Friday, March 25, 2016

Adoption Story: Phillip and Colleen

If you've followed this blog, you know there are dozens and dozens of adoption stories. Stories I've recounted  (a quick count is over 150 so far). But my favorites are the one's when an adoptive mama shares in her own words their path to adoption. Today Colleen shares the faith it took for them to start, the patience it took for them to continue, and the joy it brought when God answered their prayers.

I have been trying to sit down and our story about this past month for several days now. Each time I thought about writing, I just did not know where to begin. I guess I was still processing and adjusting to all that has been going on. Here is a little bit of what has been on my mind as of late...

In September of 2014, Phillip and I made a phone call that would change our lives as we knew it. After heavy discussion and prayer, we decided to take a leap of faith and pursue adoption; 16 months later, this is God's answer to those prayers.

First and foremost, I want to publicly and unashamedly give ALL the glory and praise to the one true God for this little life! He orchestrated every detail of this adoption journey and looking back, I can see that more clearly than I ever could before!

Now, I know there are some of you out there that would say to me..."Colleen, that's great and all, but I just don't believe in God." I would say to you, let me tell you the story of Adeline and how she came to be in our family. Let me share the details with you (it's too much to do here). Let me share with you how the timing was unbelievably perfect and how her sweet birth mother had the strength and courage to do what she did. Let me tell you what was said, and events that took place. There is no other explanation but GOD!

I have been an emotional wreck for a couple of weeks now; I have experienced the goodness and faithfulness of God these past months and not just in receiving this baby, but in the lessons learned along the way. Having to trust, having to be patient, having to be without fear and worry are hard things to overcome. Did I do that perfectly? No, but by God's grace He gave me the ability to do each of those when I needed to, which in turn, only enhanced my worship of Him! His presence was felt and known by both Phillip and myself. We even saw glimpses of His work through interaction with Adeline's birth parents. I often found myself saying "this just doesn't happen naturally." 

I also fell more in love with my husband over the past month! He is absolutely the man I need to walk this life with! It's difficult to describe how much of a blessing He was to me during the trying time we had at the end of this journey. All the emotion, traveling, lack of sleep, and new responsibilities wore me down and I ended up getting sick the day we brought her home with us. Phillip stepped up and took on 90% of daily life that first week so I could rest. He stayed up for late feedings, ran errands, made sure we were fed and had everything we needed. He was and is my rock. I am eternally grateful for this man! We spent 9 days in Nevada by ourselves before bringing Adeline home to Georgia. We only had each other. That was one of the toughest weeks of our life, but also one of great joy at the same time. God used that time to bring us closer together as a couple and as a family!

As I wrap our story with my sweet little daughter wrapped to my chest, I want to share one final thought with you all. Many people told me that adoption is beautiful in that it represents the gospel. It is a tangible picture of how God adopts undeserving, sinful and selfish people into His family. Adoption is that and I know first hand the love I immediately felt for this child when she was placed into my arms. I get a glimpse of the love my Jesus has for me as His child and a member of His family. What I did not expect is the love that I have for her birth parents, especially Adeline's birth mother. Despite what choices she makes, or how she lives her life, I have been given an undeniable love and heart for her! I have been given another glimpse of how God could love an undeserving and selfish sinner such as I, despite how many times I fall and fail! What an awesome God we have!

If you are interested to hear the details of Adeline's story, I'd love to grab coffee and fill you in on the tiny details that point back to the amazing God I serve! If you are interested in adoption, come talk to us. We can help point you in the direction to get started. And do not let finances be your excuse... Let me be cliche for a sec - If there is a will, there is a way! What a testimony to God's goodness our adoption it has been.

Was adoption easy? Heck no! But was it worth it? absolutely!

To connect with Colleen or to see follow more of their story, you can read their blog over at Expecting the Unexpected.

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