WELCOME TO LEEMINGVILLE!
"What God the Father considers to be pure and genuine religion is this: to take care of the orphans and widows in their suffering and to keep oneself from being corrupted by the world." James 1:27
It is probably due to the heavy rain the day before we arrived but I was expecting to be choking from smog. Hasn't been too bad out. Learned quickly yesterday that even if the pedestrian light is on that turning traffic still have the right of way! Having breakfast at our hotel in downtown Beijing overlooking one of the streets. Still hard to believe we are here. We fly out to where Anna is in a few hours although we won't see her until tomorrow. Again, it's starting to sink in about what we are doing. Anna is quickly moving from an abstract concept to reality. God is giving us an extreme responsibility to raise this child as our own and we are both contemplative and very excited about it all.
Other then the 3 hour delay at Toronto the flight was good. Took off and headed NNW and flew near Churchill and then Yellowknife before skirting Alaska. Flew south over Siberia to Beijing. Hotel is great. Haven't had the chance to see much of Beijing other then the ride from the airport. It's hard to believe we are here! Tomorrow we fly to Urumqi where Anna is but we don't get to see her until Monday. The picture was taken over northern Canada.
Well, it is the eve before the big day. Lots of running around and still more to do. Hard to believe this is it. Some philosophical musings. Over a hundred years ago did the Wright brothers ever imagine that hundreds of people could board a single plane that would take them nonstop halfway around the world in less than a day!? Also, at the risk of being misunderstood it is sinking in more about this adventure we are about to embark on. Anna isn't coming for a sleepover but will be a permanent part of our family! Do I have what it takes to be her father? It is both a sobering and humbling thought! Will need God's help even more from now on.
Yesterday was a productive day at our house. Everyone is very excited. The younger kids are finished school now and Jacob has one more exam to write today. Our focus has shifted from school to bringing home our little girl. So yesterday we did as much decluttering and organizing as we could. The boys spent the morning cleaning out their room which is pretty amazing for a 12 year old and a 15 year old. I was impressed!
I have one suitcase packed and two more to start today once laundry is done. Still so many little things to think about.
I have to admit, yesterday I was very tired and feeling somewhat overwhelmed about the trip and leaving the kids. Before bed last night I was encouraged as I read some blogs of other families who have adopted, some who have done it multiple times adopting children with a variety of special needs. I am truly amazed by these stories and the strength they have as they put their faith in God.
This morning I feel better and focused again on this little girl that will soon be home here with us. I know that God is greater than my fear or weakness. So we ask for your prayers as we leave this Thursday and we hold to the verse in Isaiah 26:3,4 that tells us,
"You will keep in perfect peace him whose mind is steadfast, because he trusts in you.
Trust in the Lord forever, for the Lord is the Rock eternal."
We began the adoption process with our homestudy in January of 2009. In August of 2010 we received approval by the Ministry of Ontario and began working on our dossier for China. This included a huge amount of paperwork that was finally completed in January of this year and was sent to The Children's Bridge in Ottawa. Soon after it was sent by them to China. Things began to move along more quickly after this. It was only about three weeks before we received a call saying they had a referral for a little girl in Xinjiang Province for us. It was then that we were introduce to Xin Jing Zhi, whom we now call Anna. The journey didn't actually begin in January 2009 but many years before. I have had a desire tucked away in my heart for a long time to adopt and Mark and I discussed it occasionally over the years. Many different circumstances have played a part in making this decision and often it has been the difficult times in life when I have felt most strongly that God has a greater purpose for our lives than we ever imagine. We feel tremendously blessed and the gift of our family has been such a source of joy for us and we desire to share our blessings with Anna. As the day approaches we are humbled and overjoyed that this little girl will be our daughter.