Terrified, I sat on our bed staring at a 13 year old little girl’s picture. The Lord stopped me in my tracks as I read the brief description about her.
Father, surely she is meant for another family… I am hearing your voice wrong, right?
People will think we are irresponsible… they will think we are crazy.
How will we ever fund another adoption? It was only two weeks ago we became fully funded for our current adoption.
God, I don’t have the strength to ask for more money from our tribe, they have already given so much.
What will my husband think? There is no way he will ever be willing to adopt again.
What will our family think? Our children – oh gracious – our children. We have already put them through so much.
But, Lord, I have always said that if you called us to adoption again, we would never adopt a child older than our eldest child. I can’t do that to him… you put him in this order on purpose, didn’t you?
These were only a few of the thoughts running through my head in a matter of moments. Fear filled my whole being as I sat trembling through prayer. But, my mama heart knew I had to go through the door until God closed it. I had to just trust in Him. He knows what is to come, right?! Just trust, Alexis… just trust.
So, I asked God to guide my words as I told my husband about a little girl across oceans.
We agreed to call the agency who knew about this sweet girl and find out more about her. Her story broke us.
Don’t ask the Lord to break your heart for what breaks His unless you are ready to be called to battle. Mercy!
We found out that her name was Zhou, Jun Yuan. She was 13 years old and healthy. She was victim of the “One Child Policy” in China. She had been living with an older couple for the first 12 years of her life. She was found as an infant in a trash can outside the mortuary of the hospital.
This wise couple cared and loved her as their own. But, life and their age caught up with them and they were unable to care for her any longer. She was sent to live in an orphanage and ripped from everything she had ever known.
We prayed. Talked with our children. Asked our oldest son what he thought we should do – and our mouths dropped open when he told us we needed to go get her. Faith like a child, y’all. Faith like a child.
May 10th 2016, we called the agency the next day and told them… yes.
We had no clue what we were doing. We were leaving in two weeks to get our son Kollier from China. We needed to focus on him, but we had no time to spare… our soon-to-be daughter had a 14th birthday coming up in October.
We had 5 months to get all of our paperwork done and raise $40,000! Seriously?!
In China, we an orphan turns 14, they are not eligible to be adopted internationally. This is called aging out. Most children who age out are forced to live on the streets or are committed to institutions depending on their needs. For an orphan who ages out… most hope is lost.
How would we do this? Why would we put ourselves through this again? Oh my goodness… we are adopting a teenager! What in the world are we thinking?!
God opened the floodgates and after people heard the story of our daughter, they gave generously. We were fully funded two days before we left for China to bring her home. Two days! Whew! Half of the amount was raised during the time we were in China adopting our son. Blown away is an understatement!
But, how are we qualified to parent a teenager? We have no clue what we are doing! Talk about jumping in feet first – bras, shaving legs, modesty, periods…. what?!
There I was, terrified… again.
God gave me peace as time passed. The date of our our departure for China came and we were excited, anxious, and scared.
Would she like us? How will she adjust?
How do we communicate with her?
What clothes do I even begin to bring with us for her to wear?
What does a teenage girl like?
Will she call me Mommy?
God filled all of these questions with peace.
You see, there is a need… period. No questions are more urgent than His call. No fear is more important than fulfilling the role of “family” in a 13 year old’s heart. No “inconvenience” is more significant than saving a child from having her innocence being taken as she tries to stay alive on the streets of China.
No mountain of money and paperwork can ever be more valuable than sharing the love of Jesus with a child.
It’s been 7 months. We have good days and hard days. The good outweighs the hard. She has grown so much and continues to humble me daily.
Maleigha is the part that was missing from our family and we didn’t even know it.
This past Friday, she accepted Christ as her Lord and Savior. When I asked her what it meant to accept Him, she said she wrote it down so we could see. Here are her words:
To accept Christ is to go to Heaven. To have God help me with my struggles. I won’t be separated from God any longer. The devil has no place in my heart.
This. This is why we adopt. No matter the age or condition. It is Jesus.
– guest post by Alexis