We had some nerves on the last trip, but were mainly just beyond excited to meet our little man. Anticipating this trip has been more nerve-wracking. We've been spending our evenings preparing our answers for court and reviewing all our home study documents to make sure we're able to answer the judge's questions. I've always hated math and memorizing gross income, net income, monthly income, insurance information, retirement info etc... that's been the worst part for me. For once in my life I've been very thankful that our financial situation is pretty simple without a dozen different investments to memorize!
We can now speak succinctly about our motivation to adopt (you can imagine how hard it was for me to get that answer down to a couple sentences!) and about our plan for raising our son. Between my anxiety about giving the right answers, the formality of the court hearing, and the need to have everything mediated by a translator, I'm full of nerves about our court date.
I've been reflecting on a story in Luke 21 where Jesus talks to his disciples about impending persecution and how they will defend themselves. While I don't feel persecuted per say, I am experiencing a sense of injustice. It's not injustice on any judge's behalf- certainly these regulations exist to protect the children- but does feel rather unfair that millions of people around the globe walk into parenthood with such ease, many of whom will go on to be terrible parents and abuse or neglect their children- while we have had to struggle and fight and prove ourselves again and again to provide a loving home for a child who needs one. Again, I'm not saying this process is unnecessary, but it certainly does highlight the brokenness of the world.
This sense of injustice that I'm experiencing, and my confidence in the belief that God has led us to this adoption, has me applying Jesus' words to our own situation:
...you will bear testimony to me. But make up your mind not to worry beforehand how you will defend yourselves. For I will give you words and wisdom that none of your adversaries will be able to resist or contradict.
In all our preparation, when it comes time for us to stand before the judge and open ourselves up to her evaluation- to let her decide whether we will be this little boy's mama and papa- at the time, Christ will give us the words and wisdom to say.
So I'm making up my mind not to worry beforehand and I'm going to ask for your prayers to carry us through. If you are willing to hold us up in prayer for this trip, I'm going to ask you to print this out or write it down or bookmark this post and pray us through.
- Monday: traveling! Please pray for our safe journey. Praise God for providing us the money for these plane tickets; we have not forgotten how others gave so generously to get us to this point! Pray for our peace of mind as we travel and that we will feel healthy as we do so.
- Tuesday: arrival. Pray that the arrival will be smooth, from passing through customs, collecting our luggage, to getting into our apartment and getting groceries. Another prayer for our health is appreciated as we again navigate the headache of not drinking the water or eating anything that's been rinsed or washed. (Probably my least favorite part of traveling.)
- Wednesday: medicals. We will be seeing a number of doctors, having blood drawn, and getting x-rays done. This process takes 3-4 hours. Pray for patience, peace of mind and body, and that we pass! Praise God for our good health which means we are not worried about passing these medicals.
- Thursday: we see our little man. Pray that God has prepared his heart and mind to see us. We would love it if he remembers us. Pray that we will be able to show him our love and affection and that he continues to bond with us. I really hate the fact that we are telling him that we are Mama and Papa and then leaving. Please pray that he will not feel any sense of abandonment when we leave and that somehow God will protect him from confusing feeling about us so he can just accept our love. Praise God for keeping him safe and for providing him with good care while we cannot care for him ourselves. Praise God for being a Father to the fatherless.
- Friday: our court date. Pray for our nerves. We want the peace that passes understanding. Pray that Christ will help us to remember all the things we have prepared and give us the right words to say. Pray that the judge's deliberations will not be long so we do not have to endure waiting for that "da!"
- Saturday: we fly home. More prayers for safe travels and praise for provision for them.
Our location in Russia is 9 hours ahead of our timezone in the States, so if you are praying at night before bed you can pray for the following day and you will be carrying us in prayer as we wake up and prepare for the day ahead.
If the Lord impresses a scripture passage or a hymn or song on your heart for us, please share it! We love the encouragement we receive from our brothers and sisters in Christ.
With a profound gratitude,
Already praying for you. We just had our little girl last week so as I pray over her, I will remember to pray over you and your requests as well.ReplyDelete
So excited for you to see your sweet little man. Enjoy this trip. You'll be telling him stories about this journey for years and years.
Congratulations on your daughter's birth and thank you so much for your prayers! What a beautiful picture to have another mom praying over her daughter and remembering us as well. You have humbled me. Thank you!Delete
i saw your beautiful photo with the globe on pinterest and found your beautiful blog!ReplyDelete
reading your latest page of posts in the past 5 minutes has already brought tears to my eyes.
i will be praying for you all - and adding you to my google reader.
Oh Tara! Thank you so much for your kind words and for following us in our journey! It means so much to me. Thank you for sharing in our joy!Delete
Oh Tara! Thank you so much for your kind words and for following us in our journey! It means so much to me. Thank you for sharing in our joy!ReplyDelete
Keeping you all in my nightly prayers. Your faith is so very inspiring. Hoping your little man is safe in your arms soon.ReplyDelete
Thank you so much!Delete
A friend sent me a link to your adoption maternity photo shoot and I found your blog. My husband and I adopted our son two years ago (goodness, nearly two and a half) and are waiting for a match in our second adoption process. Your photo shoot is so beautiful and definitely something I would like us to do as well. I am so happy to have found another beautiful adoption blog to follow, and will be praying for you, John, and your sweet boy as you start this next chapter of your family adventure! Blessings to you all!!ReplyDelete
Kara I'm so glad you commented! I always love hearing from other adoptive parents! Did you blog/are you blogging about your adoptions? Thank you for following our story!Delete
I will most certainly keep you and your little man in my prayers Jill.ReplyDelete
Happy Thanksgiving my fellow Canadian. ;)
Happy Thanksgiving to you Candice! As always I am so grateful for your prayers.Delete
John and Jillian,ReplyDelete
I will be praying for you - thank you for the details of each day that help us do that in a more specific way. Joining you in the most fervent prayer for a "da" - if God sees fit, on this trip...and if His perfect plan is November, then the continued grace and peace to follow His lead.
Jacquie you always know just what to say. Thank you for your precious prayers and your encouragement. We love knowing you are holding us up and cheering us on as God unfolds this story before us.Delete
I found your story on thebump and have been following your blog for a while. I love reading your stories and hearing about your journey. I will be keeping you all in my prayers this week for a safe journey and that all goes well during your court date. It's clear how much you both love this little boy and I can't wait for him to come home with you all! He's such a beautiful boy.ReplyDelete
Melissa I love that you have been following our journey and I really appreciate your prayers for us. Thank you so much for this wonderful comment!Delete
Praying! Court lasts a while so don't get discouraged. It goes by quickly. He'll probably ask why this child. Just speak from your heart. He might ask about how your family is going to accept him and how you will keep Russian traditions alive in his life. Good luck this week. Enjoy your time with your son! Our court trip was a year ago on the 22nd.ReplyDelete
Thank you for the heads up! It is really good to be able to think through those answers before the court date!Delete
I blogged about your trip... I, uh, I hope that was okay!ReplyDelete
Of COURSE! I love that! Thanks for sharing.Delete
Loving your banner. Have a GREAT TRIP!ReplyDelete
Thank you!! It took my very best photobucket skills (which are minimal at best). Ha! Thanks for your good wishes Bethany!Delete
I just found your blog via Pinterest and am so thankful to hear your journey. My husband and I have been in a 3 1/2 year adoption roller coaster. We were literally supposed to be in the country to pick up our little girl today, and were informed the day before we were flying out that some paperwork wasn't finalized. People have no idea the agony of the wait process and the disappointment when your plans get shattered. Somehow you just know it will be worth the wait when you're holding that little one in your arms for good! I am absolutely commuted to prayer for you during your court trip week and the Lord's tabor upon your journey.ReplyDelete
Wow Khela I am so sorry that you are having to endure this sudden delay. How awful! I pray your paperwork is finalized in the next couple days and you are soon on your way to get your little girl! I know your heart is already there with her! Thank you for praying for us on our journey!Delete
Sorry...auto spell check : last sentence should have said I am COMMITTED to prayer and the Lord's FAVOR! Sorry :-)ReplyDelete
Your blog has been an inspiration to us as my husband and I consider adopting from Russia. I especially enjoyed reading about the different fundraisers you have done. It helped us to know that it can happen and we just have to work hard and have faith. Would you mind telling us what adoption agency you have been working with? Thank you for sharing your story! Have a safe trip and hopefully you can bring your little one home this trip!ReplyDelete
Hi Sarah! I am so glad our story is serving as an encouragement to you! I'd be happy to share our agency, but I don't do so publicly. If you send me a private message via my facebook page (link on the upper right of my blog) I will give you the link to their site!Delete
I discovered your blog on Pinterest, it was linked to your adoption photo shoot (super cute)! I just wanted to let you know that I am praying for you as see your son again. I wanted to send you a hymn that will hopefully encourage you as you have to leave your little man and go to court and then come back home.ReplyDelete
"Because He Lives I can face tomorrow!"