On Thursday night, December 15 a spectacular thing happened.
Hope came home.
As a mama of a Ugandan babe, this is of course exciting.
Our entire Florida-Ugandan Family congregate at the airport EVERY time
a new family steps off the tram in our international airport
with a Ugandan child -
formerly an orphan,
now a closely-held,
wide-eyed and overwhelmed,
dearly-beloved son or daughter.
we bring balloons and signs and cameras
We make a
loud huge deal.
By Wednsday there were 13 Ugandan children who have stepped off this
tram and into our community of love.
On Thursday, though....
that number became 14.
Our Hope came home on Thursday.
Back on August 11, my friend Janna and I were having a normal playdate at her house.
We'd been separated much of the summer with one family travelling (them)
and one family cocooning (us).
Our kids play well together and love doing so.
Janna had her 3 kids - I had my 4.
We talked for about 4 hours while LEGO's and cars and babydolls were thrown about.
We ate salads
The kids had sandwiches and snacks.
It was all very normal.
It was nice.
And then something sincerely supernatural happened.
God spoke up.
Janna mentioned that she and her husband were ready to begin the adoption process again
wanted the Lord to be clear.
Wanted to adopt from somewhere they felt a signifigant connection to.
They didn't want to just choose out of the blue.
And they wanted to adopt a sister for their youngest, a girl among 2 older brothers.
*This? Completely flew by me.
I was all: "Oh! Cool!"
And that. was. all.
(God must have been shaking His head at me.)
20 minutes later...
I "randomly" mentioned I was praying these last 2 weeks for a little girl.
"Do people ever tell you about orphans and ask you to pray for them?",
I asked Janna,
since I know and respect her greatly.
"What are you talking about?", she asked.
"No. No one's ever done that to me.", she added.
I told Janna that this little girl lived in an orphanage and was recovering from malaria.
I told her we were unsure of her age but thought her about age 1-1/2 years old.
And I told her we were unsure about anything else about her
Then I told Janna her name....Hope.
And with that one word I watched Hope be born in her mother's eyes.
I watched Janna's face lift and lightbulbs click on.
I watched confusion cloud her eyes and then - clarity settle.
And I heard her say to me:
That's our name.
For our daughter I have started praying for.
She said it like a question, almost
like she was asking permission to tell me Something Big.
I was floored.
It was my turn to be confused.
Slowly the wheels in my head started turning
and I knew I needed to head out,
wrangle my kids home,
and make some phone calls.
When I got home 10 minutes later
there was a message on my voicemail.
Janna had called her husband, Scott.
She told him the precious little she had heard about Hope.
He said: "Well. Let's go get her."
The voicemail I arrived home to that day,
only 10 minutes after leaving her house
spoke these words to my stunned ears:
"Esty, I have talked to Scott.
And we want to do everything possible we can do to Lord-willing
bring Hope home to be part of our family forever."
That was all they needed.
An invitation from the Lord.
And they raced to their daughter and never looked back.
Now, it was not all over after that.
After that came the most mountainous trek of faith I have ever witnessed.
After August 11 came a race against the clock
and a challenge of hope such as I have only been a part of 1 other time.
And that was with my Rissa.
This was different...
because I was the witness, not the parent.
But I was allowed to be party to miracle after miracle.
For Janna and Scott.
This little life has seen something extraordinary.
Hope came home.
And here's what it's done to me:
Hope coming home makes me unafraid.
I can't explain it
but after watching it all
one miracle at a time
I can testify this truly:
"...and hope does not put us to shame, because God’s love has been poured into our hearts through the Holy Spirit who has been given to us."