Friday, January 10, 2014

A chapter ends but the story continues



Just days after the Lord stirred in my heart and called our family to adopt I knew that he was also calling us to walk this journey publicly.  

When I began this blog my primary goal was to share with our families and close friends why were were adopting.   I also wanted a place to journal the details of our journey to one day share them with our baby girl. 

 That was it- simple.  A place to share God's story of our Ruthie's adoption.   

Oh, but it became so much more.  

Our blog was therapy- I had to process and face my feelings in order to communicate them.  Both the good and the bad- the exciting and the very ugly were all there for the world to see.  The beautiful thing is that sharing these details and emotions here drove me to the Lord and his Scriptures.  You see I never wanted to leave you, the reader, discouraged.   So I would dive into God’s Word to find hope  “for you” before I would write a post all the while I was actually finding the HOPE for myself! 

Our blog brought us great encouragement- from the comments left here to those that were sent to us via text or email or facebook we were blown away by the love and support we received.  Some of the greatest encouragements I experienced were kind words and financial support from friends from High School.  This touched my heart profoundly.  You see, in High School my faith was very private.  Very few people knew I loved the Lord back then and I have often regretted that… but thanks to this little blog I have been able to share my love for Christ and of His GREAT love for me!  I am so grateful for the chance to reconnect with these friends and for the opportunity to encourage each other with the HOPE that we share!

Our blog also helped us successfully fundraise in ways we never dreamed possible- We launched RuthieB Photography, sold “Hope” and “Psalm 91:4” bands, we solicited items for sale and promoted our yardsale, we sold customized letters, we sponsored puzzle pieces and sold t-shirts.  The Lord blessed these efforts abundantly!

And finally, our blog gave us a place to share our great joy when in God’s perfect timing we became a family of 5! God called us to be a family of 5 through adoption and he was faithful…

  • Faithful to protect our family and our baby girl during our journey.
“He will cover you with his feathers and shelter you with his wings.  His faithful promises are your armor and protection” Psalm 91:4

  • Faithful to direct our steps.
“And though the Lord give you the bread of adversity and the water of affliction, yet your Teacher will not hide himself anymore, but your eyes shall see your Teacher. And your ears shall hear a word behind you, saying, “This is the way, walk in it,” when you turn to the right or when you turn to the left.” Isaiah 30:20-21

  • Faithful to provide all that we needed.
“Look at the birds of the air: they neither sow nor reap nor gather into barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not of more value than they?” Matthew 6:26

  • Faithful to comfort us in pain.
“The Lord is near to the brokenhearted and saves the crushed in spirit” -Psalm 34:18

  • Faithful to bring to complete the journey he began.
“He has made everything beautiful in its time” Ecclesiastes 3:11



He has indeed made everything beautiful in its time and we are forever changed. 

To mark the completion of the “bringing Ruthie home” chapter of the story of our family I have decided to end this blog. 

And with great joy and eager anticipation I am happy to report that I plan to begin a new blog!  I have no idea what the Lord plans for this new little outlet for me but I’m excited to find out!  I'm still a bit "under construction" but  I hope you will visit me at my new Blog 

Mom of 3 Fergusons  





Thank you again for reading, encouraging and praying for us! 


With great love and gratitude,
Niles, Maria, Turner, Calvin and Ruthie





PS- I do not plan to delete this blog.  I pray that it can continue to be an encouragement to those considering or walking the adoption journey or those simply waiting on the Lord.  

To God be all glory and honor!



Friday, November 8, 2013

Happy half-birthday, baby girl!


Today, Miss Ruthie FERGUSON celebrates another milestone...


Today is her half birthday!

We are crazy about this little lady!

She's been changing and growing so much these last weeks...  


Here are a few of her favorite things:

She loves dancing with her daddy while Mommy makes dinner.
She loves when her brothers talk to her- they always make her laugh!
She likes trying new foods- today she even ate quinoa for the first time and liked it!  
She's sitting like a big girl now and likes to play with her toes.
She REALLY likes splashing in the tub.
She likes being pushed FAST in a shopping cart- it makes her squeal!
Ruthie likes to play with Mommy's hair :).
She also loves to be outside.





 

Isn't she a beauty???


We are SO thankful that God brought her to our family.
We are now, blissfully, 5 Mariposas!

Forever A Family


Tuesday, November 5, 2013

Daddy Speaks- Adoption is Real



Last Sunday was Orphan Sunday.  

As I mentioned in my last post, on Orphan Sunday, Christians across the world stand for the orphan. We take the weekend to discuss and pray for ways to defend the fatherless…to care for the child that has no family…to visit orphans in their distress.


Niles was asked to share at our church what the Lord had been teaching him regarding adoption...


{I was SO proud of him!}

Niles spoke about the "real" and legitimate effect adoption has on our lives as believers in Christ as well as it's effect on our family.


In case you missed it, you can listen to the audio from the 9:00 service HERE.


We want to say "Thank you" to our church family for the opportunity to share what we have been learning.  We pray that everyone would take some time this week to think about and thank the Lord for their adoption in Christ.  We also pray that you will ask the Lord how YOU could be used by him to minister to the least of these. 





Wednesday, October 30, 2013

Happy to Report Nothing


Hello friends!  
Thanks for stopping by to check on us :)


Since my last post I am happy to report- nothing!


Well, nothing out-of-left-field-crazy at least.
No unexpected phone calls.
No last minute legal issues.
No heart breaking news.

Just a plain, old, happy life as a family of 5!


We are THRILLED to announce that Ruthie's adoption finalization hearing is scheduled for NEXT Wednesday,  November 6th.  Niles and I will "attend" the hearing in Florida via phone.  The call should last about 15 minutes after which we will FINALLY become Ruthie's forever family and she will legally become a Ferguson.

To God be all Honor, Glory and Praise!



Friday, August 16, 2013

"She looks just like you!"


 "Oh my goodness!  She looks just like you!" said the girl at the CVS counter the first time I ventured out with my baby in SC.  I had been in FL for 17 days and was pretty tan.  And Ruthie and I both have really dark hair...  so I could see our "family resemblance" and it made me smile.  Later  when I started posting pictures of Ruthie and her brothers online  friends would say "she looks like Calvin!" and "she looks like she belongs!"- all sweet and well intentioned compliments.

And yet, they made me feel strange.

I began to wonder how I was "supposed" to respond to these remarks?  Was I "supposed" to tell perfect strangers that she's adopted when they compliment us?  Was it "lying" to let people believe she was biologically related to me?  And I wondered too how should I respond to friends that say she "looks like she belongs in our family"?  You see, I had prepared myself for 2 years to become the mother of a baby that did NOT look like me and assumed we would become a conspicuous family once our Ruthie joined our family. We took classes and did research to equip ourselves to handle the tough questions people might ask us regarding why our family did not look alike- and now all of a sudden we did! 

It seems like a silly thing to worry about, I know.  But as someone who was so publicly working to bring a baby home through adoption it felt like a strange secret sometimes.

I prayed about these feelings of confusion and sought the wisdom of friends and the counsel of the online adoption community.  As is always the case the Lord responded... 

I began to feel great peace knowing our Ruthie was fearfully and wonderfully made by her loving Father.  I felt too that our adoption journey was exactly what it needed to be to prepare our family to bring her home- whether she was going to look like us or not.  And I felt that He was whispering "be still" to my heart full of worry...


So I decided to trust Him and stop my worrying for once :).  

I trust that it is GOOD for me to enjoy my baby girl without constantly "championing" the cause of adoption.  
I trust that I have a lifetime ahead of me of opportunities to talk about adoption and the joy that it has brought to our family.  
I trust that He will not hide His will from me, so I can stop worrying about what I'm "supposed" to do.
I trust that love makes a family, not biology or looks.
  

Now when people tell me she looks like me- I simply smile and say thanks!  



Monday, July 29, 2013

God Changed the Mind of Pharaoh


So there are two reasons why I haven't blogged in nearly a month...


One reason is probably pretty obvious...





Keeping up with these 3 little treasures has taken up every second of every day!


The other reason isn't as cute... 

The day after my last post we received a terrifying phone call from our social worker.
Just a couple weeks after finally coming home with our Ruthie,
one day after our baby turned one month old 
and just days before her baptism 
we heard this news:

"Your adoption is being contested."

The beautiful dream we were just beginning to taste was suddenly yanked away... and we felt broken and helpless.

This helplessness eventually turned into a paralysis for me when it came to things like blogging, planning, even day-dreaming of the years to come.  
I was weak and afraid- just trying to put one foot in front of the other.


But God..

He didn't just leave me in this broken place.  Slowly he began to show me what he promised the apostle Paul in 2 Corinthians 12:9
"My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness"

He consistently gave me the grace I needed to make it through the day, one day at a time.   His mercies were new every morning and slowly he began to show me contentment in today-surrendering my tomorrows to Him...
(There's a lot more to share here- in time.)

God also provided us with great counsel and prayer warriors to support us.  One of these great conselors was our home study social worker, Hollie.  
 I will never forget her response on a day that I called her in despair- she said "The same God that changed the heart of Pharaoh and parted the Red Sea is in control today"... 

That soon became my consistent prayer ...
Father, just as you changed the heart of Pharaoh, please change the heart of the man contesting our adoption but unlike Pharaoh let him come to know you as Savior...



As I said above there is a LOT more to share about the last month...
...the grace God gave us each day
...the encouragements we received seemingly out of nowhere
...the most specific prayer requests that God answered
...the heroic actions of our birthmother (who was NOT the reason for the contest)...


But today I just want you to share in our joy 
so I will skip to the end of this chapter of our story.


Today just before lunch I received a call again from our social worker- or so I thought.

Caller ID said:
Suzanne- Bond of Love agency

I answered- "Hi this is Maria!"
and I heard

"Hi Maria! It's "B" (our birthmom)

then she said
"are you sitting down? I have good news for you again"

So I obediently sat down and she said
"I got him to sign all the papers.  Ruthie is officially yours"

It. Is. Over.


To God be all the glory and honor- the contest is over and we can now FINALLY move to finalize our  adoption!  In a matter of months, the baby girl that was born of our hearts on May 8th will officially become a Ferguson.


We are floored by His great love for our little family.


Instead of immediately calling Niles at work after hearing from "B" todayI decided to WAIT to surprise him with our incredible news when he got home.

So the boys and I made signs and got balloons...

When Daddy arrived boys met him outside and made him close his eyes and walk in while Mommy stood shaking like a leaf trying to capture the moment...


 

Surprise!
Please forgive the quality of the photographs (as I said, I was SHAKING like crazy!).

I think you get the idea :) Daddy was thrilled!

Today our family will raise an Ebenezer to remind us what God has done.  May He receive all glory, honor and praise.