Tuesday, March 8, 2016
I love reading books that are part of a series; I like to watch the progression of the characters, the plot twists and returning to earlier books to review parts of the story. As I look at character development it's easy to see that people's stories rarely begin when you think they do. It's a little bit like life; you meet someone when you're 15, 23 or 35, you instantly connect and then bit by bit you learn how they became the person that you met.
A decade ago I thought Matt and I would eventually adopt but a quarter of a century ago (gosh, am I truly that old!) I always wanted to adopt a baby girl from China and name her Lily. Cue the eye roll because I do it to myself when I look back at the sweet but naive girl I used to be. And that girl and her dream followed me through high school and college.
But then sometimes dreams change; I no longer dreamed of a little Chinese baby girl Lily, I dreamed of having a family. That dream brought Matt and I to one of our sweetest and biggest joys, Gabriel. After Gabriel, more joy came along. Thomas and Samsel. While it took so much longer to bring them home than I had ever imagined. I'm glad we had that time though; we learned so much about adoption and the children that need adoption as their chance for a family. While we learned the ins and outs of international adoption we learned that most children that needed a family were not healthy babies but either older children or children with special needs.
As we settled in to being a family of 5 we knew we weren't quite finished growing our family yet. We talked domestic adoption, browsed through agencies and waiting child sites. India was a good option because you have to have less than 4 children to adopt there, we thought a special needs little boy from China would be a sweet addition, there was always domestic adoption.... there were many different ways our little family could grow.
Then we found out Matt was being transferred and sometime in the fall our family would be moving back to Houston. Adopting again was pushed a little back down on our list until I received a short text and a picture from my dear friend Jenny. In that picture was the face of the sweetest girl I'd ever seen holding an apple and the message "Or... you could go after Lily and we could travel to Bethel together"
Jaw dropped. Jenny didn't know that I had a long forgotten dream of adopting a baby girl named Lily from China. Goodness, I had pretty much forgotten that dream. I now dreampt of lots of sweet little boys filling our home and maybe, eventually a little girl.
But the Lord, our Lord had never forgotten. He takes those long, lost dreams and brings them to fruition.
This is the first photo I saw of our daughter. I texted it to Matt with some details about our girl and that her name was Lily. He knew she was the one; the one we didn't know we desperately needed.
There were so many logistics to figure out; we were moving, we had to have her file moved to an agency that would not only work with a family that was relocating after submitting paperwork but one that would also allow us to disrupt our birth order. Once we found our agency the paper chase began - let me tell you, it's much easier the the third time around. We recently began the paper chase again to update our home study now that we're settled here in Texas and awaiting our Letter of Acceptance from the government entity in China that is in charge of adoptions.
We are thinking she'll be home sometime mid-June but we've learned with international adoption is to be flexible with our timelines and expectations.
Our sweet girl's foster home gave her the name "Lily" because it was so much like her Chinese name. We plan on having her name remain Lili (sounds like Lily) with the middle names James, after Matt's dad. I'm certain he'd be tickled pink by this precious girl
As we get closer to bringing our daughter home I often think of Matthew 6:27-28:
"And who of you by being worried can add a single hour to his life? And why are you worried about clothing? Observe how the lilies of the field grow; they do not toil nor do they spin, yet I say to you that not even Solomon in all his glory clothed himself like one of these."
Adoption brings so many different unknowns into your life; but as The Lord cares for the lilies and has cared for our Lili as she has waited for a family, we know he will take care of all the details surrounding our sweet girl and bringing her home. He brought a long forgotten dream to fruition in ways we couldn't even imagine, surely He has this taken care of as well.