Luke at St. Basil’s Cathedral. Moscow, Russia.
This is the story of our adoption journey to Russia for our fourth child, Luke.
To be fruitful and multiply
Let me say first that deep down Matthew and I wanted another child. We did not adopt just because it was the right thing to do or out of some kind of feeling of obligation. I knew that would ultimately not result in a happy home or happy childhood for a child. I knew my gut level motivation had to be a sincere desire to increase our family size. To have another baby. To procreate. To be fruitful and multiply.
I wouldn’t change my last name
For 11 years I have watched myself change from a driven, ambitious, career-woman, semi-feminist who wouldn’t change my last name to my husband’s until we’d been married 7 years to a very content, stay-at-home wife, homeschooling mom and Jesus-seeker whose fervent desire is to clearly knows God’s will for me at all times. I now see that my most joyful life, my absolute happiest is living my life as God had planned from the beginning. It’s that fruitful and multiply thing and I didn’t “get it” until I was 40.
In an orphanage for a year
There is no doubt in my mind that God had a plan for Luke and that it started way before he was even conceived. That it included him living in an orphanage for a year, us doing 2 years of paperwork, waiting, finding him, and traveling to the other side of the world twice to get him.
The baby He had for us
When I sit here and rationally think, it is a little unfathomable that we were supposed to go to those lengths. That we weren’t just supposed to adopt a child in our city or state or even domestically, especially with my husband being a lawyer and being connected to babies up for adoption quite often. But as I look back over the process, I can say, this is exactly where God lead us. We had irons in the fire in many areas – through local lawyers in 2 cities, through Catholic Charity adoptions, through a private domestic agency, and through DHS – Department of Human Services in our hometown. But for some reason, God kept leading us back to Russia. I believe to find the baby He had for us. In the process there were battles to fight.
I was 37 when our first daughter, Emma, was born. 40 with Meg and 42 with Henry. I’m 48 now.
The world would love to say:
You are crazy. You are too old.
Take care of my orphans.
The world says:
You won’t have the energy to take care of these small children.
I will bless you if you obey.
The world says:
How can you give each of these children the attention they need.
Blessed is the man that has a full quiver.
I say; my heart says:
I want another baby. I want many arrows in our quiver. Mostly, just lead the way God.
Matthew and I had talked about adoption our whole marriage. Actually, he had talked about it, but it wasn’t really on my radar screen during the time we were having babies. Then about a year after Henry was born, we knew we wanted another child. At the same time, the idea of letting God plan our children (i.e. when and if we would have more) was taking hold in me. I mean if I’m going to trust God in every other area of my life, I guess I’d better trust Him in that area too, right? If I didn’t, would that not be hypocritical?