A couple of years ago my wife heard about an international orphan hosting program that allows you to host an orphan for the summer. She later told me about it, and to be honest I didn’t think a lot about it at the time. However, after thirteen years of marriage I have started to realize when certain things are important to her. Earlier this year I rememberd hearing about the organization again and there would be days that I would sit down at the computer only to see dozens of pictures of children’s faces. I knew what she wanted, and this literally went on for weeks before I finally acknowledge it. I knew she wanted to host, however I was worried. Worried about the cost, worried about the commitment, worried about the unknown.
After finally acknowledging the elephant in the room, we began to see which child was the best fit for our family. Young or old, boy or girl. There were so many to read through, and I hated the feeling of choosing a child. It was like I was trying to decide on a car. This was a child that we were thinking about bringing over into our home. What if we made the wrong choice?
After several back and fourths we decided on a teenage boy. We were excited, the kids were excited and we all began to count down the days. The paper work was completed and God took care of the finances. The reality of hosting a 14-year-old boy in our house for five weeks was setting in.
I still remember the day we drove to the training. There were adoption representatives passing out folders of information as soon as you walked in. Sitting down, I remember opening up the package, skimming to the bottom of the adoption fees page, and seeing the total cost of adopting a child. Even if I had thought that this was going to turn into an adoption, which I didn’t, the bottom figure took that possibility off the table. When asked how many people were planning to adopt after the hosting experience, half the room raised their hands. Mine was not one of them.
It was a week before our child was to arrive when we got the devastating call that he was not going to be able to make it, and it was too late for another child to take his place. We were on a road trip when we got the news, and I remember how angry I felt. My sinful selfish self was questioning the entire process. How could this be? Didn’t they know before now? All this time, energy, and resources that we have put into this, to all of a sudden be told that he is not coming. My kids had been looking forward to this, and so had I.
Funny how eight weeks later, I can look back and see how God was and is orchestrating every single situation. God knew that two days later we would get a call for us to host a little girl that could not be hosted by her original family. God knew that he had to bring us to that uncomfortable point so that he could pave a path to send this child into our family.
Days later she arrived. I remember picking her up from the airport. She was scared, shy, and knew just about as much English as we did Ukrainian. Instantly we fell in love with her, and in the back of my mind I began to think about that Ukrainian adoption packet. The first Sunday that we were in church I can remember fighting the loosing battle of keeping tears in. I could feel that were being called to make this more than just a five-week experience. I felt that God was leading us to open our hearts and home permanently to this little girl.
So here we are today. Our little girl just recently flew back to her country, and we hang on every little bit of communication that comes our way. We have started the application process. The cost and process of this journey is scary. Yet we know that God is going to provide. Not always sure how and when, but we know that we can trust Him. I laughed to myself this morning when our pastor made the comment that God is up there saying, “Don’t worry, I got this.”
As we start this process, my family asks for your support. Please pray for safety of our little girl while she is in Ukraine. Please pray that God gives us wisdom so that we can make the right decisions that may come our way. Finally please pray for the other orphans, not only in the Ukraine, but also all throughout this world. There are so many precious children that need the love and hope that can only come from Jesus. Please pray for ways to be a part of that hope.