Our Red Thread of Hope: An Advocacy Success Story

September 21, 2016 adopting a boy, Advocacy, Family Stories, pre-adoption, referral, should we adopt?, switching agencies, waiting for referral 4 Comments

The Chinese have an ancient proverb that says, “An invisible red thread connects those who are destined to meet regardless of time, place, or circumstances. The thread may stretch or tangle but will never break.”

Back in July 2015, the Lord called our family out of the Ethiopia adoption program, where had waited for over three years to adopt, and He moved us into the China adoption program. We could see His hand clearly leading us, and felt confident to move forward. He laid on our hearts a theme: Hope.

We felt strongly that this was our “season of hope” in our adoption journey, and God laid specifically Jeremiah 29:11 on our hearts: “For I know the plans I have for you declares the Lord, plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you a hope and a future.”

Something about knowing that God did have a plan for our family and a hope for our child gave us such a peace. We were trusting that the Lord would continue to lead us as He has all along.

A month after switching adoption programs, we saw our sweet boy’s face for the first time here, on No Hands But Ours. I was familiar with NHBO as I had found it back in 2012 when reading anything and everything I could about adoption; but since NHBO is so China-specific, I eventually stopped so that I could try to find out more about Ethiopia.

Three years later, I stumbled upon NHBO again – this time to begin researching special needs for China! I had spent at least 50 hours that whole week reading up on different needs and had started to read the NHBO blog daily. The posts always made some of the scariest sounding special needs seem so do-able and realistic, and were a huge source of encouragement to me and my husband.

One typical Friday night, I was caught reading the daily blog post, but this night would be different. They were advocating for a little boy. The photo couldn’t have been much bigger than 2 x 2, and it was blurry. But, despite it not being the best photo, you could still see a sweet smile. It had some info on this little guy and said there were videos at his agency’s website. Shockingly, his needs did fit what we had just been approved for, but there was no way he was still available — surely someone had already snatched this cutie up. I clicked on the videos, and was totally struck by his sweet personality. He reminded me so much of our biological son who happened to be the same age.


I remember showing my husband his cute little face and getting the okay from him to ask for more info, but to be realistic as we were so close to getting a referral from our agency it would be crazy to switch now (so we newbies thought), it was likely someone has already gone after him. That whole weekend this little boy was constantly in my thoughts, even my dreams at night. I called first thing Monday and was shocked to find we were the only family that had called… out of the thousands who had seen his sweet face we were the only ones who had inquired. We know now this was because God knew we would say yes, and didn’t need to burden anyone else’s hearts for this sweet boy.

After two weeks of praying, we both felt God calling us to switch agencies and pursue this little boy. We fell in love and God moved mountains to allow us to pursue him! We had what felt like so many giant leaps of faith in such a short time: we switched countries, agencies, and even were researching special needs all the time wondering who our sweet child would be, but now we knew. This was the child we had been praying for long before he was born.

A few months after accepting his file we decided to dig into his Chinese name. We originally thought it had meant “My Country’s King”, but being new to Chinese we didn’t realize that the English version could actually be many different Chinese characters meaning something very different. We sent his characters to a friend who passed them on to a guide in China as they just didn’t quite match up to the same character as “King”. Sure enough, he texted back that we were close, but his name actually meant “My Country’s Hope”.

There was that thread again… Hope.


We were blown away. His name meant Hope. The theme God had laid on our hearts before we even laid eyes on him. God’s fingerprints have been in every detail of our son’s adoption…starting three and a half years ago, and even found in the name of our sweet boy. We had chosen the name Hudson after Hudson Taylor, who was a missionary to China — a man who brought the only hope to China.

We picked this name long before we saw his sweet face. And here, our son’s name was “His Country’s Hope”. We know God has a mighty plan for our Hudson’s life, and we feel so privileged to be called to be his parents — to be the ones to share with him God’s love for him! We cannot wait to see how God will use our son.


Though it’s an ancient proverb, it does have truth to its words: we were meant to meet our sweet boy, we were meant to be a family. We don’t deserve these blessings from God, but we are thankful. We are also extremely grateful to NHBO for advocating for our sweet boy. Without their post, we would never have seen our son.

Fast forward one year and our sweet boy has now been home six months this September. We are blown away by the transformation that God has done in redeeming our sweet boy’s heart and giving our family this great blessing. There were many ups and downs in the journey, but God saw us through, and will continue to do so, we are so thankful we said “yes”.

– guest post by Stephanie

4 responses to “Our Red Thread of Hope: An Advocacy Success Story”

  1. Lisa says:

    Does your son happen to be from Tianjin orphanage? He looks so similar to a boy, we were looking at through our last agency? Though we never did pull his file. We had already accepted our son from that orphanage and decided to only proceed with him. But we prayed hard for the other boy, we were so drawn too, but just knew he wasn’t ours.

    • Lisa says:

      Oh my gosh! I just looked at his post! It is him! I saw his video and just fell in love with him, but remember telling my hubby, wow..if we were going to adopt two at once, that we so would have adopted him! But as much as we seriously considered it, and so loved him. He didn’t feel like ours, now I know why!!! So excited for you and him that you found each other! Your son and my sons orphanage is excellent! My son is doing so well and they did an amazing job taking care of the kids there. The agency that has this particular partnership, was amazing as well. We got so many updates! So happy to hear he is doing so well!!!!!!

      • Stephanie says:

        YES! He was there and your right both the orphanage and His agency were amazing! Our son is doing so wonderful with transition too…shockingly so. OHHH I loved that you prayed for our dear boy! The Lord knew! 😀 And I know I have had that feeling about a few others too they just were not our child and I was always glad to know they had found their families… how old is your kiddo…were they in the same room??

  2. Lisa says:

    Not sure if they were in the same room, my son with the privacy name ” Jackson” just turned three in August. We put LOI in on him in January 2015 and finally traveled in December of 2015 to pick him up. We found him In November 2014 right before Thanksgiving and because we were building another home, we thought we could never ever affiord to adopt again so soon. He is doing exceptionally well and quickly learned english in months and is not delayed in anything!!!!! This orphanage is top notch with all they do! We feel SO blessed as our first adoption has been hard with nearly no development in over 3 years with permanent delays, etc. But we knew irregardless we had to try no matter the outcome! ☹️ But, this is why we decided we would pre identify a child first to be able to have more control over the process too and We had thought if we adopted again, we for sure would go throgh this agency again. But as God would have it, right before Thanksgiving 2015, hmmm..????before getting our son, we saw another child at yet another agency!!! With two agencies used the last thing I wanted to do was use a third one, especially since we so loved the second agency and who in the world is ready to adopt AGAIN before we haven’t even traveled for this child????!!!???????? So, we tried to tell everyone about this child with absolutely no interest. Finally, we listened to God and put LOI in on this child February of this year and are hoping, after many delays to travel by December or January. After being spoiled with massive updates and pictures from Tianjin, its hard to wait on our update from this third orphanage. With this being our fifth child ( 2 bio/aged 20/18 and now a 6, 3 and soon to be 4 1/2 year old, I think we are feeling done after this! I can say that My son looks like he came out of a home, not an institution. I remember seeing your son trying so hard to get to the nanny and so excited to be held up and wanting to walk, it made all of us want to scoop him up and hug him. Your son is so sweet, it was so hard to say No to him. Looking back, I marvel that we didn’t pull his file as we looked at quite a few other files from that orphanage after accepting our son. From the moment I saw videos of this orphanage, the stark contrast to my daughters orphanage was mind blowing. So we discussed, wouldn’t it be nice if our new son came home with a child he knew. But every file we saw just didn’t feel like ours. When we saw your sons file, we were that close to pulling it, but just didn’t. It just goes to show, God is In the details! Tons of people pulled our sons file and our son is amazing, yet his file sat, waiting on us. Ironically, our sons only health issues are allergies and asthma! Why is that so ironic, because our entire family, even including our daughter all have severe allergies and asthma too, so what is the chances? We have always lived and breathe allergy everything here and I think, our son waited for us, because we were the best fit for him and God knew it. With no furry pets, nearly 2 dozen air cleaners and our complete and total knowledge of surviving, I cant imagine had he gone to a different family! ???? He had a chronic cough in China and I already knew what to do. He had three bouts with near pnueminia and pnueminia too the first months home, before our pediatrician would Listen to me. Finally, they put him on my meds and he has been fine for months and months now! You are so right though about your son, he is meant to be yours! For everyone to see how adorable he is and say no, thats all God! Just like our current adoption, another family wanted to put an LOI in and were super interested and then suddenly, just stopped calling the agency. They just dropped off the radar and didn’t even return phone calls or emails, ever again. Its like God cleared the path! Crazy how God is like that! I get so stressed over the process every.single.time and yet God knows the details. So excited though to hear your boy is doing well and so thrilled he is with HIS family! God Bless

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