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The Journey

Several years ago, I felt led to participate in a FamilyLife-sponsored mission trip to Guatemala where I visited orphanages and my heart was broken for the 100 million orphans in our world.

This led to the beginning of our family’s adoption journey—a journey that would stretch our faith and finances and take us to the very limits of ourselves. As we waited three and a half years to bring our precious Maria home, watching her grow up in pictures without her family, we often questioned God’s purposes.

During one of the lowest points of our wait, plagued by concerns of whether or not her adoption could be completed, someone asked what would be the worst outcome from this experience. Without hesitation I answered, “That Maria would never come home.”

I pondered and prayed over my answer and realized the worst that could happen would be if Maria never met her Savior and spent eternity separated from him. My attitude changed and I began praying first for Maria’s salvation and second that we would be blessed to be the family that would lead her to Christ.

It’s been more than four years since Maria joined our family and nearly three years ago our prayers were answered with Maria’s baptism on Jan. 4, 2009. Not only will we have the blessing of sharing this life with her, but eternity as well.

I’m in awe of a God who loves so deeply that he would go to such great lengths for one life. Before Maria’s life even began God knew that this would be her story—that we would be her family and that she would be his child. I’m blessed that he would use someone as flawed as me as his tool, and I’m sobered by the thought that we could have disobeyed.

“The Lord is not slow in keeping his promise, as some understand slowness. He is patient with you, not wanting anyone to perish, but everyone to come to repentance.” 2 Peter 3:9

Stacie Chalupka and her husband, Don, live in Little Rock, Ark. They have four children, and they adopted their daughter, Maria, from Guatemala through Buckner in 2007.

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