What a blessing it was to see Stella in her Christmas present we sent her. Our hearts were hurting over losing Emme and it brought smiles to our faces to see her. When we looked at Stella, we couldn't imagine how such a beautiful child could also be an orphan. With our hearts still broken, we knew she wasn't yet matched with a family of her own, and we started to wonder if we should ask about her file status. Knowing full well going in that it was practically impossible to be matched with a child that was considered "pre-identified". You see, China adoption files can go to any one of many lists. There's the shared list (where all agencies can pull files from), there's agency specific lists (and there's many agencies) or a file can even go to another country (like Europe). Sometimes it takes years and years before a child's file is ready. There were so many things against being matched with Stella. But we had to ask. She had already grown to be so loved by us. We just didn't know when would be the right time to ask.
New Years eve morning arrived and with it the usual morning check of my email. As I sat in bed thinking about when would be the right time to ask about Stella, I opened my email to her monthly update and this picture of her in her Christmas present. (yep...goosebumps)
I quickly sent Jeff a text telling him what had transpired and asking what he thought - did this mean we should ask now??? His reply back - yes, I think we should ask now. Okay...deep breath. Let's just ask. So I sent off an email to our social worker, knowing full well it was New Years Eve and she probably wasn't working. But it was sent. We had asked.
Our agency reply was so sweet, they knew we had prayed over this and they knew it was still very much in our hearts to adopt. They also were hurting from the loss of our Emme - I know they were. They agreed to check with their in country rep about Stella's file, but cautioned us with all the above notes on how unlikely it is to be matched with a New Day child. Needle in a haystack - we understood and were fine with waiting to see what would happen. We had given everything up to God and knew He would find us the child meant to be in our family in the right time.
Our lives had started to return to normal after all the rushing around and the waiting to hear if we were going to China. It was nice. A routine after the holidays felt good.
Two weeks passed and a call from our agency came. They said that they were confident that they could get Stella's file! Confident! We were shocked! It sounded like her file would be ready in about a couple of weeks. And heres the important part - her orphanage had just formed a brand new (like in December new!) partnership with our adoption agency. That's why they were confident about obtaining her file.
Four days...yes, four days later we had her file in our hands! AMAZING! Only God. This little one we had been sponsoring since she was just six months old, had prayed for her to find her forever family, and had been able to send gifts to.... she is going to be our little girl. We feel so blessed.
Soli Deo Gloria.
And that is how we came to be matched with our DAUGHTER. Stella Claire. A precious blessing from above. "Every good and perfect gift is from above" James 1:17
We are obviously thrilled and can not wait to meet this little girl. Chosen by us - but truly chosen by God.