Empty Pockets, Willing Hearts

I’m not going to lie; adoption is expensive!  There are home study fees, application fees, collecting of official documents fees, agency fees, orphanage fees, travel fees, and on and on.  To bring home our two children, we are looking at about $30,000.  Do we have this money just lying around?  Obviously notJ  Should we have waited to start this process when we were “financially able”?  Under normal circumstances the answer would be yes, but this is not a normal circumstance.  We believe without a shadow of a doubt that when God calls us to something, he WILL provide.  Let me share with you some of the many ways our Lord has provided for us during these first steps of our adoption.  

Our first expense came when we had to send a $50 application fee to our home study agency.  Two days later, we received an unexpected check from my work for… $50!  This check brought assurance that we were indeed following God’s will and that he was going to take care of us every step of the way. 

The next week we went to Nashville to visit family and friends and while we were there we had to pick up birth certificates and our marriage license (which costs…of course).  After picking up our documents, we headed to dinner with our dear friends.  This was also our first time meeting their beautiful new baby!  During dinner Matt whispered to me, asking if I wanted him to share the news of the adoption with them.  Before we could share, our friend came into the room with a card for us.  She asked us to open it and inside was a very encouraging note and a check for $200!  (We had forgotten that we had already shared our plan to adopt with them.J)    And of course I cried as we saw once again how God was providing for our family. 

It gets better!  Mom had been sharing our story with a friend at work, who is also a believer.  I will share more of this relationship later because it is nothing short of a miracle, but for now I will keep it to God’s provision financially.  So, this special friend of moms, whom we have never met, sent us a check for $100!  In the memo of her check she wrote, “when God calls, he provides”.  My thoughts exactly! 

Right now we are in the positive with the adoption!  We have some much larger expenses coming in the next few weeks, but we aren’t worried.  We know that God has called us to adoption, and he will provide.  This same friend of moms sent her an email, which she forwarded to us.  Here is some of what it said…


“Anytime God gives us a command, He has already provided for its accomplishment.  But we have to do the hands-on, ‘certain of what we do not see’ (Hebrews 11:1-2). ~H. Blackaby and R. Edgemon

What are you holding back on doing that you know God wants you to do?  Are you waiting for a ‘more opportune time?’  Better circumstances? More provision?  I understand.  But I also understand, in essence, we are not acting in faith until we act.  Believing and doing are different things.  If you’re holding back, let this prompt you to burst out of the gate and do whatever it is God has put on your heart.  With your yes on the table, whatever else is needed will follow.  ~V. Lee”


We are holding on to this truth that God will provide.  I can’t wait to see how he will do it and whom he will use!  And rest assured that I will share it with you!  


Why Ethiopia?

“How did you choose Ethiopia?”  This is one of the first questions that we are asked when people find out we are adopting.  Here are some of the reasons we have chosen Ethiopia. 

*There are approximately 6 million orphans

*Less than 1% of foreign orphans will ever be adopted

*One out of every 20 children born alive die in their first month of life

*One in 6 children die before their fifth birthday.

*One in 10 children die before their first birthday.

*82% of the population survives on less than 1 dollar a day

*Only 24% of households have access to safe drinking water

*Ethiopia’s doctor to children ratio is 1 to 24,000

*About 72% of school age children have no access to formal education

*55% of Ethiopian children under the age of five are stunted due to malnutrition.

*Most importantly - Ethiopia is where God has called us, our children are there! 



So Our Journey Begins

As mentioned in the previous post, adoption has been on our minds.  It has been on mine since I was a little girl.  I always knew I wanted to adopt a child and when I met and married Matt, he too had the same desire.  We thought we would have a few children biologically and then adopt a few more.  Although this was our plan, God had something greater in store (because his plans are always best)!  

Let me backtrack a little and bring you up to speed.  Matt and I both have always desired a big family.  We would have started expanding our family as soon as we married, but with him in school and me working, we decided to put that on hold for a little while.  After about a year of marriage, we decided that God knew the best time for us to have a child, so we were going to leave it in his hands.  We stopped all forms of pregnancy prevention and expected to get pregnant soon after.  Over a year later, we were still without a child.  We decided to make an appointment with an infertility doctor and found out that Matt needed surgery.  After his surgery, we thought we were well on our way to expanding our family!  Indeed we were, just not in the way we thought!  A short month after his surgery, Matt left for 2-weeks of intense discipleship training in Texas.  This took place in May.  While Matt was away, God was dealing with both of us.  God placed a man in Matt’s path while in Texas who runs an orphanage in Africa.  Through his interactions with this man, Matt started giving more serious thought to adoption.  He admits that he was a little nervous about sharing this news with me, but did anyway.  He came back from Texas and shared with me that he felt the Lord speaking to him about adoption.  To his surprise, I had been feeling the same thing!  Not only had God been speaking to both of us about adoption, but he also laid on both of our hearts to adopt 2 children!  We spent the majority of the summer talking about this decision and praying about it.  Several times throughout the summer the Lord would speak to both of us separately, but when we would share our thoughts with each other we realized that we had been receiving the same message from the Lord.  It has truly been an amazing experience.  Because of this, we felt full confidence that we should precede with the adoption.  Not AFTER biological children, but NOW!  So we praise God in all circumstances, even infertility, because we know that his plan never fails and neither does his love and provision.  

In August, as I was starting back to school and Matt was starting a new job, we began the adoption process!  The Lord has led us to two children in Ethiopia!  We haven’t seen them yet, we don’t know their names, but we are already crazy about them!  We have our final home study visit on Tuesday and then start all of our paperwork. Please pray for us as we travel this journey.  Pray for our children.  Our hope is to bring them home sometime during the summer of 2009.  And so our journey begins…