Sunday, May 6, 2012

The Christmas Gift

OK, so remember this post

and this Christmas gift?

the best gift of all...

Well, I did say that, hopefully one day soon I would be able to explain this gift,

this beautiful gift!

So, now I get to explain, even though the cat is already out of the bag, so to speak!

As I have written about before, our family got hit pretty hard a couple of years ago when hubby was out of work for an - extended - period - of - time.

It was a struggle.

The bills piled up

the debt piled up

and we were very afraid of loosing our home.

Through it all, however, the Lord was working on us


During this time, it became very clear what God was asking me to do


It was also very clear that the one thing I wanted so desperately,

the one thing that broke my heart

day in and day out...

had to wait.

As much as I prayed for the Lord to open the financial doors for us to bring home another precious child, it just was not the right time, it was not His time.

so I had to wait and during this wait, I would rejoice every single time another beautiful soul found their forever home.

It soothed my spirit to be able to be even be a small part in that awesomeness! 

There were many times that I would see a sweet face, show hubby and his pat answer would be,

"Oh, he/she is cute"

and that would be the end of it.

However, there were a few precious kiddos who really tugged at my heart

whom I had asked hubby to really pray about

who I was praying might come home to our family

It was not the plan, of course and  the first sweet soul came home to a wonderful family not too long ago.  As I was talking to her new Momma, she told me that
this beautiful child was VERY afraid of dogs!!!

Um, yeah, we have FOUR dogs...

FOUR very loud dogs!!!

Now, I know that she will most likely overcome that fear but for me, it felt like a little sign from the Lord that it was going to be OK, that His plan is always the best plan, even though it is not always our plan.

I believe that we were meant to hold on to this beautiful child so that her true family could get ready and get ready, they did!!

Right after this, our financial situation got worse and the dream of bringing home another child got dimmer and dimmer.  As much as the Lord had moved hubby's heart for another, the struggles we were going through, made it very obvious to him that we had to wait but God kept placing these kids on my heart - for a purpose.

The next little one who completely stole my heart was a child who had been waiting a very long time, a child whose needs were great but whose sweet spirit was greater.

However, as much as I prayed about her, it was a struggle and the Lord never made that path clear.

I so remember the first time I spoke to her forever family about her

I knew instantly that this child was their child

The love they had for her was obvious even during our very first conversation and even when the road got rough, they fought like crazy to stay on the path that they knew the Lord has laid out before them.  This was their child!

I know, now, that the Lord had to truly break my heart for her to be able to bring her family to her, the family that He had chosen for her.

The next child that the Lord laid on my heart was another child whose needs were far more than hubby and I had ever talked about.

Her needs were scary but her determination reminded us of our Lizzie and little by little, this child became intrenched in my heart.  I asked hubby to pray about her.  I never pushed but I would remind him to pray.  I promised to advocate hard for her - and did...

and - still - no - one - came - forward

she waited and waited and waited

Right before Christmas a dear friend of mine suggested that I ask hubby to pray with me very specifically about this child.

I asked him to pray that if this child was meant to be our child, that the Lord might send us the money we needed to start our home study.

We asked the Lord to send us $2000 so that we could start the process to bring her home, so that hubby would have confirmation that this child was indeed our child.

Well, about a week later, guess what???

It came!

We very unexpectedly received a gift of, yep, $2000 - exactly!


I was elated and hubby was shocked but ready to follow through to bring this child home.

However, there was another plan, another path and the very same day that we received what we thought was confirmation, we got the word that another family, a wonderful family, a family whom I had been talking to about this child, a family who had fallen in love with her the minute they saw her on my site, had decided to bring this child home.

As I read the email telling me of their wonderful decision, I felt like the breath had been knocked out of me.

As sure as I had been just seconds before, now I was filled with doubt and questions and "why's."

As before, I had talked to this family and knew that this family loved this child, knew this family saw the same determination and sparkle within her

and as much as my heart was breaking, somehow I felt as if I had known all along that she would not be our daughter and that this family - was - her - family and had always been her family.

This time, however, the Lord was working on hubby's heart, paving the way, making His path for us clear and even though hubby knew all along that this child was not our child, the Lord used this child to ready hubby's heart for the child who was coming...


So, as I threw myself into getting ready for Christmas, hubby was getting ready too.

His heart had been moved and he knew exactly what he wanted to give me for Christmas, despite our continued struggles.

I hadn't expected much as we just couldn't afford much but boy was I in for a shock.

As I opened his gift, I saw that it was an envelope and I did not understand.

As I opened the envelope, I saw that it was a bank account

a bank account with $250 in it.

OK, so I still did not understand what this account was for and had no idea where hubby had found $250 to put in it...

and then he told me...

he told me that it was an account so that we could save for our next adoption!!!!!  

Hubby was ready and I was then the one in shock!!  Hehe!

At that moment, I knew that God was working for us and had been working for us, even though we didn't always see it...

After hubby's heart was committed and His time was here, everything else seemed to just fall into place and our daughter, the child whom He had chosen for us, just fell right in our laps and right into our hearts...

BOTH of our hearts!

It didn't take months of prayer for us to know...

We just knew and we knew with a conviction that only He could have placed in our hearts...

BOTH of our hearts!

Soooooo, there ya have it!

The story of the gift, the very best Christmas gift ever!


  1. What a beautiful story of a truly wonderful Christmas gift! Congratulations to you all, I'm so happy for you!

  2. I love this story of God's faithfulness working through his children. You need to print this and save it for your new daughter, Annie! And as a reminder when challenges arrive. I love reading it this morning, friend. God is always working behind the scenes for our good. He adores us!

  3. Watching this story unfold for you has been such encouragement to my heart. We all love you and Chris and your precious children.

  4. I love reading adoption stories! Always miraculous and so clearly marked with the fingerprints of God. I am so happy for your family!! God has honored your obediance friend:-)

  5. That's amazing. I love hearing these stories. God is so good. To Him alone be the glory.

  6. God is so faithful...and you have been such a faithful servant, Annie. XM is truly meant to be a part of your crew and I can not wait to see that sweet little face in person!

    LOVE YOU and thank you so much for being such an inspiration!

  7. Definitely the BEST Christmas present of all!!

    Your video made me cry!!!!

    I am so happy for all of you! :)

  8. I just KNEW that folder was an adoption folder!! I am guessing that you are like me and the fact that you were speechless in the video said more than any of your words could have :) We have Samantha/Ella/XM's photo on the fridge to be praying for her and y'all!! Abundant blessings to you!!

  9. That picture you posted at Christmas has been killing me, ever since! Thanks for clarifying! Awesome news!

  10. How sweet! I'm crying now.....thanks. :-)

  11. You sure know how to make me cry! You are a beautiful person, Annie. :-)

  12. so words...just gentle tears

  13. Annie,
    WOW... I had no idea this was unfolding until I saw your name on the Advocate WC site prayer list. So, I jump over here to check your blog and see this wonderful news!! I am beyond happy for all of you. You and Lizzie have been such an inspiration to us during Abbey's surgeries and treatment for her clubfoot. Overjoyed to watch your family grow according to HIS plan.
    Rene' Runner

  14. Thank you for sharing. We are going on 2.5 years of waiting for the right time. Two months after we decided to adopt (a huge, huge decision for us) my husband lost his job. It has been one thing after another. I'm always hoping it is right around the corner. But God has used this time to mold us and really get into our hearts about the true meaning of adoption. I know His timing is right, but it is so nice to know that He makes others wait as well!

  15. Wow, that' what the sweetest thing that your husband did! I told my husband that all that I wanted for Mother's day was a card that said "Yes" on it! We will see what I get.