By Lisa Myhill
Dreams of Becoming a Mom
I’d always wanted to be a wife and mother. After marrying my husband, Paul, we agreed to start a family and I felt everything I’d hoped for was coming to fruition. While I prayed fervently for God’s direction and timing to be parents, I couldn’t imagine the journey that awaited me.
Sadly, we were unable to become pregnant. We went through years of infertility procedures, even though doctors couldn’t find anything wrong. After years of failed pregnancy attempts, I began to question my plans. While I felt blessed to have a godly husband, I believed God would also grant me the desires of my heart by allowing me to become a mom, too.
An Open Heart to International Adoption
From the beginning of our marriage, Paul and I had been open to adoption. We both felt adoption was something we would pursue, in addition to any biological children that The Lord would give us. “Bring on the children in droves,” we would pray together. Also, we felt strongly about international adoption, as we had a special place in our hearts for China.
During a Christmas trip to Colorado, we visited a church that supported a missions program at the Texas church where Paul and I were both employed. As my husband and I surveyed the ministry boards, we found a single brochure about adopting from China. Just one single brochure. We looked at one another and knew.
God’s plan had begun to unfold before our eyes.
Not telling anyone of our treasured brochure, or how international adoption would be possible at that season of our lives, we waited and prayed. When we returned home to Texas, friends approached us at work. God had laid on their hearts to fund an adoption for us. Our friends told us we could select anywhere in the world to adopt from, but they hoped it would be China!
All infertility attempts ceased. With amazement, we rejoiced at God’s perfect timing and path for our family.
When we completed our initial adoption paperwork, we chose the name Faith for our baby girl, knowing that our journey was indeed one of faith. When we were matched with our child, we learned the Chinese name assigned to her derived from three separate sources of the orphanage. In Faith’s case, the three Chinese symbols combined to mean “Prosperous fruit tree.” Her chosen name affirmed to us that an outward evidence of faith in God, is the bearing of much fruit.
We brought Faith home on Thanksgiving Day, 2001. In March of 2002, we became pregnant with our son, now 15, with two biological daughters to follow in 2005 and 2008. Our prayers were answered, in God’s timing and in His most beautiful and precious plan.
While we are blessed to have a family of six, our adoption journey came with hardships.
Due to overcrowding and lack of proper care in the Chinese orphanages, Faith struggled with Sensory Processing Disorder (SPD) as well as an attachment disorder, especially in the area of trust between a parent and child. While she wrestled with trust, Paul and I continued to love and guide her toward a safe place in God’s loving arms. We held firm to Deuteronomy 31:6 which says: “Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid or terrified because of them, for the Lord your God goes with you; he will never leave you nor forsake you.”
Adoptive Parents Can Love, Pray, Guide with Wisdom
When asked, “What can one do for adopted children?” I believe it’s quite simple. I do the exact same things as with my biological children—love them, pray for and with them, and guide them with godly wisdom. I demonstrate the kind of love that comes from knowing Jesus personally; an unconditional, relentless, unwavering, patient, forgiving, generous, promise-keeping love that goes on forever. All children need to experience the never-ending love of Christ.
From the time our children were very young, my husband and I have prayed with our children. Prayer is a humbling experience that allows our children to understand that we submit to someone higher than ourselves; that we “look” to someone for help in times of need, and thankfulness in times of plenty; that a relationship with Jesus Christ is the deepest and most fulfilling relationship one will ever have.
Proverbs 3:21-26 says, “My son, let them not vanish from your sight; Keep sound wisdom and discretion, so they will be life to your soul and adornment to your neck. Then you will walk in your way securely and your foot will not stumble. When you lie down, you will not be afraid; When you lie down, your sleep will be sweet. Do not be afraid of sudden fear nor of the onslaught of the wicked when it comes; For the Lord will be your confidence and will keep your foot from being caught.”
In every family relationship, whether an adopted or biological child, leading with godly wisdom is key in helping them navigate life’s hardships and trials. We desire our children to know that Jesus offers an abundant life. God-designed families are built on the spiritual and eternal, not the physical and temporal.
As parents, we have the unique opportunity to share all of life’s ups and downs. We get to share the most precious gift with our children—the love of Jesus. We get the privilege of praying for them, with them, while teaching them to pray and submit to God’s plan for their lives. We get to spend each day, modeling wisdom that Jesus imparts, through the Holy Spirit to guide us.
Lisa Myhill is a stay-at-home mom and home schools her four beautiful children; Faith, Caleb, Hannah and Naomi. She has been married to Paul for 22 years, whom she met in high school. Currently, Lisa resides on twenty acres of grass, of which she is allergic, in Castle Rock, Colorado.