I've been trying to think how I can summarize the adoption workshop Bryan and I went to on Saturday. There's just no way. Perhaps the biggest statement would be it was very enlightening, informative, and convicting. And at the same time it was also a very sweet time to share with Bryan. There were 13 breakout sessions but you could only go to 3 and they were 45 min - 1 hour long. I wanted to have more opportunities for breakout and longer sessions!! The information we received was very valuable.
The workshop was hosted by Hope Ministry. Their theme verse is "Pure and lasting religion in the sight of God our Father means that we must care for orphans and widows in their distress." James 1:27. I got tears in my eyes when this came on the screen. Poor Bryan was probably thinking.....this is going to be a long day! :) But seriously, think about that verse....Pure and LASTING religion involves caring for the orphans.
Our day started with hearing a story from an adoptive mother's perspective. At lunch, we heard the testimony of a birth mother and her experience of giving her child for adoption. The choice for adoption proved to be a pivotal event in Crystal's life that God used to lead her away from a life of abuse, drugs, and alcohol. Since her daughter was born she has lead an abortion alternative ministry and is an advocate for pro-adoption, pro-life legislation in Oklahoma. To be completely honest, I had not put much thought or prayer into our birth mother. I had viewed it as a means to get what Bryan and I so desperately want. But God used her testimony to show us both we MUST begin praying for the birth mother now. Pray for her well being, guidance, and spirituality. God showed us Saturday we can use this adoption to minister to the birth mother. That was just one of the BIG lessons we learned.
Bryan and I chose to go to these 3 breakout sessions: Domestic Adoption, Creative Ways to Finance Your Adoption, and Home Study 101. There were others on Transracial Adoption, Profile Books, Ages and Stages of Adoption, Mentoring, and Fostering. We chose these 3 because this was the areas we really wanted some clarity and factual information on at this point in our journey. We are interested in the others but we couldn't get past these 3 until we understood it more. Does that make sense? I could have sat for hours in each session but time was very limited... :( Would you believe I cried and kept crying in the Finance session!!! Who would cry over the federal tax credit!! I'm crazy!! I felt like a crazy doedoe. The presenter went over the tax credit in detail and how that plays out over a few years. It just really showed us this is completely possible and we can do it. It isn't as hard as I thought it would be. I was just grateful God has blessed us and provided a way. The numbers do not look as bad as I had thought they would. Bryan was quick to remind me he never doubted we could do it!! :) In short the financial session was very encouraging. We left there uplifted.
All along I had thought there were only about 3 agencies available that facilitated adoptions. Nope!! I learned there are several more in the state of OK!! Thank you God!!! I truly saw the grace of God throughout this day in just giving us information and then in encouragement. It is very hard to explain. Thank you for being patient with my rambling. But Praise God Today!!!
Dinner last night:
Would you believe I cooked last night for the first time in a very long time (I know exactly how long but I'm not going to tell you for fear of shame and judgement..hee hee). I know breathe, everyone take a breath. I was shocked too. I tried something new Bryan and I found at the grocery store.
I love boneless Buffalo Wild Wings and I had been buying the Tyson frozen already season bag. We found this wing sauce and decided to try to make our own. I cut up 3 chicken breast, seasoned them with salt, pepper, and lemon pepper. Coated them with egg and flower and then fried the little pieces. Then I poured this sauce mixed with butter over the cooked chicken. My husband loved them!!! Absolutely loved them!! He was so complimentary! The finished product looks scary in picture but they were pretty crazy good.
I have a goal to eat at home every day this week! Seriously. Tonight is roast, green beans, and scalloped potatoes. Wish me luck!