Saturday, September 5, 2009

Counting my Bessings

Each of our five children is a miracle and each was hand-picked by God to join our family. I remember all the pregnancies, the labors, and the deliveries. (The video recorder has helped fill in what I had blocked out.) A few years ago, during a lapse of judgement, I let my kids watch one of the births (G-rated, of course). Out of that came a disagreement. Measle, 3.5 at the time, announced that she came out of Mommy's tummy. Mr. Monk corrected her that she didn't actually come out of my tummy, but out of my bottom (our generic word for nether-regions.) They went back and forth a couple of times before Measle decided to settle it with, "I came out of Mommy's tummy, but Bubba came out of Mommy's bottom. Bubba's a poopoo baby!" So there!

But there's one of our five blessings that stands out. Our All American Boy was brought to us in a special way. We prayed for him, just like we did the others. More, in fact. We prayed that God would have His hand upon him and keep him safe. We prayed that God would direct us to him. But most of all we prayed that he would belong to the Lord. We adopted our second son from Kazakhstan. It was quite an adventure, a wild ride not for the faint of heart. It's a long story that has been chronicled elsewhere, but there are two pieces of the puzzle I was remembering today that I want to share with you.

I've never been one to ask God for signs. I don't really believe in it. But, while we were in Kazakhstan I was an emotional wreck. We had left our other three children at home during the Christmas season, we were half-way around the world in a foreign place, and the baby they "gave" us was sickly and strange to me. I panicked more than once. God was with us the entire trip and blessed us in so many ways. Big D and I depended more on one another since we only had each other. We grew closer during that trip. We met some wonderful Christians who asked Big D to teach a couple of times each week for the 3 weeks we were there. Worshipping with them felt like home. My All American Boy began to blossom before our eyes, first sitting up, then crawling, then turning the pages of the books I would read him. But there were still nagging doubts. Moments that I would wonder what we were doing. Then something so minute that it should have gone unnoticed happened. And yet it was the turning point for me. It reminded me that God had always been in control of the situation from the beginning. That He had been Providentially and graciously working in our lives and the life of our All American Boy and that He would work out all the details that still remained. What was it? It was his birthday.

It should have been a meaningless date to me, but for some reason it jarred something in my memory. I got my checkbook out and thumbed through the register. Sure enough, the day our All American Boy was born in Semipalatinsk, Kazakhstan, was the same day that on the other side of the world Big D and I had decided "for sure" that we were going to adopt. It was the very day that we wrote out our check to USCIS and put it in the mail to get the ball rolling on the adoption. We had prayed about adopting and talked about it and gone back and forth, but the day that our son was born God gave us a peace about moving forward. Though I hadn't asked for a sign, I know that our son's birthday was not a detail that was lost on God. When I made the connection, I was able to let go of any remaining concerns. From that point on, my only care was making it home to our other three children by Christmas, which by God's grace, we did.

The other piece of the puzzle I didn't learn about until after we had our All American Boy home with us. I found out that he had been offered to another couple before us and that they turned him down. This seems incredible to us! I mean, look at him! Who would turn that face down? God answered our prayers and saved him for us. (The other couple got the son that was meant for them, too, no doubt.)

Anyway, a trip down memory lane always makes me count my blessings. God is so good! I'm grateful for a God that cares about the little things, as well as the great. And I'm thankful that it is no more difficult for God to bring us a child from around the world than it is for Him to do it the "traditional" way.


  1. What a precious story! I loved reading it. And that IS one sweet little face.

  2. How lovely! What a thought that you "birthed" this little one in your heart! He is precious!

  3. Isn't it amazing how the Lord shows us in such minor details His perfect timing, His perfect love... AMAZING!



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I'm an on-the-run mom to 6 kids who studied and taught exercise science in a previous life. I love all things running, nutrition, and health-related. I usually run at zero dark thirty in the morning and am often quite hungry before, during, and after my run, but I live a rich, full, blessed life with my children, family, and friends. My faith in God is my anchor, and looking to Him and His promises allows me to live fully even when life circumstances are difficult. While running gives me an appetite, my desire is to hunger and thirst for righteousness more than for physical food.