As I sit here and reflect on life, I can’t help but think of where life is as I know it. I am blessed with the most awesome wife who is so genuine and caring towards others. Jenn gives everyone the benefit of doubt and is passionate about getting to know people. I love her very much and cannot believe what God has blessed me with. I have three beautiful girls Isabella being the oldest 7, Ava the middle 5, and Audyn the youngest turning two in another week. These children are beautiful in so many ways. Each one has their own special gifts that God has blessed them with. I pray every day for them and ask that God uses them to fulfill his purpose in life. God has a special plan for each and every one of us in our lives. Of course, we all have our ups and downs and all around no one ever said life is going to be easy. At church this past Sunday Pastor Ryan was talking about the bible character Job. In the bible, Job was a wealthy man, an important man, a man of character, a man of wisdom, a man that was respected. You could say Job had it all. Until one day God allowed Satin to test Job’s faith. Job experienced great trials in life. He lost his wealth, his friends, his family and finally his health. God allowed satin to test Job in ways we could never imagine. Still through the trails Job remained faithful to God. At the end of Job, God blessed him and gave him a new beginning.
As I reflect on Job’s life we could all question how? How did Job lose everything and still remain faithful? How??? It has been clear to me that this is how. Job experienced God like no one else did. Job understood that through his life that God blessed him and that if he remained faithful that God would always protect him and provide for him. See we all have a calling in life and each person’s calling is different. God uses each and every one of use to serve his mission on earth. If we allow God to take control of our lives we can experience God’s fullness. Job learned this! That is why Job remained faithful to God. One of my favorite verses in scripture is this:
“Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat or drink; or about your body, what you will wear. Is not life more important than food, and the body more important than clothes? Look at the birds of the air; they do not sow or reap or store away in barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not much more valuable than they? Who of you by worrying can add a single hour to his life?” Matthew 25-27
As I reflect on these verses it is quite simple. Turn everything over to God and everything will be alright. We know we will all experience trials life is not easy. During life’s trials our faith gets stronger and it changes and shapes who we are.
As Jenn mentioned on a previous post I have felt the heart to adopt for some time now. It wasn’t until before Audyn was born that Jenn and I had discussions of adoption. There were many ups and downs in our discussions. After many, many conversations I realized through prayer that we were supposed to have another biological child. So along came Audyn. As time slipped away and Audyn started getting a little older I felt to myself that life felt complete. I have a wife, and three girls my life is now complete. See, ever since I was little I pictured my life with three children. Hmmmm ””” I”””” pictured my life with three children. Little did I know that God was tugging at my heart. From that point on I had many discussions with God. I felt him calling me to adopt but I was resistant. I didn’t want more than three children. Little did I know it wasn’t what I wanted it was what God wanted! There were many nights that I had dreams of orphans being left by their mother crying for help. I would wake up in the morning and try to forget the dreams. When I would go places with my family I would see other families with biological parents and adopted children. The children of the adopted parents would smile at me and often they would wave at me. I would think to myself and look around are they waving at me? I didn’t even smile at them first. Why is this happening? God was speaking! I had a dream one night where God got a hold of me. In my dream there was a lot of crying from a child. When I looked up I saw an orphan child crying with its hands out towards me. As I looked a nanny was holding the orphan walking back into the orphanage. It was vivid that the child was crying out to me “save me”. Wow, God was speaking!!! This dream still brings tears to my eyes and emotions as I reflect on its purpose. It was at that moment that I didn’t resist God anymore. I knew what God’s calling was and it was clear. We were going to adopt. As Jenn mentioned before in another post, she was at a place where I once was “resistant”. I prayed for Jenn often and asked God to show her signs and to speak to her. I did not take matters into my own hands and force this upon Jenn. I knew at the right time God would call her.
So where are we today? We submitted our application to Holt International and we have been approved. Jenn has taken the upper hand on gathering all of the paperwork needed for our home study and dossier. Paperwork includes getting copies of marriage licenses, birth certificates, and ordering criminal background checks, child abuse clearances, and we began to apply for passports. While compiling our paper work, our next step is to complete our home study. Our home study will begin within the next two weeks.
As Jenn has mentioned before we don't know where all of the funds are coming from to pay for the adoption. It's not like we have been saving money for this. For those of you that know me, I deal with numbers daily at work. It is in my blood to sit down and do a budget and make sure that I have everything accounted for. I mentioned to Jenn about a month ago that I am not going to do this. God has called us to have faith and to realize that through this mission that he will provide what we need. I am not going to lie. At times I feel great about this decision and other times I struggle. This is human nature just as I described how Job was feeling during his times of trials. One thing remains certain we will always come back to a verse that speaks clearly to us. "Live a life that is worthy of the calling you have received." Ephesians 4:1. Jenn has taken a few cleaning jobs to help cover some expenses and we have some savings to fall back on. The rest is up to God. He clearly states in the Bible that he will help the orphans and the widows. If anyone has any suggestions on fundraisers that could help benefit this mission, please feel free to share. We will continue to keep you posted as our journey continues. Thank you for all of your prayers!!