Thursday, February 23, 2012

Faith of a Child

Believe and have faith. Faith is often easy to talk about, but hard to actually put into practice. I think my problem is that I usually think logical or practical. I need to see the cause and effect. It needs to make sense to me. In many ways this can be a good quality, however when it comes to faith I don't think God wants me to be practical. He just wants me to have faith and believe in Him.
As we have journeyed down this path of adoption I have learned so much. I have seen God in ways that I probably never would have otherwise. Faith is one of the areas that God has grown me the most this past year. I honestly feel I have a come a long way, but apparently I still have a ways to go. As I mentioned in the last post we had talked to our kids this past weekend about everything that needs to happen so that we can travel in March. We talked about how at this point it is all out of our hands, God will have to make it happen. I asked the kids if they believed God could do this and without hesitation both said they believed He could. I asked why they thought that. They said because Ann and I said He could. Just like that I say it and they believe it to be true. I realize that I need faith like that, when God says something to just have faith. When I ask God for something just believe and wait for Him to work.  We put them to bed Saturday and Landon prayed for our letter to come soon. 
I thought I had really learned something until the next morning and I realized there was more. As we sat down together as a family to eat breakfast Sunday Landon began to pray just like many other times. He thanked God for his food, family, his friends, Addie and then he said something I wasn't expecting, "God help our letter to come today so that we can get Addie on March 16th." My first thought was it's Sunday and he does not realize the government offices are closed and our letter is not coming today. And almost in an instant my heart was broken, my faith is shallow and my logic tells me it's Sunday and the letter is not coming today. Whether he realized it was Sunday or not he believed God could do anything. I'm thinking it's not possible and he believes that anything is possible with God. Most days I'm trying to teach my kids how to live their life. How to follow God, praying that they love God with all of their heart, soul, and mind. That they love their neighbor as themselves. However on days like Sunday they're teaching and I'm learning. 
The letter we have been waiting on from the NVC came on Tuesday. We forwarded it to our agency who then sent it to the US Consulate in Guangzhou. Next the US Consulate will issue an Article 5 which asks the CCCWA to issue us travel approval. Then our agency will help us arrange travel and our appointments at the US Consulate's office and then we are off to China. Today we also received our visas from China that allow us to travel. We are thankful that God continues to move things along in this process. We are continuing to pray that these next few steps happen quickly so that we can travel in March. I realize this puts our travel only three weeks away, but we are praying and believing in a God that can do anything. We would be grateful for anyone else who would like to pray with us.

Saturday, February 18, 2012

"I wouldn't say it's impossible, it's just not probable."

We hope this blog will be a good way to keep everyone that is interested in our adoption process updated on what's going on. I'm sure we will write about other things as well, but right now it will mostly be about our adoption. Over the next few weeks I will probably account for everything that has brought us to this point, but wanted to write today about where we  are now. 

On Monday we received our I-800 form, this gives pre-aproval for Addie's citizenship. Right now we are waiting on a letter from the National Visa Center saying our clearance has been forwarded to the US consulate. We will then get travel approval from China and be able to schedule our travel to go and bring Addie home. It sounds simple enough, a few more steps and the process we have been in for the last 13 months is nearing an end. 

In January when we received our Letter of Acceptance(LOA) allowing us to adopt Addie our agency gave us three possible dates of travel: March 16th, April 6th, or April 13th. Right away we knew we wanted to travel on March 16th for several reasons. Obviously it is the earliest date and would bring our family together the soonest. Another reason is the kids are on spring break the last week of March and that would be less school they would have to miss. At the end of October when we found out we were going to be able to adopt Addie our agency said it would be about 6 months before we traveled, so about the end of April. Landon began asking if we could go to China and celebrate his birthday which is the end of March. We told him if everything processed quickly there was a chance that could happen. He told us he didn't want presents; Addie could be his present and we could celebrate with a moon cake. 
Since the end of October Landon has been praying for us to spend his birthday in China. He has prayed specifically to travel on March 16th since we found out that was a possible date. As we have looked at the possibilities of traveling these three different dates we have found airline tickets to be a lot less expensive for the March date. We really thought things were looking good to travel the middle of March. Wednesday as we were waiting in the airport to return home from Chick-fil-A seminar I called our agency to ask a few questions and mainly see what they thought about us still being able to travel in March. When  I asked about travel he replied, " I wouldn't say it's impossible, it's just not probable." We talked a few more minutes and I hung up the phone a little disappointed that we probably will not travel in March. He explained the time frame things usually take to happen and he just didn't see that it could happen quickly enough for us to travel. As I thought for the next several hours as we waited in the airport and flew home I realized I worship God that makes the improbable things happen. I have a Dad who cares for his children and likes to give them good things.
As we got home and were putting the kids to bed we told them about the call and reminded  them the only thing we can do is what we've been doing all along: Pray. We prayed that God would work out the details, speed the process up and allow us to be in China March 16th. We know that God is more than capable of doing the improbable; He is more than capable of doing the impossible also. God spoke and created the world in Genesis 1. In Genesis 2 he created man from the dust of the earth. In Joshua 6 God's people shouted and blew trumpets and the walls of Jericho fell. A few chapters later in Joshua 10, Joshua ask God to make the sun stand still and He does. We are not asking for the sun to stand still, just that God do the improbable and work it out so that we can travel the middle of next month. We would greatly appreciate any that would like to join us in praying.