Many of you know that we named our youngest daughter Zion Hope to remind us of the hope we have in heaven. We know that although we were created to live life to the fullest here on earth, this is not our home. Our home is in heaven where we will live forever in perfect peace. We have three babies waiting for us there and countless family and friends. The truth of our desire for heaven is becoming more and more apparent as we live in Haiti. Not necessarily because we have encountered more death, but because of the relationships that come and go on a very regular basis.
When we lived in the States we did have to say goodbye to people from time to time. We had moved to Lake City as a family, but were still fairly close to Grand Rapids. The goodbyes never seemed as final as they do here. Volunteers, adoptive families, and other people come to visit COTP on a regular basis. Children go home to be with their forever families. Sometimes it feels like we are bonding with people and building relationships, only to say "goodbye" much too soon. I had been feeling it this week, and then Malachi, our seven year old, expressed it also. "It feels like people just keep falling out of my life." This past week alone he said goodbye to a boy that was here to volunteer with his family, one of his "favorite" baby house children who went home with her forever family, her brothers who he played with while they were here, and one of his close friends who also went home with his new forever family. He loves people deeply, and struggles with missing friends and family back home, and then also saying goodbye to new friends. While we realize that we will indeed see some of these people again, in reality we will not connect with many of them this side of heaven. We meet so many people we would love to have close relationships with but we know that we will likely never live near most of them.
We have developed close relationships with the aunts that work in our home, and they see us every day in the good and in the bad. They probably know us better than many of you! I still don't love having people in my home 24 hours a day, but I have grown to love these women and we have laughed and cried together despite our language barrier.
We are also very aware that as we grow closer and closer in relationship with the children we are caring for, it will get more and more difficult to say goodbye to them. They are precious to us and as we experience highs and lows with them, we pray that they will soon be able to experience those things with their forever families. Please pray with us that those families will hear God's calling on them to consider adoption.
As you pray for us we would love you to pray for our relationships to be sweet and our fellowship to be honoring to God. We know that there will be many goodbyes, but we are so grateful for the people God places in our lives.