Labor Pains

Labor Pains

Adoption is often called “paper pregnancy.” And the comparison is probably pretty accurate–there is excitement and expectancy coupled with fear and frustration. The waiting is difficult to endure–you just want your child here so you can hold her! Preparations and to-do lists mount. As you wait and work, you wonder how your life is going to change when she arrives, if you will be a good parent, and how you are going to afford this.

While there are similarities, adoption is different from pregnancy in two major areas: paperwork and cost.

When you and your spouse decide to have a child, no one is coming to ask you dozens of personal questions and minutely examine your health and home and finances to see if you will be fit parents. But prospective adoptive parents have that responsibility. And with responsibility comes a huge stack of forms! form

The cost of adoption can also be completely overwhelming. Fees are paid for home study, the adoption agency, the in-country lawyer, the translation of documents–and that is before the costs associated with travel and lodging for all the trips you have to make. We are working hard to fund raise, apply for grants, and request employer adoption assistance, and praying that God provides in whatever way He sees fit.

I have to stop and remind myself that all of these forms and all of these fundraisers are really just labor pains. The waiting, the paperwork, the fees are all simply the (sometimes painful) means of getting M here. God is using paper cuts to teach us patience. He is asking us how hard we are willing to work to accomplish this process. And He is reminding us that we are not in control at all; we have to lean on Him to go before us and fight the battles on our behalf. As difficult as the paper pregnancy can be, it is nothing compared to the patience and hard work and dependence on God we will need when M comes home.

While I wish this part of the journey were over, I also know that our lives will radically change in a short time. So we pray and wait and fund raise and fill out forms. And God is still at work, giving us help and encouragement on the way:

  • I have been baking bread to help raise funds, and in 15 days, 110 loaves of bread have been bought by friends and neighbors and even by people we don’t know–friends of friends who have heard about our story!
  • We have been blessed by several different businesses who are joining with us and sponsoring fundraisers for adoption expenses.
  • We have the opportunity to share M’s story with a pastor in our church.

M has touched the lives of many people, and we are so blessed by every prayer and every gift.  The Bible talks about our adoption into the family of God. This adoption cost Jesus everything: the glory of heaven, uninterrupted fellowship with His Father, and ultimately, His life.  And as much as we love M and want so desperately to be her parents, we know our love for her is a tiny shadow of God’s love for her. It is He who has plans to give her a hope and a future. We are allowed to be a part of her story and watch it unfold. Thank you for praying as we wait to be reunited!redemption