Last Updated on March 13, 2024

About 8 years ago, the adoption discussion began in our home.  We collected information, went to information meetings and gathered information from people about their adoption experiences – information overload.   We discussed and discussed and … ugh… discussed.  I distinctly remember riding in the car and my husband saying, “Why don’t you just fill out the application.  Gitterdone”  Gitterdone?!  As much as I felt we were called to adopt another child, there was no way I was going to pursue adoption unless my husband felt 110% called to it.  I decided to wait on the Lord. No easy task for me to be sure.  Within a year, my husband brought home a flyer about a Department of Social Services program called Fostering to Adopt.  Sounded intriguing and a bit terrifying.  I couldn’t attend the information meeting because of a prior commitment; my husband had to attend alone.  After 6 hours of listening, he returned home excited and ready to pursue adoption.  God at work.

Several months later we found ourselves seated at a table with 5 other couples listening while social workers shared about foster care.  I like to describe it as having our rose colored glasses taken off, stomped on several times and then handed back to us.  Every meeting I left feeling completely unprepared for what might lie ahead.  I felt scared and a bit unwilling to subject our family to the possibilities.  I left saying, “I don’t think I can do this.”  My husband would then encourage me that indeed we could.  He couldn’t have done that had he not felt called to it – if I had pushed it on him.  God had it covered.

The day after we completed our home study, we received the call.  “We think we have a little girl that will fit perfectly into your family.”  After praying for about 24 hours straight, we welcomed our Elizabeth into our arms the next afternoon.   Oh that I had more space to share the millions of ways we saw God at work – His faithfulness, His sense of humor, His loving-kindness.

I will tell you that I had NOTHING for her.  She was a little baby and I was fresh outta baby things.  Within 2 hours of my sending out a prayer request to friends, I had everything I needed… everything!  Including 2 friends to spend the first night with me! God blessed beyond measure.

Less than a year later, we received another call to foster to adopt her little sister.  We again prayed and prayed and prayed some more.  We knew without a doubt this little girl, our Allison, was meant to be part of our family.  We got the call as we were pulling up to a reception for my husband’s job.  We shared quickly with friends in the parking lot that we had to leave to get our wonderful 5th child!  Our quiver was full.

I think back on that time in the car with my husband – I remember where we were on the road and what we were listening to.  It’s so clearly etched in my mind; because it was the moment I decided to let God be in control.  I’m so very thankful I did.

{Editor’s Note: This post first ran in 2011 during our feature on National Adoption Awareness Month!}

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  1. Your article brought tears to my eyes. We have 3 bio kids and know we are called to another child….waiting to adopt and praying about fostering. Bless you!

  2. Dan Donehey says:

    Incredible memory and wonderful perspective. Dr. Dobson's "Parenting is not for Cowards" was a sobering treatise when we had a quiver full but in so many ways an essential primer for parenting. I think our culture has in many ways grown afraid of children and rubber-kneed at the thought of parenting. Yet, in more ways that can be counted (or at least recalled), parenting brings adventures and changes to our life that we could never plan or experience on our own without them. Thank you Sue for providing such a heartfelt reminder to remember how God has worked in our lives to begin journeys knowing He will be faithful to see us through all the valleys in between the peaks!

  3. Daphne Phillips says:

    Beautiful, sweet Sue! Thank you for sharing such precious memories with us.

  4. Thank you for sharing something so special. Those girls fit so well; I can't imagine your family without them!