When I last wrote about our Emily we were in the thick of waiting. Day 90 I believe. We were getting passed daily by those with log in dates almost a month after us. I was truly despairing. I sat in Bible study one night and asked the group to please pray that it would come. They stopped right then and prayed, and as our leader prayed that I would feel peace during the wait, in my heart I cried out to God, "I'd have no peace - please help me!" I sat there with tears streaming down my face feeling desperate for God's peace to settle me, to help me focus on my family now and to wait well. I longed for a verse to hold onto, but I just felt helpless. That's not a great testimony of faith I realize but it is truly where I was. Desperate.
That Saturday I had an Usborne book party at a friend's house. This is my friend Amy who is also a China waiting mom. At the end of the party she gave me a little canvas she had painted. On the back she had written 2 Corinthians 12:9. "My grace is sufficient for you…." She read it aloud to me…."My power is made perfect in weakness." And weariness she added. And that friends is the moment the peace I had longed for took over. I felt the words of the Lord soothe my soul. How that ministered to me that day. The whole way home I kept saying over and over…. My grace is sufficient, My grace is sufficient… He is sufficient for this task. I am woefully insufficient but He is perfectly sufficient.
A week later we hit day 100 with no change in our status. I took a deep breath and we made it through that day. And through the next 5 when FINALLY we got the call. In the Target deli line. A hate to be rude and be on the phone while checking out, but that number was from Birmingham and wild horses could not have kept me from answering it! It was our social worker with the news our dossier was now listed as match reviewed. Praise the Lord!! We just had to wait for the hard copy of our LOA (letter of approval) to arrive at our agency.
The next Wednesday, as Shane and I packed to leave on our first trip away together since Sarah came home, the phone rang and it was Anna. The LOA was at Lifeline and would be overnighted to us at our hotel. Day 111.
The poor front desk staff at The Grand Hotel. Shane was in meetings all morning so I slept a little late, ate some breakfast and asked the front desk 10 times if the package had arrived. I went back to our room and gathered up all the documents I had brought with me that had to go back with the signed LOA and headed back to the front desk. Could she maybe make a few copies for me? Sure….ok, well its like 20 pages, mostly in Chinese, and has my package come yet?
Just before noon I got a call from the gate that my Fed Ex package was there. The nice man brought it to me and we signed it and sent it back!
It really is a beautiful document. I hate that it was only in my hands for about an hour!
Everything is at USCIS right now awaiting approval. Things will move quickly now hopefully. I have so much to do. Nesting has kicked in and I feel like I need to clean out every drawer and straighten every closet. Unfortunately Sarah's nickname around here is "The Destroyer" and nothing stays clean for long.
A friend from my Lifeline group traveled this month to bring home her daugter from the same orphanage as Emily. She was so kind to take a letter and some pictures and a little gift to her. I was so happy to wake up the day after we got the LOA to several new pictures. We got video from her yesterday and it just makes me so happy. She is reading our letter and looking at our pictures and she sings a song. It's a Chinese children's song about two tigers to the tune of "Where is Thumbkin." I mentioned in my letter that I was trying to learn it and she sings it for me. We are so ready for this precious girl to be home.
We would like to ask you to pray with us as we enter these last few weeks before she comes home. Pray for her heart to be ready to be part of a family. Pray for Will and Jenny as they once again scootch over and make room. Pray for Jenny as she will be sharing a room, and although she is excited, the reality and the thought are sometimes different. Pray for Sarah as the trip and the adjustment may be rough for her and therefore for all of us. We do have a medical concern that we are seeking information on and would ask you to pray we will get that settled before we travel.
I am so very thankful for God's promise that His grace is sufficient. I am so thankful for a friend who spoke peace and truth into my heart that day. I am so thankful and humbled that God has called us to be this precious girl's family. I am so ready to be her mamma!