If this adoption journey has taught me anything....which it's taught me LOTS....one thing is to hope for the best and plan for the worst. There is so much unknown throughout the entire process so there is often no way to predict how things are going to play out. There is often a lot of negative information which could cause us to despair and hopelessness. There are facts that are hard to deny. However....we also know that with God anything is possible and if I lived the whole process with a gloomy cloud of doom over my head then I would have been done in a long time ago! Despite how hard things may get or have been, I have to maintain hope that things could always play out the way we would like because it keeps me sane and helps me to lean into God, trusting and knowing that no matter what the outcome....He is perfectly sovereign and He knows what's best. Man, without Him and the hope we have in His perfect care and control, I don't know how we would have weathered this journey thus far!! It gives me great encouragement knowing that no matter what happens, it's all being filtered through God's loving hands and nothing will come into my life without His permission and control. And ultimately it will be for my best....to grow me more into the image of Christ.
So...that brings me to our newest update! We are praying and hoping for miracles, but fully aware of the reality of the situation and trusting that however it plays out, God is in control. We have been waiting for at least a month now to get our first court date for our little guy. This court date is called the birth parent/finder court date and it's not one that we have to be there for. This court date also serves as a deadline for MOWA (the Ethiopian government agency in charge of international adoptions) to submit their federal consent letter which is required for us to move forward at all. Thus far, over the past several months, MOWA has been VERY (and that's an understatement!) delinquent in issuing these consent letters. I'm not aware of one single case that has gotten their consent letter on the first try! Most families I know have been delayed 4-5 times before they are finally given consent. So the way it works....the courts set a court date/deadline. The day comes and MOWA either gives no response at all or they give a negative response, which means the adoptive parents and adoption agency need to provide corrected, new or updated documents (just depends on what they ask for). A new deadline is set and the whole scene plays out again. The new deadline is usually set out another 3 weeks or so. So this plays out over and over again....at least 4-5 times for most families. Once a family finally passes first court and receives their federal consent letter then they are cleared to set the adoptive parent court date and that usually happens fairly soon after...within a few weeks. And that, my friends, is when we get to travel to meet our little guy and go to court to make him legally ours!!!!!!! I cannot wait for that day!
We were slow in getting our first court date for whatever reason (there usually is no reason...we just have to expect delays). Well, we finally were given word today that a first court date has been set for our case!!!!!! I was over the moon to finally hear this news! I know in reality what it means....that we will likely be delayed and nothing will actually happen by this date. However, to me it means that we are actually on the map and starting the process of being delayed over and over again. :) One step closer! Like I said, and like our case worker kindly reminded us, we shouldn't expect for anything to actually happen by this date. Chances are, MOWA will refuse to respond by this date and we will be given a new date and do the dance back and forth til we are finally approved. HOWEVER...I'm still going to pray for miracles. :) And I'm asking if you would do the same please? I know what reality is, however, I also know my God and know that He is fully capable of working a miracle and allowing us to get our MOWA consent by the time our court date comes. I will trust that whatever happens...He is in control and knows what's best. I know His will is perfect. But in the meantime...I'm gonna keep praying for miracles and keep trusting in whatever God works out.
So...our court date is March 20th. Will you pray with us that MOWA will approve our case by then and we can move forward? And if not, that God will continue to work and care for our little boy and we will continue to trust in His loving care and control. I'm going to be praying everyday and I'd love to have prayer warriors who would join with us in storming the gates of Heaven for our little boy.
In addition, I know several families who have been waiting months and even well over a year to travel for their court date and are still waiting on their federal consent letter. I would feel awful if we received ours and they were still waiting. My heart breaks for them as I watch them journey through this, watching their children grow up in pictures. It already breaks my heart to see our little boy grow up and change in pictures and we've just been waiting 3 months since we first saw his face. Would you please also pray for these families that they would receive their approval asap and finally get to travel to meet their child?
Ps...we were so thankful to receive a new picture of him this week!!!! A fellow adoptive mom was able to visit his orphanage and was so kind to get us a new picture aaaaannnd...get a sweet little video of him for us!!! Oh my heart. I can't even express how amazing it was to watch. He is precious people. And I can't wait for the day I actually get to hold him in my arms and give him all our love....and introduce you to him!
Thank you for your prayers, love and support!
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