tacomafamily

sharing… our journey. our story. our lives

Archive for the month “January, 2012”

Who. What. Where. When. Why. How.

I thought it would be helpful to be a little more specific. The following will be a bit more direct, (except for the rambling and run on sentences I’m bound to include.)

Who? Well, to recap… there’s me, Kyle; my wife, Jamie; my daughter, Lily; my son, Beau, and hopefully a couple more. As God was putting adoption on our hearts, from the beginning we have had the thought of two. We are hoping to adopt a sibling group. We don’t have any preference as far as gender.

Where? Some 9,000 miles away in Ethiopia. Somewhere.

What?  Four + two = six Klevjer’s.

When? I wish I could say.  I’ve been saying about a year from now. I’ve been saying that for a couple months already.  For now we are officially family number 8 on the waiting list with the Adoption Ministry of YWAM, (Youth With A Mission, http://websitetacoma.com/wordpress/).

Why? Lot’s of reasons.

  • Depending on your source, there are between 5 and 6 million orphans in Ethiopia. I read this statistic the other day when researching the approximate number of orphans in Ethiopia. It went something like this: Take the sum total of all the children, age 17 and younger living in New York, Massachusetts and the District of Columbia, remove their parents and you get the number of children living as orphans in Ethiopia.
  • God pulled that whole prank-thing on us making us think we might be pregnant, and opened a wide door in our hearts- previously shut tight- to adding children to our family. And we are eager to obey and follow His leading.
  • We were adopted. The Bible paints a clear picture: we were enemies of God, rebels born of rebels, unloved and abandoned by our own kind. “And as for your birth, on the day you were born your cord was not cut, nor were you washed with water to cleanse you, nor rubbed with salt, nor wrapped in swaddling cloths. No eye pitied you, to do any of these things to you out of compassion for you, but you were cast out on the open field, for you were abhorred, on the day that you were born. And when I passed by you and saw you wallowing in your blood, I said to you in your blood, ‘Live!’ I said to you in your blood, ‘Live!’ I made you flourish like a plant of the field.” (Ezekiel 16:4-7)
How? Good question. The cost is steep, $30K+. We’ve never had any anxiety about this. We have seen God really provide for us over the last eleven years, and we believe that as God is leading us on this great journey, that He will also provide the means necessary to reach the end.  Aside from scrimping, saving, selling and slaving, we are planning to raise support. We are so blessed to have the huge sphere of family and friends in our lives that we do. It’s like what Lennon and McCartney always said, “With a little help from my friends”…  Here’s some geeky math for you: 300 fine philanthropic  folks forkin’ over 100 frog skins = $30,000. Would you like to partner with us? Any size gift is greatly appreciated. You can mail a donation to: 2905 S. 7th St Tacoma, WA 98405. Or, donate to our PayPal account by clicking the “Donate” button.

Wrap up: It’s not so much that we believe that God has simply called us to adopt children from a foreign country. We believe God has, in His good sovereignty, been knitting together a family. Four of the members live in the United States, in the City of Destiny. Two more live somewhere in Ethiopia. We have not met them yet, but we love them. We pray for them daily. We pray they are safe, that they would know their Father in Heaven is good despite whatever hell they’ve lived through, and that He would bring us together very soon. We pray against corruption in the Ethiopian government that would try to capitalize on poverty, disease and death in their country by coercing families into wrongfully giving up their children, all to make a profit on adoption court costs and fees. We pray for our U.S. Embassy to have the wisdom to discern and expeditiously approve adoptions into our country, that children and their families waiting for approval, (sometimes as long as six months) could go home.

SURPRISE! God, you’re funny.

This is a blog about a family. To be specific, it’s about the Father of a family, who goes to great lengths to create, redeem and restore a people for Himself. See, God has, since the world began, been working to create this family. And not just any kind of family, the best kind of family. A Forever Family.

As we share about God’s work in our little family, we hope you are inspired to see what God has been up to since the world began. We hope that, if you already know God as your Father, that you would know more fully what it means to be a member of His family, and how He rescued you by His power for His purpose . And if you don’t know Him like that, that you would.

My name is Kyle.  One morning back in October my wife, Jamie told me that she was two weeks late for her period.  “Excuse me?”, I said.  

We have two great kids- 9 and 7, fourth and second grade, girl and boy. Since our kids were very young we were pretty happy, (prideful) with the idea that we were getting a “head start” to parenting. We were 22 and 21-years-old when our daughter, Lily was born. Two years later her brother, Beau arrived.  We have had countless joys over the last 9.5 years.  We have also had many heartaches and struggles.  What we’ve come to find out about our “head start” is not so much that we weren’t as ready as we thought, but just how very ready God was to grow us up while we were learning to care for our growing children.  

So, it wasn’t a feeling of despair that we felt that morning, but we weren’t exactly filled with joy at the prospect of starting over with a baby.

In the days that followed we shared our secret news with just a few close friends who prayed for us and assured us that if God were to bring more children in our lives that He had a good purpose to do so. About two weeks went by as we waited to see if Jamie’s late period would turn out to be an exclamation point or just a comma, and life would continue as normal on our parenting fast track. We decided that a pregnancy test was in order. Jamie sent me a text at work that day that she would be taking the test.  I told her I was praying. What neither of us told the other was that we had begun secretly hoping for the test to be positive. It wasn’t.

“What was the point of that, God?”

Jamie and I both confessed our secret hoping for another child to join our family. And we confessed our disappointment at the negative test result. In that two week period of waiting and wondering, God was rearranging. He was making space in our hearts.  As we continued to reflect on our short roller coaster ride we discovered that quite a shift had taken place in our hearts, and that the shift had created space. A lot of space.

“I can’t stop thinking about what it would be like to have another son or daughter.” This sentiment was one we both shared. What did it all mean? Jamie had already had two c-sections, and another surgery would be a big deal- not too mention Not Covered by our elected health insurance plan. Why was it that we couldn’t seem to shake these thoughts?  And even more peculiar, why was I continually having thoughts about adoption? My ears would perk up at someone talking about adopting their dog from the pound. One of our pastors mentioned that there were millions of orphans in Africa, around five million just in Ethiopia.  Even paw-shaped bumper stickers reading “who adopted who?”.

My sister and her husband are fostering a baby boy they hope to adopt.  Since the time they told the family over dinner two and a half years ago about a burden God had laid on their hearts to foster/adopt children into their family I have been extremely proud and supportive.  But, I never considered that path for me. My family had momentum. And I wasn’t too excited at the idea of slowing down. But, all of a sudden, things were very different.

Me: So, I keep thinking about adopting.

Jamie: Me too…

Me: I’m starting to feel like God caused you to skip your period just to freak us out and get our attention. I feel like He’s leading us towards adoption. 

Jamie: Me too…

Me: I also keep thinking… not just one.

Jamie: Me too.

Me: God, you’re funny.

Peace and excitement is what we felt as we prayed and contemplated this radical idea of being a family to children without a family. Loved is how we feel as we contemplate the reality that “In love He predestined us for adoption as sons through Jesus Christ, according to the purpose of His will, to the praise of His glorious grace, with which He has blessed us in the Beloved” (Ephesian 1:5-7)

 

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