Saturday, February 19, 2011

One Year Ago 2Day

We met Kevin! Oh my goodness it just makes me cry to reflect on the mercy and goodness of God this past year....I went to our travel site which is password protected, but I copied our entry from February 18th, the day we met Kevin... (and I just realized I can't copy from that site so we will try to figure that out and post the entry later today! in the meantime we are preparing for a sweet celebration of one year gotcha days!)

Before you read it though, please go look at New Day's blog HERE to see the cutest little post about Keith!

Thursday Feb 18th, 2010
“Get up, and do the next thing.”

Oswald Chambers: “If we are inspired by God, what is the next thing? It is to trust Him absolutely and to pray on the basis of His redemption.”

From the devotional book “Jesus Calling” : “I AM WITH YOU. These four words are like a safety net, protecting you from falling into despair. Because you are human, you will always have ups and downs in your life experience. Sometimes you may feel as if you are in a free fall, when people or things you had counted on let you down. Yet as soon as you remember that I am with you, your perspective changes radically. Instead of bemoaning your circumstances, you can look to Me for help. You recall that not only am I with you, I am holding you by your right hand. I guide you with My counsel and afterward I will take you into Glory. This is exactly the perspective you need: the reassurance of My Presence, and the glorious hope of heaven.”

These were what I read early this morning in my quiet time. How gracious of the Lord to prepare me for what lay ahead in my day. Rob read this verse in his quiet time: 2 Cor. 1:8 “We do not want you to be uninformed, brothers, about the hardships we suffered in the province of Asia. We were under great pressure, far beyond our ability to endure, so that we despaired even of life.” He brought his Bible to me and said “What do you think this is supposed to mean…that we’re going to go through hardship?”

I replied “Maybe.”

He said “I hope not!”

I said “Don’t hope not!” and then I said something about sometimes God is glorified most through hardship…(of course that all sounded well and good, but then it was time to practice that truth when 8:00 rolled around and we found out Kevin was in the hospital)

After Karen Brenneman, director of New Day, came in and told us the news that we would not be meeting Kevin this morning, we prayed together for a very long time. Karen brought pages of scriptures to pray together. We praised the Lord, we cried out to Him, we sat in silence before Him. Katie Lyn and Candie sat on the floor at our knees, no words came out of their mouths but tears streamed KK’s face and even Candie could tell something very serious was going on. Though this was not the way I wanted our day to begin, that time with the Lord is something I will always remember. We felt His presence like never before.

During our prayer time Karen received a phone call with an emergency prayer concern for an eighteen month old heart baby at New Day…Tristan. We prayed for a miracle for Tristan. Soon after that, Karen received another phone call with the news that Tristan had gone on to Jesus.

To say the morning was an emotional roller coaster heading south at lightning speed is an understatement.

Psalm 73:23-26
“Yet I am always with you; you hold me by my right hand. You guide me with your counsel, and afterward you will take me into glory. Whom have I in heaven but you? And earth has nothing I desire besides you. My flesh and my heart may fail, but God is the strength of my heart and my portion forever.”

We found out Kevin had a low platelet count and would need platelets over the next five days. There was a possibility that if Karen could arrange it with the hospital and the orphanage, that Kevin might could receive platelet treatments once we get to Changsha, if he was okay to travel. In the meantime, Karen needed to go see about making arrangements for Tristan. So what is the next thing we do? As Oswald says “trust Him completely and pray”. And then we walked next door and loved on the foster home babies. There is nothing that will get your mind off your troubles like playing with kids! Rocking babies, feeding bottles, playing on the floor, games of peek-a-boo…Heavenly! If I couldn’t spend the day with my son, the next best thing was to spend it with these orphans, many of whom have forever families waiting on them and many who are months away from even having their paperwork ready to be adoptable.

Insert updates for families waiting on their babies: Tanya, I got to see Khloe very briefly as it was lunchtime (yes, she was EATING! ;) and then right before naptime she was playing a little cat and mouse with me (what a personality!) and as soon as I got out my camera to snap some pics, they led her out for naptime! I tried one more time before dinner and she spied me through the window and perked up, and then wouldn’t you know it, they led her down the hall to get ready for bed! So…I’m going to try one more time in the morning to get you some pics! She is a little PEANUT, let me tell you! And talk about a grinner! Also in the foster home we got to visit with Victoria who is being adopted, and her forever family is SO blessed to have this little angel! I am not sure who is adopting her, but if anyone knows, tell them I have some great pics and video! Also, little Ethan is a HAM! What a flirt!

We were not able to see Debra, Adahlyn, Adrian, Drew, Evan or any of the other children in foster homes. Since it is Chinese New Year the foster families were not coming to the orphanage this week. Alycia, I left Adahlyn’s package with Karen.

We spent a lot of time upstairs with the babies. That little Judah…oh my goodness. EAT HIM UP! And Cora…she is a tiny little squirt but boy is she a pistol! All these kiddos are SO LOVED by their nannies! We are seeing firsthand the work and the love and the dedication that New Day has to these children. If you do not sponsor a child…THIS IS THE PLACE TO START!

When it was naptime for all the children, we went back to the guest house and ate sandwiches for lunch. Jet lag was beginning to set in so we had to get moving to fight it. We took Candie and KK to the playground here, and they had a ball! New Day has a great outside play yard, complete with a family dog, bunny rabbits, and a goat! Then we walked out the gate to the village. Things around here are slow right now because of the holiday. Chinese New Year is hands down the biggest event of the year. Families plan their year around this one week. They get together for the week, shoot endless fireworks (hearing them right now as a matter of fact), many businesses and shops and restaurants are closed. It was neat to go down the street, unguided, and just see what we could see. We feel very safe in this village, and especially here at New Day. New Day has a gate with a 24 hour guard.

After that brisk, freezing cold walk, we wanted to warm up a bit so we went back to the guest house and spent some time reading God’s Word and praying some more. We knew Karen would be back soon and we would find out if the hospital might let Kevin receive his platelet treatment in Changsha, where we’re supposed to be traveling tomorrow. I began reading Psalm 119 and just writing down verses as prayers to God. The last one I wrote was verse 105: “Your Word is a lamp unto my feet and a light unto my path” As soon as I finished writing it, I heard someone come through the front door saying, “Let’s go! They’re on their way to the Healing Home!”

THEY? Did she say THEY? Yes! Meaning Grace and Kevin! (Grace was with Kevin at the hospital, which is comforting since he’s familiar with her) Grace and Kevin were coming home and we drove to the Healing Home (only about a mile away) to meet them there! We pulled up at the same time, and Kevin was sound asleep in the back seat, bless his baby heart. They cradled him gently and took him upstairs. He woke up NOT a happy camper once upstairs. Of course he had been through quite an ordeal. His nanny just held him and comforted him. We stood off a little to give him time to adjust and wake up. He wanted no part of us and I can’t blame him for that! We did not even try to come close to him. We talked to the other Healing Home babies while Kevin sat with his nanny. Eventually he perked up, and I scooted over towards him and showed him some pictures. He loved the pictures and began babbling with his nanny about who was in the pictures…mama, baba, jie jie, ge ge, etc….And I had to squeeze my nails into my hands to keep from scooping him up and smothering him with kisses! Yall, I am not kidding, this little one is IRRESISTIBLE! His lips are even more perfect in person. His eyes, oh his eyes! He cuts them over at you, like to say “Don’t even think of being my mama and taking me away. I’ve got your number, lady” Oh yes you do, Kevin! And you’ve got your mama and daddy WRAPPED already! He’s not afraid to stand his ground, even after an exhausting hospital stay. Those pictures were HIS and HIS ALONE and woe to the other children who tried to sneak a peek. They just might draw back a nub!

Soon, Kevin got down and started toddling around. Oh my goodness, as if he wasn’t cute enough already! This guy’s got quite the saunter! ADORABLE! He actually sat with me and Rob a good while on the couch taking the pictures out of the envelope and putting them back in. One time he even kissed Quan’s picture! Candie enjoyed playing with Catherine, and KK got quite attached to Melody. I’m going to have to check her carry-on to make sure she didn’t stow her away! There is a new little guy at the Healing Home…Hosea. Wow…talk about a baby sweetheart!

When it was time to say goodbye, Kevin was happy to wave and say “bye bye” in the SWEETEST little voice! (I think he was thinking “as long as you’re not taking me and I get to stay here with my nanny!’) His nanny just hugged and loved on him. He kissed her cheek and then put his cheek next to her cheek. It was SO SWEET to see him so affectionate. Karen leaned in to me and whispered “That’s gonna be YOU soon!” One day…one day!

We are flying with Grace and Kevin to Changsha tomorrow!!!!!!!! The road ahead is still uncertain. We will go straight from the airport to the hospital for a platelet treatment. Thankfully, Grace will stay with us for several nights in Changsha. We are so thankful the Lord is allowing us to have her to help us! She is great at communicating with the doctors and the orphanage director. She has Kevin’s best interest at heart and so Karen, Grace, and all of us are so grateful the Lord worked all this out in this way!

We cannot express enough our gratitude for your prayers. To know that so many were lifting Kevin up before the throne of grace brought us a peace that passes all understanding. We felt that grace raining down on us. Pouring! Oh thank you sweet friends! To God be the glory!!!!!!!!!!

We don’t know what the low platelet count means. We refuse to let our imaginations run wild when we don’t have any confirmations as to the cause. All we know is what we know: Kevin is healthy enough to travel, we will continue to do what we need to do for his best interest, we will proceed to keep his adoption process going smoothly so we can get him home, he is meant to be our son, he is a precious gift from the Lord! And most importantly…GOD IS SO GOOD, ALL THE TIME. He is near to us, and we pray He is glorified in a BIG way!

Please continue to lift up Karen and the Nannies as they grieve the loss of Tristan, yet rejoice that he is healed and home in Heaven…it is of course a bittersweet loss. It cuts the nannies’ hearts to the core, yet we’re reminded of how many miracles God has performed in these New Day children. We look to Him as the Sovereign One, Maker of Heaven and earth, Healer, Restorer, Redeemer! His mercies are new every morning. Each and every miracle is a treasure we do not take for granted!

Kevin loves his nanny!

Helping Dad organize pictures

Catherine and Candie playing a game

Kevin and Mama playing "gimme five"

KK and Melodie..... "IN LOVE"!

Tristan, healed and in home with Jesus


Ashley said...

Only God could have prepared for you that day. How timely it was for you and Rob to be there on that specific day.
So amazing He spoke to you all so clearly. I am amazed by your will power ~ that is a miracle b/c he is ADORABLE.

I have the same devotions every morning :).
Hugs and much love and Praises for Kevin's Gotcha day ~

Anneli said...

Oh Laine, I forgot that you were there adopting Kevin when Tristan went to be with Jesus. What a tough time that is. I still remember that day so clearly. He was such a little sweetheart, one of the first kids who warmed up to me. However, he's with Jesus now and HEALTHY. Also everything that happened with Kevin when you arrived. What a gotcha day that was. So happy about Keith now!!! Blessings to you and your family. Happy 1st gotcha day Kevin!!!


TanyaLea said...

Oh Laine ~ The emotions I felt reading this post came flooding back in, just as they did one year ago! I remember it as though it were yesterday. I was glued to my computer and on my knees for you, for Kevin, for Tristan, for the nannies and staff, for my Khloe and all those who were waiting. It was a time of so many different emotions. From joy and happiness, to fear and sorrow. Yet I remember even as I type this, how I was reminding myself that 'fear is NOT from God' and taking authority over what they enemy was trying to steal from your family. What he intended for evil, God turned around for good! PTL for the amazing staff at New Day and for His divine grace that carried you through every step of the way, bringing you all home safely and seeing you through the storms that would follow. God is faithful. Faithful in the calm and in the storm. Faithful to prepare His servant's hearts. Faithful to PREVAIL over the enemy.

Happy 1 Year... we'll be thinking of you and celebrating with you!

Love ya'all!!


Mike and Barb said...

Yeah for your little man. One year already, wow!
My little boys continue to pray for little Kevin just about every day. It's so sweet!
Especially Elia has such a tender heart towards kids with medical problems.
Love, Barb

The Byrd's Nest said...

Oh my...I cannot believe it has been a year!!! Seriously??? I agree with Ashley...God's perfect timing that you were there with Kevin on that day! God bless little you my friend and I am thanking God today for you in my life and for the life of Kevin:)

Jennifer Taylor said...

What a story, and what a blessing! Happy Gotcha Day Kevin!

Southern Cheesehead said...

I remember praying through this...waiting for the latest update from the blog or from Shalita. Oh far everyone has come! Praise the Lord for God's hand on Kevin and your family! And I think he still has the sweetest little voice!!!