Ten weeks ago in a run down, filthy, insect infested ghetto house a child was born, born into the madness that goes hand-in-hand with poverty and depravity.
Just over ten months ago a woman got on a jet liner headed to China unaware of what God had in store for her and for the rest of her life.
This is a part of their story:
The woman who we will now call Vicki has a wonderful brother named Gregg who was friends with Mark who was married to Tiffany. Got all that?
Mark was one of Greggs childhood friends and they stayed close into adulthood. Mark suffered from some health issues and passed on from this life to the next way too early in life, leaving Tiffany a young widow. Gregg being the loving compassionate man that he is, became very close to Tiffany and their friendship became strong as they endured this great loss of life. Not too long after all of this, Gregg found himself in the intensive care unit with some life threatening issues. That’s where we got to know Tiffany as she was by Greggs side, day and night. Leaving work every night and stopping by the hospital to check on Gregg. Because Tiffany is a Nurse, Vicki called her a lot to check on her brothers health.
Getting to know Tiffany was a joy for us as she is a fun loving, happy and funny person, always smiling and always having a positive outlook.
Jump over to Vicki’s involvement with our Church. She had already gone to Hong Kong to smuggle Bibles over the border into China and the opportunity presented itself for her to go to Sheppard’s Field Orphanage near Beijing, China. She really felt strongly that this was something that she wanted to do. To go and simply share the love that God has instilled in each of us with orphans who don’t have parents to love them and hold them. ( I must interject here that Vicki and I had found ourselves praying together for a radical change in our lives. We both started feeling that there was much more that God wanted us to do than to just be involved in church and church programs) Vicki went to Beijing and fell in love. She loved being with all of the kids, but one child in particular had captured her heart. Surprisingly she was named after one of our best friends, Sharon. We now see that Sharon was the seed that God had planted in Vicki’s heart for what was to come. A couple of weeks went by after Vicki’s return and we were sitting at the dinning room table, (I think it went this way, but I may be wrong) . I said, “you want to adopt a baby don’t you”? She said, YES, and I did not want to be the one to bring it up, I wanted to see if God would work this out without me saying anything about it.
So, what do we do now? Wow! This was a whole new idea to consider as our awesome daughters were 14, 18 and 21.
Vicki then started to research adoption from China as she felt a real connection to the Chinese Children that she spent two weeks with. After much research and realization that this may cost in excess of thirty thousand dollars and could take up to four years, we started looking in different directions. Vicki found an agency that was working with children from Nepal and she started talking to them about costs and time frames. The cost was half of what China was, but the Country was closed at the present time. The agency told us we could be put on the top of the list for the following year and we had agreed. Now was the time to start to look at the financial requirements affiliated with this endeavor. Three thousand for the deposit and another twenty-five hundred soon after to get the ball rolling for the first Home Study. (I may not have this exactly correct, but you get the idea).
Money was the primary hurdle that we had to jump and in the present economy we saw no way to raise this money. We were starting to lose “HOPE”. Meanwhile, Vicki’s sisters had been talking to her about Lutheran Social Service’s adoption program and for Vicki to consider adopting domestically. We really felt as if God was calling us to help a child from another country, but we were seeing that this was very costly and could take years to happen.
In comes Tiffany, remember Tiffany? Before Tiffany’s husband passed away they had been working toward adopting, but Marks untimely death caused the effort to stop. Tiffany did not let it stop her desire to have a child so she continued on with the process through Catholic Social Services and St. Francis.
On a normal phone call with Uncle Gregg, Vicki found out that Tiffany had already had a child in her home and was working toward adoption. This really surprised us and we started to talk about it and consider this and an option.
Vicki spoke to Tiffany and “HOPE” began to rise again. Vicki called St. Francis and got the information about the program. We talked about it and signed up for our certification classes in September to get the ball rolling. Tiffany had told Vicki that the birth Mother of the child that she had, was pregnant again and the agency would need to place that child as soon as it was born. Excitement began to raise and we were now on our way. Tiffany, knowing our hearts and the desire that God had given us to provide a loving environment for a child made it clear to her caseworker that she would want the child in her house as it would be good to have siblings, all the while knowing that she would introduce this infant to us.
Well, it happened exactly that way. Tiffany got the baby and introduced her to us about five weeks ago. Since then she has stayed in our home and captured the hearts of Rebekah, Aubrey, Lizzy, Vicki and I. A sweet baby born into dire and unfortunate circumstances, a child molded by the Hand of God to be rescued. A child born to fulfill God’s plan that weaved its way through sickness, death, heart-ache and pain. We prayed together that God would radically change us and He is faithful. He showed us “One who brings Joy and Hope”.
As our Home Study is complete and we should be approved by the middle of January, we are confident that this child will be with us for a long time to come and she will be grafted into our family as one of us.
At this time of year I encourage everyone reading this to remember that God provided a child to us who also was born to bring Hope and Joy to mankind.
If we were asked to write a script of how this all would have taken place, we would have short-changed ourselves.
God is faithful to bring us “one who brings Joy and Hope”.
Just the other day we had been sitting around the family room listening to the baby make noises and smile. She was in a sweet mood and started to get sleepy. Vicki laid her down in the bassinette to take a shower. About ten minutes had passed and she woke up crying. Lizzy picked her up to try to calm her and she did not relent. I took her and started to rock her and she seemed to get worse, nothing was calming her down. So I headed up the stairs and gave her to Vicki, at that point I witnessed the Mother with the Child. She held her close and spoke to her with a calming tone just like she did with our girls when they were upset. She held her tightly to her chest and I could see the baby change. I could see that she felt the heartbeat of a Mother, safe in her arms she calmed and eventually went back to sleep. A chosen moment in time to give us a snap-shot of Gods gifts to mankind, a Child and the heart of a Mother.
When hearts ache to give love to the unloved we see GOD’S POWER unleashed in a real tangible way.
I can’t help but think of the words of an old Hymn:
Softly and tenderly Jesus is calling,
Calling for you and for me;
See, on your portals He’s waiting and watching,
Watching for you and for me
Come home, come home,
Ye who are weary come home;
Earnestly, tenderly, Jesus is calling,
Calling O sinner come home.
By Michael Tacoma