It's been funny getting messages from you guys about me leaving you hanging. I can count on one hand the number of replies I have got in the last 7 years but not any more.. :) It's kind of been funny which has helped me deal with my stress. So I left you with the facts that now the DSS has denied us the right to adopt Karen who we have known for soon to be 8 years just because she is confused and afraid. I'd be confused and afraid too if I had some woman telling me I had to fly on a plane and learn English and never see my friends again I have never been out of a rural area before in my life, yes I would be scared to.
I have had many people question me on if this is not God closing the door then what is. Good question but when you are truly called to do something you know when God is closing the door and trust me, HE is Not closing this door yet. Will He, maybe, will He open more doors and get us past the next step, maybe. For now all I know is what he has shown me and Terry. For example;
On the third day after we got the news (and remember I was a mess during those three days, wishing I had never heard of Nicaragua) I was just finally starting to come around. I knew in my heart something didn't seem right and once I got a hold of myself I started thinking a little more clearer. God used a great friend of mine to help me. Thanks Mary Green for being there for me that day. It was even her birthday but instead of me giving her a present she gave me one.
I was in Mooresville delivery pictures and decided to call Mary. I honestly had forgot it was her birthday because I was too consumed by my own issues. I told Mary that I was just not sure that God had closed this door and that I truly only wanted His will for Karen's life, even if that meant we would not get her and I didn't want to do anything that would change that path. I remember telling her that I didn't want to stick my foot in this door God is closing and pry it open for the sake of my own desires. I truly only want what God wants.
I went on to tell her that in December 2010 a friend of mine introduced me to an official of the government who just so happens to be the best friend of the highest ranking official at the DSS. She is called the Minister. After hearing that DSS had done nothing this friend, Mauricio, had told us he would put in a good word for us with the Minister to see if we could get some progress. Since December we had not spoken to him about his connection but I was thinking maybe this was the right time to use that contact.
At the very moment that I was pouring my heart out to Mary about this connection she was working on a bible study for her children's church class and had stopped typing at a very specific point. She was teaching on Ester. Let me remind you of this story. You see Ester was put in a specific place for a specific reason. It was always God's plan for her to have favor with the King. In Ester 4:14 Mordecai tells Ester that her favor she had with the King was for such a time as this. FOR SUCH A TIME AS THIS.
Needless to say at that very moment I knew God was speaking to me through Mary. She was typing those exact words at the same time I said to her maybe this is the time I need to use this connection God has given me. We both became very emotional and knew that God was speaking to us. I prayed all the way home asking God to show me what to do with this connection and I am still praying today. God told me that night that I can't pry open a door He has closed. Rev. 3: 7-9. If the door is shut then I can't open it so why not try. I can't fail.
There were so many little doors that opened for us that it just did not see normal that God would lead us along like a animal after a piece of meat only to shut the door in my face. I could be totally wrong on this but if I am so is my husband because Terry feels the same way. He loves Karen and has always felt a strong bond with her. God does not put that kind of love in your heart just because he can. He puts it there because of a purpose.
What now you are asking? Where do we go from here? Well after much prayer and many more little connections like the one with Mary we have decided to fight. We are going to appeal this answer and fight for Karen with all our might even if that means God says no down the road. One day when she is an adult I want to say to her that I did absolutely every thing within my power and my connections and that I felt God told me to do only because I love her with all my heart.
We have just completed our home study for the 3rd time over the course of the 4 years and we are waiting on it to be given to us. Once we get it we will send it to Homeland Security asking for an appointment to get our fingerprints done. As soon as they are done I will be free to leave the country and go and appeal this process. We are estimating mid to late June.
How will the appeal work? Not sure, doubt that anyone has ever done it. Not many Americans fight. Most just accept their answer and give up. I can't. I can't give up on this child of God until God tells me to give up. Terry is in complete agreement with this and will have to live without me for a very long time.
Once I leave I will first have to convince them to give me a chance to stay with her and show her our love for her and show her that it will be ok to leave her country and that Ubana won't die if she does. She could still say no and if that happens I think at least I will have closer in my heart. I will know I did everything. That's a big maybe. It will take me going to the Minister and fighting for this chance. We are asking them to allow us to have her for at least 30 days and then ask her again if she wants to live with us or not. As of today in all the 8 years I have not spent more than 8 straight hours with her. How can she make a life changing decision without having some time with us?
If we are given that chance we hope to show her how much she is loved and how great it would be to live with us here in the US. If she agrees I will then have to live in Nicaragua for another 3 months. All together I could be stuck in Nicaragua for up to 4 to 5 months.
That is extremely hard to accept. To leave my kids for that long and to leave Terry is excruciating in my mind but I know that if this is God's plan for our life that He will make the time go quickly or even shorten it. He is in control not the DSS folks.
What happens if Karen says no, I am sure you are thinking that. I am expecting God to give us that closer in our heart and to know that its ok. He will give us the peace that we will need to get through it. Maybe doing this will force them to change the rules and change how they do things for other people who are put in this position in the future. Who knows...
So the Never Ending Journey is truly just beginning. I will need your help like no other.
This will be a costly endeavor. Living full time in Nicaragua during the time of our lives that we have no income until late August or early September. Even knowing this we know that God will supply. We know that He loves Karen more than we do and if this is His will or even if it is not He will honor our willingness to fight for his orphan and meet our needs.
What can you do? You can pray and pray consistently.
Once I have the fingerprints appointment I will know when I am leaving and then the test begins. I will want to give up many times and I will want to run home to Terry and stop trying. I will have it hard this I know but I am a strong girl as most of you know already and I am a very determined woman who walks by faith and not by sight. My flesh may get weak but you will be there praying for me so my spirit will be strong. That's what I need from each of you readying this.
Will you walk this journey with me? Will you agree to pray for me faithfully and stand in the gap for me when I am weak, IF I GET WEAK? I believe God has called us to do this. I believe the greatest commandment is to Love and what greater love can I show than to help one of His orphans. Knowing that His word promises me that I can do all things through Christ that strengthens me I rest in knowing He is in control and He will guide us down this path He has called us to walk.
So for now we wait, we wait on the appointment and we pray that it comes at the perfect time it needs to and that once I am in Nicaragua the doors open for me to meet with the Minister. I have already decided that if the Minister turns me down that I will go and see the First Lady of Nicaragua. I have also been given two people who know her well and can possibility get me an appointment with her. That's as high as I can go and we already know she hates Christians and she hates Americans so maybe she will be the reason I am fighting. Winning her to Christ by showing her my love for Karen could be the very way. Only God knows, right.
Start praying for us now, I'll update you again when I know more but for now we just wait and believe God together.
Thanks for being apart of our Journey. It's comforting to know there are people praying on my behalf.
God Bless and I look forward to updating you soon.