Thursday, December 19, 2013


Jen reminds me SO MUCH of me when we began the process to adopt! Adopting first felt very natural to me. I love this little excerpt from her blog! It's so honest…

 "Many of you who know me, know that I have talked about wanting to adopt for a long time.  I am not one of those girls who dreams of being pregnant with warm, fuzzy feelings.  Even before meeting Mike, I knew that I wanted to be a mom.  I just wasn't sure they would be my biological children.  As Mike and I have talked about what our family will look like in the future, both of our hearts have been drawn to adoption.  At Redeemer Fellowship (our church), there was a sermon about a year ago which painted a beautiful picture of Christ's love and sacrifice for us.  Christ loved me, even in my sin and filth, so much that he died on the cross in order to adopt me into His family. At the end of the sermon, Kevin (our pastor) spoke about what we can do in response to God's love for us.  For both Mike and myself, our answer was to adopt."

They are now officially a waiting family! Read a little more about their story below and consider supporting their adoption! You can give through their Adopt Together page, or support them by shopping Love is Waiting. This week 20% of sales will go to the Waldens!

"Hi! We are Mike and Jen Walden and we are adopting a baby boy from Ethiopia!  Our story begins in 2009 when we met at a Superbowl party thrown by a mutual friend.  We were engaged later that year and were married in September of 2010.  We currently live in Prairie Village, Kansas. Mike is an accountant for JE Dunn and Jen is an occupational therapist at John Knox Village.  As a couple, we enjoy working in the yard, doing home projects, playing with our dog Zoey, and spending time with family and friends.  We are also active in our church community at Redeemer Fellowship in Kansas City, Missouri.
We began talking about adopting shortly after we were married in 2010. Adoption touched our hearts because it is a beautiful picture of God’s love for His people.  We were orphaned by our sin and God, in His love and mercy, adopted us into his family.  He paid the ultimate price so that we can know eternal love in Him.  Earthly adoption is a tangible picture of this love and a small thing that we can do in response to God’s love for us.  
We were drawn to Ethiopia because of the beautiful children in this country who need forever homes.  Although we know it will come with challenges, we are excited to become a multicultural and multiracial family.  It will be our joy to bring African culture and traditions into our home as we learn and grow together as a family.

We began the adoption process in March of 2013. We have completed our home study, filed our dossier, and have been pre-approved by the Department of Homeland Security to bring a child into the country. We are anxiously awaiting placement on the Ethiopian waiting list with our agency, Children's Hope International, and hope to be placed with our child within 18-24 months.

One of the great challenges of international adoption is the cost. To this point, we have contributed thousands of dollars towards our adoption, but still need continued support to cover adoption fees, travel, visas, etc. We are excited about our adoption journey and we are thankful that you are supporting us through prayers and financial gifts. Follow our journey at

Thursday, December 12, 2013


The Yarbrough's decision to adopt was met with undeniable confirmation! I love hearing about the different ways that God speaks to His people. Read about how God used the sweet voice of a two-year-old in their story. Shop Love is Waiting this week and support this beautiful family! 

"Has God ever laid a verse on your heart?  One you can’t get out of your head?  One that pops up in everything you read?  I hope so.  Lately Ephesians 3:20-21 seems to be written on my heart.   “Now to him who is able to do far more abundantly than all that we ask or think, according to the power at work within us, to him be glory…”

God has done for me abundantly more than I could ask or imagine.  I spent my twenties longing for a family.  I felt God’s nudging all those years telling me to wait on him.  His abundantly more for me has come to life with Chad and our daughter, Campbell.  They are truly more than I could have hoped for or dreamed of.   God is blessing me and sanctifying me through them in ways I never anticipated.   I thank God for them everyday.

And now, I’m back in a season of anticipation.  In February 2013 I told Chad I felt God was about to do something big in our family.  We spent a lot of time in prayer asking God to prepare us for whatever he had in store for us.  I had a couple of guesses, but God had something abundantly more planned- to Him be the glory!  Exactly a month later we attended an informational meeting about adoption.  Adoption was something we had previously discussed very loosely.  We agreed God was going to have to make it very clear if that was the path he had chosen for us because, up until that day, we had not felt “the call”.  Chad agreed to go to the meeting with me so we could be better informed IF we decided to adopt somewhere down the line.  We came home from the meeting and chatted briefly about it over lunch.  I felt pretty strongly God was stirring something in my heart, but wondered if Chad and I were on the same page.  I put Campbell down for a nap and Chad left for a run.  When he came back he said, “let’s do it”.  I panicked.  This was coming from my husband who doesn’t decide on ANY thing without research, research and more research.  We both realized God was leading us to adopt.  God spoke clearly to us through a friend who made the comment that to be “PRO-life” really ought to mean more than politics.  It ought to mean we are FOR the least of these including birth moms who are unable to parent and their children who need a family.  That conversation led us to decide on an open, domestic adoption.  

When we told our families of our decision, both of our moms said they already knew that’s where God was leading us.  What confirmation from the Lord!  We continue to see God confirming this calling through others, financial provision and our sweet Campbell who kept saying, “I EXCITED!” the day we mailed in our paperwork even though she had no way of knowing what was going on.  It was also the first day she added the word excited to her little two year old vocabulary.

We hope to be finished with our training and home study by March, at which time we will be waiting for a birth mom to select our family.  Your prayers for our child and his or her birth family would be greatly appreciated!  Your support and prayers are such a precious part of the love story God is writing for our child.  Thank you!

With love~ Chad + Cris + Campbell"

Thursday, December 5, 2013


I am SOOOOO EXCITED about this week's family! Please read through their story! It's really a unique how this family is coming together. Eric and Kim are just so full of love and they are so open to whatever God has for them! Join me this week in supporting the VanDevenders as they are aching for their son to come home! Love is Waiting will be giving 20% of sales this week to their family. You can also support them by purchasing a puzzle piece here. Or give a tax-deductible donation here! Just type in  “VanDevender Family Adoption” where it says “Designation”.

We are the VanDevender family—Eric (Dad), Kim (Mom), Kyle (age 19), and Kelly (age 17).  We live in Katy, Texas, and are in the process of adopting M (we will call him "M" to protect his identity), an 11 year-old boy from the Ukraine.  Since starting the adoption process, we have learned that M has an older brother and sister who are also available for adoption.  Currently they do not even live at the same orphanage, but we feel God may be calling us to take all three children.  We won’t know for sure until we are actually in the Ukraine to finalize everything, so we are learning to trust God and His timing in the whole process.  We do know our hearts are prepared for all three children if He calls us to that.  People may think we are crazy to adopt teenagers, but we can’t stand the thought of them aging out of the orphanage at 16 and ending up on the streets on their own. That will happen for the older brother next year (2014).  I can’t imagine that life for any child. To make things harder, these children are of “gypsy” or Romani descent.  They are still very discriminated against in their own country—stereotyped as beggars and thieves, with little opportunity for education. In short, they don’t have much of a chance at all on their own.  We are hoping to change that for these children.  Below is a portion of a letter we sent to family and close friends to tell them about the adoption of M.  I think it tells our story very well.
In the spring of 2013, God called us on a journey that has forever changed us.  He called us to host an orphan from Ukraine, to open our home to a child in need for five weeks.  Just the fact that the entire family was in agreement was proof enough of a miracle in the works; the miracle of God orchestrating us to pick this child from a photo listing and a small, brief biography.  As most of you now know, M was a perfect fit for our family, and our lives will never be the same again.  But God knew that M was meant for us, and so much more.  He knew that M belonged in our family forever!

“For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.” Jeremiah 29:11

As our family prayed over the prospect of adopting M, this is the verse the Lord gave us to encourage us; to show us that He would provide for us now, during the adoption process, and in the future.  It is the same verse we have prayed over our children since they were born.  God is good.
One of the hardest things we have ever done was putting M on an airplane back to Ukraine at the end of the hosting period.  We had to, it is the law; but we didn’t want to.  Imagine sending your child to a faraway country, not knowing what waits on the other end, having no control or ability to protect them. Now you understand why we want to bring M home as quickly as possible. 

For now, we must trust that God is protecting him while we cannot.  Again, He promises us through this verse:
“Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged, for the Lord your God will be with you wherever you go.” Joshua 1:9

God Bless,
The VanDevender Family"