IF Gathering: {Last Year}

One year ago this past weekend I was invited to the If Gathering at the last minute, and on the second day we were asked to write on a stone a word God was speaking to us.


I wrote the number 7.

God had shown me 7 a few times in the weeks before and would after too.

I really felt like He was leading us back to China for a 7th child but when I shared this with Scott, he reminded me of a pact we had made 6 months before that. He said no.

It was June 27, 2014 and as we hit the tarmac, we locked hands, looked into each others’ eyes, and made a promise we were done! Done with travel, done with adopting, and just ready to be home. Little did we know, God had such better plans for us.


Back to February 7, 2015… I was home from a mountaintop experience thinking I had heard a clear word from God and my husband was sure I had not. I didn’t know what to think or pray.

I decided to pray IF we were meant to go back for our 7th child, God would tell Scott. It was SO hard to sit back and let Him work.

In April, I saw the face of a little girl that took my breath away. I wanted her to be our little girl but didn’t know how to approach Scott about her. I casually mentioned a precious little girl who looked just like SJ, and he said she probably had a family. I checked… no!


I told him I would advocate for her and just see what God would do. That was SO hard. Trust God to give her to us even when I was putting her out there to be chosen by someone else. I believed with all my heart if she was meant to be our daughter, God would work it out.

For two months she waited on an agency list and I kept praying for her, for Scott, for our family.

I remember getting a message while we were away for our anniversary in June that another family had sent LOI for her, and I had to force myself to be thankful she was chosen and loved. It hurt so much but God was working.

For two months her file was gone and we believed a family was pursuing her adoption. I still thought about her and continued to pray for her.

In August I was standing in the school room staring out the window watching the rain pour when a message appeared on my phone that Raine was back on the list and the family had released her file. I could NOT hold back my feelings. I sent the file to Scott with a note saying, “Don’t be mad.” For days he didn’t say a word.

One Saturday he was running and God revealed her eyes to him. He knew. The next day at church God would make it SO clear during a sermon challenging us to be Lifesavers… who were we going to save?

Bam! That was it… the answer to my prayers over the last 7 months. That night he reached over to take my hand, looked me in the eye, and said Okay. Nothing else needed to be said. I knew he meant Okay, we have a daughter and Okay we are going to get her. It was also a moment when 7 made complete sense.

7th child had been chosen 7 months after God had spoken to my heart. He had taught me He is able to do immeasurable MORE in His timing. I just had to believe and wait.

Our children were thrilled when we told them they had a new sister while vacationing at the beach.

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And the rest is history… we are waiting for LOA and hoping to travel in the Spring.

Chosen for Life Conference~ {Yesterday}

One year later yesterday, we were invited to share our video and testimony at Chosen for Life Conference. One year later God gave us the beautiful privilege to share our adoption story with people chasing adoptions or foster care. It was amazing to stand on stage and shout God’s provision in our marriage over the last 30 years! SO thankful to Bryan and Lisa Miller for this amazing opportunity!

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IF I had not gone to IF Gathering, I might not have been available to hear God’s plan for our family.

IF I had chosen to ignore God’s nudges, I would have missed the blessing of speaking for His glory.

IF I had pushed Scott instead of waiting on God, I might have missed our 7th daughter.

IF our marriage had been weak and we had been selfish, we may have chosen our own path.

SO What to Take from all this?

God will reveal His will to BOTH of you but not necessarily in your timing OR at the same time.

Prayer moves us to a place where God ordains His will.

Never say never because you don’t always know what God has in store.

His plan is ALWAYS better!

Ephesians 3:20…┬áNow all glory to God, who is able, through his mighty power at work within us, to accomplish infinitely more than we might ask or think.

Our favorite matra lately has been: WHAT if we had missed this?

Final Thought: DON’T MISS IT! It’s TOO good to miss!!!


Share what might be holding you back from a first adoption or maybe your 7th.