Tuesday, April 27

Even When You're Scared

Brooke (our 9 year old) was outside when she noticed our 15 year old neighbor's boyfriend drive up. He had a back cast on and his upper body was stiff. He proceeded to knock on our neighbor's door and walk in.

Brooke told Rob that she really wanted to go and pray for that boy, but

she was scared.

She continued to say, "I wish I was brave like you Daddy."

And Rob said,

"Brave is not being scared.
Brave is doing something
even when you are scared."

Where did he pull that from??

And then Rob immediately said, "Let's go do it! Let's go pray for that teenager!"

So they knocked on the door. And Rob shared that Brooke wanted to pray for this boyfriend.

Brooke went first.

She prayed

even though she was scared.

Brooke then came running into our house, heart beating fast, hardly able to get the words out. . . to tell me what she had done. I had no clue what was going on.

She told me that was the most scared she had ever been, but that she did it. She prayed for this teenager's back to heal, for him to be able to take his cast off.

I am sure I will get more details from Brooke in the following days. I am sure I will make her write it all out in her journal. I am sure that later this week, I will quiz Rob on every detail of this interaction. I am sure I may even hear something about it from our next door neighbors.

But right now as my family is asleep, I am thanking God for

  • a little girl who believes that God heals

  • for a little girl who has compassion for a high school boy, a boy 6 years older than she, a boy she does not know

  • for a husband that seizes the teachable moment

  • for a husband that stops the cleaning of the yard to say, Let's go do it!

  • for the reminder that sometimes I need to do "it" even when I am scared

So I know this has nothing to do directly with our adoption,
but I have a feeling indirectly it does :)
so I had to post for me to remember.

Want to see what others stopped, took notice of, and were thankful for?
Check out "Tuesdays Unwrapped" at Chatting at the Sky

Tuesday, April 13

I am constantly amazed. . .update on prayer request

I am so excited!! I just wrote this post at 2:45 pm today asking for prayer for our homestudy. I do not know if any of you had the chance to even read it yet.

After I wrote the post, I got on the couch and prayed. Prayed for our social worker. Prayed that our homestudy would get emailed to our agency for review today.

Rob and Anna walked in around 3:40. I stopped praying and painted Anna's nails and heard about Anna and Rob's day. Rob left to skateboard and I checked the computer.

Our social worker emailed the final draft of our homestudy at 3:59pm!!! About 15 minutes after I had asked God to intervene.

I reviewed the homestudy. Our social worker made some corrections and at 5:51 our homestudy was emailed to our adoption agency for review.

3 hours! I am constantly amazed by the power of God. I am constantly amazed that He allows us to be a part of His plan. He could have done all this without us but He allowed you and I to participate through prayer. God is good.

The Stages of Int'l Adoption Paperwork & Prayer Request

The paperwork stage of our international adoption is divided into 4 parts. I wanted to share so you know where we are at. I will try to explain in non adoption language to make it easy to understand.

The first part is the application process which we have completed. This is where you fill out the agency's application, get 4 letters of reference, and sign all kinds of agreements. We have already done this.

Upon completion of each paperwork stage, a fee is due. Read here if you missed hearing how God provided the fees for this stage.

The 2nd part is the homestudy. Many documents are required to even begin the homestudy process: autobiographies, answers to questionnaires, medical forms filled out by doctors, birth certificates, marriage certificate, employment verification letters, county and state background checks, 10 hours of online adoptive family training.

The social worker takes all these documents and the info she gathers in her meetings with you and creates a homestudy that is submitted to the adoption agency AND to Homeland Security, the US Citizenship & Immigration office. A fee is due at this time too. . and I gotta do a post soon on how God provided that. :)

Once we have the homestudy, we can move to the 3rd stage which is applying for "advance processing of orphan petition". You fill out a form, include the homestudy, and copies of birth certificates and marriage certificates and send it off to Homeland Security. They in turn tell you a date of when you can come in and get your fingerprints done.

We will go to Durham to get these fingerprints taken. We will then wait for them to mail us approval. . the I-171H form. . that is what we want, this goes to Ethiopia with us. It is also what is needed to complete the 4th stage of the paperwork: the dossier (go here to hear how you say that word).

The dossier is this huge stack of documents: the I-171H form, homestudy, medical forms, employment verications, bank letters, copy of tax returns, birth certificates, marriage certificate, copy of passports, family photos, reference letters, police clearances. .all notarized and sent off to the adoption agency who in turns sends it to Ethiopia for authentication by their government.

At this point are you able to receive a referral of your child.

And here is where we are at and what we need prayer for:

So we are waiting for our homestudy. . all documents have been given and all meetings have been conducted. . we just need the hard copy of our homestudy in our hands to move forward.

Will you pray with us that we would get this homestudy this week? We have been waiting quite a while, a lot longer than we were told it would take.

I do not think we are necessary in a hurry. . .as we trust God is orchestrating the coming together of us and our son just perfectly. . but we would just like to continue to move forward. . we would like to check this off our "to-do" list. . we would like to free up a little "brain energy". We sure would appreciate prayers for this homestudy to get done and in our hands.