Friday, October 21, 2011

The Road To Big Brother....

Oh, MY, how BLESSED we are to have such wonderful family and friends to join us in the jumping up and down; the praising of God and His miraculous works; and in the screaming out in PURE JOY!!!!  We are awed by the wonderous works of our Heavenly Father!  Bringing us one child is such a miracle and blessing.......but blessings our socks off with the surprise of TWO BOYS is.......well......I'm speechless!  (and that doesn't happen very often! ha!)

I'll try to catch you up on the details that lead us to "Big Brother."  As with Baby K, we cannot announce his name until he is "officially" and legally our son ~ even though BOTH boys are OURS in our hearts already!!!

Remember how we felt lead to add our names to the list for two children, back before we were ever matched with our Baby K?  We just really felt God putting it on our hearts that He had chosen two children for us, so we asked AWAA to open us to the availability of two children, while keeping us also on the "singleton" list ~ one infant boy 0-6 months.

Following that change, we were laying on a blanket at the park one sunny day, reading "From Ashes to Africa,"  which shares the Bottomly Family story of their first adoption from Ethiopia.  There was a section of the book that spoke of an older boy in the orphanage that they referred to as "Denim Boy" (because he was wearing denim the day they met him).  It expanded upon this boy's story, and it moved me to tears.  So much so, that I turned to Jeff and said, wiping my tears so I could see him, "Maybe our second adoption will be an older child."  Jeff's heart melted when I shared what I had just read, and after reading the book, himself, he too, felt like God had spoken to his heart about a child of an older age.

Then, weeks after reading this book, I saw a 10 year old boy on the Waiting Child List (meaning he was available for adoption), and my heart was burdened to pray particularly hard for him ~ which I did.  And when his family chose him, we were blessed to be asked to take Gabe a care package for his family.  Oh, the FUN of hanging with Gabe!  It melted my heart that day to watch he and Jeff interact and play, and both Jeff and I felt that similar "heart-thing" toward an older child.  Jeff shared that he believed both Denim Boy and Gabe were placed on our hearts to further prompt us to consider adopting our own older child one day.  The very next day, we interacted with a sweet, precious girl at the Transition House, and guess how old she was!?!?!?!?  Yup!  Ten years old!  "What is this 'hear thing' for ten-year-olds?" we'd ask one another.

Two days later, we met who is now Baby K's "Big Brother."  We were visiting an orphanage that was bigger and busier than any other we had previously visited.  The children were so excited to see us, hug us, and play!  When I looked down and caught the beautiful brown eyes of this sweet boy, I felt my heart literally LEAP and start beating faster.  I immediately prayed for him, as I could not deny that God had him stand out to me above any of the other precious children.  It was as if God had shined a light directly over this boy for only me to see!

I asked God what the prompting meant, but only felt Him encouraging me to reach out to him.  It was a busy time, with so many children, but I was able to ask "Big Brother" his name, and he shared with me his beautiful name and tole me how old he was.  Yes, as you already know, he too, was TEN YEARS OLD!!!!!  It gave me chills to hear him say it.  I turned to get Jeff to meet "Big Brother" but could not find Jeff amongst all of the kiddos, and when I eventually found Jeff, I could no longer find "Big Brother."  So, unfortunately daddy has not yet met his older son....well, face-to-face that is......

Jump forward to our last day in Ethiopia.  Very early that last morning, I had gone up to the rooftop of our Guest House to have some "God time."  While greeting the sun as it rose, I was praising Him and thanking Him for our precious son, Baby K.  I was thanking Him for His felt presence all week and especially this heavy morning, knowing we would be leaving our sweet baby boy in Ethiopia that night.    I was praying over all of the children we had met that week, and asking God to bring each one to their family.  I was praying over our personal family ~ sweet Baby K and any other children God already knew He would be bringing to us.  I especially prayed for the 10 year old girl and 10 year old boy we felt drawn to, asking God to move mountains if one of them was meant to be our child.  I was, once again, laying all of our children at His feet, asking Him to intervene and complete the good work that He had begun in building our family.  

Although my heart was heavy, God's presence was near.  Honey came up and joined me in greeting the day and praising, thanking and beckoning our Lord.  It was peaceful.  It was beautiful.  And then we saw him.  One single boy standing in the yard of the nearby orphanage we had visited a few days before.  I waved to the boy, and he waved back.  Tears started rolling down my cheeks, as I knew that I knew it was that sweet 10 year old boy, "S."  Jeff tried to help me understand that many boys live there, and I couldn't know it was "S," but I assured him with confidence, "That is him!  I know it!  I feel it!  I know him!"  With the zoom of our video camera, it was confirmed.  Of all the children, this little boy was the one standing below waving to us and blowing us kisses.  I begged God to help "S" feel the love I was hoping to shower on him with my returned blown kisses.  "What if he is meant to be our second son?"  I asked Jeff.  And my faith-filled husband replied, "Then God will bring him to us.  Then God will bring him to us."  After a time of engaged waving and blown kisses with "S" and the other children who had now joined him, it was time to for them to go inside.  And time for us to go downstairs and start the day. The ache in my heart that morning, knowing I may never lay eyes on that boy again, just added to the agony I was feeling over leaving Ethiopia that night.

Low and behold, not long after returning home, AWAA had gotten all of "Big Brother's" paperwork in order.  He was now adoptable.  I was, once again, looking into the eyes of this sweet boy, as he was posted on the Waiting Child List.  He was ready and now waiting to be adopted!

God kept him on our hearts throughout the next couple of weeks, until one day we both felt prompted to ask how we could review his file.  We were told we needed our caseworker to write a letter stating she would approve us for a child of this age, should we decide to pursue adopting him.  While she was writing this letter, another family asked to review "Big Brother's" file.  We were shocked, because, by now the excitement was building and we were feeling as if we were hearing God that this might very well be our second son!  

I read one blog that night.  ONE.  And hadn't been in the blog world much the last few weeks!  The ONE I read was about a family who was so convinced that a little 4 year old from their agency's WCL was their daughter.  However, while trying to get their paperwork in order to review her file, another family chose to review this girls file.  The couple was devastated.  Until they watched God lead that family away from the girl, so that the blog family could become her parents!  An overwhelming peace took over me.  God is the Almighty God.  Nothing happens in life without first passing through His hands.  "God has this!" I assured myself.  What a blessing for this boy!  TWO families seeking him!  I went to bed that night with the peace of God, knowing that if this boy was meant to be our son, God would gently guide His precious child to exactly the parents He has always intended for him!  Days later, we learned that we could review this boy's file!  God had done it!  He had kept this boy available for US!  We felt it!

Needless to say, all fell into place and we have completed the Referral Acceptance paperwork!  "Big Brother" is going to be our second son!  THAT is why God prompted us to become approved for two children!  THAT is why He kept opening our hearts to ten-year-olds!  THAT is why this boy stood out so clearly to me!  THAT is why we got our own special "good-bye" waving/kissing session with this boy from the rooftop!  THAT is why this precious boy has never left our hearts since leaving Ethiopia!


Oh, and yes, as many of you have said, the good that has come out of this extended wait for a mowcya letter, is THIS!!!  Because we have not yet passed court, we can quickly get approved by our government for an older child, and AWAA is going to try their best to include this adoption as part of our first Dossier!  "Big Brother" is the second child God put on our hearts from early on in this adoption!


I know this is a long post.  SO MANY beautiful details on this road to "Big Brother!"  I wanted to capture them here!  THANK YOU for wanting to share in the tapestry of God's work!  I cannot even believe how beautifully he has orchestrated all of this!  GO, GOD!!!!!

So what now?  We have been approved by our caseworker for an older child, and we have sent off the request for our government to update our I-171H (showing government approval of an older child).  All in four days!  Wow, God, you are on the MOVE!!!  LOVE IT!!!  If things keep up like this, we should be able to have our first visit with "Big Brother" when we go to pick up "Baby K," and "Big Brother" should be able to come HOME 1-2 months later!!!  Can you believe it!?!?

Only God could orchestrate such details!  Only God could bless our socks off like this!!!

Praying for continued favor over our boys!  Praying for a QUICK I-171H form and for Baby K's APPROVAL LETTER SOON!!!!!

And in the in utter AWE and GRATITUDE for God answering our prayers far better than we could have ever imagined!!!!!

"He has made EVERYTHING beautiful in its time" Ecc 3:11


erica said...

Absolutely BEAUTIFUL!!!! Only God would be able to do something so incredible - Praise His Name!!! We are celebrating with you, and wish you much peace as you look forward to bringing home BOTH of your precious sons! :)

Alison said...

So amazing!!! Love hearing how God orchestrated every single detail! Can't wait for ya'll to have BOTH of your boys home!!!

Dan and Chrissy said...

WOW!!! So amazing! I'm not going to lie, I got a little teary reading The Road to Big Brother : ) Very sweet! And, very exciting!!! Wishing you all the best as you prepare to bring your two sons home!!!

Kim said...

WOW!!! I don't even know what to say other than that GOD IS SO GOOD!! So happy for your family!!

Jennie said...

I hope this gives you hope . . . when we decided to accept the four kiddos, we too had to update our I171. We prayed over that thing, sent it off and prayed some more. We got the approval back in less than a week! God moved those mountains so quickly!

Soooooooo happy for you guys and for 'big brother'. Such a sweet ending to a long road. :-)

Elle J said...

So grateful to walk beside your blog and read firsthand the journey God has made for you, your husband, and your TWO boys. I am so grateful for this "silly thing called blogging" that I can see HIS Miracles and Blessings. This post gives me chills, and Hope for all of life situations. Blessings to you, Debb!!! xo

carrie said...

Thank you for sharing this beautiful God story! Drawing strength from you experiences, believing that He has been so faithful in building your family, and He will surely do the same for ours in His time.
P.S. Love Ecc. 3:11, I quote it to myself often.

Wife said...


Meliski said...

Wow. This is awesome Debb! I haven't had much time to check out blogs lately, but am SO GLAD that I was caught up on yours today! So much wonderful news! I will keep your family in my prayers. Can't wait to see your family all together.

Tarah said...

I am so excited for you guys and can't wait to meet your boys! :) Hopefully sometime soon we can actually hang out.

April D said...

Your faith and joy are radiating in this post. It is beyond encouraging to hear how you've matured throughout this process, surrendering your own desires and timelines to the Master Timeline God's prepared for your family. If you had not been attentive to the Spirit's voice and open to his leading, just imagine all that you'd be missing out on. UNIMAGINABLE! Beyond excited for your growing family. :)

Anonymous said...

Praise God! How exciting and how joyful! Congratulations!

Unknown said...

DEBB!!!! I haven't been blogging much (sweeeeet Mihret keeps me busy) :) ....and after a dear friend asked me if I have read about what is happening with your adoption.... And shared about Big Brother... I totally FREAKED!!!! Oooooooooh DEBB!!!!! I am praising God and totally thrilled to hear HE has blessed you guys with TWO sweet boys!!!!!!!! I AM SOOOOOOOO HAPPY FOR YOU!!!!! Sincerely, completely and TOTALLY OVERJOYED!!!! GOD IS GOOOOOOOOD - ALL THE TIME!!!! I will be PRAYING BIG TIME for you guys and your boys and that you are HOME as a beautiful family of FOUR in record speeeeed!!!! Sending you high fives, big hugs and some big ole loud screams from Seattle!!!!!! XOXOXO

The Davidsons said...

WOW!!! I am so glad I checked in today to see how things are going. What an amazing & beautiful story you have!! Congratulations!!

Heather and Adam said...

This just brought tears to my eyes! Love how God works! What a beautiful story of God's blessings when we listen and follow his prompting in our lives! Congratulations!
Adam and Heather Cheney:)

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