boy picking the starfish one by one and throwing them back into into the ocean. He got closer and called out "Good morning! What are you doing?" The boy paused, looked up and replied, "Throwing strfish in the ocean. If I don't throw them back in they will die." The man said, "Don't you realize that there are miles and miles of beach and starfish all along it? You can't possibly make a difference." The boy listened politely. Then he bent down, picked another starfish and threw it into the sea, past the breaking waves. He looked at the man and said, "It made a difference for that one." ~ from: For His Glory Outreach Website
"My heroes are those who risk their lives every day to protect our world and make it a better place - police, firefighters and members of our armed forces."- Sidney Sheldon