Sunday, July 24, 2011

Raising Support for Adoption (part 1)

As we have worked toward bringing our little guy home, I have heard from so many friends who are also thinking and praying about adoption. Since the financial side of things is so often the biggest obstacle for people, I thought I’d share here some of what I’ve learned through this process.
When we first started praying seriously about adopting (almost 2 years ago), we had some money saved up, but also some financial commitments we felt like we needed to get out from under. Primarily, we owned a rental house that Matt bought with some life insurance money after Julie went to be with the Lord. With the market being what it was/is… and with the continual reminders that our ministry lifestyle does not lend itself well to being landlords… we decided we needed and wanted to sell the rental. At the time, I was not at all sure that God was calling us to adopt – I just knew we were called to get involved some how in caring for orphans. But I was also SURE that selling the rental was the right and wise thing to do. We expected it to be the first step toward our adoption, and even to provide financially for our adoption in some way.
But then… It didn’t sell. And we hadn’t found new renters, since we didn’t want to rent it while it was for sale. The rent usually paid the mortgage on that house, so while it was empty, we paid both mortgages ourselves, which ate through our savings pretty quickly.
As fall approached – and winter, which here in Nebraska is not prime house selling season – we began to run out of money. So this first step toward our adoption felt like a step backwards.
And then our furnace/AC died. Which is not something you can mess with in the Midwest. So now rather than having money set aside for a possible adoption, we’re pretty deep in the hole.
I was tempted to despair, be bitter and discouraged.  But I’d committed to receive everything on the path to adoption as from the Lord’s hand. So this wasn’t what I expected or would have chosen, but it was the Lord.
I have heard from MANY other adoptive and seeking-to-adopt families who had similar things happen. I can’t speak for anyone else, but for our family, I think the Lord wanted us in a place of complete dependence upon Him.
When we began to sense that He wanted us to move forward – with nothing to offer other than a willingness to work really hard and budget like crazy – we both knew it would grow our faith.
But I don’t think I realized how much… It has been SO ENCOURAGING to watch the Lord provide for us. Every family’s journey is different in this – and we’re not done yet.
But the rental did sell. After we took the step of faith to begin the adoption process…and without having to leave it rent-less for any amount of time. We did lose money on it, but not much considering how easy the sale was (and less than we likely would have lost leaving it empty for many months trying to find a buyer.)
And each step of this journey we’ve had exactly what we needed.
I’ll share more about our thoughts on fundraising in part 2…