Our Adoption {Just Show Up} Story

Our adoption story really begins and ends with grace.

Through undeserved grace, God stepped into our lives when we were hopeless and needed forgiveness and made a way for us to be adopted into His family as sons and daughters.

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As our family began to grow, God burdened our hearts for the needs of the fatherless. That is His heart, and He made it our heart as well.

Soon the question changed from “Why adopt?” To “Why not adopt?

So we started on the journey to find a little girl that needed a family. Before she was even born, we were seeking her.

just show up @4onemore.com

The grace cycle was continuing.

We love because He first loved us.

We know what love is, what grace is, because of Christ.

Adoption is totally undeserved and unexpected on the part of the orphan. Our little girl couldn’t fathom how drastically her life was about to change that day we met her in an Ethiopian orphanage.

just show up @4onemore.com

But starting the adoption journey wasn’t the end of the grace cycle.

God had burdened our hearts to adopt. That much was true. But we had no way of paying the huge financial costs on our own. This is where God’s grace shows up in amazement and splendor.

 

just show up @4onemore.com

He could have plopped down $35,000 in our laps when we stepped out in obedience to His calling on our family to adopt.

But instead He mobilized hundreds of friends and family to Just Show Up.

To Just Show Up and share generously with us in many totally unexpected ways.

To Just Show Up and be God’s hands and feet in our lives during the adoption.

Every time an adoption fee had to be paid, God miraculously paid it in full. Right on time.

just show up @4onemore.com
Money came in from people generously saving their spare change, slipping us $20 bills, contributing to a huge yard sale, and many more ways. And through grant organizations whose donors we have never met, but who have significantly touched our lives.

And I pray that those friends and family who were such an integral piece of the puzzle in bringing Anna Rakeb home from Ethiopia received great joy in knowing they were making a difference.

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By choosing to Just Show Up, they were a part in the story God was and is writing in the life of a former orphan. Now our cherished daughter. And one day, we pray, a daughter of the King.

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{Linking up our Adoption Just Show Up story at MundaneFaithfulness.com}

{Just Link Up}

christmas rescue

God’s rescue plan that unfolded that special night over 2,000 years ago (for it was really begun before the foundation of the world) is what we celebrate at Christmas.  God’s Son came in flesh to bring forgiveness, restoration, redemption and adoption.

To be right with God the judge is a great thing, but to be loved and cared for by God the Father is a greater.

J.I. Packer, Knowing God

Horizontal adoption (adopting our sweet girl) is a beautiful picture of our vertical adoption brought about by God’s rescue plan.  

You see, our little one was literally rescued last Christmas.  She has been in an orphanage for a whole year waiting for her adoption into our family — her forever family.  We have sacrificed to get her.  We have done this gladly.  
And so while we will celebrate Christmas Stateside this year without our sweet girl, we know the day is coming quickly when we will be asked to come adopt her.  Our lives will be forever changed.  But we will also have to come home without her while final documents are prepared.  She will legally be ours, but the reality of her new status as our daughter will not be realized.  Yet.
Until gotcha day!The day when she leaves the orphanage, never to return.  The day we sweep her up in our arms and bring her home to enjoy all the love of her forever family.Christ’s birth over two millennia ago was wonderful, significant, and necessary.  He lived the perfect life I could never live.  He took God’s just wrath over my sin on the cross.  He bore that wrath and separation from God so that I don’t have to!

Now by faith, I look with anticipation to Christmas Future — that “gotcha day” when the reality of my spiritual adoption and position as a daughter of the King will be fully known and enjoyed.

{Our adoption paperwork cleared the U.S. Embassy on December 4th, and now we are just waiting for the Ethiopian courts to let us know what day to be in country to adopt our sweet girl!  Exciting days ahead for our family in 2015.  Thanks for your prayers and support along the way.}

our adoption process:  an update

We’re still here waiting for our next steps in this adoption journey!  It’s a huge lesson in patience and waiting for God’s perfect timing.Here’s what an adoption from Ethiopia looks like (taken from U.S. Department of State website on InterCountry Adoptions):

1.  Choose an adoption service provider
2.  Apply to be found eligible to adopt
3.  Be matched with a child
4.  File the Form I-600 with U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services to initiate the Pre-Adoption Immigration Review prior to filing an adoption case with the courts
5.  Adopt the child in Ethiopia
6.  Receive final approval of Form I-600
7.  Obtain a Visa and bring your child home

We are currently in the middle of step #4!  USCIS has received our form and they are conducting the PAIR process.  We are now waiting for the PAIR process to be complete and receive our court date!  Then we can make arrangements for our first trip to Ethiopia to meet our little one and adopt her there!  After that, we will need to come home without her and wait for everything to be finalized for our final trip to bring her home.  
It’s a long process, but totally worth it.  Being known, loved, and wanted is so very special, isn’t it?  So many parallels to God’s adoption of me.