Sep 2

The phone rang…

2011 at 3:57 pm   |   by Nicole Whitacre Filed under Motherhood | Adoption

...last Thursday at around four o’clock. I didn’t recognize the number, so I didn’t answer.

The person hung up and called right back. I still didn’t answer, so she left a voice mail. I listened to the message and it was our family coordinator from the adoption agency. She didn’t say why she was calling and that could only mean one thing. I called her right back. “We have your referral” she said, “Would you like to get your husband on the phone so I can tell you together?” I patched Steve in, my fingers shaking as I dialed the number. Then she told us about a sweet pair of siblings—a boy age 6 and a girl age 2. I couldn’t believe this was happening. I thought it would be many months before we received this phone call. “I’m sending you pictures” she told us. We hung up and Steve drove straight home so we could see our new kids for the first time, together. I wept while I waited. Happy tears.

The email took a few minutes to come through and I sat there clicking “Send/Receive” like a kid who won’t stop pressing the elevator button. “That won’t make it come any faster” Steve reminded me. “I know.” I told him, but I didn’t stop.

The first moment we saw our new children was indescribable. Like the moment they place your newborn in your arm. Elation and wonder at this precious life. Only difference is, I’m still waiting to hold them. I can hardly wait. They are so beautiful. Such a gift from God.

We called Jack and Tori to join us, and they were thrilled to finally see their new brother and sister. We couldn’t have planned their ages more perfectly if we tried: eight, six, four, and two. All the waiting to get pregnant after Jack and Tori was God making space in our family for these precious children.

We don’t know exactly when we can bring them home. The Ethiopian courts are closed right now and won’t reopen again for another month or so. Then we will get assigned a court date and after that we must pass embassy. We are hoping and praying we can bring them home some time in January, Lord willing.

The waiting is both sweeter and harder now. Sweeter because I can now look at my children’s pictures (which I do about every five minutes). Harder because I can only look; and not see and hold and tell them how much I love them.

(I wish we could show you their beautiful faces today but that will have to wait until we pass court and they are legally our children.)

The morning after we received the best phone call ever, I opened my Bible and my eyes fell on these verses:

“May the Lord give you increase, you and your children! May you be blessed by the Lord who made heaven and earth.”
Ps. 115:14-15.

“Behind the gift is the Giver” says Derek Kidner “and the psalms response is altogether positive: praise here and praise now, in the place and time He has allotted us; praise, moreover (we may take it), in the way we handle this heritage, not only in the way we sing about it.”

We are praising God today, in this place and time. And we pray our Savior will give us much grace to glorify him with our heritage—as we seek to love and raise our children in the ways of the Lord.

Thanks to each one of you for your prayers and encouragement. Please pray that by God’s grace we can bring our little boy and girl home quickly. And if you’d like to follow more detailed updates you can check out our humble little adoption blog.

Sep 1

“Blessed in My Mourning”

2011 at 6:11 pm   |   by Nicole Whitacre Filed under Biblical Womanhood | Suffering

When I was a little girl I would often stay late with my dad after church. I would run the halls and play hide and seek with my friends. But after they went home and a few people were still waiting to talk to my dad, I would stand quietly by his side.

I don’t remember what people said to my dad during those after-church conversations, but I do remember something my dad would say. When speaking to people in the midst of extreme suffering, who were nevertheless trusting God and clinging to His promises, Dad would look them in the eye and tell them how much he respected them. Then he would remind them that their trust in God was a pronounced and powerful evidence of grace in their lives.

When I read this post by Jordan Rice this morning, I remembered what my dad would say and I thought “This is amazing grace, indeed.”

Two years ago today (Aug. 22nd), God gave me a faith-filled, gorgeous, brilliant woman as my wife. Danielle. A virgin on our wedding night and the woman I wanted to spend the rest of my life with. I was literally the happiest guy in the world and at that time 2 years ago, I never could have imagined in a million years that I’d be where I am today. Instead of a vacation or a celebratory dinner to celebrate our anniversary, I’m on my way to the cemetery to mourn my wife’s passing.

But today I’m blessed in my mourning. No, this isn’t some denial of the pain associated with grief, because truth be told today is one of the worst and most painful moments I’ve ever lived through. Losing Danielle is a pain so deep and enduring, I would have preferred having my arms ripped off. Nevertheless, faith and pain can and do co-exist very nicely.

May God give us all His grace to bless Him in our mourning.

HT: Thabiti Anyabwile