Tuesday, October 27, 2009

What's in a name?

We've been asked what's up with the blog name, Boys in the Bulrush? In the book of Exodus, the Bible says that a Levi couple had a boy. At that time, the government was paranoid and had ordered a "death hit" on all Hebrew males babies. This one particular mother, fearing for her son's life, made a basket of bulrush, or something similar to cattails, and glued it together with tar. You may know the rest of the story, but basically the baby, Moses, was hidden amongst the bulrush in a river, retrieved and adopted into the royal family. It was a divine arrangement and Moses was raised in that environment for God's purposes, i.e., deliver His people from slavery. For several years we have been hearing children crying to us from the bulrush. We knew something was lodged in the bulrush and we have been trying to retrieve it. God was stirring our hearts to adopt. We have since visited countless adoption websites, attended seminars sponsored by adoption agencies and talked to social workers, parents who have adopted and countless others trying to decide what exactly was coming from the bulrush. Sometime in early 2009 it became clear what was in the basket in the bulrush. Just as Pharoah's daughter discovered it was a baby, a Hebrew baby nonetheless, we have pushed aside the cattails to discover a boy. Not one, but 2 Chinese boys, hidden in the bulrush! And like the Pharoah's daughter, we have purposed in our hearts to retrieve these boys out of the bulrush and bring them into our home where they can be a part of our family!

Monday, October 26, 2009

sign language

We started taking a sign language class this week in preparation for raising a child that is deaf. Even though we know he does not know American Sign Language yet we are learning to be able to teach him. It was so much fun to attend the class together and we learned quite a bit on the first day. We have been practicing at home and suddenly the other kids have become interested in learning it as they watch us sign to each other and they don't know what we're saying! So now, 2 of our children will join us in the class next week and they will learn it also! We are amazed at the help and support we have received from the community support services. There is so much available to help the deaf and hard of hearing and the deaf community is very welcoming and helpful to teach us.

Friday, October 23, 2009

Many years ago, Karen had begun to feel a stirring in her heart to add to our family through adoption. Her heart has always been as big as the Montana sky when it comes to babies and children. The big joke around our house has been how she will adopt anything that resembles newborns of virtually any species…thus the reality that we have 3 dogs, 6 cats (and counting), 35 chickens, 2 horses, 2 cows, all of whom started out as some little, baby somethings…oh, and that’s only counting what we currently have on our property!

Russell, was a little slower on this adoption thing. His mind was focused on paying off enormous student loans accrued while he worked on his doctorate and making plans to get ahead financially. However, as time went by, He began to get an awakening in his spirit that focused on Romans 8, particularly the part about receiving the spirit of adoption in such an intense way that we proclaim God as our Father. He began to realize that in a spiritual sense, we Gentile Christians were all orphans. We know what its like to have a need inside for family that becomes fulfilled when we meet and surrender our hearts to Jesus. It makes us cry out as a son, not as a vagabond in this world. We began to explore various options of adoption.

Fast forward to this summer, we saw a picture of boy from China who was deaf. It was pretty clear to both of us that this was the boy to pursue. We began the process of inquiry and along the way noticed another boy from China who needed a home. Both were 6 years old, both special needs kids that basically were hard for the orphanages to place. We inquired if we could adopt 2 at the same time. We began to fill out all of the initial paperwork. For a special needs child in China, a couple must receive pre-approval so we worked on the initial paperwork in hopes of being granted permission to continue the process. The paperwork was intimidating. There were so many questions that arose in my mind. Questions like, “how are we going to pay for this?” to “are we really ready to have a child with special needs into our home?” We prayed and quickly felt like it was right and that we were to proceed. That “go ahead” was and still is accompanied by several personal Heavenly promises.

October 15, Our adoption agency point lady emailed to say that China had pre-approved us. We are moving into the next phase with confidence that we are on the right track. It is a feeling difficult to describe to anyone who doesnt know, but it is similar to finding out we were pregnant in the natural. We have a tremendous sense of peace and wonderful expectation that God was blessing us beyond our wildest dreams and expectations.