This past Friday, Nov. 1st, we woke up with an email in our inbox from U.S. Consulate
Guangzhou, China with notification our Article 5 has been sent to CCWA (China Center for Children’s Welfare and Adoption)!! Woooohooo!
What this means to us………
From this point, it takes about 2-4wks for the CCCWA to issue our Travel Approval (TA). When we get our Travel approval (TA) phone call, from America World Adoption Agency, we will be given our travel dates, and they will begin making flight, hotel, sight-seeing arrangements for us. From our Travel Approval until we are up in the air on our way to Beijing, China it’s an estimated 2-4wks.
So…estimated 2-4wks from now to our Travel Approval (TA)……then 2-4wks to travel!
We are counting down the days, and praying we use each and every day wisely until she is in our arms. I continue to pack many miscellaneous items and it has really helped to print off packing lists that other families have shared via blogs. We’ve also met friends who have adopted from China and have given us great advice! (thank you!) I pray we are not only prepared physically, but most of all spiritually. When searching for packing lists, I came across one mom’s blog who shared she wished she had spent more time soaking up the Word of God, than worrying about clothing for her child. (more good advice!!)
This has honestly been the hardest part of the wait for us. I just ache in the pit of my stomach to be with her…..yet, God tends to teach us the best lessons when we are squeezed, stretched, and forced to wait upon Him only. So, it isn’t really the Chinese government or our adoption agency we wait upon…..it’s Him. We trust that he has already chosen and ordained that moment we will be gifted with meeting Elyana. It’s not about us, and “our story”, and “our idea” of what good timing is. We realize that there are Christians everywhere, trying desperately in one way or another, to help orphans out of a gift they have also been given…..the love of Jesus Christ.
Today, on Orphan Sunday, our family was given the opportunity to help spread awareness, along with other families who have adopted or are also in the process of adoption. It was a privilege to be with so many people who share God’s heart for adoption. (thank you for inviting us to be with all of you wonderful families!!) I didn’t get pictures of every family….I wish I would’ve done that. The kids did a great job today handing out information on how individuals can become involved. Not every family can adopt, but all CAN help!
It’s our decision to accept this gift of adoption into God’s family, then share this perfect gift with the world. Today has been a day to celebrate the beautiful gift we’ve been given…..that we are all adopted by God!
The back of our shirts said “I Am A Child Of God.” Our friends Jim and Wendy Spears (who have adopted 2x and have 4 children total-pictured above in collage) designed our shirts to be like the shirts on the Third Day video “Children of God.” It’s an awesome video if you’ve never seen it……and if you have…..I love to watch it again & again. A great to be reminded….it’s a love He has given us ALL…….
“adoption has changed my life, but also my relationship with my father in heaven” ~quote from “Children of God” video
We don’t think we are special because we are adopting….we know each is special in God’s eyes….because we’ve been chosen….and ADOPTED! It’s been a great day to reflect and give thanks! We will keep you updated as we await that phone call with news of our Travel Approval!
Love, The Sparks Family