Friday, December 17, 2010

Manger - Check!

We're nesting. Last weekend I went into the attic and located Bryan's old crib, worked it awkwardly down the ladder and put it into Katie's room. The only thing I was missing was the instructions for putting it back together. I went to my office at church to google the model number so I could print off some directions. That's when I learned that the crib had been recalled. There was a warning saying to stop using the crib immediately. There was no fix available. "Just great," I thought, "another unexpected expense." A couple of weeks ago I had ordered some new cribs for the church nursery. We needed a fourth for the Mothers' Day Out program and the ones we had were pretty worn down. This morning I was putting one of those cribs together when some ladies from the Bible study Brenda leads came in with a brand new crib as a Christmas gift for Brenda. Over 2,000 years ago God provided a bed for Jesus in an unusual way. Now he has done the same for Katie.

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Another Approval

We received our I-800A approval last night. Our I-800 was sent out this morning. We're looking at two weeks' wait for that paperwork. Bryan received approval from his school to travel with us yesterday. Things are moving along. Please continue to pray for us as we prepare to bring Katie home!

Saturday, December 4, 2010

Clutter For Katie

Today an Alsbury small group led by the Tim and Jenifer Newton held a garage sale at church to help us bring Katie home. Once again, we're blown away by God's provision. We praise God for the incredible blessings he has given us through our church family. Garages are a little emptier so our home can be a little fuller. Thank you to everyone who has allowed God to work through them to help us go to China and bring Katie Joy home to Texas!

Monday, November 22, 2010

God Providing (Again)

With each approval comes more requirements. This week we owe $4,000 to our adoption agency. We had $2,000 set aside in our adoption fund. If you do the math, that leaves $2,000 we didn't have yet. On Saturday, Alsbury Baptist Church hosted a yard sale to raise funds for our adoption. Once again, God provided what we needed plus a little more. Between the yard sale and donations, $2,188.65 was raised. I'm convinced that God keeps providing a little more than we need so we are constantly reminded that we are to help others with their adoptions. To the friends and family who helped with the yard sale, know that God used your generosity to meet our immediate need. During this week set aside for giving thanks, we thank God for each of you. We can't begin to thank God enough for his provision, not only for Katie's adoption, but for every one of our physical, emotional, and spiritual needs. Praise God in all things.

Friday, November 19, 2010

Another Approval!

We received our referral approval this week! That means we are approved not only to adopt in China, but to adopt Yu Niu Jiao. More paperwork, money, and patience are due now, but we are another big step closer to bringing our sweet girl home. We'll be having a garage sale at Alsbury Baptist Church on Saturday, November 20 to raise funds for the adoption. Stop by if you are in the area!

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Great News!

We received pre-approval from the CCAA today! We're one step closer to bringing our baby girl home to Texas! We also received a few new pictures of Yu Niu Jiao. She is absolutely gorgeous. She looks like her daddy if you ask me.

Thursday, October 28, 2010

God Can Be Playful

Just a short reminder to myself that God will provide everything we need for the adoption. I'm shooting a video for the kids this week about trusting God to meet our needs. In the "What Does That Mean to Me" segment, I told the kids about times when Brenda and I were in seminary and God provided food when we had run out and money for rent when we didn't know how we'd pay it. Friends would just show up with food, or an envelope would arrive in the mail with the exact amount we needed. We didn't know who sent it, but we gave God glory for meeting our every need. Just as I finished editing that video segment, Scott brought in money from some Beatles dolls I had asked him to sell for me on eBay. The amount covered a bill we received last night for the doctor's consultation fee (+$15). Sometimes I feel like God just wants to see our faces when he brings things together like that. Our verse for the week is "God will generously provide all you need. Then you will always have everything you need and plenty left over to share with others." -2 Corinthians 9:8

Monday, October 25, 2010

Pending Referral

What is it about going to Missouri? On Wednesday, October 20th, we received notice that we had been linked to a one-and-a-half year old little girl with albinism waiting to be adopted in China! We had 72 hours to decide whether to proceed with the adoption process. With Gene in Missouri for a family wedding and Brenda at home in Texas, we had a huge decision to make. After praying, speaking with a doctor in Michigan, and talking on our cell phones A LOT, we decided to go forward . As a special needs adoption, the CCAA will now pull our dossier so they can approve us for adoption. This will take approximately two weeks. When Gene told his Mom that these things always seem to happen on the way to Missouri, her reply was "you need to come to Missouri more often!" Please continue to pray for God to work through this adoption process. We look forward to watching him provide as the long wait appears to be getting shorter. Praise God for adopting us as his children and allowing us to follow his example.

Monday, July 19, 2010

A Fellow Traveler

On Thursday, July 8th I received a call from our adoption case worker while we were driving through Oklahoma letting us know we needed to update paperwork. Another $500 was going to be due very soon. That may not seem like much, but I'll be honest... I was frustrated. I spent the rest of the drive asking God if we were following his plan for adopting a little one from China. While with my family in Missouri, I met three kids from China who found their forever families in the US. I got to hold my cousin's infant son (also of Chinese heritage) and my doubts melted. I knew we were doing the right thing. When we arrived home in Texas, I went through my mail at church. I opened a small envelope and found a card from an anonymous friend. Here's what the card said:

Hi Gene & Brenda,
A year ago God laid it on my heart to help you with the adoption of your baby from China. It has taken me a while to save this and I think it's time to give it to you. May God bless and encourage you along the way.
In Christian love,
a fellow traveler

Inside the card was a cashier's check for three times the amount we needed. Did I mention that the card and gift were mailed on Tuesday, July 6th, two days before we learned we needed the funds? It would have arrived in my mailbox at church on the day our case worker called. To our fellow traveler, thank you and know that God has used you to "encourage us along the way." To all of our friends, let this story serve as a reminder that when God calls us to do something, he will make it possible. All glory to our God and Savior Jesus Christ!