A Million Miles to Madison

Sarah Heinsbroek
Sarah Heinsbroek Houston, Texas

On the day I found my daughter, I was on the internet searching out contract agencies who work with CPS, with the intent of applying to be a foster parent.  I would provide temporary care for hurting children while their families healed.  I had been at the computer for an hour or two and I realized I was getting tired and hungry.  Nothing seemed to click, I thought when I found the right agency, I would know.

             I couldn’t tell you how I got to the page.  I suddenly found myself staring at a photo page of waiting children from China.  Realizing that I strayed far from my goal of finding a local foster agency, I resolved to quickly pray over the pictures, shut my computer down, and go fix a sandwich.  I prayed hurriedly that each of these children would find a loving family with parents who would cherish them and would be able to provide for their needs. Then words escaped from my mouth that I did not consciously mean to utter, for some unbeknownst reason I added, “And if one these of these children is meant to be mine, I ask that You just write their name on my heart.”

            Then I closed my computer, went to the kitchen for a snack, and tried to make peace with this gnawing sensation in my soul that would persist for a few days.

Now, you must know that I consider myself an eighty percent sensible woman.  I will admit, the other twenty percent sometimes gets swept away by homeless dogs and hurting children.  I’ve learned to live with it.  I am also a very prayerful person.  My prayers are specific and targeted and the words I speak to my Father are words I mean.  On that day, though, those words which came out of my mouth were honestly not mine. 

There is a familiar verse (Romans 8:26) which tells us the Holy Spirit intercedes for us (when we struggle in prayer) with groans too deep for words.  Personally, following this experience, I am quite convinced that words, sentences, and even complete paragraphs are not outside of His skillset either.

            I thought the utterance was strange, but figured I was just being called to pray for the children and left it at that.  Since the sensible eighty percent of me influences the twenty percent that gets swept away, I told myself there was no way it would be anything more than that, so I knew I was safe. 

            There was, however this gnawing feeling which persisted and a little face I could not get off my mind.

            I made my sandwich, ate it, and prayed for the little face again.  I was curious that the little face kept coming back to my mind so I returned to my computer and read the profile.   The little face belonged to a girl.  She was thin as a rail, with a haircut that was neither feminine nor masculine. She was obviously sitting in a wheelchair and being told to write her name in Mandarin.  She complied, but it was evident that there was something else she would rather show her prospective parents.

            The report used words to describe her that seemed very heavy for such a young girl.  There was a long list of orthopedic and neurological issues.  All these together would mean life-long care.  As handicapped and an orphan, she was twice not a candidate for the local school.  Her medical diagnosis suggested she might be still and stiff as a board.  Oddly, to my teacher-eyes, the video showed a bright/normal bright little girl who was wiggling much as most 10-year-olds do, except that her movements lacked symmetry and there was a wheelchair holding her up.

I contacted the adoption agency and spent weeks searching out descriptions of her medical conditions and talking to people who had met her. I had to do much soul searching about single parenthood.  Repeatedly, I prayed for a mommy and a daddy to come forth for her.  Deep down, I really wanted to be a mom, but I did not want to take a chance at a two-parent family away from any child.  Again, I asked Him to send her a family and to do so quickly.  I asked God to instead give me the-child-no-one-wanted and to help me forget this one.

            I was new to this idea of international adoption and the idea that this child had been available to married couples for over a decade and yet had not been chosen, never entered my mind.  To me, if there was such a thing as an adoption lottery, she would be the prize and it was hard to imagine that there were not families lined up for her.

            I knew (beyond a shadow of a gnawing doubt) she was to be my daughter the moment I finished reading a blog written by a mom who had just returned from the same foster home where my child lives.  The mom was there to adopt another child who lived there.  The mom was recounting a conversation she overheard between the director and “Maddie”.  “Maddie” was asking when it was going to be her turn to get a mommy.  The minute I read that, I knew she was meant to be my daughter, for I have asked a similar question of God many times over my adult life, “When Lord, when will I get one to keep?”

          This day, He whispered back, “She’s yours”.

And I embraced His gift. 

My adoption process is moving very rapidly at this point in time.  I would greatly appreciate your support.

As a new mom to-be starting with an older child, I hold your prayers dear to my heart.  While I have no doubt God's hand authors this, the mere thought of suddenly being pronounced "mother"  and more realistically, "mother-of-preteen" is a bit intimidating. 

I also need financial help to complete this adoption.  I am expecting to have all my stateside paperwork comnpleted as November begins.  My adoption agency requires the bill to be paid in its entirety before I am allowed to travel to adopt "Maddie" .  At this time I am short $5,000.  Miriam’s Heart is graciously going to match every dollar I raise up to $1,200 which will literally double your contribution (so the $1,200 becomes $2,400) and help give this sweet young girl her greatest wish.

The money will go to my adoption agency to pay adoption fees, which include orphanage fees, translation fees, visa related expenses, and the like.


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 “Heinsbroek 7216”, 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.
Read more
Raised to date by 5 people
 of  $5,000
Ending Today!

My Story

On the day I found my daughter, I was on the internet searching out contract agencies who work with CPS, with the intent of applying to be a foster parent.  I would provide temporary care for hurting children while their families healed.  I had been at the computer for an hour or two and I realized I was getting tired and hungry.  Nothing seemed to click, I thought when I found the right agency, I would know.

             I couldn’t tell you how I got to the page.  I suddenly found myself staring at a photo page of waiting children from China.  Realizing that I strayed far from my goal of finding a local foster agency, I resolved to quickly pray over the pictures, shut my computer down, and go fix a sandwich.  I prayed hurriedly that each of these children would find a loving family with parents who would cherish them and would be able to provide for their needs. Then words escaped from my mouth that I did not consciously mean to utter, for some unbeknownst reason I added, “And if one these of these children is meant to be mine, I ask that You just write their name on my heart.”

            Then I closed my computer, went to the kitchen for a snack, and tried to make peace with this gnawing sensation in my soul that would persist for a few days.

Now, you must know that I consider myself an eighty percent sensible woman.  I will admit, the other twenty percent sometimes gets swept away by homeless dogs and hurting children.  I’ve learned to live with it.  I am also a very prayerful person.  My prayers are specific and targeted and the words I speak to my Father are words I mean.  On that day, though, those words which came out of my mouth were honestly not mine. 

There is a familiar verse (Romans 8:26) which tells us the Holy Spirit intercedes for us (when we struggle in prayer) with groans too deep for words.  Personally, following this experience, I am quite convinced that words, sentences, and even complete paragraphs are not outside of His skillset either.

            I thought the utterance was strange, but figured I was just being called to pray for the children and left it at that.  Since the sensible eighty percent of me influences the twenty percent that gets swept away, I told myself there was no way it would be anything more than that, so I knew I was safe. 

            There was, however this gnawing feeling which persisted and a little face I could not get off my mind.

            I made my sandwich, ate it, and prayed for the little face again.  I was curious that the little face kept coming back to my mind so I returned to my computer and read the profile.   The little face belonged to a girl.  She was thin as a rail, with a haircut that was neither feminine nor masculine. She was obviously sitting in a wheelchair and being told to write her name in Mandarin.  She complied, but it was evident that there was something else she would rather show her prospective parents.

            The report used words to describe her that seemed very heavy for such a young girl.  There was a long list of orthopedic and neurological issues.  All these together would mean life-long care.  As handicapped and an orphan, she was twice not a candidate for the local school.  Her medical diagnosis suggested she might be still and stiff as a board.  Oddly, to my teacher-eyes, the video showed a bright/normal bright little girl who was wiggling much as most 10-year-olds do, except that her movements lacked symmetry and there was a wheelchair holding her up.

I contacted the adoption agency and spent weeks searching out descriptions of her medical conditions and talking to people who had met her. I had to do much soul searching about single parenthood.  Repeatedly, I prayed for a mommy and a daddy to come forth for her.  Deep down, I really wanted to be a mom, but I did not want to take a chance at a two-parent family away from any child.  Again, I asked Him to send her a family and to do so quickly.  I asked God to instead give me the-child-no-one-wanted and to help me forget this one.

            I was new to this idea of international adoption and the idea that this child had been available to married couples for over a decade and yet had not been chosen, never entered my mind.  To me, if there was such a thing as an adoption lottery, she would be the prize and it was hard to imagine that there were not families lined up for her.

            I knew (beyond a shadow of a gnawing doubt) she was to be my daughter the moment I finished reading a blog written by a mom who had just returned from the same foster home where my child lives.  The mom was there to adopt another child who lived there.  The mom was recounting a conversation she overheard between the director and “Maddie”.  “Maddie” was asking when it was going to be her turn to get a mommy.  The minute I read that, I knew she was meant to be my daughter, for I have asked a similar question of God many times over my adult life, “When Lord, when will I get one to keep?”

          This day, He whispered back, “She’s yours”.

And I embraced His gift. 

My adoption process is moving very rapidly at this point in time.  I would greatly appreciate your support.

As a new mom to-be starting with an older child, I hold your prayers dear to my heart.  While I have no doubt God's hand authors this, the mere thought of suddenly being pronounced "mother"  and more realistically, "mother-of-preteen" is a bit intimidating. 

I also need financial help to complete this adoption.  I am expecting to have all my stateside paperwork comnpleted as November begins.  My adoption agency requires the bill to be paid in its entirety before I am allowed to travel to adopt "Maddie" .  At this time I am short $5,000.  Miriam’s Heart is graciously going to match every dollar I raise up to $1,200 which will literally double your contribution (so the $1,200 becomes $2,400) and help give this sweet young girl her greatest wish.

The money will go to my adoption agency to pay adoption fees, which include orphanage fees, translation fees, visa related expenses, and the like.


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 “Heinsbroek 7216”, 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.
Read more

Comments

$3,066

Kory and Crystal

Dec 13, 2017

“Your story is so beautiful and truly speaks to us. We just adopted our seven year old daughter from China this summer. She also has some neurological and orthopedic needs. It is amazing to see how much she has been thriving and growing these past few months and we are sure the same will happen for you with Maddie! Please feel free to contact us anytime if you ever have questions about anything or just need someone to talk too! crystal.b.kawai@gmail.com”

$100

Kimberly

Nov 5, 2017

$500

Cornelis

Oct 24, 2017

“Merry Christmas”

$250

Hidden

Oct 17, 2017

“We have loved little Audrey since we came to know about her. She is precious and I hope we can see her again one day. We love her name Madison that you picked out for her! Congratulations! Jennifer and Audrey Smith”

$150

Cathy

Oct 3, 2017