As if the Dawn Had Already Come


As I write this it is still pitch dark outside.  I have had a few hours of sleep here and there, but at 4:30am I have been wide awake for an hour, praying and emailing our senators and representatives, pleading for their help.  Here is the update I posted on Facebook just a little bit earlier:

Visa Update & Prayer Request

It is the middle of the working day in Ukraine and it was expected that this issue would be resolved, but it hasn’t been. Apparently this particular technical issue with the visas has never happened before, and they do not know how long it will take to resolve.

This is a worldwide problem affecting dozens upon dozens of families. After the problem is resolved it is not known how many visas they will get out immediately, or whether or not ours will come out of the queue on the first or second day.

Because it is a new problem there is no way of knowing when it will be fixed. They are hopeful that it will be before the weekend, but that is far from certain. The embassy has been wonderful. The consular officer has been calling every half hour on our behalf, and staying long hours to wait for news, but there is only so much he can do.

I am in the process of emailing our senator, representatives and the ambassador to beg for some kind of help or medical exemption to get our daughter home. We were told there are already senators involved, and we are not sure what difference this might make, but we are willing to try everything at this point.

We continue to covet your prayers, both for Zhanna and for Jake. Pray for comfort, health, peace and a speedy resolution.

There is something I don’t talk about often, but this dire situation at the end of our adoption reminded me of it fully, and I thought it would be an appropriate time to share here.  Anyone who has ever met our daughter will tell you how joyful she is, how her smile affects people, how loving and compassionate her heart remains, soft and beautiful even after a lifetime of neglect.

I am 100% certain that she had angels attending her the nine long years she remained without a home or the love of a family.  God poured out love and compassion on this precious child, and preserved her when we could not be there, so much so did He overflow her cup with these things that she cannot help but to heap such joy on everyone she meets.

Yes, our daughter is incredibly special, but not in the way one might think at first glance.  Her heart and her soul have attained a spiritual strength and beauty that I could only hope to come close to one day.  I have long known this about her, but I’m not the only one.

I truly believe that the Enemy had no desire for this child to leave her place of seclusion; that he has fought tooth and nail to keep her locked away, that her grace-filled life might be hidden from the world.  Her very presence testifies to the goodness of God, to the mercy of our loving Creator, to a faith that trusts beyond all hopelessness.  Meet her and you will see!  This child has good works prepared for her in great multitudes; God has great things planned for her and for those who will be blessed to know her.

This is a despicable and unbearable thought for the Father of Lies, the one who would rather that Truth never comes to light.  Dear friends, I will have to recount for you one day all the many obstacles other families and ultimately our family faced in the fight to give Zhanna Hope a life outside of the bars of her crib.  Once we officially began the process for her, the battles intensified.

We experienced nothing of the level of spiritual warfare in our pursuit of Jacob that we have in adopting Zhanna. It has been consistent, unrelenting.  There were many times we believed she would not come home, even after meeting her in person.  We have kept most of this information private, but one day there will be time to share our struggles.

Her life is a spiritual battleground, and Satan knows he has lost it.  He knows that there is One Greater than he that has commanded she be a beloved daughter and no longer an orphan.  He knows that she is only days and hours from being home where she belongs.  He knows he has lost this battle and it infuriates him to no end.

Just as he torments the world, clawing and flailing in his feeble and futile attempts to take what belongs to the Lord of Hosts… he now torments our daughter and our family, knowing there is nothing he can do to take away what God has generously given.  The power of Satan is terrible and seemingly great, compared to our weakness and frailty.

But my friends, it is not up to us to fight, for Christ has already destroyed the power of the Devil and won for us the victory.  He has promised us that no finger will be laid on us by the Evil One that has not been allowed by God.  And we know that what God allows is for our ultimate good.

Satan is using this situation to discourage, to beat us down, to destroy our joy and our hope in the midst of what should be the most joyous and praiseworthy of times.  I am on to your wicked games.  Get behind me Satan, I will not succumb to fear, to despair, to depression, to bitterness.  Though I thirst, I will not drink from your poisonous cup any longer.

I am turning all my attention to the Lord.  I wait on Him and drink from the Fountain of Life, after which any earthly thirst seems trivial.  He will deliver me, He will deliver my daughter.  I will seek first His Kingdom and Righteousness and the rest will be added without thought or care.  It is not for me to struggle against you.  Instead I will be still, and will wait on my Savior.

Now it is dark, but the dawn will break soon.  This He has promised.  Oh how He loves us, how certain it is that He will come through.  Just as certain as the sun rising in the East.  My heart sings as if the dawn had already come, truly this is what it means to hope.  Thank you Lord for the gift of Hope.


  1. Amen and Amen! To God be the glory!

  2. I was left to die at three years old. I want to tell you that Jesus was with me. He rocked me, told me how much he loves me, sang to me. That is what, he is still doing for these children. I felt his love for me.

  3. praying me dear praying hard

  4. look how incredibly smiley and happy janna is amen to such a wonderful family prayers

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