Monday, July 23, 2012

Stay in Your Lane

How do you respond when you're stuck in congested traffic on the highway?
Do you weave in and out hoping to just get your car a little closer to the front?
Or do you find satisfaction in slowly making progress?
Do you cope by developing theories as to why the traffic is so bad on a Saturday afternoon?
Do you pull off at the next exit, find an Arbys, drink a Jamoca Shake, hoping that once you are finished, the traffic will all be over?

I'll tell you what I do: honestly I'm a get-off-at-the-next-exit kind of girl. I hate being in traffic. I hate feeling stuck. I hate not knowing why the cars aren't moving. My tendency is to flee conflict, to run from stress, and to avoid pain. I just want to get away from it all until the traffic passes.

Steve listens to sports talk radio and one of the things his favorite show host often says is, "stay in your lane." Meaning, "stay where you are. Don't try to get ahead. Don't dangerously weave in and out. Don't pull off." Just stay in your lane. Stay focused on the goal, no matter how the lane seems to be going.

So there we were, it was last Tuesday morning. I spent most of the day working on paperwork and other tasks for our adoption (like having fireman come to our house to declare it "safe.") Dima loved this by the way. He told him "I want to be a fireman, just like you."

Then, as I began sorting through a giant stack of papers, I came across something completely new to me. Apparently we are required to maintain a certain level of income to proceed with our adoption. It's a dollar figure we don't even come close to meeting.

I called our agency and our rep confirmed this to be true, "Yes Kate, this is a problem. And yes, this could be a deal breaker." I won't go into all of the details, but basically we were told that unless we get it figured out, we would not be able to proceed with our adoption.

My mind went into a frenzy. My heart dropped into my stomach. Tears rolled down my face. I called Steve. "We're done. This isn't going to happen. We're done." (GET ME OFF THIS HIGHWAY!)

And he said, to me..."It is going to be ok. Let's just stay in our lane."
"But, how? Look what we have to come up with! Look what has to take place..."
"You're right. It's a lot. But, this is the first of many obstacles we are going to face...let's stay calm and see what we can do...see what God is going to do."

And truly, the day which started as a tear filled, frustrated, giving up kind of day, turned into a "wow and thank you God" kind of day.

That same afternoon, we received a Facebook message from the parents of one of our high school students involved in the ministry Steve leads. The message read, "We just wanted to bless you with what God has blessed us with." Included was a large donation. Wow! God is providing.

Then, same day. I received another Facebook message from a dear friend who decided she wanted to create an online fundraising campaign. She told us she wanted to raise $500 for our adoption. We of course were thankful but didn't expect what happened next. In less than 12 hours the $500 goal was met. So, she upped the goal to $1000. In less than 24 hours that goal was met too. So, now she has set the goal for $5000 in 96 more days. Wow! God is providing.

The very same day I received yet another Facebook message, this time it was an event invitation called the "Garcia Fundraising Event at Nectar" (a smoothie and juice bar in in our area). A couple  of our former students work there and got this ball rolling. Steve and I were shocked and surprised. We had no idea this event was even being planned. Wow! God is providing.

I truly felt as if God was speaking into my heart, "stay in your lane, oh fearful daughter of you think money is a big deal to ME? Do you think I can't provide what you need for this adoption? Don't you know I am a creative God who loves to use all kinds of ways to bless your life?"

So, here we are, a week later. And God continues to provide. He is calling us to stay in our lane, to keep our sights set on Him alone. He is calling us to focus not on the overwhelming and often paralyzing obstacles, but on HIM. ALONE.

One of the coolest things about the online fundraising campaign is that it asks people to simply give one dollar. It is not a campaign asking for a few people to give LOTS. Instead it asks LOTS of people to give little. And they are. We are so blessed.

I could write a novel of the stories behind the people that are quietly funding our adoption. But in brief, here is a quick glimpse of some of the people who are helping us...
  • college students who don't know how they are going to pay for their books for the fall semester
  • a couple who has been unemployed for 18 months, but just wanted to give 
  • high school students who are giving their babysitting money
  • others who have adopted from Russia in the past and those adopting from Russia right now
  • missionaries who are raising money themselves for their own day to day living
  • a dear girl who has just been told she has been diagnosed with cancer
Friends, friends of friends, total strangers, are all coming together for a greater good, one dollar at a time. It has been humbling, inspiring and amazing to just sit and watch what God can do through people.

This whole journey so far has led me to this truth: If you want to be blown away by God, step out and do something you know you could never do on your own.

We know we could never do this adoption on our own. We know it is something God called us to do...but WE have no idea how it is going to happen. God does. And as He continues to stir in the hearts of people to give in such creative ways, their response is our blessing.

Somewhere in Russia is a little girl who does not yet know that a little family of 3 is talking about her, praying for her, and doing all we can to bring her home as fast as possible.

So, thank you.
Thank you to those who have already given.
Thank you to those planning on giving.
Thank you for those who are praying for us regularly and encouraging us through words and messages.
There truly are no words to express our thanks.

So, here we go. We're staying in our lane.

  • We are 95% complete with our home study. 
  • We have 2 more documents we are waiting on and then it will be FINISHED! 
  • Once this is done, we can then start the REAL paperwork :)
  • If you'd like to check out the Give$1 campaign, just click on this LINK
  • Also, for all of you Akron local people, Nectar Smoothie and Juice Bar will be holding a big fundraising bash on Sunday, August 5th from 10am-8pm. Half of all profits on that day will go directly to our adoption. 
  • There will be games, activities, face painting...all kinds of fun stuff! So bring your family and come on out!! For more information, check out this LINK. We will be there with Russian candies :) 
  • Pray for our little girl - that she would be loved uniquely by one person during these crucial developmental months of her life.
  • Pray for a speedy completion of the very complicated pile of paperwork
  • Pray that God would continue to stir in the hearts of people to give

Until next, Kate, Steve & Dima.

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