About Me

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I'm originally a Kentucky girl who transplanted to Texas. I feel like a Texan I guess bc I have one baby born in Texas. It just feels like home here! A wife to Donald and mother of 3 beautiful kids who are full of life and keep me on my toes at all times. We serve at Community of Faith Church in Houston, TX.
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Monday, November 17, 2014


Adoption…I have to say it began after our miscarriage in 2007. I told Donald that there was no way that I could go through a miscarriage multiple times. Of course, there was no reason to think I would have another miscarriage, but that was the emotion I felt at the time. Several months later we were pregnant with Reagan, our first Texas baby, third child. Needless to say, the adoption convo was put on hold.

There had been conversations off and on about adoption but Donald never seemed totally on board or ready. After discussing local foster to adopt with Arrow Family Ministries several times and not getting the green light from Donald, I totally dropped the subject and just prayed. Anyone else do that? Stop talking about it and just pray. I just prayed that the Lord would do a work in Donald’s heart or change mine. The desire was not going away but I knew from experience that once God puts something on my heart that He will fulfill it just maybe not in my timing.

So now it’s June 2014 and we are headed to Burundi, Africa to celebrate a 5-year friendship with the Batwa people. There was a group of us from our church, Community of Faith (www.cof.tv), going to spend some time there. It was Donald’s second time and my first. Many of you saw the pictures on Facebook. It was an emotional experience to say the least because for the past 5 years I had been hearing of the amazing things the Lord had been doing in their lives from providing land, birth certificates, marriage licenses, education, food, children, and them even coming into relationship with the Lord. Amazing is an understatement. When I met these people, they were so grateful that I was in friendship with them. They hugged me like family. I literally was in tears most of the trip because the videos and photos brought back to the US don’t do it justice.

On the plane over to Burundi, Sarah Shook May, said, “Did you hear that Burundi is open to adoption to the US?” Surprisingly, we said no and then moved on to something else. Donald and I never talked about it again. Then on the Friday before we were leaving Mark and Laura gave a devotion to the staff at the bank where they do micro financing. Mark was talking about how he was walking the lake one day and how he came upon a struggling duckling. A lady walked up and asked what he was doing and he said this poor little duckling doesn’t look like it’s going to make it. She said, “We will see about that,” and scooped it up and walked off. He said that really impacted him because as Christians are we going to say we care for the orphans and the widows or are we really going to do something about it and make a difference in their lives. He was encouraging them to take an active part in being in people’s lives. That was the moment Donald said that Lord impressed upon him that it was time to adopt and Burundi was the place. Are we just going to come visit Burundi every couple of years and send them money through the church or are we going to take an active part in their culture and provide an education and equip one of their very own to come back to their culture and make a difference? Wow! Trust me, that is God not us! It seems too big of a task and a costly one at that.

We met with an attorney while we were in Burundi and arrived at no answers really. So, we decided to head home and do some research. While in the Nairobi, Kenya airport, we saw a white couple with a black child. I immediately said to Donald that they just adopted. He encouraged me to go speak to them of which I refused. Then they ended up at our gate so then it was clear that I needed to go talk to them. As soon as I approached them, they nearly came out of their skin with excitement. They had been in a country for three weeks not knowing anyone and not many people speaking English. I asked them if they just adopted and they said yes. I asked them from where and they said Burundi. What?!?!? “Burundi just opened,” I said. They said, “We are the very first couple to come home to the US with a Burundi child.” Are you kidding me? I couldn’t have orchestrated that if I tried. What a gift that the Lord placed in front of us. We were able to talk to them and ask questions and ask about agencies. What a blessing!

We arrived home and decided to really pray about this because the last thing we wanted was this to be a Mission Trip high. This was a huge change and task ahead of us. So, we took the next two months to interview agencies and get more information. We decided on an agency in August and started the massive amounts of paperwork needed for the home study. As of Friday, November 14, we passed our home inspection and we will meet after Thanksgiving to go over training materials. I hesitate as I type this but at this moment I am actually ready for the waiting period. I’m sure I will not feel this way long but I’m thankful this hurdle is behind us.

How long will it take you say? Well, it could take anywhere from 18 months to 3 years. We are hoping sooner than 3 years. We feel like the child is a boy and the age is 1-4 years old. And, that’s about all we know for the moment.

We would covet your prayers for our child. The child is called Bebe in Kirundi until the father gives the child a name which could be up to a year. I don’t think we will wait that long but for now we will call him Bebe. Pray for his safety and development. Pray for his family and care givers. He may not even be born yet. Pray for us as we prepare ourselves for a new child and all that comes with that. I’m learning it’s totally different from having biological children. Pray for our biological kids and the transition they will be going through. Pray for anything else the Lord puts on your heart to pray and I would love it if you would tell me what you are praying for.

We are excited to see God move. He already has in many ways. So, it’s official! We are adopting a boy from Burundi, Africa. All glory and honor be to God!

“I will not leave you as orphans. I will come to you.” John 14:18

Much love,

Gretchen, Donald, Cole, Riley Kate, and Reagan