Monthly Archives: November 2012

Running the Paper Chase Race… Finished!??

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Running the Paper Chase Race… Finished!??

We got the email today that our final piece of dossier paperwork is approved!

But first I want to say three things that are huge on my heart before they get lost in the details of what has gone on to get us to this point and what is still to come.

First, my heart is overflowing with thankfulness.  The Lord continues to be evident in every step of our journey.  The last couple months have been full of exhausting days and sleepless nights.  Elijah, our sweet 10 month old, has red swollen gums and is painstakingly cutting teeth… slowly, one at a time.  In the late nights, as I soothe and cuddle him, I am overwhelmed with gratitude for the gift of our sweet baby (who did not come to us easily) and pray earnestly for the child(ren) I know the Lord is in the process of bringing into our family.  Even though I am exhausted from lack of sleep and running the paper chase race, I have a Peace that surpasses understanding.  Thank you Lord Jesus for deepening our roots of faith and understanding of who you are through this process.

Second, our child(ren) are worth it all.  Period.  They are (or will be… only time will tell!) formed in His image and are fearfully made.  Their lives are worth every effort we make to bring them home.  The Lord has placed them deeply in our hearts, so much so, that when I do a head count and only count three, it feels like someone is missing!  So, while the paperwork and fundraising is daunting, please hear my heart loud and clear… their lives are worth it all and much more.

Third, I am blown away by the gift of you.  Encouraging notes dropped in the mail, constant prayers, financial support… there are so many people who continue to support us in so many ways.  We are humbled and reminded over and over again that this is not about us.  We thank each of YOU for answering your unique call and taking part however it is the Lord has asked you to care for orphans. (side note: I can’t wait until our child(ren) are firmly set in our family and are no longer called “orphans”.)

So, this is where we currently stand… ALL of our home study paper work is gathered, filled out, signed, notarized and approved!  We meet with our social worker next week to review and hopefully accept our finalized home study document.  It will then get sent to our adoption agency for review.  Once they give us the thumbs up, we will send it in with the rest of our I-600A application (this is the official request asking the U.S. Immigration to expedite a visa for an orphan to be allowed to be brought into the United States as our adopted child).  ALL of our I-600A paperwork is filled out, approved and ready to go.  Then we will be scheduled for fingerprints and receive our approval from U.S. Immigration.  Then we head down to the capital building for authenticating from the Secretary of State and our dossier is sent to Ethiopia!  ALL of our dossier paper work is collected, approved and ready to go too. So, all of our “doing” and “gathering” feels pretty much done.  (that is of course unless it expires and has to be renewed, but by then we will know what we are doing, right?! 🙂  It feels good to have all of our paperwork ready to go.  Now we pray as we wait for the dominos of “this, then this, then this” to come together.

This is a crazy journey.  Thank you for being faithful to pray for us.  Please continue to ask the Lord for his blessing in processing of our paperwork, for a successful Christmas tree fundraiser and for his blessing on our adopted child(ren)… and for sleep to be sweet and plentiful in the Smith household!

Celebrate Adoption Event

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oneTreasure Church is having a service focusing on adoption this Saturday, November 17th from 5-7pm.  We have been working on this service for some time and it is going to be awesome!  Fabulous message, special guest families (including GBF’s Pastor Roland Sanchez and his wife LaNae who were instrumental in our adoption journey!), media and prayer time all coming together – I am super excited.

If you are at all curious about adoption, want to minister in some way but don’t know how (your heart yearns to help but you don’t feel called to adopt), or you are in the adoption process and would love your future child and family to be prayed over – this service is for you!

The service will deepen our understanding of God’s heart for adoption, open our eyes to the need and share many tangible ways we can minister.  We will be praying for orphans world-wide and for families who are in the adoption process.

Please join us!  We will be meeting at West Salem Christian Church located at 1155 Glen Creek Road Northwest  Salem, OR 97304.  Our potluck this month is pizza and salad, so if you are able to bring a pizza or salad to add to the feast that would be great!  Also, no rsvp is needed, but if you have young children that would enjoy the children’s program could you please send me a message or post a comment so that I can help the team be prepared.

Looking forward to seeing you!

Home Study Interview

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Matt’s birthday is this Monday!  Happy Birthday Babe!!!

And guess what his sweet wife did? (with his permission of course)… scheduled our big, long, hope you pass it, home study interview that morning!  Oh yah, I also scheduled his extensive, physical exam appointment that morning too.  So, after he gets a hearing and vision test, goes over his medical history and is examined, gets a TB skin test, blood tests and urine test and instructs the doctor on how to fill out the paperwork and write his approval letter according to the agency requirements… he’ll get to head home for an interview!  Please, please, please pray his doctor’s appointment is smooth and that they are on time.  My physical exam appointment and tests took over two hours and I am really hoping his is quicker.

We are not sure what to expect for our home study interview.  We were told that she will interview each of us individually, then together and then the kids and do a walk through the house.  I appreciated our home study social workers heart and desire to place children in safe homes with loving and well-trained parents, so I get the purpose of all of the questions.  We sent her our autobiographies answering the long list of pre-interview questions (my paper was 15 pages – two pages longer than Matt’s… he teased that I was an overachiever, really his business background helped him write more concisely!)  I was feeling a bit nervous about the upcoming interview and felt like our answers needed to be just right so that she would approve us.  And then it hit me.  We are who we are.  And more importantly, God is who he is – Sovereign over the whole process.  He can use this process to have us approved according to his will for a specific age and number of children to align us up with the exact child or children that he already has predestined to place in our family.  Wow, that takes the pressure off and places my trust in the One who is trustworthy.

Please pray for our interview (we meet at 10am on Monday). Please pray for clarity of thought, wisdom in answering questions, clear communication and the Lord’s blessing over the meeting.  Also pray Matt has a fun birthday and feels extra loved on his special day!

And for a good laugh, just have to share a Josiah-ism from this morning.  After breakfast the kids were arguing, so I began to share with them Philippians 2:14-16 about not quarreling or arguing and was about to share Ephesians 4:32 to encourage them to be kind, compassionate and forgiving each other, when Josiah finishes my sentence with “hakuna matata, Momma”.  I asked, “what?!”  He looks at me and says, “You know, no worries, Momma.”  So there you have it.  The Bible and Lion King.  I do have the best job in the whole world.  How I love them!