Thursday, June 19, 2008

Our Sweet Jacques

Yet another updated dossier was FedEx'd to Haiti yesterday for the adoption of our sweet Jacques. It's been more then a year since we thought his adoption would begin. Please do keep praying for this adoption. He is getting closer and closer to his 16th birthday and we can't let it happen until the things that need to be done are done. At 16 a child is no longer adoptable (if you are not already at certain stages of the adoption).

How God brought us together:

It was about 2 years into the wait to bring home Stephanie, Jude and Lovenie when we met Jacques. We were sure we were done with adding to our family (HA). With 3 young boys and 3 more children on the way I was in no way thinking about more children. I had become friends with Kez online. She was living with the kids of HFC and NLL (the 2 orphanages share a building) and not only was she a wonderful connection to our children but also quickly became a dear friend. One day I got an email from her telling me about 3 of the HFC boys that were really exceptional kids that would be turning 16 soon and would no longer be adoptable. Thinking nothing about how this would end up impacting our life I suggested she send a photo and short description of the boys and I would blast out emails to everyone I know and all the adoption groups I was a member of. She quickly got that information to me and I was stunned when I looked at the photo of Jacques and heard God speak to me (clear as anyone else speaking to me) saying "This is your son". What? "No way, I'm sorry but no God. It's just too much. I'm terrified of going from 3-6 kids and now your asking me to add to our family a teenage son. No, No way... It's just too much for me!!!" For about a week God continued to confirm what He told me (and confirmed it separately with Jim). I could think of nothing else and to be honest for that week or so I begged and pleaded with God not to call me to this. I was just too overwhelmed at the thought. Then one morning I was going to spend some time in prayer and made a decision to pray about anything except Jacques because he had been all I had been praying about for a while. I started praying for other loved ones and heard God speak to me again and say "I want to talk to you about Jacques". I tried to ignore it- thinking that I was imagining it. I tried to continue to force myself to pray for others when God said it to me again. This time it was louder and clearer and it could not be dismissed. Somewhat reluctantly I said "OK God, I'm listening." This is when I received visions for the first time. Sitting with my eyes closed I saw that Jim and I were sitting in a hospital waiting room. I looked up from where I was sitting and saw a grown Jacques (I was totally aware that it was him) walking towards us. As he got closer he flashed us this gorgeous smile that started really slow until it spread into the most beautiful smile I'd ever seen! I knew that he was coming to tell me if his wife just had a son or daughter- our 1st grandchild! It was so real and tears started to fall. Immediately following that vision I was given another one. I knew I was surrounded by people sitting in chairs but everything around me was a blur. There was music playing and I was walking down an aisle and was led to a seat in front of everyone. As I sat down everything became clear and again there was the grown Jacques looking down the aisle with his big smile watching as his wife was about to walk down the aisle and there I was as the mother of the groom staring with joy at our handsome son. At that moment God spoke clearly to me again and said to me "Children do not need parents only when they are young." I burst into tears and said "Yes God, I'm sorry. Thank you, thank you for this precious gift!"

It was only a few days later that I got the opportunity to fly to Haiti for the first time with a friend that was going to pick up her daughter. Kez had informed Jacques that a family had requested to adopt him and his mother was on her way to meet him. I'm sure it was quite overwhelming for him. He had never known a Mom and Dad of his own. He met me at the airport and the first time I saw him he gave me his very unique smile that starts out slow and then ends in a big beautiful smile- just like in my visions. The moment I hugged him it was as if I had known him forever. The bond was so strong right away! I thanked and thanked God for not allowing my lack fear to hold us back from being blessed beyond our wildest imaginations. It was unreal getting to know him over the next several days. What shocked me most is that he is just like his Dad. I couldn't believe how much my son and husband were alike. It's almost like God knows what he is doing or something! ;) It was the most natural thing in the world to hug him, kiss his cheek, hold his hand, sit near him, and be his Mom.

I returned to Haiti just 2 months later with an adoptive parents mission team. At that time I hand delivered our updated home study and dossier for the adoptions of Jacques and Vilner (who we had also just learned about and agreed to adopt- that is a whole other crazy story). At the time we were told that Jacques and Vilner could be rushed to be added to the adoptions of Stephanie, Jude, and Lovenie and they would all be coming home together. Whew! So we began to prepare our home and family for the arrival of not 3 but 5 new family members.

A couple months later we received a blow. The director of IBESR (Haiti's social services) refused to allow us to add Jacques and Vilner or even to let us start over for their adoptions. She insisted she would not approve them until Stephanie, Jude, and Lovenie were home and a home study update included them. So it has now been over a year from when we thought the adoptions of Jacques and Vilner would be started. We were told that adding them to our adoptions could have been done just one month before but in that short time things had totally changed. Welcome to Haiti (or any government really).

It is pretty bittersweet to be finally bring home Stephanie, Jude and Lovenie but knowing that we will have to say goodbye again to Jacques! Vilner is still living with his Birth Mom and does not know any different... but Jacques, he knows. :( So we wouldn't turn down prayers for this adoption or for our hearts and Jacques' heart as we bring home his new brother and sisters soon and spend precious time with him again in Haiti.

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