let me back up a bit...
so this lovely woman who has been following along on my blog wrote me awhile back. they had been also pursuing a special needs adoption in china and had been finally matched with a little girl last may. they were feeling quite overwhelmed in the decision of it all. this little girl also had some very complex heart issues like bella. my new blog-friend, amy, shared a bit of her story with me and was asking for encouragement. this step felt huge for them. unbelievably huge and incredibly scary. i was so overwhelmed with her story and her bravery -- because these things DO require just a little courage -- i wrote her back immediately. by a strange turn of events, the post showed up back on my own blog (june 6th - "mama's mooncake"...you can read what i wrote, but click on the title and it will direct you to amy's blog as well --- go ahead, look for it and read!). i was so tickled with her story and moved by her honesty, instead of erasing the accidental post, i left it there thinking to myself, "you never know...you just never know who might read this and be touched."
i am not really sure what i want from my blog. honestly, i'm conflicted at times on the things i choose to post. too much? too little? too what? not quite certain, i just kind of go with my heart on it all. but i can say with confidence, i very much want my writing to encourage others to consider adoption. i don't mean inspire -- that assumes too much. but i do mean encourage. sometimes we just need a little push when we're ready to jump. sometimes we need a big old shove. i know we did. i know rick did. i certainly did. i would love to chronicle someday all the little pushes and big shoves we received in the days leading up to us saying YES! it's an amazing story -- one that only God could think up and one that only God could weave together.
anyway, this sweet woman, who wrote me months ago -- well, yep, you guessed it...she and her husband were the ones at the dinner table with the sims last night in china. and between these two couples from georgia, sat three little girls: mary henley, maggie and qwinn! i mean can't you just see it? how can any of us not get teary-eyed over that image. maybe because i know a little bit about both of these stories and the fears and the hardships and the worries and the work and the wonder involved. maybe that is why i can't hear this kind of stuff without feeling overwhelmed with God's sovereignty and grace and goodness. i hadn't caught up with amy in awhile and had no idea she was traveling at the exact same time as mike and meritt. but there they all are. two families with big lives back here in georgia...and even bigger hearts opening up to their new daughters in china. it is truly amazing. (and, it goes without saying, i am truly j e a l o u s).
none of this is about me, however. but i am feeling a little giddy this morning that God allowed me a small glimpse into how He works. how He calls people for a time such as this. how He calls people for a need such as this. how He calls people for children such as these. how He calls ordinary, average, everyday, normal people. there are over 165 million orphans in our world today. children like bella and mary henley and maggie and qwinn. oh friends, the need is so great, it is staggering to think about. but what i want to reflect in my writing and my sharing of these other stories, is that the blessing is even greater. it is greater than we can possibly imagine. i don't mean everything is perfect or easy. good heavens no! read a little bit about maggie's tearful leaving of her caregivers...read a little bit about bella's life saving surgery at 18months alone in a hospital...read a little bit about the freezing cold orphanage mary henley was living in...look at the pictures of where these girls were abandoned as tiny babies...these are not easy things. i won't ever write that all of this is easy, but it is good. so good. so very good. not just for these girls who get to come home to warm beds and big brothers and sweet sisters and bowls of oatmeal and christmas mornings and bedtime stories... but it is good for us -- the families who wait for them and then welcome them home. it is amazing for us, in fact. i often have people stop me and ask about bella. (my family will tell you i ALWAYS stop and talk to these people). they want to know her story. and when i quickly tell them even the littlest bit about her, their reaction is always the same: "oh, what a fortunate little girl. oh, what a lucky little girl. oh, what a blessed little girl!" that's what i hear, time and time again, and without fail, my response is always, "yes, but we are even more blessed. we are the lucky ones. we are the fortunate ones." sometimes it seems a pat kind of answer, but i only have to watch bella being tickled by a big brother and hear her uncontrollable laughter. i only have to walk into her room at night and watch the even breathing of her body and the heavy lashes of her closed eyes. i only have to feel her tiny arms tight around my neck to know we are blessed abundantly with the gift of this girl.
one other thing...this friend, amy, also wrote me several times to encourage me in my cancer battle. she was praying for me all the way through. her own mother battled cancer... and she could relate. and well, most of you know, meritt was my right hand woman throughout this journey. she attended every doctor's visit and was with me every step of the ugly way. i had an appointment this past week, and i believe it was the very first one she was not along for. (i think she has a good excuse). anyway, i find that kind of cool too...these women, this journey, that journey, china, blogposts and precious girls... how do we ever doubt the Master Creator, the Weaver Designer, the Ordainer of Days, the Alpha and Omega...the one who loved and pursued and adopted us.
so, i've asked my friends and readers to pray for the sims family as they bring home their girls. i love that so many of you are following along in their unbelievably cool journey. and now, let me add another precious family...amy, anthony and their daughter qwinn. qwinn's adoption was in the same room as bella's. you'll maybe recognize the wall behind them. seems hard to believe we stood there only 18 months ago with our little girl.
if you do happen to get to amy's blog "mama's mooncake" ... you'll find this prayer in the upper right hand corner. i think it kind of sums up what this is really all about.
I know that you are growing our hearts so that we will have a love for this baby, that is from you. One that exceeds the boundaries of the womb. The kind of love that put Christ on the cross....the kind that sent Him to die, so that you could adopt me. Thank you for this love. Amen