Thursday, April 21, 2011
Friday, March 4, 2011
My heart aches this morning as I pray for a sweet client. They had a failed adoption situation yesterday, and my heart hurts for them as I know they are hurting. Adoption is such a long, emotional journey...even if it only takes 3 months to get your hands on YOUR baby, that 3 months is a lifetime in adoption. In 3 months, you could be matched with 5 different BM's, you could travel 5 different times, to 5 different states and still go home each time with no baby. That's when you have to remember that, Joshua 1:9 says, "Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged, for the LORD your God will be with you wherever you go." What an encouragement...what an incredible promise, the Lord our God is with us wherever we go, He is with us in each of those 5 states, in every hospital room we walk into, in every BM conversation. He is there. He has not left us. Do not be afraid, be strong and courageous.
God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble. Therefore we will not fear, though the earth should change and though the mountains slip into the heart of the sea; though its waters roar and foam, though the mountains quake at its swelling pride. Selah. The LORD of hosts is with us; the God of Jacob is our stronghold. Selah. Psalm 46:1-3,7
‘Do not fear, for I am with you; do not anxiously look about you, for I am your God. I will strengthen you, surely I will help you, surely I will uphold you with My righteous right hand.’ Isaiah 41:10
For God did not give us a spirit of timidity but of power and of love and of calm and well-balanced mind and discipline and self-control. 2 Tim 1:7
I have set the Lord continually before me; because He is at my right hand, I shall not be moved. Psalm 16:8
Cast your burden on the Lord and He will sustain you; He will never allow the righteous to be moved . Psal55:22
He only is my Rock and my Salvation; He is my Defense and my Fortress, I shall not be moved. Psalm 62:6
Casting the whole of your care on Him, for He cares for you affectionately and cares about you watchfully. 1 Peter 5:7
“The steadfast of mind You will keep in perfect peace, Because he trusts in You. Isaiah 26:3
Lord, I pray that you would comfort my sweet clients today and in the days ahead as they continue to walk through this adoption journey. Lord, they know that you have called them to this, and they know that you have a plan. Lord, wrap your arms around them as they grieve the loss of this situation. Lord, I pray that you draw this BM close to you, Lord I pray that through this family that she be drawn to you, may she accept you as her Lord and Savior and raise this child up in Christ. Lord, my you be glorified through every adoption situation my clients are in, whether that be a completed adoption or a failed one, I pray you are ultimately glorified. You are a mighty god, and we will trust in you, Lord.
Wednesday, March 2, 2011
Original Story by: Loren Eisley
One day a man was walking along the beach when he noticed
a boy picking something up and gently throwing it into the ocean.
Approaching the boy, he asked, "What are you doing?"
The youth replied, "Throwing starfish back into the ocean.
The surf is up and the tide is going out. If I don't throw them back, they'll die."
"Son," the man said, "don't you realize there are miles and miles of beach and hundreds of starfish?
You can't make a difference!"
After listening politely, the boy bent down, picked up another starfish,
and threw it back into the surf. Then, smiling at the man, he said…"
I made a difference for that one."
Love this story! So many of us get overwhelmed with the numbers, the number of orphans, and we think we can't make a difference. You can make a difference, for that one orphan!! I hope this little story encourages you as much as it did me, we can make a difference, don't let the numbers scare you, if you rescue one orphan, the number would go from 147,000,000 to 146,999,999! Imagine if we all rescued just one orphan!!
Can't imagine my family without the children we adopted! Boy, has God blessed our lives with the "orphans" we rescued!!
James 1:27, "Religion that God our Father accepts as pure and faultless is this: to look after orphans and widows in their distress and to keep oneself from being polluted by the world."
Monday, February 21, 2011
This blogger requested that we share his material, he believes it is important for everyone to read this....I AGREE!!! You can visit him at www.danoah.com! He has a way of bringing laughter to some serious subjects, all the while educating the offenders....Check out one of his posts below.....I, as an adoptive parent of 4 kids of different races, have been asked the questions many, many times.
Disclaimer: He does use some choice words, that I would NEVER use, so please keep that in mind before choosing to read. Thanks!!
Okay, here comes another "Single Dad Ranting" post. You may laugh, but hopefully only because you see the idiocy and carelessness of some people, bless their hearts. Please, though, this is something that I'm very serious about and I hope you'll listen in.
What do you notice about this photo?
Hopefully you just see a father and son. Maybe you see a beautiful bond. Maybe you see love. Maybe you see two awesome human beings. Hopefully you don't see a damn price tag hanging from Noah's ear or a child who will never know true happiness.
You see, today when I was at the store with Noah, somebody had the nerve to ask me, right in front of Noah, "how much did he cost?" And this was the second time somebody has asked that absolutely ridiculous and insensitive question to me; I know his mom has heard it too.
You may have noticed that Noah is of a slightly different race than his old man. He's a quarter Panamanian, quarter Jamaican, and half Caucasian. Noah is my son. Noah was adopted. Trust me, I couldn't pass on genetics to a kid this beautiful.
And since he was placed with us, his parents, I have learned just how insensitive the world can be to kids who have been placed through adoption. People don't realize how fragile the minds of young children are. People don't realize that wording things certain ways can hurt a child, and badly. And with that, I present to you the following list, all taken from personal experiences in the past three years:
Single Dad Laughing's Guide to Adoption Etiquette.
- Never, ever, ever, ask how much a child costs. This includes the phrase, "how much did you pay for him?" First of all, it's none of your business. Second of all, if you're interested in adoption, research it through the appropriate channels. Speak with an adoption agency. Adoptive parents don't purchase children. They simply pay legal fees and agency fees. Just like biological parents pay hospital and doctor bills. Don't turn the child into nothing more than a commodity.
- Never ask if a celebrity inspired the adoption. Believe it or not, Tom Cruise, Connie Chung, and Angelina Jolie did not convince me one way or the other in the biggest decision of my life. Are you serious?
- Never ask "where is his real dad?" Forget the fact that it will hurt my feelings. How do you think it will affect my son's feelings to feel like I'm not a real dad to him? Adoptive parents are real parents. The term you're looking for is "birth mother" or "birth father".
- Don't say things like, "as soon as you adopt you're going to get pregnant" when you find out somebody is adopting. First of all, there are usually many, many years of pain and financial burden strapped to infertility, treatments, and heartache. Do you really think that what you're saying will help them? Secondly, while it is funny when it happens, it's rare.
- Never say, "why did she give him away?" Do I really need to explain why this one would hurt a child? The proper term is "placed". A birth mother and birth father place their child for adoption. And again, it's personal and none of your business, so don't ask if you aren't my BFF.
- Don't say, "it's like he's your real son". This is similar to number three, but worthy of mentioning. He is my real son, damn it.
- Don't say, "do you love him as if he was your own?" Ummm... probably more than you love your little terror, that's for sure. And again... he is my own, damn it.
- Never say things like, "you're so wonderful to adopt a child". I am a parent. Just like anybody else with kids.
- Don't start spewing your horrible adoption stories. "This one time, my friend's sister's aunt's dog's previous owner's niece adopted a baby and the real dad came back and they took the baby away after they had him for two years." First of all, it probably isn't true. Second of all, how would you feel if I told you about all the ways you could lose your child. Adoption is permanent. And in the extremely rare circumstances that something like that happens, it's not something you should spread because the hurt that exists for all the parties involved must be immeasurable.
- Don't say things like, "is it hard for him to be adopted?" Well, it wasn't, until you asked me that right in front of him you freaking idiot.
- I don't want to hear about your second cousin who was on a waiting list for twelve years and never got a baby. Granted, this one was much more annoying when we were going through the adoption process. Nobody wants to know that some people never get chosen. Show some kindness. Even to ugly people.
I understand that I'm not being super politically correct here, but I'm a little bit pissed off about what happened today. And understandably, so is the old woman I sent away in an ambulance. I know she meant no harm.
Dan Pearce, Single Adoptive Dad Laughing
PS, please post this one on Facebook and Twitter. Most people have good intentions but really say some horrible things without ever knowing it. This is one bit of education that needs to be passed on.
Tomorrow, I'll share with you the non-private details of how Noah came into our lives. It's a beautiful story. Click here to read it. "Noah. A beautiful tale of adoption."
Thursday, February 17, 2011
I know for Emory and I there were times throughout each of our 4 adoptions, that we truly questioned whether or not we could handle anymore. Adoption is not easy. It is an emotional journey. There is heartache, there is hurt, frustration and so much more.....but, the JOY at the end of the road is so much greater than the heartache. Ask any person that has adopted, even the person that got their baby on the first birth mom presentation, ask them if they endured heartache or frustration. They did. Of course, there are varying degrees, and it all depends on how long you have been on the journey and the circumstances you have walked through, but as adoptive parents, we have all suffered an emotional roller coaster.
The Lord never promised an easy path. Instead, He promised that He would be with us and that it would all be worth it in the end.
We were commanded to take care of the orphans in James 1:27, "Religion that is pure and undefiled before God, the Father, is this: to visit orphans and widows in their affliction, and to keep oneself unstained from the world." He commanded us to take care of the widows and the orphans, He didn't say take care of them and I will make it easy, or that we would understand each path that He would take us down, He just said to do it.
I love my job as an adoption consultant. I love it! It brings me such joy to watch the Lord build families through adoption, it brings a smile to my face to see these orphans rescued, to see Christian families being obedient. I love it! However, it doesn't come without a price either....luckily, there are many more happy days, than sad ones....but, the sad ones are hard. My clients are my friends, they are brothers and sisters in Christ, I love each of them dearly and it is difficult to watch them go through the journey that is adoption. I know in the end, they will have a baby, I know that once they hold their baby, it will have all been worth it, but it doesn't make it any easier to watch them hurting NOW.
The Lord tells us in Galatians 6:2, "Carry each other's burdens, and in this way you will fulfill the law of Christ." We have to support each other through the adoption journey, we have to pray for one another, really lift each other up to the Lord.
We have to believe Jeremiah 29:11 each step of the way, "For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the LORD, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future."
We have to trust that if the Lord commanded us to do something, that He will be with us every step of the way, we have to believe Joshua 1:9, "Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged, for the LORD your God will be with you wherever you go."
No, the adoption journey is not an easy one. It is not easy to watch your friends and family go through the heartache, frustration and disappointments that they will most likely encounter. However, I know for each one of my clients that has experienced heartache along the way, knows that the Lord is directing their steps, knows they were commanded to take this journey, and knows that they cannot turn back, although sometimes that is all we want to do.
We know that Proverbs 24:12 says, "Once our eyes are opened, we can't pretend we don't know what to do. God, who weighs our hearts and keeps our souls, knows that we know, and holds us responsible to act."
I say all this to say, I know the road to your child is not an easy one, but you can rest assured that I am on my knees daily for each of my clients, my friends, lifting you up to the One that commanded you to rescue the orphans, and to the One that directs your steps! Praise the Lord that we don't have to walk the adoption road alone, Praise the Lord that He is there every step of the way!
He is good!!!
Now to Him Who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine...to Him be the glory." Eph. 3:20
Monday, February 7, 2011
Finn Carl "B"
Born Jan 10, 2011 at 1:07 pm
7lbs and 19 inches long
Soon after we decided to look into embryo adoption. It would be less expensive, less risk and I could be pregnant again. We started the paperwork in early 2009. For some reason, the door seemed to shut for us at this point. The clinic we chose to work with never got J's medical records after requesting they be sent several times. I couldn't understand it, but we had started building our house and decided that it would be best to wait till we were settled in the new house to make any further decisions on adoption. The entire time, I still questioned God about if he really wanted us to adopt or not. Somewhere along the way, He clearly said "Why wouldn't I?"
In January of 2010, we had just gotten settled in our house and sat down one night to make a final decision of whether or not we thought we should proceed with adoption. We decided to go for it! I told J I would start looking into agencies immediately. Within a week or so, I got really sick. (You can get details here) After a brief hospitalization, my doctor gave me no option but to have a hysterectomy. During this time, I begin to get information from several agencies. All of them seemed great, but there was one slight problem. I just couldn't get a peace about which one was right for us. We also began talking to some adoptive families we knew. One of them pointed me to Faithful Adoption Consultants. One phone conversation with Courtney at FAC left me at complete peace. I knew without a doubt this was for us.
I began to rush around making arrangements and packing. I hate driving long distances and was dreading the trip with just H and I. I would have no back up driver. I fervently prayed that God would provide someone to go with me, but I didn't want to ask anyone. Within about 30 minutes, a dear friend called and said, if I wanted, she had made arrangements to go with me! Talk about answered prayer!
Thursday, January 20, 2011
Daniel and I emailed our now adoption consultant Courtney Lott back in late 2009 just to see if we could have dinner with her and Emory and talk about adoption. We each knew years ago that we both wanted to adopt. Like most people we thought it would take a few years. So with that anticipation we wanted to get the ball rolling so to speak. We thought we may have 1 kid and then adopt but that wasn't God's plan!
In March of 2010 we decided to start trying for a family and within two weeks I was pregnant. It was a rough few months with many uncertainties and on May 20, 2010 we found out our little Turtle went to be with the Lord. Months went by with no "luck" of getting pregnant again. Those months seemed like forever. Eager to have a family even more now we contacted Courtney again and set that meeting up! We met with her and sweet little Emmy at Chick-fil-a one morning and were very suprised to learn it could take such a short time to adopt but we were ready to start the "process".
We went through all the logistics and paperwork (mounds upon mounds of paperwork) and had just finished applying for our grants. A few days before Christmas we got 2 emails within 24 hours that we were denied for 2 different grants. We were kinda shocked and extremely bummed. Daniel and I started trying to figure out how we could make it work and had absolutely no answer. Courtney called us about a "situation" with a baby due January 5, 2011 in Tampa, FL. We went back to our original list of prayer request we wrote when we began the adoption process and every request was answered but one - the finances. We talked and prayed about it and told her we just couldn't do it yet. Within a few days God provided and the finances were met! God is so amazing! So we decided to adopt this little boy.
Once everything was approved we anxiously waited for the agency to call saying the birthmom was in labor. We drove down on Tuesday January 4 for my great grandma's funeral in Tampa and were hoping she would go into labor while we were here but no such luck. So we drove back home on Thursday morning! Sunday morning at 2:00am we got the call...she was in labor!! We jumped up out of bed and drove through the night. We pulled into the hospital that morning to soon found out the little boy was a little girl! We couldn't help but laugh at this! We had a bag full of blue packed! We went in and met the birthmom, held the little girl, fed her, changed her diaper and couldn't have had a better time. To make a long story short the birthmom decided the night before she was suppose to sign that she couldn't do it. Because of the ice back home we couldn't drive home where we so desperatly wanted to be. We were heartbroken but when we woke up the next morning (Tuesday) we had an overwhelming peace about the decision. We didn't understand but knew that God had other plans and was doing something we just didn't know what.
I prepared my heart for another few months of waiting. We talked with Courtney Wednesday morning and she had some other possible situations: a 10 month old boy and a soon to be little girl. Daniel and I talked all day until 4:45 when Courtney had to have an answer about presenting to the birthmom having the little girl. We were torn all day long as to what to do. Daniel has always wanted a little boy and I just wanted an infant. We decided to go ahead and present on the little girl due next week.
Courtney called the agency to tell them and immediately called us back. She said, "your not going to beleive this" and asked if we were sitting. She told us about a little boy that had been born on Sunday (same time as the little girl we were suppose to bring home). His birth parents had already signed over their rights. I had told Daniel previously I wasn't sure how I could stand going through another 48hour waiting period not knowing if the mom would sign or not. What an answer to a prayer! The original adopted family had changed their minds. So there he was this perfect little angel sitting in the hospital with no parents but not for long! It was our baby boy!! God could not have been anymore clear! Once again for the 5th time in a week we made the 8 hour drive back to Tampa through the night! I couldn't sleep at all that night because I was anxious to meet our little man!!
We got to the hospital first thing in the morning and got to lay eyes on our precious gift from God. Isaiah Thomas Poe was born January 9, 2011 at 2:33am weighing in at 6lbs 9oz and 20.5in!! He shares a birthday with his papa Poe (Daniel's dad)!
James 1:2 "Consider it pure joy my brothers whenever you face trials of any kinds because the testing of your faith develops perseverance."
2 Peter 5:10 "The God of all grace, who called you to His eternal glory in Christ Jesus, will personally restore, establish, strengthen and support you after you have suffered a little."
James 1:17 "Every generous act and every perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of lights"
James 1:27 "Religion that God our Father accepts as pure and faultless is this: to look after orphans and widows in their distress"
All Glory, Honor and Praise to God!!!