Adoption can be an excited, and challenging process. I have been endeared by so many stories of adoption over blog land. A couple months ago when Jill contacted me and asked if she could be featured on my blog, I could not pass up the opportunity... Like many families going through the adoption process the 'Funk' Family has a unique story. I think I will let Jill introduce her sweet family and tell their story in there own words. You can also visit their cute blog Camp Funk!
My husband Dave and I live in a small town in Northeast Wisconsin (Kiel) where Dave proudly works as the police chief. We have 4 wonderful children, three boys and a girl, all who are ages 6 and under and all who have a deep love of God.
Even with our God-loving and fun-filled house, we decided we wanted more from life. So, this past fall, we started the process to adopt a child from Ethiopia. Dave and I felt that God was laying something heavy upon our hearts, that we had more love to give and certainly room in our home and more importantly in our hearts. Every time we thought about it and put up obstacles against adoption, God smashed those obstacles with an overwhelming need that is so evident in our world. There are so many children who need our help.
So what makes a woman who already has 4 little kids of her own want more? People often think (and say) “you’re crazy!” but adoption has always been something I had dreamed of, even as a child. Soon after our youngest child was born, I felt we were getting too comfortable, even with the craziness in our life, and that we were meant to do more and to help more than we do. I had this sense of “Okay, God…We’re ready for whatever you are about to put in front of us…Bring it on!”
My husband Dave was more reluctant to just dive right in so we spent a solid year of research and connecting with other families talking about the many risks, problems, and extremely high costs of adoption. Even with the information, Dave was still reluctant but he told me that he would ask God for direction and did. Dave prayed and asked God for signs on what to do. The very same morning he told me this he stopped for gas on his way into work and a van pulled up on the opposite side of the gas pumps. Written in block graphic letters across the back window in bold print was “Adoption is the only Option” and out of the van popped a whole bunch of kids, all who Dave learned were adopted. They smiled and laughed and talked to Dave about how their life now was so wonderful. It was truly a miraculous experience for Dave.
As if that obvious sign wasn’t enough; Dave and I both were repeatedly exposed to numerous other encounters with children who were adopted from other countries. Our waitress on a dinner date was adopted from Africa, the family camping next to us had adopted a little boy from Africa, our tour guide on a mini-vacation we took had adopted three children and so on. Everywhere we turned, we received God’s signs that this is what we were meant to do. It had become our mission and we made the commitment to move forward with it.
In November 2009 we submitted our application to adopt a little girl from Africa and our mission began anew. Our adoption story is one of faith—a mission defined by our desire to participate with God in restoring what’s broken in this world. We realize we cannot help all of the 147 million of the world’s lost children, but we know that we have room in our hearts and in our home for at least one.
Then in May this year a new journey begins...
As a family we have had to make a hard decision solely based on months of prayer and God's lead and timing in all of this. God has been taking us on a roller coaster ride the last 5 months, going through all sorts of loops and twists and changing and opening our heart along the way. God has put Domestic adoption of 1 or 2 children on our hearts and we as a family have chosen to follow.
Giving us consistent signs, over and over again we have opened our hearts to his plan not our plan. I just couldn't believe how persistent God is and how he never left us wondering. Even though its been hard to finally say yes to him we as a family feel very at peace and we couldn't be more excited about this new journey he has us on.
We have so many friends that have adopted domestically but it never really crossed my mind. I always had a love for Africa and always will. Dave is the one who wanted to pursue Domestic from the start, and I guess I should of listened. After Ethiopia stopped their process and then started it again but with cuts in their government we just started to ask God where we should go or what we should do. God simply threw situations, conversations and signs our way. The more we stayed focused and faithful to Ethiopia the more signs and confirmation for us to switch to Domestic he gave us. I was starting think...Wow! Can he really do this stuff? God is crazy and I am going insane over here! Trusting in God and his plan, it got to be pretty crazy sometimes before we made the decision. It's like I was constantly teetering on this edge and we finally had to make the decision. We are so thankful that God had given us this time to raise the money for this adoption and to open our hearts to Domestic adoption. We are saddened that we will not be adopting from Ethiopia but we know we will be going there for mission trips in the future with our children. We as a family are very excited about this and we couldn't be happier. God has the perfect child(ren) for us in his timing. We are starting over and following God's leading and our wonderful God will provide for us. We humbly ask you to join us on this journey. We ask that you pray for us as we embark on this adventure to bring our little girl home.
There have been a lot of road bumps along the way with the forces of evil working against us, but for every roadblock, we receive a small blessing and we know that if we stay focused and faithful our loving and wonderful God will provide for us.
We will be having a silent auction/dinner fundraiser at our church in Sheboygan Falls, WI. On September 16th to raise funds for this adoption. This will be the last fundraiser hopefully for this adoption. We will accept anything you would be willing to donate, just let us know what we should start the price at and some info about it if it’s handmade. Thank you so much for being a part of our journey.
We might not have the answer to the many questions you have but we do know that we have a gracious, kind and loving heavenly Father that delights when His children follow Him– even to uncharted territory. We wait expectantly for all that God has for us along this journey and we would welcome you to come along for the ride! God is good!
UPDATE: Jill just emailed me today to let me know, they have been CHOOSEN to adopt a sweet baby girl in California... She is having a Facebook-a-thon today to try to hurry and raise the remaining money they need. Go HERE to see how you can help!