Posts

Now We Wait

Image
Now we wait. 
What do I mean by that?
Well for a little over a year this adoption process has been a series of  us filling out paperwork, taking classes, home study appointments, document collecting, trips to Chicago for special stamps, basically busy work, for months, and months. Well now our documents have passed through our agency on to our translator, and then to Ukraine to our facilitator (who I hear is the BOMB), and now they are with Ministry of Social Policy (MSP) in Ukraine. They will decide if we adopt Nina and Katya. At this point we have done all we can. Now We Wait and we Pray.  We pray for the judge looking at the paperwork to find no errors. We pray that our approval date would come quickly. We pray we would get our first MSP appointment fast!! Very Fast!! We pray we can raise, save or borrow the remainder of the funds we need.  We pray for a quick wait between MSP and Court. Court is when Us, the judge, our facilitator, our translator and Nina and Katya get together in t…

Grants

Image
So I am applying for a grant from Lifesong for Orphans.  This is one of the questions...

The question is, “How has God led you to adopt?” 
This question scares me. What if I don’t give the right answer. What if I don’t come close to having an understandable answer. Let me tell you- I can talk better than I can write, but it’s not about me. It is about God and what He has done. So here it goes. In June of 2017 our family of 3, Richard, Terri, and Erynne were just an “average family” with no thought of adopting anyone. At the end of June a friend of ours from church, Michele, was blessed to host two cute girls from Ukraine. The church family was asked to donate clothes or anything to the girls as they had come with only the clothes on their backs. I love kids and I love shopping so I went out and purchased a few items for each of the girls.  I gave my donations to Michele and thought that was it. Boy was I wrong!  Later that same evening during youth group at our church, my husband an…

Miracle

Image
The miracles continue to appear- day after day.  This blog post is a chronicle of their journey, and I am blessed to have a front row seat. Terri, I pray for you to continue to be bold and brave. God has made you strong for such a season as this. Rich, may God bless you financially for your willingness to add two to your family and raise them to adult hood; may you see grandchildren that always tell of the Papa who provided for them. Erynne, may your gentle spirit know how to minister to your new sisters. For all, may our faith increase as we review the Gardner's journey of miracles: 
God continues to write a miraculous story in the lives of the Gardner family. Rich, Terri, and Erynne Gardner have been experiencing an increase in their faith over the last ten months as God brings miracle after miracle. This journey involves events and people that God orchestrates as only He can.
The Gardners have seen unprecedented events unfold before their eyes as God intricately planned this a…

Psalm 127:1

Image
“Unless the Lord builds the house, they labor in vain that build it. . .” Psalm 127:1 God has been building a new home for our growing family, and he has been doing it with one brick of blessing after another.  Brick #1:  God found a home for us in Plainfield, Illinois that will fit our family of five. He actually provided a home that is like a dream come true for us! When I think of Joseph from the Old Testament, he exemplifies that God is in the business of making dreams come true; sometimes He makes tangible dreams come true - like a house or car or vacation. But, other dreams are not so measurable. How about the dream of an orphan to have a room of her own and a family that loves her?  Every plan for this house has been provided for by God, and I marvel at His servants who have donated their time, talents, and money.  Brick #2:  God continues to provide the necessary money for this adoption. God  builds one brick at a time, and he recently provided a $10,000 anonymous gift toward…

Trouble Comes, but Miracles Occur

Image
This is the true story of what happened this week - told in very short sentences:
Terri plans to sell her inherited estate. Closing date is December 20th.  Buyer’s lender is terrible, and is fired. New lender “Newbie” is hired.  Closing date is December 29th.  Newbie does not answer calls or emails.  Terri’s attorney gets nervous.  Closing date is now January 5th.  Newbie still does not respond.  In fact, Newbie engages in breach of contract and tries to change the title company on the sneak.  This information is discovered on January 3rd.  Terri’s attorney flies into action: she withdraws so close can occur, new paperwork gets to Terri at 4 pm, it must be overnighted, Terri signs.  Rich gets home early.  Notarized at 5:20. Off to UPS that said they were open until 7:00.

Not my will but His

Image
“This is not the way that I would do it.” Have you ever thought this when God was bringing you through a trial? Have you ever been stunned into worshipful awe when you saw how the details came to a perfect conclusion that only God could orchestrate? This.is.me. 
I reflect that just 12 months ago I was dealing with the grief of losing both my aunt and uncle within six months of each other. I loved and cared for them, and I carried out their wishes. Just one year ago, I was readying their home to be rented, and clearing out the estate. I rented the home to a single-mom, and she signed a two-year lease. Done deal. God had different plans!!
As I began to pray about the provision of the $50,000 to adopt Nina and Katya, God began to provide in strange and amazing ways. Gofundme (but it takes 10% of the profit), neighborhood collections, and even the pasta dinner. What a dinner it was!!
The pasta dinner was a startling provision of more than $5,000. God accomplished this with the donations …
Image
Waiting. Is. So. Hard.
I am realizing that sometimes there is much good in what is hard. Right now, I am working so hard, yet I find myself waiting. I wait on paperwork, fingerprints, and others’ decisions. I wait to hear from or about the girls. I wait to see how God will bring the money in. Sometimes, I wrestle while I wait. Oh, not a physical wrestling, but a mental wrestling match- usually on my knees. One match in particular, I kept telling God, “I don’t understand, and I have nothing else to say.” Over and over for four hours this was my mindset. 
But, guess what?  I have been humbled to realize that often when I am waiting, the answer is on the way or already done. I wake in the morning to find my prayer is answered in the middle of the night! I think of the phrase, “back to His dear loving arms would I flee when I remember that Jesus loves me!”  I wrestle, but my Saviour has it all in control, and I am right where he wants me- in His arms.  
My arms prepare for the silent auc…