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Tuesday, May 11, 2010

.Fears & Answers.

Being a child of God should not be characterized by fearful slavery.

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Can I be honest friends?

I struggle with that. I really struggle with fear. At times, my life is characterized by fear, and I don't want that to be true of me. God doesn't desire that for me either. To some, our journey to Ethiopia looks brave (to others foolish). But there is really nothing brave about me, and today the enemy is doing a really good job of putting that front and center in my mind. Making me question our sanity. Making me question my God.

His laugh is almost audible. Where is the money going to come from? The father of lies mocks. What are people saying? How dare you ask for people to gift you with money. This is your decision - you need to back it up. He sneers. How will you bring up a black child in a small white community? Everyone is laughing at you guys. Your decisions look foolish to others. Even those you love don't understand why you are doing this. This will never work. What if this child you adopt grows up wishing he or she were never a part of your family? What if Cadi and Scotty grow up resenting this child? He jeers. You will never measure up as a mom.

My emotions were all over the place late this morning. I am not sure what set me off. It doesn't really matter, I suppose. The whisperings were almost more than I could take. Where was that Voice of Truth? All I could taste was fear. I put my children to nap early, and cried out to God while clinging to my Bible, sobbing and shaking with the turmoil of fear raging in my mind. I poured through my Bible desperate to read everything I could about overcoming fear. I copied verse after verse into my journal and prayed through the verses I found. The one that I am clinging to the most still now as I sit here, a bit calmer, with a gentler beating heart and my mug of strawberry tea is Romans 8:15 For you did not receive the spirit of slavery to fall back into fear, but you have received the Spirit of adoption as [children], by whom we cry, “Abba! Father!”

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I am not going to delve much into that verse here right now. But the knowledge that I can cry out to the God of all Creation as Daddy is like soothing balm to my scared heart, and the reminder of how much God loves adoption blew in like fresh air over my parched soul.

I know that this is the path that God has called us to. I know that what I am fearful of are mostly lies. I know He has chosen us for the ministry of adoption. I know the time is now. Yet, I am scared, but as a wise friend wrote to me a few weeks back do this for the little Ethiopian life who needs you. I cannot explain this, and maybe one can only understand this if he or she has walked this journey we are on, but that Ethiopian life is my child. I have a child who needs me. How can we not proceed with this? How can we not do everything possible to get to our child and bring our child home? This is no different to us than if Cadi or Scotty were trapped in Ethiopia, as I already mentioned. It weighs on my heart just that heavy. My arms ache to hold my baby, and our home is filled with such anticipation, such expectation. I think that with as much as God loves adoption, Satan must really hate it. That has been very evident to me lately.

And on a lighter note....{hopefully}

Here are some answers to your questions - both ones you asked and ones you wanted to ask! {grin}

Why Ethiopia? There are children right here in the US that need homes, so why did you choose to adopt internationally?

I want to be very clear and careful in how I answer this. I think there are needy children, needy orphans all over the world. I don't think one place is better to adopt from than another. We chose Ethiopia, because God literally kept bringing Ethiopia into our path - every time we talked about and sought out adoption we stared at the country of Ethiopia. I couldn't get those sweet faces out of my mind, out of my heart. I knew that an Ethiopian face was missing from our family photo albums. Then when we found out the need for Ethiopia was so, so great, there was just no denying where God was leading our family - Ethiopia. We did not consider finances in our decision. Yes, there are less expensive places to adopt from ( more expensive, too, though!). It's just that God shared with us that our child was in Ethiopia. Again a bit hard to explain probably, unless you have walked this road.

How long of a process is this adoption?
We are looking at a long road probably. While some in the Ethiopia program have adopted in as little as 10 months, we are probably looking at closer to 18-24 months. What Jim and I can conclude about the time line is that a lot of it is dependent on how quickly we can get the money in and the paperwork completed. Since we are just on the first step, we have a ways to go.

How much is this costing you?
I struggled with whether or not to answer this specifically, but I will. I want this to be a resource for other families looking to adopt, and I want God to be glorified in this. Because without Him, we just don't have the money. The whole adoption process will cost us around $30,000. Jim doesn't make much more than that in a year, but God knows that, and He has a plan.

What agency are you using?
We did quite a bit of research when choosing an agency. We finally settled on a Christian agency that holds to much of our same beliefs. We are really excited to be working with America World Adoption Association.
It was important to us to be able to do our home study under a Christian social worker. This will be the case with our agency.

How old will the child be that you adopt?
We have requested a child under 12 months. With having to travel to Ethiopia twice, I am thinking our baby will end up being closer to twelve months than to a newborn.

Did you specify a gender?
On our application we did not specify a gender. However, God seems to be placing a boy on our hearts, so Jim and I are earnestly seeking God on this matter.

Are you going to adopt debt free?
That is our honest desire. We are praying and believing that way. However, if it comes down to having to take out a loan or not rescue our child, we will without a doubt take out a loan. There is no question that God has a heart for orphans, though, and we are praying that He moves mountains for us.

What can I do to be a part of your journey?
I am humbled and reduced to tears with the outpouring of love and generosity from people. I am amazed by the amount of "strangers" - you my bloggy friends- who have reached out to us, who have emailed us, who have purchased coffee and spread our story around the internet, who have encouraged us. I have been so blessed by the body of Christ. What we really need is prayer. And beyond that, it is up to whatever God lays on your heart. We have the coffee fundraiser if you like coffee and usually buy it anyway that might interest your family. We will have t-shirts for sale soon. We hope these t-shirts spread adoption awareness. We also have the chip-in feature at the top right of my blog, if you feel led to just donate money. This is safe and secure and goes through paypal. I was reduced to tears yesterday, when I saw that a family donated $10 - a family who does not have an extra $10 to donate. They sacrificed on the behalf of our child, and I am so humbled.

We will also be hosting an adoption benefit yard sale on Saturday, May 28th and Monday, May31st - Memorial Day. We are requesting items to be donated to sell if you feel led and live in our area. You can email me at amomentcherished(at)gmail(dot)com with questions
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But mostly we ask you to pray. We are praying specifically for a few hundred dollars to be able to accomplish the first step of this process and get the ball rolling. I apologize now if my blog becomes very adoption focused. This blog is my memory book. I don't want to forget a moment of this journey.Thank you for being a part of this.
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9 comments:

Jenilee said...

sounds like an amazing journey that you are on! God will be faithful! I've been loving Psalm 44: 1-8 lately. Where the Israelites recognized that it was God fighting for them all along. They knew it was nothing they did... they only succeeded because of God. what an awesome thought to think of Him going before us and bringing success because of His unfailing love. It has some beautiful verses. He is going before you!

Redeemed1 said...

Prayingfor you. It's so hard when the enemy attacks us with his lies. I also tend towards fear and anxiety and I've found the only way to fight it is to fill myself with Scripture and to cry out to God.

Heather said...

I will be praying for you all and your baby in Ethiopia. This is an amazing journey you are on and honestly you have opened my heart to adoption. I have never "known" anyone first hand, who has adopted. I am looking forward to seeing how God unfolds your journey.
Keep listening to Him. The enemy certainly does not like this- but if God is for us who can be against us?

Kylee said...

I just feel let to tell you that I really respect and admire you and your husband for taking this leap of faith. You are doing an incredible thing. Be encouraged today!

MamaBear said...

As soon as I saw that you are adopting from Ethiopia I thought "OH! I HAVE to tell her about Sarah!"

She's a blog book client of mine that recently adopted a little boy from Ethiopia. She would be a great resource for your family! her blog address is:

http://goingtoethiopia.blogspot.com/

I'll be praying as you embark on this journey!

Kate said...

I will pray that the Lord will bless you with strength. In a way this is an incredible, but scary undertaking, but I trust that the Lord will guide you safely on this journey.

I always try to think of my fear as part of my strength because fear makes us careful and cautious so we do not miss an important step along the way. In my opinion, fear is not supposed to stop you, but ensure that you do not rush towards your goal, but consider each step carefully.

I'll pray for you and your wonderful family!

Hazel said...

Leave it with God. You will be surprised at how He will strengthen you and enable you to go forward with Power that comes from Him.

Sandra said...

Hi Tiffany! I found you on Sarah Mae's blog today and I'm so glad I clicked over. We too are starting the adoption process to bring home our son in Ethiopia. As I read your thoughts they mirror mine so closely! Praying for you and your family through this journey of faith.

Anonymous said...

I just read your blog for the first time today. I was curious, are you familiar with Show Hope? It's the organization founded by Steven Curtis Chapman and you can find it at http://www.showhope.org/. They have adoption aid for those struggling to afford the process.

I sponsor a little girl in Ethiopia and a little guy in Kenya.


God bless you and what you are trying to do.


Marsha

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