Sunday, August 8, 2010

I want different kids

When discussing the logistics of adopting, Tony originally had said he wanted to take the kids with us to Ethiopia. I disagreed. The logistics of a trip to Ethiopia, with 3 kids in tow, to pick up a new baby, who may or may not have problems attaching to us - was a little too much for me to stomach. Picture 3 kids on a plane for 18 hours, 4 kids on the way back. 3 who may experience stomach problems, and a baby in diapers who most likely will have her own intestinal problems. Nope. Not happening. As much as I would like it to. I didn't like knowing that I would be needing to devote everything to this new little daughter, but knowing that my other kids needed me too. Safety was not my concern. Many parents have taken children and felt very safe. Addis Ababa is an extremely safe city..... Nope - it all boiled down to stomach issues, sadly.

Then the two trip rule was put into place. So now we must travel to Ethiopia, spend time with Olivia, before appearing before court to attest that we do want to be her parents. So time spent in the orphanage, most likely time spent seeing Ethiopia, visiting the out-laying orphanages, hopefully seeing more of Compassion's work (or my kids!) while we are there. Being able to play with kids of a different color, language, and economic status and see they are just the same as we are. See the joy the kids at Compassion have at having faith in God vs. faith in Daddy's paycheck and American comforts. Now this was something I could wrap my mind around. We would not be able to take physical custody of Olivia yet as she will need to remain at the transitional home until we get her US Visa. But the kids would be able to love on her, see Ethiopia, and see the sights that changed my life.

And could it change theirs?

So for about a month, I have been praying for God to throw open His floodgates of blessings on our first trip - to be able to take my own munchkins on a 36 hour plane trip to learn a lesson that no video, no book, no sermon would ever be able to teach them. OR, that God would fling those doors shut and I would be at peace knowing that it was not what was best for my kids at this time in their lives.

As our pastor preached today, Satan wants to rob and steal these little ones from us. To tear their hearts away from God, whether now, or in their rebellious teenage years, or in college. But I hope, and pray, that our kids would have their faith foundation so firm, so strong - at such an early age - that they would be true soldiers for Christ the rest of their lives, Ethiopia trip or not. A witness to the need for missions, the need for loving the least of these, the power of God's hand when Christians stand up and say "use me".

I want my kids to be different. And being different, and not of this world, is a good thing.

Addisyn, the 15 year old daughter to Amy at "Building the Blocks", recently wrote the following. Addisyn has 3 biological brothers and FIVE adopted siblings. She just returned home from traveling to Ethiopia with her mom to bring home her newest baby sister:

Re: adoption
"What I didn't know then was how God would use this experience to mold me into becoming who I am today. What I didn't know was that God would use our experience to create a passion for the least of these. What I didn't know then was how glad I would be that He did."

Re: Visiting Ethiopia
"Being at the preschool that day also made me realize how much I had been taking for granted. I no longer wanted to just claim to be a Christian - I wanted to LIVE as a Christian. Instead of just memorizing the verses in the Bible - I wanted to put them into action. I knew that I couldn't return home and go on with my life the way it had been. I couldn't open my closet door and see 12 pairs of shoes in there without thinking about those left behind with none. I couldn't go into the mall with friends and spend $15 on yet another t-shirt knowing that $15 would have fed 5 children at the preschool for a month. I couldn't just be a regular American teenage girl anymore - I was different. And different, I am realizing, is a good thing."


Joanna said...

Well, Tracy, I must say, having borne witness firsthand to YOUR stomach issues in Ethiopia, I can understand your nervousness!! But also having witnessed and experienced the things that Ethiopia teaches, I totally agree that taking your kids over there will be an amazing lesson for them.

JG said...

What a great post! Thanks for giving me something to think about today. :)