To catch you all up on here... In September, Tommy and I were called to court in the Dominican to testify on behalf of our relationship to the girls and give a plea for our adoption of them. The Orphanage, where they have lived all of their lives, decided to fight us on the issue of declaring the girls abandoned. The girls had to be declared abandoned so that CONANI could petition the courts to obtain births certificates for them, because they have none. The girls had to have birth certificates for us to complete the adoption. We had to go to court 2 weeks in a row and finally at the end the trial, the director of the orphanage conceded to the abandonment ruling and stated that they felt it was in the girls best interest to be adopted by us. YES...GOD IS STILL IN THE BUSINESS OF DOING MIRACLES!!
The official ruling came out from the courts at the end of October and we have been in a waiting room since then or "aka" ..."The Middle Space". In a book called The Land Between, it talks about the Isrealites journey from Egypt to the Promised Land. God rescued them from slavery out of Egypt and guided them to the Promised Land, BUT there were 40 years in the desert until they reached their final destination and all God had for them. The 40 years was their "Middle Space"..."A Necessary Middle Space". "The desert was where they received the Ten Commandments (the core of their covenant with God), it was also where a portable worship tent, the tabernacle was built. The desert was not intended to be their final destination but rather a necessary middle space where they would be formed as a people and established in their connection to God." Nevertheless , the desert was and IS a Hard Place!
The desert of our adoption has been the endless waiting on legalities, paperwork, rulings, not being able to see my girls' faces, feel their touch, hug them tight and comfort them when they needed it most. Grieving over time lost with them, them growing without us getting to be a part of the changes that they are experiencing while WE WAIT! I know God has a plan and it is PERFECT and I know He loves them more than we ever could, but It has been HARD to sit and wait on this "Process" to complete so that we can bring them home, love them, hold them, teach them and guide them with the little time we have left before they will become young adults. We have been able to watch them grow from afar and I am truly thankful for that. We have been able to enter their lives in little blips along the way, which I pray God will use for good in their lives. I Know God has great plans for them both because of all the obstacles we have faced in this journey and how it could never have been possible unless HE WILLED IT! We have known all along that if this adoption completes we will KNOW beyond a shadow of a doubt they were meant to be a part of our family! In every season of this journey God has provided!!
So here is where we are Today! We got a phone call Friday saying that they had just removed the girls from the orphanage. They told us a few months ago this would be part of the process but we were not sure at what point they would do this. They have been waiting on the birth certificates to get in hand before they took them out. As it stands, they are planning to receive the birth certificates this week. They have moved the girls to a government orphanage in the Capital and they will remain their until we get there for our 30 day stay. They were very emotional over this as you can imagine, they were leaving the only home they have ever known, and were taken to a unfamiliar place with unfamiliar faces. We were able to talk to them Friday after they were removed. This was the first time since September and I'm praying they were comforted. Please pray for their emotions and that God Would give them a peace that passes all understanding until we can get there!
We have been told once they have birth certificates in hand they will send one last set of paper work to be approved by the US. It is the girls' immigration approval from USCIS. The US will approve, then mail back to CONANI, once CONANI gets this approval in hand, they will notify us that we need to be there within 2 weeks. We will then book plane tickets and head out asap! They have told us we could plan that we would travel within 4 weeks from the time we receive the birth certificates. So...Yes looks like we could travel in March!!
There is a part of me that is so excited I feel like exploding and a part of me that is so overwhelmed with all that must take place in the next few weeks, to make all of this happen! We are also asking God to provide for us financially. We have some steep bills ahead of us in the next few months and are in need of a financial miracle! God has provided each step of the way and I know He isn't going to stop now! Thank you for praying with us concerning this step in the journey. Well, that is all for now. I will continue to update as we receive news and will definantly be posting each day during our 30 day journey in the Dominican Republic! We are so grateful for the family and friends God has given us and couldn't have made it without all of you supporting us along the way! Love you all!