Thanksgiving in January

About a month ago, as we were getting Christmas decorations out of our basement, my daughter noticed an old black-and-white composition notebook in the bookcase. As she took it out and started to look at it, I realized it was an old prayer journal that I used to keep. For each entry I listed five “gratitudes” or praises and five prayer requests. The interesting thing was that I started the journal right around the time we submitted our paperwork to adopt our daughter from China, and here she is now almost seven years later reading the journal to me!

When we started the process to adopt, my husband was an over-the-road truck driver, so many of my gratitudes were when he had arrived home safely and many of my prayer requests were that he would get home soon. One gratitude was about a dear friend that received Christ as his Savior. There were numerous praises and prayer requests about money (as always!) and everything from the weather to weddings to new babies, health concerns, pets, work, church, friends, and family. On July 27, 2004, I wrote in the gratitude column that “Creation College was great and the Creation Museum was totally awesome!” (Can you tell I’m a child of the 80s?!)  Little did I know at that time, but a mere two years later I would be working for AiG.

On November 9, I wrote some of the most precious words I have ever penned: “We have a daughter!” Then two days later, another big gratitude was that we had received the money we needed to complete our adoption. Of course, there was a huge gap in the journal from the end of December to the middle of February because we were busy traveling to China and becoming new parents. On March 4, 2005, I wrote, “Really, totally falling in love with Elizabeth!” And almost seven years later, nothing has changed. We celebrate another “thanksgiving” in January for the gift of our beautiful daughter Elizabeth.

The food for this thanksgiving is a bit different, as we will go to a Chinese restaurant and enjoy noodles and orange chicken eaten with chopsticks (Elizabeth is surprisingly good at this even though we aren’t—must be genetic!) She will receive a gift that we bought for her while in China to celebrate Gotcha Day—the anniversary of the day we adopted her. We will watch the video (with tears of joy from mom!) of the first time we held her and remember those first few days with her that were filled with concern and joy.

I thank God not only that He gave us our daughter Elizabeth through adoption but also that He has given us the perfect example of adoption by adopting us into His family when we receive the gift of salvation (Ephesians 1:4–6).

Keep fighting the good fight of the faith!

One of my favorite pictures of Elizabeth in China

Our first family photo!