Wednesday, August 31, 2011

The Details

When John and I first started our adoption process, an adoptive mama friend told me to never put God in a box. She said He has a way of surprising you when you least expect it and can bring you children from anywhere if you keep your heart open.
I have always kept her advice in the back of my mind. When I started my current job, I even wondered if maybe, just maybe, my children were at the Mission. (Don't get me wrong...I firmly believe that we have kiddos in Ethiopia! We will wait, however long it takes, to bring them home!)
About 2 months ago a coworker approached me because one of our clients was pregnant and had come to her numerous times because she wanted to put her baby up for adoption. My coworker knew that John and I were unable to have children and had been waiting out the long process of international adoption. She asked if we would be interested in adopting the baby.
I pretty much blew off the idea. There were a thousand reasons why it could never happen - she was a client, I was a staff member. How would John and I afford a second adoption? We were still about $5,000 short for our Ethiopian adoption. I had no idea how to even begin a private domestic adoption. It's a whole different ballgame than international.
I told my coworker that I would talk to John about the possibility of us pursuing the adoption, but deep down I just didn't see how it could work. God had different plans.
The following week my heart was so burdened for this young girl. She was young, living alone at a homeless shelter and wanted desperately to find a family for her baby. I spent a lot of time praying and crying that week - asking God what we were supposed to do. I was driving to work one morning and I believe 100% that the holy spirit whispered to my heart - that baby is your child.
You can imagine my conversation with the Lord.
"Okay God, but how will be ever afford it?
God reminded me of the amount we had in our adoption account and that we would be able to claim the adoption tax credit and refund ourselves the money, which we could then use to finish our Ethiopian adoption. 
My next question was "how do we even begin this process?" The birth mom wants to go through a private attorney and not an agency. I had no clue how to find an attorney - thankfully I go to church with one and he just happened to inform me that I also go to church with an attorney who does private adoptions. I gave her a call.
The pieces of the puzzle kept falling into place - the adoption would only cost $2500 and the cost to update our home study.
The next hurdle was determining if we could even pursue this adoption since I am a staff member and the birth mom is a client. I prayed and prayed and prayed. I went to our president and he gave me his blessing - there was just one glitch...we had to get the boards approval. Guess what?? We did! The only stipulation (and our attorney had already told us the same thing) the birth mom had to have her own attorney to represent her.
Can you see why I believe with my WHOLE heart that this is a story that only God could weave together?
I get to go with the birth mom on September 13th to find out what the baby is! People have been asking me if I want a boy or a girl and I can honestly say that I don't care! I am going to about pee my pants no matter what the baby is.
I am completely blown away by God's hand in all of this. There are still a few obstacles that we face. We know that until she has the baby and signs her rights away she can change her mind. We are also still waiting for her to get an attorney so that we can start the paperwork process. Please pray she gets legal representation soon. It's SO important that she has it.
Despite some of the hurdles we still face, I believe that this adoption is God ordained. I believe He saw this child long before it was ever formed in the birth mother's womb and has a perfect plan for that child. Part of that plan is for John and I to be its parents.
Please pray for the birth mom - she is dealing with a lot and I can't imagine being in her shoes - having to make the decision to give her child up for adoption. I have so much respect for her and her desire to give her child a better future.
We are SO excited - our families are SO excited - and we can't wait for the arrival of this little miracle. Christmas is coming early in the Linck house!

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Happy Birthday John!

Happy Birthday to my awesome hubby John! Today is his actual birthday but we celebrated this weekend on our trip to St. Louis. We had a blast with his family and my sister and her fiance. Here are a few birthday and St. Louis photos.....
 Myka and Paul's First Trip to St. Louis
 Sisters :)
 John sporting his new Cardinal's shirt - one of his presents!
 Take me out to the ball game to the all you can eat seats!
 Myka, Paul, Scott and Adrienne - Paul always has to make a funny face.
 Taking Myka and Paul for a boat ride on the Mississippi
 Awesome Saturday afternoon at the river
 Soakin up the sunshine
 The guys really bonded - John, Scott, Paul and John
 Adrienne, John and Karen
 Opening his Nook - His nose will forever be stuck in a book!
 New shirt to wear in our golf tournament in October
 He may be 32 but he's still a kid at heart - and he never gets tired of Transformers
Happy Birthday John!!!

Monday, August 29, 2011


Today we celebrate 4 months on the wait list for Ethiopia. Despite the fact that we will be bringing a baby home in December, we still plan to adopt from Ethiopia - even if it takes a bit longer to complete the adoption process. We both feel very certain that we have babies in Ethiopia and our hearts are forever going to be tied to Ethiopia.

I haven't forgotten about the details of our adoption - will write more this week about the incredible story that God is weaving together....

Thursday, August 25, 2011

December 8th

December 8th is the day John and I are anticipating. On or around that day our lives will change forever. Because more than likely we will become parents to a baby that God chose for us before we even desired to be parents. A baby that God saw long before it was ever knit together in it's birthmother's womb.

We are SO excited to finally share our happy news! It's a story that only God could have weaved together. There are a lot of amazing details and I can't wait to share them - but for now I wanted to finally share that John and I are in the process of a private domestic adoption and we are expecting our bundle of joy on or around December 8th.

It's late here in St. Louis but now that our families know about the baby, I had to share the surprise with my blog friends.

I promise to share the amazing story with you very soon - only God! He takes my breath away with how perfect His plans are.

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPhones

Location:St. Louis

Monday, August 22, 2011

Rock This Shirt and Support Our Friends Congo Adoption!

Our friends Clint and Kathleen are boldly praying that they see the face of their children next month! They are adopting 2 kiddos from the Congo and need to raise $9000 before they can accept their referral. They have designed the CUTEST t-shirts and are taking orders. Will you purchase one and help them reach their goal? Look how cute they are...(don't worry dudes, they come in dark grey too!)

Here is information from Kathleen about ordering a shirt and supporting their adoption:
"We are so excited to have finished our new Congo shirt design! We are working toward raising $9000 in the next 3 months in order to have the money ready when we receive our referral!

BOLD, right?!
They will be printed on Gildan Ultra Cotton t-shirts (normal t-shirt fit. No special fit for men/women).
The girls will be a hot pink and the guys will be a dark heather gray. The artwork will be all white.
They are $20 each and we pray boldly that we can sell at least 50. I am working on getting the "Get Your Shirt" section on my blog linked up to the new design, so in the meantime, if you want a shirt...please comment and I'll put you down and when the paypal is up and running I'll email you.
We thank you in advance for your support and love. My blog community has really been such a great source of encouragement and support and I am so thankful for that!
$9000...... We can Do THIS!"

You can order your shirt by visiting Clint and Kathleen's blog here.

Friday, August 19, 2011

He is Our Source

"And my God will meet all your needs according to his glorious riches in Christ Jesus." ~Philippians 4:19

This morning during our daily devotion at work, I was reminded that God is our source for ALL things! I started thinking about several families that we know who are in the depths of the wait for their children. I thought about John and I. Through this adoption journey, God really has been our source for ALL things. He has provided the money, the strength and the patience as we continue to count each month that goes by. Most of all He has been my source of peace - in the midst of so much uncertainty, there has always been peace - only God.
This morning a few specific families crossed my mind. Families who are depending on God to be their source for ALL things as they wait to be united with their children. I wanted to share a few of their stories and ask that you pray for them.
The Winter's have been waiting to bring home their 2nd Ethiopian babe for more than 15 months now. According to our agencies estimated wait time, they are SO close to receiving a referral, but it has yet to come. Will you please pray that God would be their source of peace, of patience and that they will see the face of their child SOON?

The Ellis' just found out they are #7 on the wait list for 2 kiddos from the Congo! Kathleen is BOLDLY praying that they receive their referral next month! She is also trusting God to be her source for the $6,000 they need to accept the referral when they get it. Will you join me in praying this "Sun Stand Still" prayer for Kathleen and Clint? God can do anything you know...

The Morris' have seen their daughter's face. They're just waiting to bring her home. Will you pray that they get the call to travel to the Congo and can hold their daughter soon?

The Habuda's are waiting for the phone to ring, to get the call that they have a son or daughter waiting for them in Taiwan. All they can do is wait, to trust and to remember that God is their source for everything. Pray they see the face of their child soon....

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

We Must Do Something...

This morning I read that more than 29,000 Somali children under the age of 5 have already died because of the severe drought that has plagued the horn of Africa.
The faces of malnourished children stared at me from the pages of the local newspaper. 29,000 was imprinted on my mind and heart. I can't even wrap my mind around 29,000 children dead because they have no food.
As I sit with a Sonic drink and bag of cereal at my desk, children in Africa are starving. Food meant for starving Africans is being stolen and sold in markets, according to the Associated Press.
My stomach growls and I eat. Their stomach growls and they die. It's a pretty sucky world we live in. 29,000 Somali children. There are others, many others, dying as they journey to find food. Mothers having to leave their babies dead on the side of the road. Horrible people stealing food to make a profit while a baby takes its last breath.
Here's my challenge to you today. Each time your stomach growls, each time you go to take a bite of food, each time you see food, will you pray for the people in Africa who are dying, starving and being taken advantage of?
Will you consider giving a financial gift towards the relief efforts in the Horn of Africa? A friend recently shared with me how much $1 or $2 or $3 can help those in Africa get the food they need. We can all do something!

$1 = 40 meals

$25 = 1,000 meals

$50 = 2,000 meals

$250 = 10,000 meals

$500 = 20,000 meals

$1,000 = 40,000 meals

$3,000 = 120,000 meals

$6,000 = 240,000 meals
Here is what I am going to do. For the rest of August (possibly in to September) I will give all the proceeds from my baking business Sweet Inspirations to an organization that is providing food for the people in Africa. Please consider placing an order and supporting these precious people who desperately need our help!
You can place an order by e-mailing me at
Please help me spread the word and let's join forces for Africa. Let's pray, Let's give, Let's be the hands and feet of Jesus!

Friday, August 12, 2011

A Beautiful Reminder

For the past two days I've been at the Global Leadership Summit. I've enjoyed certain aspects because it's been very focused on orphan care.
This morning the worship team sang a song that really spoke to my heart. I wanted to share the lyrics...

Lord this path may not be easy but it's where I'm meant to be. In your presence you will keep me as my mind is stayed on thee.

I will follow through the canyons, over mountains, across the sea. You will find me in your footsteps until at last I'm home and free.

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPhone

Location:Global Leadership Summit

Monday, August 8, 2011

If I Were To Be Honest....

Yesterday, with each baby and baby bump I saw - and I saw a lot of them at church - my heart ached for my own child - I thought to myself, God, why is it so easy for some people to become parents and so hard for us.
Most days my faith is strong and I truly believe the promises of God that are tucked in my heart- but occasionally I have a day like yesterday where I just want to pout and I get tired of waiting.
In the midst of my pity party I was reading a blog by another soon-to-be adoptive mama who has been waiting to bring her son home from Ethiopia but the courts have rejected the finalization of the adoption.
She writes "Now according to God's word, I should consider it pure joy when I face trials of many kinds, because the testing of my faith develops perseverance (James 1:2). I should greatly rejoice when I suffer grief in all kinds of trials, because my faith will be proved genuine through them, and my faith is worth more than gold (1 Peter 1:6-7). And because I'm a believer, a Christ-follower, I should know that all things work together for good for those that love God (Romans 8:28). Well this week I have received the divine chance to see if I really believe these words. Do I really have faith in those things that I read in God's word, even write down in my journal or highlight on the page? Is scripture just going into my head daily or is it penetrating into my heart?"
Here's the deal: it sucks waiting to become a mom - but I've said it before and I'll say it again - had I not gone through the things I have been facing since January 2010, I would not have experienced Jesus in the ways that I have. I would still be the same person - but thank the Lord that I'm not. Jesus has changed me, made me a little more like Him and I've had to depend on Him like I've never had to before - and really that's what this journey is all about.
Being on my knees before my savior. Trusting. My faith being put to the test. My character a reflection of His. Knowing from the deepest places of my soul that His way is perfect. Believing. There are children that at the right moment will become my children - it will not be too soon or a moment too late.
And I picture that moment in my mind a lot - when my child is finally placed in my arms and I choke back tears just imagining what that day will be like, a rush of excitement sweeps over me and I know that I will never take for granted the precious gift that God gives me - being a mother, having children. I will never take it for granted because I have longed for it, prayed for it and literally ached for the day I lay eyes on my child for the first time.

**remember how I said God was weaving together a pretty amazing story? I wish I could share the details but I can't just yet - but soon bloggy friends, really soon!

Friday, August 5, 2011

Desiring Him

Last night I was reading part of my book "Plan B" and the author asked some tough questions.
He says, "You may be praying and pleading with God. But is it possible you don't really want God? Is it possible you just want what you think God can give you? One of the things I believe God is teaching me in my life these days is that at times we want our dreams more than we want God. We want what God does for us instead of just God."
WOW! Pretty hard questions - a big smack in the face with reality.
The author of the books uses Exodus 33:12-17 to make his point that God's presence is much more important than what we are wanting God to do in our life.
The Lord asks Moses to lead the people to the Promise Land and the thing Moses is most concerned about is being in God's presence. He isn't concerned about success, He is desperate for God, desperate for His presence to go with him.
"If your presence does not go with us, do not send us from this place," (v. 15) is Moses plea to God.
I want to be a mom desperately - but do I want to know God more? Do I want to experience His presence above my desire to have a child? Is my desire to become a mom overshadowing my desire for God?
Would I still worship the Lord and seek His face if I knew I would never have a child? Oh how I hope I will always put God and His will before my desires.
Like Moses, I pray I desire His presence more than a comfortable life, becoming a mom, or anything else that could potentially take my focus off the most important thing - Jesus!

Thursday, August 4, 2011

God Keeps Providing...

This week I had to bake 2 dozen red velvet cupcakes for a girl who I work with almost on a daily basis - I haven't known her long, but she wanted to order cupcakes to support our adoption. I know she has a heart for Africa because she has been there for Mission trips.
I spent Tuesday night making my ALL TIME favorite cupcake! My G-Mom's red velvet with butter sugar frosting. Every time I take a bite of one, (like I'm going to do after finishing this post) it's a little piece of heaven! I had so much fun baking up these cupcakes and packaging them in my new PINK baking boxes! I was feeling super duper professional. I was also feeling very blessed that God has allowed my little baking business to take off - I've already had several orders and more seem to be trickling in. I am glad I get to do something I love to help raise money for our adoption. Here are a few photos from Tuesday:

My husband would be the first to tell you that I am not an organized baker. I am actually pretty messy. I don't wash dishes as I go - I just have a huge pile staring at me when I am done and I usually beg and plead for John to do them because that's the worst thing about baking - the clean up!
 I got these cute cupcake wrappers that are reversible - black and red - to use for the cupcake cake I'm making for my sister's wedding in November. I got 250 of each wrapper for like $25 bucks. I was able to package the red velvet cupcakes up really cute!
Here's my pink baking boxes. I just printed off my logo and attached it to the box! I was so excited for the cupcakes to be packaged in style....
Ready for delivery!

So I went to deliver these cupcakes on Wednesday and the girl that ordered them blessed my socks off! She told me that God had laid it on her heart, to give her tithe to our adoption fund for a while. Can you believe that? I was in awe of her generosity and her obedience to what God was asking her to do. Once again, God continues to surprise me with the ways He is providing for our adoption. We are SO close to being fully funded!

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

Help Bring Constance Home....

Our friends Michael and Katie are SO close to traveling to see their sweet girl for the first time! Will you consider financially supporting their adoption? They need a little more than $4,000 before they can go on their first trip. If you can't donate to their adoption fund, will you pray? You can read all about their adoption journey and about their specific needs here.

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

Fundraising Update....

I am beyond ecstatic to report that as of this weekend we have raised $22,145 towards our adoption - we are only $3800 away from our Ethiopian adoption being FULLY FUNDED! Glory to God! He has provided EVERY single penny!
Several months ago, God pressed it upon my heart to take a break from doing any hardcore fundraising. Even though we still have funds to raise, John and I feel like we're supposed to "Be still and know that He is God." We know that He will provide everything we need to bring our kids home.
Here are a few ways God has provided (and continues to provide) for our adoption:
First of all, I have been asked to write the second book in the Peace House Series. I wrote the book below when I worked (for a short time) at a publishing company. I have been asked to write the second one on a freelance basis and the money from that will go towards our adoption.

I will also continue to put any money raised through my baking business towards our adoption. I have had several orders since launching
Sweet Inspirations and can't wait to see how this business grows. Each cupcake is one step closer to our babes. I would love to bake you up something sweet...
The one fundraiser that we started at the beginning of our adoption process, that I would like to complete, is our puzzle piece fundraiser. We have about 20 pieces left, which would mean an additional $400 we could put towards our adoption expenses. We also have a giveaway that we still need to do but I want to see if we can sale the remaining pieces before drawing a winner. If you bought a puzzle piece earlier this year, please know that your name is in the hat to receive the following prize pack (yep, you get to choose your choice of one pair of TOMS)
If you would like to sponsor a puzzle piece, you can make a $20 donation through PayPal and I will write your name on the back of the piece. You will also be entered to win the prize pack. I would hate for our puzzle to be incomplete when we bring our children home. It's already so neat to read the names and sweet messages from those who have already bought a piece of the puzzle. We can't wait to share all of the messages with our children!