Jacob’s Forever Family

Jacob

Bill and I had been married 18 years when we started our adoption journey.   Our story prior to that included a miscarriage, fertility testing, surgery, many years of waiting, disappointment and tears enough to swim through.   I was determined not to let go of hope, but hope seemed only to intensify the pain I felt, especially as we faced the reality that I had turned 40, and the room we had set aside as a nursery was still empty.  We both had spent most of our lives working with children as school teachers and as volunteers in our local churches.  The thought of not having children was unbearable.  We had long since given up hope on medical interventions when someone from our church encouraged us to consider the possibility of adoption and gave us a notebook full of information she had gathered.  We then attended an adoption conference where we were encouraged to trust the Lord for grace to overcome the financial obstacles that had previously prevented us from pursuing this path.  Bill and I began to feel a rising hope for our future as we agreed that we would pursue adoption.

We chose Covenant Kids as our adoption agency and quickly completed paperwork, classes, and our home study.  We didn’t want to waste any time getting started.  The process seemed to be going smoothly, but just as we finished the last requirements to be licensed, we found ourselves faced with an unusual and unexpected set of circumstances that delayed our certification several months.  The circumstances involved in the delay and the fact that we had already waited for so many years made this time especially difficult.  Bill and I both refer to this as the “low point” in our adoption journey. We couldn’t see at the time, but the Lord was using it all to set us in His perfect timing for what He had planned.  Yes, He had plans!

After talking to other foster parents who had adopted, Bill and I felt that we should be willing to accept foster placements.  We knew we were taking a risk of more loss and disappointment, and after our first three foster children went back to their biological families, we almost decided to “change course”.  Fortunately, a friend and experienced foster mom encouraged us to try again.   I remember the day we received the call from CK.   The investigator for our previous foster placement had remembered us and had called CK to request us for a placement, a baby boy.   I remembered my prayer from years earlier when I had asked the Lord for a son.  I had even painted the nursery blue when we moved into our house three years prior.  Only hours after we received the call, I held Jacob in my arms, just two days old at the time.  I couldn’t help but prayerfully wonder and question, “Is this my son?”

Our love and the bond we felt with Jacob grew deeper and stronger by the day.  My favorite moments were sitting and looking into those beautiful eyes just to celebrate every movement and expression.  Still the regular parent visits, conferences, and court hearings were there to continually remind us of our current reality.  We had been given no assurance that we would ever be able to call Jacob our son.  It also became apparent that Jacob needed help to overcome some effects of prenatal drug exposure.  He would need physical therapy and would have to wear a helmet for months.  We were told that he would need additional assistance to overcome some developmental delays.  Thankfully the Lord sent Jack and Amy, a couple in our church, to help us through this time.  Hearing that we had no family in the area, they volunteered to be surrogate grandparents for Jacob.

At the 6 month court hearing, CPS and the District Attorney declared that they were moving toward termination of parental rights and a final date was set.  Our friend Amy told me that the date of the court hearing was the same as her son’s birthday, the son that Jack and Amy had lost to illness just two years earlier.  When both parents relinquished parental rights on that date, Amy said that the day would no longer be a day of sorrow for her but of joy because of Jacob.  Days later, however, we were notified that CPS had spoken with a grandfather who wanted Jacob and that a home study had been approved.  An unexpected court hearing had been scheduled for another noteworthy date – our 20th wedding anniversary!  We’d had Jacob for almost a year at this point.  With the fear of another disappointment trying to overpower my faith, I prayed, “Lord, I give Jacob to you.  He began with you.  He is yours.  Our times are in your hands.”  That prayer was the only place I could find peace, but I was about to find out that someone else had been praying as well.

A surprise awaited us on the day of the hearing before we ever entered the courtroom.   I’ll never forget the words of Jacob’s attorney.  “They’re going to let him stay with you.”  Twenty years of waiting culminated in that one moment.  Jacob’s grandparents, as we would learn, had been praying and asking the Lord for His will.  They had decided that it was best for Jacob to stay with us.   It was more than we could take in!  That night, Bill and I celebrated our 20th anniversary, having received the greatest gift a couple could possibly receive!!   Weeks later, in court again, surrounded by family and friends, we adopted Jacob.  Now we look back at even our “lowest point” with knowledge of what the Lord was planning, realizing that it was around that very time that Jacob would have been conceived.   Often, when I look at my son’s smiling face,  I remember all that the Lord did to bring him to us, and I am, well, quite impressed, as I wonder, yes marvel at His ways and timing.

– Jacob’s Forever Family

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