For a second, I simply dismissed the question as irrelevant to the chronically unemployed mommy that I am. Then it occurred to me that although I didn't have a paying job, I do volunteer with Reece's Rainbow and that is a workplace of sorts for me.
As soon as the thought hit my brain a smile spread across my face. I see miracles all.the.time. Weekly or even daily sometimes. I have a front row seat as some of the most amazing, unbelievable, 'didn't think it could happen again but it did' events have transpired in the lives of families adopting children with special needs.
From the very start, I was amazed as I witnessed while two different 5 year old children who had only lived in cribs were lifted out, chosen by families who hadn't adopted before and didn't even have biological children with Down syndrome. That's a miracle. God worked a miracle in the hearts of those moms and dads to see past the dirty clothes and faces, the crossed eyes, the sickly pallor, the malnutrition and the blank looks; those parents didn't turn away because they saw their child.
I couldn't begin to count the number of times I've seen families who are days away from traveling to adopt their child(ren) with special needs and are short thousands of dollars. Equally as often I've seen God finance their trip. He uses all different means to accomplish it, to be sure. Sometimes he uses a whole bunch of people to contribute $5, $10, maybe $25. Sometimes He sells something for them and they get more than they'd hoped. Sometimes an anonymous donor shows up and gives them all they need. No matter how He works it the results are the same: a miracle.
I had the privilege of watching a miracle unfold in Ukraine last summer. A family went to adopt their son with arthrogryposis from a mental institution. He was the first to be sprung from that place and probably the first ever to be adopted in that village. The family, adoption novices, had to live with a peasant lady for weeks because there were no hotels. The accommodations were primitive, at best. They had no assurance that the judge would even hear their case (the problems with that issue seemed insurmountable for quite some time) and that, once hearing it, would grant their adoption. I'll never forget the imagery they used to console their anxious hearts as they walked to their long-awaited court. They knew the Reece's Rainbow family (and many, many others) were praying for them: they imagined thousands of bowed heads behind them as they testified before the judge, thousands of bowed heads pleading with a just and loving Lord to work on the judge's heart, thousands of bowed heads crying out for a boy to be saved from a horrible life. Their precious son is now home in Virginia, a miracle.
More recently, a family went to adopt child #7 and while in Ukraine found out that a little girl they had wanted to adopt (but were denied by the orphanage director) a couple of years earlier was now available; the orphanage director had his heart changed toward adoption and the little girl is now living in Florida with seven brothers and sisters. A miracle.
A couple of weeks ago the call went out around the internet for a boy in Latvia who was about to turn 16 and would thereafter be on the streets, kicked out of his orphanage, lost forever from adoption and family and hope. He had been to America and stayed with a host family and thought he had a family pursuing his adoption. The family decided not to adopt him but never told anyone until finally, with less than 2 weeks until his fateful birthday, the sad news was discovered. The boy, Davids, was crushed. Hearts all over the world were broken for him. The most desperate problem was that a family had to be found who had a special, Hague approved homestudy that said they could adopt a 16 year old, was current, and the family had to be able to file with the US government to adopt him before his birthday, an expensive proposition. It seemed so impossible. But God...
I still cry thinking about it. God brought forth a family that was already adopting an almost 16 year old from Latvia, their homestudy was perfect and allowed for them to adopt two children although they were originally going for one. Every detail was taken care of. Between the time the call went out for Davids and the time the family was found, almost all the money necessary for this new adoption had been raised for them. A miracle. A big, fat, could only be from God, better than we could have expected miracle.
How could we not praise such a God? How could we not trust Him over the details of our lives?
Today, right this very second as I type, I am just waiting for the next big, fat, could only be from God, better than we could have expected miracle because I believe God is setting up the situation perfectly. While we sleep tonight, a judge in an Eastern European country is going to be approached by an adoption facilitator and asked to set two court dates for two Reece's Rainbow families who are each adopting a child with Down syndrome. Both families have met their child, fallen head over heels in love with their child, and have been waiting months to go back, have their court date and bring their precious little one home.
Much like the family who adopted the little boy from Ukraine, this judge may not even grant a court date. That's the first hurdle and, like I said, it's happening while we sleep tonight. If that doesn't happen then three children will not get their families.
Yes. Another family, better known as my wonderful friend Ashley of the Chaos Diaries, is also in the process of adopting a princess with Down syndrome in that same region of that same country. If the first two families don't get a court date, Ashley won't be allowed to proceed either. If the families do get a court date but are denied the adoption of their children (which we have been led to believe would be due to the judge's predjudice against Down syndrome), Ashley won't be allowed to proceed in her adoption of Baby J.
Can you imagine? These families have been in process for over a year. Well over a year. If you haven't adopted this may seem a bit strange to you, but I can assure you that in their hearts these children are theirs already. They've been imagining and daydreaming about just how their new child will fit in the family, about all the glorious and wonderful new things they'll show their new child, all the love they'll lavish upon their little frames.
At this point, everything is out of their hands except for prayer. Like I said, it's the perfect setup for God to work. I think He lets us muddle around, grasping and trying and getting increasingly desperate, knowing it's all a prelude to His mighty work, started at the foundation of the world.
Tonight, I'll be up praying for my friends. I've said it before about my own adoptions: I'm a miracle junkie. I love to see God work in a seemingly hopeless situation. As I pray for Baby J, Kirill, and Evan, I'll comfort my anxious heart with the knowledge that ranging round the judge will be thousands upon thousands of bowed heads. I'll know that the prayer of a righteous man is powerful and effective, and I'll be waiting for news of a miracle.
Psalm 77:14--You are the God who performs miracles;
you display your power among the peoples.
you display your power among the peoples.