Monday, May 26, 2014

Surprised by God's Plan

I wrote this article last fall for a special blog series, and I realized I never posted here so thought I would share it now. 


I will never forget that morning.

It started out normal enough with my usual drive to work to teach Pilates with my then two year daughter.

As I was waiting for class to start, I glanced through my emails, giving only a cursory glance to the email from our adoption agency highlighting an 8 year old boy from China. It elicited my usual response, "What a cute boy! I can't imagine adopting an older child."

First picture we ever saw of our boy!
Then God begin to work.

My typically rather unemotional and detached husband sent me the following text in the middle of my class.

"I want him."

A surge of adrenaline mixed with fear and excitement shot through my heart as I comprehended what he was referring to. He wanted that 8 year old boy in the email! 

We had never really discussed older child adoption, or rather, I had not wanted to discuss it, because honestly, it terrified me. 

But God was working. 

We talked about the possibility of adopting him, and we decided to ask for his file which we immediately looked it over. He appeared to be a smart active boy. He had a hypoplastic thumb (a thumb with no bone) and a shortened radius bone, but other than that he was healthy. 

So I thought, ok, maybe we can do this by the grace the God.

Then, God provided us with an amazing opportunity. I spent an hour on the phone with a now dear friend who worked with our adoption agency. She had the pleasure of meeting and assessing our boy on her last trip to China. She told us how amazing and wonderful he was and how much he deserved a family.

God's work was done. It was clear. This was our son!

Our boy holding a picture of our family that he drew with items from a care package we sent.
So nine months later, there we were standing in a cold room at the orphanage in Shanghai waiting to meet our precious boy for the first time. 

One of our first family photos!
It has been an amazing and wonderful journey. One filled with more ups then downs and laced with the fingerprints of God. 

Our boy has been with us now for almost a year. He is a pure joy to be around, loves God intensely and has changed our lives forever. 

As you can see, our boy had surgery on his thumb. I am happy to report, he how has a working thumb! 

So God called us to step out in faith and follow His path for lives which was vastly different from and far superior to our plan. It was scary to step out on the older child adoption ledge. There are times when it is wonderful and times when I still think I will fail, but I know in those moments of weakness that God is carrying me, ready to give me His strength. When I am weak, He is strong!

Will every older child adoption go as smoothly as ours? Of course, not. There are too many unknowns and past experiences with an older child for that to be true.

But, will every parent, when following the call of Christ to adopt, experience joy, even in pain, confusion and frustration when dealing with an older child? Absolutely!

What has God called you to? Will you step out in faith?

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