This is a little bit of a side-story, but I’ll go ahead and post it. Show Hope is a Christian organization that exists to “show hope” to orphans and to live out the biblical mandate in James 1:27 to take care of orphans in their distress. They do a number of things, but one of their main goals is to get into churches and help get a ministry started doing a number of things from sponsoring an orphan monthly to collecting change for orphans, raising awareness, and their main focus, adoption, and helping to raise money for families who desire to adopt, as it can be crazy expensive. So, I felt the Lord really impressing this organization on my heart and really felt called to possibly start this up at my church, raise money on my own, etc. I had received a random newsletter email from Show Hope among the tons of them that we receive from many adoption agencies and the like from when we started the international adoption process 4 years ago. (before we found out I was pregnant!) But one day I stopped on this email from Show Hope and the Lord just broke me. 45 minutes later, I was still on their website, in tears. When Jason got home I told him I thought God was calling me in this direction. It was a really good feeling to finally have some direction. So, this was super exciting, yes, but again, this is kind of a side-story.
What this awakened in me was this desire to experience this first-hand. Everything that this organization does is awesome and I would so love to start this ministry at our church, but what I realized was that I felt called to go over there….to China. It was a confusing thing to me because there really were no opportunities at all for me to go overseas. And even if there were, I would have to leave my boys behind, and my husband could probably not take off work long enough to make the trip worthwhile, and I hate to fly, and it’s a really really LONG way over there.
To me, it was something that could possibly be in my distant future, but not now. Our church doesn’t have anything like this in place anyways. So, I put the desire aside, but I couldn’t shake it. I kept telling Jason the same thing….”I would love to get a ministry for orphans and adoption started at our church, but gosh, I just wish I could go over there now and have that experience to bring back here and share with our church and anyone else who wants to hear. It just seems like it would be so much more impacting to hear it straight from someone who’s seen it, experienced it, photographed it.” But again, I put it away. So…..fast forward to about three weeks ago….the Providence Neighborhood Yard Sale.
So, the night before the yard sale, Jason is complaining because, like most husbands, he’s not a fan. He doesn’t like having to haul a bunch of junk onto our front porch and sit out there while people walk by and skim through it, and then offer you half of what you’re asking which is already half of half of what it cost you! However, what I enjoy, and what I kept reminding him, is that it’s a great time to get to know our neighbors better. And he agreed. So, that morning, our neighbor from across the street came over to help Jason carry my old computer desk down our front steps because I had embarrassed him by looking like a wuss and not being able to help him with it.
He casually mentioned he had a flat screen TV that he was trying to sell for a really good deal and we were looking for one for our bedroom. So, I said I’d go over and take a look at it. I know I’m giving way too many details, but I like details ; ) So, I walk across the street with Eli to talk to his new wife who I have only met once (back in September) and there are a crazy amount of geraniums in her garage. I said hi to her and casually asked if she was planning to plant all of the geraniums to which she continued to inform me that she was selling them to raise money for her trip to……China. Side note—have you ever had one of those moments where you knew God was speaking to you—straight to you—or that He was placing something right in front of your face that you knew to be true or knew you were supposed to do?—without a doubt—the kind that gives you chills and leaves you speechless but you know you have to say something, or else you’ll risk missing something great that the Lord has in store for you? This was one of those moments. I immediately got chills and started shaking. I immediately asked her why she was going to China, and as I asked the question, I already knew the answer….”to visit orphans and work at an orphanage.” If the words would have come out, I would have yelled, “I’m supposed to come with you!!! God just told me!!!” However, as I heard those words in my head, I was also a bit freaked out. I honestly knew at that moment, that I was going to go to China, but I still couldn’t wrap my mind around it…