Can I ask you a question?

I get that question a lot.  Many times by my children.  And Michael often comes back with the witty retort "you just did".  That answer seems to baffle our offspring.  And annoy me just a little.

Since we adopted Katie Mei we get asked this question, often.  Can I ask you a question is usually followed by "well, we are considering adoption and….."  

It never ceases to make my heart beat a little more quickly and my breath catches in my throat.  I want to clap my hands and jump up and down.  But I know that may make the person asking the question a little freaked out.  And creeped out.  Remember the cellulite.

If you know me- you know that I LOVE talking about adoption.  I love hearing the stories of how the families are being led to consider adopting.  I love telling the stories of our adoption processes.  Once your heart has been touched by the absolute miracle of adoption, you are hooked.  You are tuned in to the plight of orphans in the US and all over the world.  

I love to hear the concerns, fears and desires of these families as they are praying about, discussing, thinking or in my case, obsessing about whether adoption is right for them and their family.  I love easing fears about money, about time with your kids, about loving another child.  

I love that people come to us with lists of questions, and while we can't answer every single one, we discuss with them options and people we know who can get them the answers to those questions.  I love watching their faces light up when we hit something in their hearts.  I love their concerns and their fears, because I know that they are truly considering every aspect of the process and not just falling in love with the process.

It would be really easy for me just to be thankful for the fact that God chose to expand our family by adoption.  Then I could sit back and simply enjoy my family and the sweetness of our children.  But, I really feel like I have been called to do much more then that.  There are over 147 million orphans in the world.  147 MILLION.  So.  My heart couldn't sit back.  Couldn't sit still and simply enjoy.

Truly, we thought we were done with 3.  Both Michael and I were totally content.  Totally loving our children and their bond.  But God had different plans.  He once again opened our hearts to adoption.  Truly, we both questioned our sanity.  And still do.  Go back and read some of my posts with my random lists and you too will question my sanity,  

With our hearts open, He led us to Lauren.  I will tell that story (which is amazing) when we get our RA and can officially share her photo and story with you.  

Do I think we are done with 4? I do- but then again, both of us thought we were done at 3.  But with 147 million children out there needing forever families, I can't say that.  My heart has been touched by the One who has made me His own.  

We have been blessed to have been a part of friends who have come with questions and now have children home.  These families have children.  These children have families.  Their lives, on both sides have been inexplicably changed.  Amazingly blessed.  And forever altered.  

So.  Can I ask YOU a question?  Have you considered opening your home and heart to a child who is in desperate need of a family?  

I would encourage you to think about that.

And then, find someone you can ask. 

You may get an amazingly wonderful answer.


10 thoughts on “Can I ask you a question?

  1. GREAT post, Jenny! I feel every bit of your heart in this post, and share your feelings about how adoption has changed our life. I want to share it with the world and encourage everyone to pray about it…sincerely…with an OPEN heart that is ready to receive and ACT if God should open the doors. It might not be the ‘traditional’ way to build a family… But it’s a BLESSING all the same! Keep spreading the word!!! 🙂
    Can’t WAIT to see the referral photos of your precious daughter!
    Blessings and Hugs,

  2. Neat post, Jenny. It’s really about being open to how God calls you–for some, that is to adoption; for others, it may be orphan or widow ministry; for others yet, it may be giving money so that others can adopt. But, in the end, it’s about being sensitive to the Holy Spirit’s leading and willing to step out in faith, putting fear behind you. Don’t you think?
    Thanks for posting this! I hope it encourages someone who has heard God whispering in their ears!

  3. Hi Karen- no offense taken at all. When we adopted Katie Mei, we decided on her first name and then once we learned her name (given by the orphanage staff)- we kept that as her middle name. We called her her Chinese name for awhile before transitioning to Katie. With Lauren, we may work things differently. She is four and has grown up with her name. The name Lauren has some big time special meaning to us- and we want to share that with her. We will continue to use her Chinese name as her middle name.
    As our children, we honor their Chinese heritage in our home daily. If Lauren should want to keep her Chinese name, all for it. We also want her to feel completely a Markmiller. If that means she also adopts a western name, then so be it. With Katie, she was 8 months old when we brought her home. If at some point in her life she would rather be called her Chinese name, we kept it as a part of her name- so that would be wonderful.
    We look at it as this- they are our children. We don’t want to segregate or separate them from our home grown kids. They are fully ours. Just as with anything- such as going to Chinese school, we offer that to all our kids. Not just our daughters. So in that aspect, we want the girls to know one hundred percent that they are Markmillers. Regardless of what we call them, they will know that 100%. Hope that makes sense.

  4. Thanks SOOO much for your thought filled reply. I remember you SO fondly! My prayers are with you in this wonderful endeavor!
    PS Thanks for not being offended!

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