Sunday, July 15, 2012

I Dare You To Move

I always feel like there's "nothing much" going on with our adoption.  And then I stop to really think about it.  And even though we haven't officially started the process or filled out one sheet of paperwork or brought our child(ren) home, things are still MOVING! 

I'm never quite sure how much to share about the financial aspect of adoption.  I want to be as transparent as possible, especially in this arena, because it is the number one reason why most people don't choose adoption--they don't think they can afford it. 

And I'm here to tell you...we can't afford it

I know that there are some people who will say that we shouldn't adopt if we can't afford it.  And I don't know what to tell those people.  I think if you wait until you can have kids, you'll never have 'em.  And I think life is too short to let a lil' thing like money keep us from our babies.  (So, I guess that's what I'd tell 'em, huh?)

Before we really started on our journey toward adoption, I read all these blogs about adoption.  And I heard (read?) all these people talking about how God provided them with the money for adoption.  And I kept thinking, "I want that.  I want God to pay for our adoption!" 

Now, I am a firm believer of "Go with God, but row away from the rocks."  I did not expect for God to just deposit $20,000 in our bank account and give us a free house (though anything is possible, and we are certainly open to the idea!).  But I did know that we were going to need some serious favor from God if we were going to do this. 

'Cause we can't afford adoptionBut God can

I've talked before about going to see Joyce Meyer in April, where she talked about faith and fear.  I always think it's funny how sometimes God doesn't just blast you in the face with things, but instead He just unravels them for you slowly.  She talked about the concept of giving and shared the story of Elijah and the widow from the Bible. 

I'm certainly not a Bible scholar so bear with me, but the gist is that Elijah walked in the desert for 100 miles, because God told him to go somewhere.  And when he got to where God wanted him to go, he found out that the person who is entrusted to take care of him is actually at the brink of starvation and has just enough food to cook her funeral meal.  If I were Elijah, I might have been pretty disappointed.  And if I were the widow, I would be downright annoyed that I am expected to share my last meal with some stranger who is probably more than a little dusty.

And THEN Elijah says (paraphrased), "Make me some food."  If I were this widow, I would have probably smacked him, if I'd had the strength.  And he told her that God wouldn't allow her food supply to run out.  So this woman has to trust Eljiah and her God to know that this is true.  And bottom line:  The food supply didn't run out.  In fact, it grew faster when they were using it than when they were storing it. 

So as Joyce is going on in her very southern, matter-of-fact way or maybe it was when she was showing a video of their work in Africa (with children who very easily could be OUR child), God and I had a heart-to-heart.  And I chose to make a monthly donation to Joyce Meyer ministries.  I committed to $15 a month.  Because, honestly, it didn't make sense that I should be giving away our good, hard-earned money when we so desperately need it.  And I'm a little hesitant about trusting people with my money and believing that it will go where it needs to goBut, really, it's God's money anyway. He'll do what He wants with it.

But by letting go of what amounts to a very small amount of our income and trusting God with it, we have seen His provision in a BIG WAY.  We have also made a serious committment to not spending money on crap we don't need or eating out.  Whenever I drive past a place that sells ice cream or overpriced coffee, I have to ask myself, "Do you want coffee or do you want your kids to come home?"  It's pretty sobering. 

In the last six months, we have:

1.  Paid off my car...that I got the same day Adam and went on our first date!  (It was quite a day!)
2.  Paid off two credit cards
3.  Seen God eliminate one of Adam's student loans
4.  Watched in awe as God provided retroactive health insurance for Adam's kidney stone
5.  Paid off a credit card related to my dental surgeries to get rid of my little teeth
6.  Paid off a credit card I got in college and used stupidly
7.  More magical insurance coverage that covered the cost of pain killers for another possible kidney stone

The details aren't important, but that was about $17,000 worth of debt taken care of right there!  Bazinga!

Add into that that I got a job teaching a senior level social work course at Indiana University in the fall, which will provide extra income.  I also work for a company doing adoption recruitment for families in Indiana.  Plus, things are really booming at my practice, and I'm getting so many referrals for military clients.  I'm also set up to do another Odyssey with the Wounded Warrior Project in August. 

And we managed to purchase a laptop and fix my car (something about the mechanic feeling unsafe to test-drive it because the wheel was almost going to come off).  And, seriously, I put off getting my car fixed for about 3 YEARS because I didn't have the money. 

So thanks to God for his provision, thanks to my husband for saying yes (about a lot of things), and for our friends, family, and readers who are praying and sending good thoughts our way.  We are seriously doing this! 

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