One big question is “What exactly happened on Feb 14, 2010?” So, as best I can, let me try to explain.
As I said in the prior post, Chris and I were happy, content, fulfilled and extremely satisfied with our 3 kids. God had blessed us with 2 great boys and fulfilled our desires by giving us a girl too - a rare treasure in the Halvorson line. It would be more than fair to say that we considered ourselves “done” with having kids.
On February 14, 2010 Chris attended our Sunday school class while I stayed home with sick kids. I was very disappointed to miss it. We knew that Doug and Cristie Martine were going to be talking about adoption and sharing the experience of adopting their daughter from China in 2006. I love hearing about adoption and find the subject quite intriguing. When Chris got home, I was anxious to hear all about it. We sat in our living room and Chris began to share their story with me. Chris couldn’t get through the story without crying. He was so moved by their experience. This was more than unusual, because Chris is just not an emotional guy! So, needless to say, my very emotionally together husband surprised us both with his emotional response to the Martine’s story. I knew my husband well enough to know that this had affected him deeply. Watching him try to relay this story to me with tears streamed down his checks was the distinct moment that I knew God was trying to get our attention.
So what next? God certainly had our attention, but what was this all about? Honestly, we weren’t sure. Was this just an emotional response to a touching story? Could God possibly be calling US to adopt? Adoption hadn’t been anywhere close to our radar screen, but here we were. We had a lot of questions, but very few answers, so we began to pray, then pray and then pray some more. I also began to research everything about adoption – domestic, international, China, Korea, Russia, Africa, various agencies, adoption tax credits, and on and on and on. I basically became an expert on the adoption process and various country requirements.
Through my “research” we became aware, and profoundly broken, for the orphan crisis around the world. We read that 163 million children around the world live without a family to love them or care for them. 163 million precious children! This reality hit me like a ton of bricks. How had I been so unaware of such a disturbing crisis going on in our world? When we would tuck the boys in bed at night I would think of the many children that didn’t have a Mommy to kiss them goodnight. When Hailey would giggle with delight I thought of the millions of sweet children that didn’t know the joy that comes from unconditional love. The thoughts of kids without parents to protect and provide for their most basic needs haunted my thoughts and kept me awake until the wee hours of the night. But still, what did this all mean? This was a question I begged God to answer. I knew one thing was certain, God had called us to help orphans in their distress (James 1:27). We had become so aware of their need and doing nothing was no longer an option. We had grown to love the idea of adding a new daughter to our family, but was adopting part of God’s plan for us or was his purpose to use us in another way? This was the question that consumed much of my prayers for more than 5 months. Then on July 31st the issue was finally settled.
On July 31st we had the privledge of being at the airport to welcome home some friends that were returning to San Antonio with their new sweet daughter from China. They have 2 other kids that stayed in San Antonio during the 2 weeks their parents traveled to China to get their new blessing. It is an amazing thing to see a family reunited and to watch a boy and girl meet their new sister for the first time. It was certainly a great afternoon! That night as Chris and I talked about the airport reunion, he looked at me and said “You know we are going to do this, right?” and I said, “Yep, I know.” And just like that, 5 and a half months of seeking God’s guidance, after countless signs (more on those later), and many prayers, God gave us the peace we needed to say YES!
Yes Yes Yes YES YES YES YESSS YEEESSSS YYEEEESSSSSSSSSSSS!!!!!!!!!!!
Religion that God our Father accepts as pure and faultless is this: to look after orphans and widows in their distress and to keep oneself from being polluted by the world. James 1:27