The Blessings of an Unknown Road

May 13, 2016 adopting later in life, Central Nervous System, Family Stories, reluctant husband, spina bifida, toddler adoption 20 Comments

Let me start by saying I am an ordinary middle aged woman living an ordinary life but just happen to have five extraordinary children, three of whom are adopted. My children have forever changed my life. My oldest son is 31 with a beautiful wife and two precious children of his own. My second oldest daughter is 28 and newly married to a wonderful man.

For twenty five years – and I literally mean 25 years – I begged and nagged my husband for a bigger family. I always wanted more children but was unable to have anymore. The answer was always a resounding NO. Apparently, 25 years of begging and nagging can wear a man down. So at the ripe old age of 46, I became a mom again, not through nine months of pregnancy, but through the wonderful miracle of adoption.

When my husband finally said yes, I was very specific in praying for what I wanted: a healthy Hispanic female. After three years of registering here and there and going through a lot of letdowns and disappointments, God indeed answered my prayer. He filled the request exactly as I had asked. We were present the day a beautiful, healthy little Hispanic girl was born!! She was perfect! My long awaited dream had finally come true, and I felt that we had been blessed beyond anything we could have ever hoped for. We were complete – and as my husband would said – done! We would raise this child in our “old age” and spoil her rotten!

However, God does not work that way, and little did we know, He definitely had other plans for our lives. You see, when God answers a prayer, He does not answer it for our own selfish reasons. He answers it for the good of others. With that being said, a little boy of seven entered our lives – very unexpectedly and through some very odd circumstances – eight months after the birth of our daughter. Our life of being blessed and getting what we wanted turned into, “I have given you what you wanted, and now I am asking you to take what I want to give you.”

“Nooooo,” was my initial answer. “Why God, in the middle of the one of the happiest times of my life would you want me to do this?” The sad reality is we say no way too many times. We are scared, selfish, and try to rationalize any way out with any excuse we can.

If we would just say yes! Yes, I will trust you God. I will not fight it or ask questions. I will walk down the road you have chosen for me.” You see, if we listen and obey Him, the road He chooses will lead us to some pretty amazing places along the way, places we never would have gotten to experience had we not obeyed.

This little boy has taught me that I truly can do all things through Christ, who strengthens me!

A little boy who had been adopted not once, but twice and failed both times…
A little boy who had literally been thrown to the wayside, unwanted…
A little boy, who doctors had said was autistic and had ADHD, violent behavior, and a long list of other problems…
A little boy who just needed to love and be loved…
A little boy, who today is 13 and showing signs of being an amazing teenager…
A little boy, who is not autistic, who is not violent, and who I am proud to call my son!!!

He opened the door to not being afraid of the unknown. He taught me there are no guarantees in this life; it’s okay to love sight unseen; this life that we live is not our own. We are put here to do a work, and whatever it is God has called you to do, then do it with all your heart and soul. My son led me down the road God had really chosen for me, and he opened the door for another blessing along the way.

Because of this journey, I found myself on the road to China to a blessing named Emma. I would have never met Emma had I not just listened and obeyed. After adopting two children, I guess I really thought I was Wonder Woman. Especially after adopting my son, I was fearless! At the ripe old age of 48, I flew to China without my husband and met our Emma. She was 15 months old at the time and her special need was spina bifida. Again, on this road, so many unknowns that will never be answered. It doesn’t matter. We have already been there and done that. Some questions are better left unanswered anyway. She has so many more health issues than was disclosed. Again, it doesn’t matter – it’s really okay. God says, “Just stay on the road, and keep following the path I’ve laid out for you. Just keep going because I am going to show you miracle after miracle in this child’s life.” And…He is doing just that.


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Please don’t be afraid to listen to God and venture out. Live the life He has for you.

I will admit, I did not research spina bifida. I did not join a support group, or call a hundred people for their opinion. I just knew there was a little girl that needed a mama and a daddy to love and be loved in return, and if I could provide that for her, then God would provide the rest. She is a beautiful child with a spirit to match it. She loves life and lives it to the fullest. She does not let her disabilities stop or hinder her in any way. I have never seen a more courageous little girl in my life. She has faced her future like a lion. She is intelligent, active, and loved. Our little Emma is five today, and she amazes me. God knew she was my daughter. He just needed my obedience to walk that road, and I am so glad I did!


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The road may not be paved – it may not be straight, but if you go on it and stay on the path He has chosen for you, you will be blessed beyond anything you could ever imagine.

I beg you. If you are considering adoption through the China special needs program, just do it. God will provide the way. You do not have to be a nurse, a doctor, or a counselor.

God is not looking for someone with a degree to do His work. He doesn’t call the qualified, he qualifies the called.


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-guest post by Jane



20 responses to “The Blessings of an Unknown Road”

  1. Kisha Kimsey says:

    This story is absolutely beautiful and amazing. So blessed to know this lady.

  2. Julie says:

    Hi Jane, I would like to share my adoption journey with you and ask for prayers! Can I email you?

  3. Jennifer rollins says:

    Simply beautiful 🙂

  4. Kelsey says:

    Such an inspirational read! Such a beautiful family!

  5. Brandi says:

    Amazing story!

  6. Kristy Williamson says:

    Can’t even see right now because of the tears that flowed down my face as I read this. I have chills… I’m proud to say that I belong to this wonderful family not only as ” church member ” at the church they pastor but also as one of the ones whom they call their ” First Adopted Daughter!” They took me in as a ” baby CHRISTIAN” and they have treated me like I was their own. They have seen me at my worst and also my best and given me NOTHING but LOVE, DIRECTION, & SUPPORT ALONG MY JOURNEY!! I’ve also had the honor and privilege of being apart of these wonderful moments of them becoming parents to each of these awesome children. They are definitely God Given and each a great part of my life as well. They even call me ” Nanny!!” God says, ” What is impossible with man is made possible with God!” Matthew 19:26 HE MADE WHAT SEEMED IMPOSSIBLE FOR SO LONG BECOME POSSIBLE RIGHT ON TIME!!!

  7. Gerri Miller says:

    That’s beautiful!
    Just like you and your family!

  8. Victoria Credeur says:

    ❤️❤️ Such a beautiful story! God never lets down and always provides the way! Always amazing to see how God works!

  9. Lisha says:

    This is the sweetest, most touching thing I have read.. Sis Jane and Bro Greg are truly God sent people.. I am blessed to know and call them family..

  10. Nan says:

    I have loved Greg & Jane long before they were called to be Pastors. They are truely amazing. They both have a helping loving heart no matter who you are or your past.

  11. Michelle Perkins says:

    Such an amazing story written by an amazing woman

  12. Julie says:

    What a beautiful family you have! And what a lovely story of surrender to God. Thanks for the encouragement!

  13. Toni Karam-Fabre says:

    Jane,

    Your words are as beautiful as your family. I am so happy that I have been able to meet these sweet little ones of yours. God has truly blessed you and your husband just as much as He has blessed each of your children!

  14. Lynn Martin says:

    Jane Cottongin you are an amazing woman. God bless your family!!! Lynn Martin. Jeremy Goodwins mom ????????

  15. April says:

    Beautiful story!! I love watching Aubrie smile while playing softball.

  16. Jennifer Ballard says:

    Amazing women and an amazing family❤️❤️❤️ Thank God for families like yours.

  17. Darlene Doyle says:

    Jane is a wonderful friend of mine that has always been by my side no matter what time day or night if I need her she is always there. You have a heart of gold. God has blessed you for your obedience to him. Love u.

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