Above all that we could ask…

September 22nd, 2011

Holding hands in the dusky darkness, we speak quietly, hesitatingly, out of full and awestruck hearts.


Can you believe it?


How much God has blessed us?


He’s had so much mercy on us.


He hasn’t given us what our sins deserve.


Just think of all He has lavished on us.


He has drawn us to Himself, and continues to work in our hearts.


He has showered us liberally with friends.  Friends of the very best kind.


He has helped us to be true friends with each other…


…visibly strengthening a marriage which has not been the easiest journey ever!


He has allowed ten children to be born from this body.  


He has let us experience the joy of having twins!  


The joy of having a child with Down syndrome!


And now…?!  Is He really giving us the privilege of bringing this precious Katie into our family and caring for her?!  Truly?!



Can you believe it?


…long silence…


He has always been so faithful to give us all–all–we need, so that we can do what He’s asked us to do.

Yes, even parent strong-willed children, and teenagers.  *smile*

How can we ever thank Him for what He has done for us?  There is so much that we could not speak it all in a lifetime.


And that was before


Travel agency: How in the world was I supposed to sift through all the possible airlines to find the right one?  The task loomed large for this home-educating mom of ten who does not have a lot of phone time, especially during business hours.  The travel agent from my first trip told us that our situation was far outside her area of expertise, and good luck!  I thanked her for her time and prayed that God would guide me deftly past all the time-wasting rabbit trails and make the way clear.  Then several people reminded us of the Golden Rule Travel agency.  I gratefully report that we could not possibly have asked for more interested and helpful service!  Answer to prayer!  


Airline:  So far, it sounds as though Lufthansa is willing to work with our situation!  Answer to prayer!


Airline-approved car seat:  Same family who gave to open Katie’s account wants to pay for the carseat!  Our missionary friends in Katie’s country have offered to use the funds we send to purchase the seat there, then take it to Katie’s baba for us before we get there.  At that time, they can also deliver a few other items we plan to send–small “lovey” cloths with our scents and recordings of our voices singing to her (both for her baba to use as comforts), and instructions to help prepare her to leave the orphanage.  These missionaries also want us to travel to their country a couple of days early, so that we can stay with them.  This will help cut down on the amount we need to pack, since we can purchase some of the orphanage gifts there.  Answers to prayer!


Experienced advice:  I was warmly welcomed into an online group of adoptive moms.  They have already given me a wealth of incalculably valuable advice!  Answer to prayer!


Extra expenses for Katie:  After reading about the anonymous family who sent $200 to open a bank account for Katie, with a commitment to send $50 a month as they are able, a close friend wrote, “I’d like to match this gift, which I think I can commit to for up to 5 years.”  Every time I tried to tell the rest of the family about this gift, I got choked up and couldn’t finish, for many reasons.  Answer to prayer before it was prayed!


Hospital logistics:  God has even set help in place for me at the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia (CHOP).  This help is in the form of a mom who is right now adopting from Katie’s country, and works in Admissions at CHOP!  She has already given me loads of very specific and practical advice regarding my stay there, and has said she will arrange the best room she can for Katie and me!  Answer to prayer before it was prayed!


Possible need for a nurse escort for the flight home:  An adoptive dad of ten children, ICU nurse in another Philly hospital, and former NICU and pediatric ER nurse, has offered to accompany us as we fly Katie home!  “[We] will figure out the fundraising for travel expenses if this comes to be. You do not need one more thing to complicate life right now. God is so faithful! We have proceeded with our last two adoptions without a clue as to how we would fund the ransom, and God has left us in awe with the way He provided. The travel would be pocket change in comparison to full adoption fees!”  Answer to prayer before it was prayed!


Other children in Katie’s orphanage:  We need to keep laboring diligently in prayer for the other children with special needs at this orphanage.  Some of them still need God to cut red tape on their behalf, so they can be made available for adoption.  Some of them need God to send families for them.  A path must be cleared in front of each family through agency and governmental red tape.  Finances need to be provided.  We can pray with great hope and confidence, because guess what?  God can give and give and give, and at the end of the day, He still has just as much left to give.  He moves hearts; He changes minds.  And He is stronger than [the unprintable enemy].  We believed it; now we have seen it.

Want more evidence?  I have heard some good news about a few more of the other children waiting with Katie, but I cannot give specific details yet.

One of the little boys (not “Tony”) has had several families consider him!

One of the little girls has a family interested in her!

Another little girl has a family poised to commit to her; we know this family, and we will be so thrilled if God gives them the final green light!

And one more little girl has a family moving forward to adopt her!

Answers to so many prayers!  Thank You, Lord Jesus!


“Now to Him who is able to do exceedingly abundantly above all that we ask or think, according to the power that works in us, to Him be glory in the church by Christ Jesus to all generations, forever and ever.  





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20 Responses to “Above all that we could ask…”

  1. Ginger says:

    We had such a very similar experience in our adoption – just one more WOW, God is good! after another. He finds such joy in swinging doors wide open in adoption. Praise His name. 
    Love, love, love that verse. So very true. And so very happy and excited for you!!! 

  2. Gail says:

    I am in awe of God–of His mercy, His grace, and His faithfulness!  I have no more words—just a grateful heart!!!!!

  3. Carrie says:

    All I can say is WOW! God is SO GOOD!!!

  4. Deanna says:

    Beautiful….our Lord is faithful!

  5. Heather says:

    Awesome!  Beth Moore said in a Bible study we are doing that everytime God did a big miracle, there were little miracles all around it.  That stuck me to be so interesting.  These all seem like big miracles to me, but how I hope and pray these are just little miracles all around a big miracle beyond anything we could hope for!

  6. You have increased MY faith today!:)  Love watching this story unfold!  Miraculous and wonderful!

  7. You don’t know me, but I would like to pay for the shipping fees to send the items to EE….I know how expensive that is and I always fret when I have to ship something there. Your family is beautiful and May God Bless You Even More!!!!
    Stephanie Carmichael

  8. Susanna says:

    Stephanie, if you were here right now, you’d see me laughing and shaking my head with tears in my eyes. Wow. Thank you!

  9. Tammi says:


  10. Lisa says:

    Wow.  Amazing.  I love how He just doesn’t stop. :)

  11. Jane says:

    I echo Stephanie.  When the time comes to gather the money for the nurse attendant, just put the need out here on your blog.  I will contribute what we can and I am sure others will too.  (I couldn’t understand from your post if this is an immediate need or one you will share with us down the line…let us know!)
    I am thankful each day that Katie has been brought into my life through the gift of God, this blog, your amazing family and the calling you chose to answer.  I get choked up when I think of the pictures of her in your and Joe’s arms for good…there will be so many of us celebrating with your family!
    God bless you as this week unfolds.

  12. Carol says:

    Thanks so much for sharing these blessings, Susanna. Our God is amazing!

  13. Tara and Family says:

    So excited about all your wonderful answered prayers – God is Good All the Time! I would like to make a donation for any further expenses needed to bring Katie “home” (i will watch for a post on that). Blessings to your beautiful family, Tara

  14. Sara says:

    I noticed that you had a PayPal button on the top of your blog.  I would like to donate money, just wondering if this money goes directly to you.  Your post today brings tears to my eyes…I’m so thankful we having a loving Lord that is watching over our every need. 

  15. lk says:

    Wow!!  “Help me in my unbelief” is a frequent prayer of mine….today He used you to help me – love reading your story

  16. Christi says:

    Wow!  We found a precious girl yesterday on Reece’s Rainbow.  I can’t even fathom being able to do this but when I looked at her sweet face I knew that God could.  I don’t know when or how but I know He is leading us down this path. 
    This post had tears flowing freely and I am so thankful you posted it!  Such an encouragement to others!

  17. Susanna says:

    Christi, I have tears of my own reading your comment! Please let me know when you get to the point of committing to her; I would dearly love to hear that news!

    Yes, God CAN do it.

  18. Susanna says:

    Sara, thank you so much! Yes, the Donate button on the sidebar goes directly to our family’s account with Lifesong for Orphans. We will have an account with them until we bring Katie home. Because so many have asked for it, we are also planning to put up our family’s address on the sidebar, with another Donate button that goes to Katie’s new bank account! (This account is for extra expenses we will have for her that are not adoption costs, and medically-related expenses that are not shared by Samaritan Ministries International. The Lifesong donations are tax-deductible, but the donations to Katie’s account are not tax-deductible. Does all that make sense? Please feel free to ask more questions, and I do plan to attempt to write a clear explanation in a blog post after we have it all ready to go!

  19. Tammy Ellis says:

    Wow… this is So Incredible.  GOD is doing such great things. 

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