Tuesday, August 12, 2014

Why We're Adopting

Today I applied for an adoption grant through our church association. It's a neat ministry where Southern Baptist pastors and missionaries can apply to receive aid for an adoption. Exciting, right? As part of the application, I had to share why we're adopting, and this is what I wrote:

Our journey to adoption has been a long one, and at times it has been full of many tears. We were married in 2005 and knew we wanted a family–and a big one at that!–but our plans to have children didn’t go as we thought. After much prayer and counsel, we felt led to begin fertility treatments, beginning with the most conservative treatment and ending with a last-effort attempt of In-Vitro Fertilization. During that time, we found out Candace had severe endometriosis that required surgery, and just before our IVF, she was diagnosed with Diminished Ovarian Syndrome. We were heartbroken as we heard our doctor tell us we had a less than 1% chance of conceiving.

Infertility is often a huge burden for a couple to bear–financially, emotionally, and spiritually. We experienced great loss and heartbreak, calling on God’s strength and love and the support of our church to get us through something we simply did not understand. Through some research, Candace became connected with Bethany Christian Services, an organization that offered infertility counsel and help. Little did we know that this would be the organization, years later, that we would join with to bring a child home!

Although we never began our marriage thinking adoption would be part of our life, here we are, excited and ready to grow our family through adoption! God has done a huge healing in our lives, mending the brokenness from so many “fails” and opening up our hearts to something new and different. We also see how God was preparing us along the way, without us even knowing it. Rob, as an Associate Pastor, is over a number of different areas, one of them being our youth ministry. Candace, a high school teacher, has been part of that with him, as well as the children’s ministry. God has placed us in so many areas of service that involve children, showing us that His love is what binds us. God has used our experiences, our joys and our pain over the past years to grow us and prepare us to be Christ-like adoptive parents to a little one.

We began our process and home study at the beginning of 2014 and just completed it in July. Although the journey has been long, our reason for adopting seems simple now: God has poured out his love and mercy on us, and we want to do the same. We want to experience–as a family–God’s redemption through adoption. We are excited to work with Bethany Christian Services to match us with a birth mother who is choosing a plan of adoption for her child. We will be part of an open adoption, meaning we will be connected to the birth mother and possibly the birth father, as well as extended family. We know there will be tough moments along the way, but we trust that God is working this out to be something beautiful.

I'll let you all know if we receive this help! Please pray that God's will is done in this! Also, if anyone is interested in supporting us financially in our adoption, you are certainly welcome to :) You can send support to our church's adoption fund, making a note that it is for the Feely family. (This gift is tax deductible, so if you would like a receipt be sure and include a request for one with your name and home address.) Thank you all for your continued prayers and support! This child is already so loved. :)

Sierra Baptist Church
1437 E. Walnut Ave.
Visalia, CA 93292