Friday, May 6, 2016

The Journey ~ Reflection and Thankfulness

We had an incredible trip to China.  Well, if you consider no flight delays and the entire trip taking only 19 hours, it was incredible!

We landed in Beijing at 3:15 pm Thursday, and were met by our guide, Angela!  I've been wanting to meet this incredible gal for years!Angela is co-founder of Ladybugs N Love, and she's sent tons of care packages to our waiting children over the years.  If you need to send a care package, get an update or need an incredible gal, she's the one, y'all!

We settled into our room, enjoyed noodles and dumplings and crashed by 8 pm to prepare for a full Friday.  We checked out at 6:30 am, and one of the places we visited was the Great Wall.
 This is my fifth visit to one of the Seven Wonders of the World, and honestly, it continues to awe me.
It was such a beautiful day we just sat on one of the watch towers and talked about our common passion - Jesus.

 We tried something new - a toboggan ride down the hill.  It was the best!
 We took our time having dinner with Angela and our driver before heading to the airport for our next destination, Zhengzhou!

We checked into the Hilton in ZZ at 1:30 am, and I was suddenly wide awake at the sight of this:
An empty crib which will soon hold a very special treasure.

That got me thinking...
We are so blessed to even be here.  On this journey.  Starting another adventure.  Adding another family member.  
Who knew?
Ten months ago it went something like this:  I saw a picture of a beautiful little guy and texted Clayton, "There is a precious little treasure who needs a family," and his reply was, "Then we will pray for a family."  I said, "No, we are his family!"
That night we talked and prayed, and the next day he said, "Yes."
Yes to an amazing little boy.  And yes to surrender.  We knew we couldn't do this on our own.  All we had to offer was our hearts and our home.
So, from the moment we said yes till the day before we traveled, we praised God that He would bring our son home, in His time and in His provision.  
We fundraised the entire time.  Some days it felt like I might hit a wall.  It was exhausting, and yet I always had enough energy to carry on.
It was humbling.
Asking for help always is.
Selling t-shirts, baking goodies, planning dinners, sorting through and pricing mounds of treasures donated for 2 garage sales, applying for grants, shaving every dollar we could from paychecks, it seemed like we were thousands of dollars away.  And then it all came together.  Right.on.time.
And we were amazed.  We still are.
It's what we had prayed for and praised God for. And yet, we were amazed.
Although we prayed expectantly and praised God constantly, we never took for granted that we'd be able to bring our son home.
The process is arduous.  Sometimes even disheartening.  There is room for fear.  And doubt.  And even though they may seem valid, doubt and fear are from the enemy.  He hates families.  He hates redemption.
Only God can move mountains and beat insurmountable odds to redeem a life.
And so we are in awe.
We are humbled.
We are thankful.
So many of you have joined us in this journey!  You have prayed.  You have encouraged.  You have shared.  You have given.  Even sacrificially.  Thank you isn't sufficient.  You will never know how thankful we are for the part you've played in helping us bring Kaison home.  From the bottom of our hearts, THANK YOU!
In 48 hours we will hold our precious son.  And you can witness the fruition of God's plans.  Something only He could stir in our hearts.


Audra said...

AMEN!! Love your hearts! Love following your journeys! Cannot wait to meet sweet Angela too! Cannot wait to see your precious boy in your arms!

Hope Rising Farm said...

Such an encouragement to those on this journey of loving such sweet treasures! Enjoy

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