Tuesday, February 11, 2014

If You Think My Hands are Full, You Should See My Heart {Guest Post by Crystal Sponseller}

Last March, we featured the Sponseller family on G1S1 Europe and raised $1,383 to help them family travel to Ukraine and adopt their son Daniel. Crystal wrote this update celebrating having Daniel home five months and was so gracious to share it with us!

Five months!

I think about it and I smile.

I smile because I can see how far we have come. I smile when I see our family's cogs slipping into place. I smile when I see my children dancing in the snow. I smile.

On a serious note, I have had the recurring thought of "How did I really expect this to go?" I honestly can't remember how I thought it would be. I know that I was scared and worried, but I totally underestimatedwhat the experience would be. I think many of us have scenarios like that. Scenarios that we find ourselves in the middle of that we wonder how we got there.

And, I mean, REALLY, who wants the hard? No one. Not even Christ. He prayed for the cup to pass. But somehow, when we submit our will to Him and decide to follow His plan for redemption, we plod through, with our heads down; through the adoption hiccups, through the surprises that aren't the good kind, through, through, through. And when we lift our eyes up we can see bits and pieces of the story that God is weaving using our willingness and our brokenness.

This was Данило five months ago (and about 12 pounds heavier due to unnecessary medications). He was terrified to ride in the car. He liked borscht, kielbasa, chupa chubs and any kind of fruit that he could forage from the fruit trees that grew around his orphanage. He would sweat profusely and shake inexplicably. His hair was thin and coarse. He was terrified. Of everything. The word that he said that most was "Buy-oos!" (Meaning: "I am scared!!!") Tantrums were an all day event. When he was bathed he would shriek like we were using acid to clean him. And the smell... ugh.

This is Daniel today. He loves all sorts of adventures. He likes hamburgers, french fries, chili, roast beef, hash browns, peanut butter... and the list goes on. He talks non-stop. He says he is scared if he is being silly. Tantrums may be once a week. Or not at all. And they last for ten minutes. He loves to be in the shower. He smells like a Sponseller. His hair has grown in thick and soft. He loves Superman and Batman. He loves to pray. And his prayers are always full of thanksgiving for his family and petition for Ukraine. He begs me every week to say the closing prayer at church.

So, are things perfect? Nope. But are they wonderful? Oh yeah!

I can honestly say that I am so happy with our decision to expand our family following God's leading. We have no regrets.

If I could encourage anyone on the journey, I would just say that I am happy. We are happy. The other children are happy. We have our bumps and they are different bumps than we would have had if we only had 2.5 children.

And our hands are full.

My hands are full.

But you should see my heart.

Originally Posted here: http://openheartsopenhands.blogspot.com/2014/01/if-you-think-my-hands-are-full-you.html?m=1

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