Thank you for taking the time to read our adoption journey. I feel that it is only appropriate to share our entire story, so below is a blog I wrote at the beginning of 2016, six months before Judah joined our family…
The heater in the car broke and I knew it meant the Brumleys were called to adopt.
Too fast? Okay, that’s the short version, but a lot happened leading up to that moment. Let’s start at the very beginning…
At some point during my later teenage years, I began to picture a family of my own. I had a desire to be married one day and have children. A part of my desire to have children included a dream to adopt. I can’t think of one specific moment of when I decided this. It’s just always been there.
When Cody and I first started dating, we went to a Steven Curtis Chapman concert. At this concert Chapman spoke of adoption, and there, on our first date, Cody and I each spoke of our individual desire to adopt. After we were married, we continued to keep adoption in our plans as part of our story. I wish I could say that I never looked back to that calling to adopt. However, after having two biological children, I began to second guess if this was really something we were called to do.
If you know me at all, you know I have a type A personality. I like to plan and prepare. So many challenges of adoption made me second guess if I was capable of walking this road. I sometimes feel ill-equiped with the two that we have. Could I be a good mommy if there were three? Could God really be asking me to give up my desire for control on something as important as our family? Yes. And as God has convicted me again and again of my little faith, I will say it has been a messy, but beautiful process.
As Cody and I began to talk again of adoption, many doubts and fears filled my mind. However, my quiet times continually spoke to my doubts. When I was asking what this faith journey might look like and how long could it take to bring home our child, my quiet time was out of Luke 1 with the story of Zechariah and Elizabeth. Talk about a family of faith waiting a very long time for the birth of their child! “And they were both righteous before God, walking blamelessly in all the commandments and statues of the Lord.” My prayer changed from “God, give us a quick process” to “Father, help us to live a life of righteousness before you following your commandments.”
I had several quiet times out of the book of James during this time. When doubting my capabilities as a mother, I read, “If any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask God, who gives generously to all without reproach, and it will be given him.” I prayed, “God, I know I can’t do this from my own knowledge or willpower. Grant me the wisdom needed at each step.” When my thought was “God, aren’t we doing enough good things”, he reminded me of a scripture that has been important to me for many years. One that I can’t ignore. James 1:27 says “Religion that is pure and undefiled before God, the Father, is this: to visit orphans and widows in their affliction, and to keep oneself unstained from the world.” Now I don’t believe that this means God has called us all to adopt, but I know without a doubt that God has called our little family to adopt.
Over a few month process, God gently reminded me of His plan and how it looks different from my own American dreams. Could I have control over each step of the process? Absolutely not. My new answer is found in Proverbs 3:5-6, trusting God to guide our steps and direct our path. Could I protect my children and my family from any possible hurt in the process? No. But a wise friend reminded me that God loves my children and my family more than I do and to count trials as joy.
Remember the broken heater?
My journey took a strong turn from dragging my feet to running towards God and it started with a broken heater in our car. It was beginning to get colder and I had reminded Cody that we needed to get it fixed to keep our babies warm. We had both prayed that it would be an easy fix. After picking up the car with a working heater and relatively cheap bill, I offered up a prayer of thanksgiving. I thanked God that we were able to fix the car and that I could keep my babies warm. I heard a very clear voice in my head saying
“Could you keep another baby warm?”
That was it. That little phrase made every other lesson along the way take root in my stubborn heart. God was not asking me to fulfill the world’s picture of an American dream. He was telling me to worry less about raising kids who make good grades in name brand clothing. It wasn’t about taking our next planned Disney vacation or healthy options at every meal. While these are not bad things, I had to evaluate what I valued most. I had to choose between my plans and God’s plans. I had to choose what was acceptable for me verses what was obedient to Him.
I don’t feel like I can do justice in a few paragraphs of the process God has taken me through to get me to where I am today…all-in, ecstatic, glowing and ready to bring home Baby Brumley #3! I am so thankful for His love towards a broken sinner like me. I am thankful for His continued tug at my heart to use me for part of a grander story, when He could have given up on me a long time ago. Cody and I are are so excited to continue on this journey. I long to hold our new baby in my arms. I find comfort knowing God already knows our baby intimately as his word describes in Psalm 139. God is the Author and Sustainer of my life and the lives of my family. This process has already changed us forever, and we are only at the beginning.
Originally published 1/9/16.