Thursday, August 20, 2009

Today, Corban Tekele Phillips became our son – officially!!! We, the Phillips, stand in awe of who God is and how He has answered our long awaited, prayers. May you too stand in awe of the One who carries us through this thing called life!

Here is a synopsis of our adoption journey…

Somewhere in the late 80’s…God captures my heart for adoption

Somewhere in 2007…God captures Brent’s heart…

On the day Brent says he is certain we are to adopt, I start panicking and begin to second-guess…mainly, because we have no money. If you know anything about International Adoption – it is expensive. So, on the eve of Brent saying – yes…I go to bed begging God to affirm our decision. For “doubt” and its cousin “fear” begin having a hay day within my soul. (Brent knew not the depth of my struggle). As the next day progressed, I get a call late afternoon. Brent begins to share how a friend, whom we have not heard from nor seen in over 9 months, gave us a Christmas card with $2000 in it. While Jon did not know anything about our desire to adopt, God had moved his family to give us a huge gift to encourage and bless un in this new season we found ourselves in (new church plant, new neighborhood, schools, friends, new paycheck, etc.). Of course, I balled and confessed my doubt – God had affirmed.

I share this because God touches many with the desire to adopt and when they find out the costs they don’t move forward. I beg you not to let the $$$$ ever detour you from adoption – we are a living testimony that He provides. This is one area I could go on and on about…

January 2008…we send in our application to AWAA and begin what is called the paper pregnancy.

June 2008…while looking at the Waiting Child List (children who have special needs)…a little boy jumps off the screen and into our hearts. From the beginning we felt God ask us to be open and so we were…and on a particular evening, we all fall in love with “Eric.” We spent months preparing to bring him home.

Eight months go by…on the day we are taking Luke for his first MRI…we receive a phone call from our agency with extremely hard news. The short of it is…another adoption agency had also had Eric in their system and a family in Italy was adopting him. Since they were ahead of us in their paperwork…Eric went to them. Crushed…broken hearted…it felt like a miscarriage and we grieved.

Days later, we receive news that Luke has a low-grade brain tumor and Epilepsy (again). He will need surgery to remove the part of his brain that is damaged. In our endeavor to grasp it all…we trusted God’s timing would be best.

After praying, we believed God still wanted us to move forward to adopt another little boy…the new timeline sets us in motion to have a “new referral” around mid June. Certainly by the time our new son comes, we will have journeyed through Luke’s surgery. NOT!

Our new referral comes months early (unheard of in the adoption world) and on April 15, we receive Corban. Instantly, we all knew he was to be the one God has for us…but Lord, the timing does not make sense.

Luke’s surgeon tells us “to go get your son” and surgery can wait until August or September.

Our first court date is mid May and we have a tentative travel date of June 6th.

However, we do not pass court...many, many times (Long story – I will spare you the details). The bottom line, there is a discrepenscy in whether Corban’s mom was deceased or merely had disappeared. We knew, from all sources, she had passed away…but the judge needed proof.

All summer…the journey of paperchasing ensued…every Wednesday we would receive an update that would take pages more to write about. Every week, was full of “ no new news”…even one time the mention of “You have a good chance you will travel in 1 or 2 weeks (so we bought our tickets)…but, our agency was given wrong information and it was “false labor.”

Then last week, we realized the timeline, even if we did miraculously get the paperwork in and then pass court…it would be too close to Luke’s surgery (September 8th) to travel. This chapter is closed…now we will wait to travel in October.

We settled into the “wait until October” and “focus on surgery” plan. I must admit that it was nice not to be married to our phone, and email, and wondering how these two worlds were going to collide…this new life I was getting used to. God, Your timing is what we long for…Your purposes…

So, yesterday (8/19/09), we receive a call from Luke’s surgeon, and the doctor needs to move surgery to the end of September. What?! We have waited for so long, we are ready to get Harry (what we have affectionately named Luke’s tumor) out and help him move on with his life. And, secondly, what does this mean for our adoption…we will have to wait now until November.

Today (8/20/09), out of the blue...the call comes…” we passed court”…after 3+ months…our son, who has been ours from the beginning of time, is now “officially” part of our family.

The end of the story is still to be written…if we are able to move surgery back to mid October we will go get Corban in the next few weeks. If not, we will wait until after surgery when the doctor clears us to leave the country.

All of this to share, God is good…He has provided…and will continue…He is bringing a family together as only God can do. May God’s love connect our hearts with the heart of a little boy oceans, mountains, and miles away…Corban – we are coming!!!! And we are beyond grateful for your life.