I wouldn’t describe either of them as typical.
No, I’m not talking about my children – although the same statement could perhaps be true of them. I’m talking about their referral day stories. Both daughters came to us under very unique circumstances, so it stands to reason that their referral day stories are unique as well.
Take Miss A’s story, for example. When we received Miss A’s referral, we had just hit rock bottom in our adoption journey – unsure of if God even wanted us to continue. Perhaps this is how it all ends, we thought. We don’t understand the what or the why, but we’ll trust Him wherever He leads. And if that means not adopting, then so be it.
But our network of praying friends and our incredibly supportive agency worker encouraged us to stay the course, stay open to the possibility. And so we did. Sad as it is to admit now, we were anything but excited when “the new list” came out. Missing was the typical nervous energy and excited anticipation of news of a match from our agency. Defeated and worn down, we simply went to bed, deciding to check our email the next morning.
Weeping may last through the night, but joy comes with the morning. Psalm 30:5b
Logging into email the next morning, we found message from our agency worker. She had locked a child for us, a child with a need we had felt comfortable with. Sadly, still shell-shocked and feeling defeated, we had to admit we didn’t know if she was the one God wanted us to adopt.
We saw her beautiful, smiling face and read the facts of her file. We talked endlessly with each other, with our prayer warriors, and with our agency worker. How gentle and patient they were as they walked us through our pain and doubt and uncertainty.
It wasn’t about her. Our doubt. Our hesitation. Our needing to process. None of it was about her. It was all about us…and Him.
Where He led us thus far in this adoption journey was filled with pain and questions. Would we – could we trust Him as He continued to lead?
My thoughts are nothing like your thoughts,” says the Lord, “And my ways far beyond anything you could imagine. Isaiah 55:8
So God did what He does. He was patient with our questioning and wrestling and processing. He was powerful, moving mountains and infusing the undeniable confirmation we were so desperate to receive. He was faithful, not leaving us to wonder where He was in this rock-bottom place. He restored our hopes. Dashed as they were, they were made new in ways that were beyond what we had imagined.
And in the end, He made it more than clear that this precious child – with twinkling eyes and robust cheeks looking at us through our computer screen – was most definitely our daughter.
I used to feel bad that her referral story wasn’t what I imagined to be typical – that we didn’t gush at first sight and instantly know beyond a shadow of a doubt that she was ours. Instead, I now see that her referral story is the best kind because it’s hers…ours. And through all of the private details and the ones I’ve shared here, God was telling us about Himself and His deep, patient, enduring, passionate, and abiding love for us…for her.
So, no. I wouldn’t describe Miss A’s referral day story as typical. But if we’re honest, when we are following God’s plan, is anything typical?
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What about you? Do you have a referral day story you’d like to share? It may have happened years ago or just recently. Perhaps you’ve never taken the time to write it all down, or maybe you’ve already written about your child’s referral day on your blog. Whatever the case may be, we’d love for you to share your story with the WAGI community! Use the link up below to provide a direct link to your referral day blog post. And while you’re at it, take the time to visit and comment on other referral day stories. It’s in sharing our stories that community is built and God is glorified!
18 years in the classroom as a teacher is nothing compared to parenting three little ones at home full-time. Through their three daughters, God has revealed Himself most clearly to them. He not only worked a miracle in giving them their biological daughter, He continued to show Himself in mighty ways throughout adoption journeys in China and Bhutan that were anything but normal. You can read more about their family on their personal blog We Are Family.