I don't know exactly when God started healing my heart from all the ups and downs of foster care/adoption and loss of Taylor in January 2010 and the loss of Madina from 2005, but slowly he has in His own way. We weren't looking to have our heart captured, but God has been known to do the unbelieveable.
In July/August of this year our church started planning a mission trip to Honduras. For some reason Ben and I just didn't feel like God was telling us to go on this trip, instead we felt like God was saying--go to China. So we began looking into trips to China, we wanted to take Leighanne back to the city where she was found. We wanted our whole family to be able to love on some orphans while we were there. We also wanted Leighanne to be able to expereince some of the beautiful sights of China.
In August, my heart was burdened to take on the details of an Orphan Sunday event. I went to our pastor and youth pastor and we started planning a service to simulate what it is like to be an orphan/social orphan in the world today. Basically as people entered the sanctuary, they were given a booklet that had the beginning story of an orphan from either China, Russia, Africa, Honduras or India. They then traveled as a group from simulation room to simulation room, and even ate a meal simular to what an orphan from that country would eat. When they came back into the sanctuary they found their orphan's picture on the wall and found out if they lived or died. All of the stories were based on research that I had been looking up during the months of Sept./Oct. We followed this up with the "Answer the Cry" video and a what can I do now session. As I was gathering information about waiting children for people to pray for, my kids were sitting in my room with me and we started looking up waiting children on Rainbow Kids. I said hey let's look up older girls near Leighanne's age from China. Well that's when it happened--we saw Hannah's picture and our hearts were captured. All of the kids said mom--Hannah's it--she's the one.
Well, you could imagine that I wasn't quite ready to say yes- let's adopt Hannah, but my heart was drawn to this sweet face. I began praying for her.
On Orphan Sunday, November 7th, I put her picture up on a board for people to take a child's picture home to pray for. Guess what--her picture was still there at the end of the night--so I brought it home.
I didn't sleep much that night--I just couldn't get her off of my heart. The next day I asked Ben if I could call the agency and find out if another family had already chosen her. To my dismay there was a family looking at her file and they had already moved her to the "pending" part of the waiting children list. I told God that I was okay, but could he please make sure that Hannah was adopted into a christian family. Ben agreed to complete the waiting child application with me, just in case this family decided not to adopt Hannah. However, we were not expecting to be given a chance. On Friday, I received an email from the agency--Hannah's file was ours to look at. I was so nervous I could hardly open the documents on the computer. She is a precious 7 year old and she is from the same province as Leighanne. Oh--and just another small detail, but Hannah is the name we had picked out for Austin if he had been a girl. Isn't God cool?
So now we are waiting for doctor reports. We also are praying hard--we do not have any money set aside for this adoption. We are asking you to join us in prayer--we have to have a certain amount soon. We know that God is able, more than able, and because we can't possibly come up with this amount on our own in the next couple of weeks, we will wait to see God get the glory in this. We ask you to pray, that if Hannah is to be ours, that God just show up and show off in a way that others will say, "Wow look at the God they serve!"