James 1:27 has been a verse that God has used throughout our marriage, to teach us, stretch us, and take us places that we had no idea we wanted to go.
We had been married about two years when we first had a discussion about starting a family. Even though we knew we weren’t quite ready, we discovered a mutual desire to one day, eventually expand our family through adoption. As we grew closer together and closer to the Lord, we realized that adoption wasn’t just a maybe one day, but a calling. In all of our discussions about having children, it was just a given that we would adopt.
From the beginning, we had always talked about adopting from China, but in doing research we knew we weren’t old enough. We had been told to start our paperwork early so that it would be ready to go when we turned 30 and so on my 29th birthday, I called Lifeline Children’s Services and inquired about adopting from China. I found out that we would have to wait until turning 30 to start the process. I also found out that we probably didn’t qualify financially at the time. However, the sweet person I spoke with told me to go ahead and fill out a pre-application, and that would narrow down the countries that we would qualify for. That evening, we decided that we wanted to go ahead and start the process, and that adopting from China could come down the road. So we filled out the pre-application and the next morning around 8:30, a case-worker from Lifeline called to talk to me about the Ethiopia program.
Over the next few days we talked to several more program directors, and did A LOT of praying and research. It took about two weeks and God confirmed in our hearts the Ethiopia was where our child was.
Our story gets pretty crazy from there. When we entered the Ethiopia program, the wait time was 6-9 months. By the time we finished our homestudy, the wait had jumped to 12-18 months. This really didn’t bother us because we knew God had a plan. It took about a year to have our dossier submitted and then after about another year of waiting, and slowly climbing up the wait list, we found out we were pregnant.
Asher Bean was born on January 27th, 2014 and he is a joy in every way possible. Asher is so excited to meet his new brother or sister. We talk about who they will be and pray for he/she every day.
After Asher was born we went on a manatory hold for 6 months due to agency regulations. After the 6 month period ended, we chose to keep ourselves on hold a little longer to adjust to being first time parents. That ended up being a pretty wise decision because we had job changes and moves and all that kind of good stuff that goes with being in ministry.
Throughout our time on hold, we kept up with everything going on in Ethiopia and could see that the program was becoming unstable. However, we were close to the top of the list and thought we could complete our adoption before the program closed. Unfortunately, a few weeks into updating our homestudy, we got the news that the program would be closing and we would not be able to continue our adoption. That was incredibly hard, but we counted it a blessing to have not been matched with a child and then been unable to bring that child home. We did know several families that were in that exact situation and our hearts were broken for them and their children.
After the program closed, we honestly did not know what we were going to do. We had to grieve what we thought our family would look like. We do know that we were called to the Ethiopia program and that God worked through our time in that program. We took some time, and when we were ready, we basically started all over. We read through the programs and prayed about it for several months and even though the financial burden seemed daunting, we felt God calling us to pursue a child in China. And if there is one thing in seven years of this process God has taught us, it’s that He is always Faithful. He always provides for our needs even when we don’t see the possibility.
So that is where we are, we have completed our homestudy and are now waiting on immigration approval. We have received a matching grant from from Colonial Heights- Heart of Compassion for $3,000, so every donation we receive up to that amount will be matched! We are incredibly thankful for this matching grant and the financial support that so many of our family and friends have given us through this long and winding journey. Thank you for helping us finally bring Baby Bean home!
All Our Love,
Eric, Christen and Asher Bean
STRIPE charges an online processing fee (2.2% +.30 USD per transaction). Your donations will be decreased by this amount. You may also send a check payable to “Lifesong for Orphans”. In the memo line please write “Bean 8080”, to ensure it is credited to our account. Please mail to Lifesong for Orphans, PO Box 40, Gridley, IL 61744.
Lifesong has been blessed with partners who underwrite all U.S. administrative and fundraising costs (TMG Foundation and other partners). That means 100% of your donation will go directly to the adoption.
- In following IRS guidelines, your donation is to Lifesong for Orphans. This organization retains full discretion over its use, but intends to honor the donor’s suggested use.
- Lifesong is a 501(c)3 tax exempt organization. Individual donations of $50 or more and yearly donations totaling $250 or more will receive a tax-deductible receipt. Receipts for donations under $50 will gladly be sent upon request.