You may have noticed that I have not sent any pictures of myself or Mom for posting on the blog. This is due to two different reasons. First is a technology-based one. While we both have cameras here and are taking pictures of each other (or having them taken of us), I am only sending pictures for blog posting that I take with my tablet. So I try to take a few pictures with the tablet and then rely on my camera for everything else. Sending pictures via email is just easier when it is from my tablet versus from my camera, and since China's firewalls block access to blogs, facebook, etc., I am relying on sending emails to Rachel for her to then post. So that's the technology-based reason.
The other reason, and the more important one, is that really this trip is not about this part. While I am enjoying it and see great benefits to having these days in Beijing, the real reason for this trip is what happens Monday. Monday changes everything!
Monday is the day Liliana becomes part of our family (though she already is part of our family in our hearts). It is the day that Liliana goes from picture to person. Monday is the day when I first get to hold my daughter! So in many ways, I'm not interested in being seen in pictures online until I have her. Once I do have her, you'll see my face and Mom's face as we welcome Liliana into the family.
Monday begins a new chapter for all of us. It is a watermark moment. Often referred to as "Gotch Ya Day", Monday is when we get Liliana, and she will be with us the rest of the trip. I've read blogs, listened to adoption experts, spoken to adoptive parents, and even have a few second, third, and fourth time adoptive parents here with me. Doing our homework is good, and yet I do not think it is something that anyone can really be ready for. Thankfully, the families here all have each other to lean on to get through the thick and thin of those early days with our kids, and as always, the Lord is there to lean on at any moment.
One thing that has struck me from the beginning of this process is how much adoption is like our adoption into God's family through Jesus Christ. I remember when Rachel and I clicked on Liliana's picture online on the CCAI website. I recall realizing days later that that one click changed everything and realized the power (for lack of better word) I had in just that one little click to totally transform the life of a child. Liliana's life was going to be forever changed because we clicked on her photo. In the same way, God chose me and touched my life years ago offering me the opportunity to be adopted into His family through Jesus Christ, and because of that, I have been changed forever. Rachel was touched by God as well and made a decision for Christ years ago as a child. Elianna and Janaya have both also felt the hand of God reach out and call them into His family, and my prayer is that each one of my children will feel that touch from God and accept that offer of adoption into His family through Jesus Christ. For truly, we were made for this purpose: to be in relationship with our heavenly Father both now and forever. Monday changes everything, but Monday is just the beginning!