#OneForJuToo – Brannon’s Back to Beijing!

Stephanie Brannon
Stephanie Brannon McKinney, Texas

***3k Matching Grant*** we are grateful to: Faith adoption Fund administered by Lifesong! (See full post update) 

Proverbs 16:9 says; “We can make our plans, but the Lord determines our steps.”

The plan:

In April 2018 we decided that we had talked about it long enough, Una had been home from China for almost 2 years, we planned to start this arduous process a year ago. So we set a date and began gathering paperwork and attending trainings at Upbring in Dallas TX, to foster to adopt. We just KNEW God wanted us to adopt a sibling group (and eventually, maybe He still does 😉).

The steps:

On June 28th we were to travel from Dallas to Nashville, Robin was scheduled to lead worship for Lipscomb’s Summer Celebration for a week, next teaching at WLI (Worship Leader Institute) the second week and I would be spending most of my time with the girls visiting our family and friends. One of our favorite trips of the year! The morning we woke up to get on the road to Nashville, the bottom dropped out- of our van, our finances, and our sanity (temporarily=). Robin looked at me once we *finally* got on the road and said “I think Satan wants to stop this trip, He is NOT happy about something that is going to happen while we are in Nashville!”, we could NOT wait to find out what God had in store!

While on the road we talked a lot. We were having trouble with the decision factor of what age child or children we would be open to accepting into our home from foster care. You see, we were only ONE training and ONE final walk through of our home to being certified as a foster-to-adopt family and would be completing those items once we got back home from the trip.

—– A little back story, 3 yrs ago almost to the day while Robin was working with WLI in Tulsa, in a hotel room there, we *finally* got a certain video to download that changed our adoption path and revealed the ONE little girl out of millions that owned the name that had been divinely planted in our hearts over a year earlier (Una, our youngest daughter home from China October 2016!).

*You can read the full story and see pics on our FaceBook page titled “One For Ju Too – Adoption Journey Page” by scrolling to the beginning of the page.

——– Fast forward to the second week in Nashville.——–

It was morning and I was checking messages on my phone. I had a message from a friend who is a China adoption program director. She had been looking at the shared list when she happened upon a child whose eyes she said looked familiar to her, and she immediately thought of our family. Her message was that “He has your husband’s eyes.” When I saw the boy’s face it was like I had seen it many times before. He looked familiar. I thought maybe I had seen him advocated for before today but it felt like more than just seeing him, maybe I had prayed for him before? My adoption director friend said that there is video that *won’t download*, I KNEW that the video would help to confirm, videos are harder to confuse than photos- the sounds, the scenery, the child’s movements and expressions. Meanwhile, I had shared the photo with Robin, who was in class at WLI. His text response was, “Oh. My. Cuteness! He looks familiar?”. My heart kinda stopped for a beat or two. I told him that I had the same thought and about the video. We waited a couple days while praying for God’s Will to be made clear and we finally received the video. It had not been viewed by anyone except those in China, my China director friend, myself and Robin, THAT day. His file was brand new. We couldn’t have seen him before. Robin and I agreed that we had to pray more specifically and really seek God’s Will. Later that day we headed to downtown Nashville to attend the WLI commissioning ceremony. We discussed the boy, we prayed for him and discernment, a sign of some sort- a very clear sign. Just moments later while parking on the roof top, the curve around dead-ended us into a giant mural. Robin stopped and we stared at it, then at each other unable to speak for a moment. The message and the detail were very clear to our hearts, like a sudden heavy-holy presence laid over us. The mural read, “One day I will rescue your brother, too.” picturing a giant dog wearing an American cape around his neck holding a girl to his chest, in the foreground a dark barred window where a small boy is sitting alone. I wanted to touch the painting because it MUST have still been wet, like some heavenly graffiti artist put it there just for us to see it. Nope- it was dry, and still there when we left the ceremony. But, that mural- that giant sign was definitely no coincidence. Right there in the parking lot we said it out loud; “He is ours!”

Buckle up here we go!! We are all so excited! Robin and I are feeling very humbled to be called a second time to a world changing mission, ransoming a priceless soul who was born to be a Brannon! Isn’t God’s love for us all just incredible!? Thank you for reading our story and praying over joining us as we bring Ju home.


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 “Brannon 8176”, 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.
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Raised to date by 3 people
 of  $3,000
31 days left

My Story

***3k Matching Grant*** we are grateful to: Faith adoption Fund administered by Lifesong! (See full post update) 

Proverbs 16:9 says; “We can make our plans, but the Lord determines our steps.”

The plan:

In April 2018 we decided that we had talked about it long enough, Una had been home from China for almost 2 years, we planned to start this arduous process a year ago. So we set a date and began gathering paperwork and attending trainings at Upbring in Dallas TX, to foster to adopt. We just KNEW God wanted us to adopt a sibling group (and eventually, maybe He still does 😉).

The steps:

On June 28th we were to travel from Dallas to Nashville, Robin was scheduled to lead worship for Lipscomb’s Summer Celebration for a week, next teaching at WLI (Worship Leader Institute) the second week and I would be spending most of my time with the girls visiting our family and friends. One of our favorite trips of the year! The morning we woke up to get on the road to Nashville, the bottom dropped out- of our van, our finances, and our sanity (temporarily=). Robin looked at me once we *finally* got on the road and said “I think Satan wants to stop this trip, He is NOT happy about something that is going to happen while we are in Nashville!”, we could NOT wait to find out what God had in store!

While on the road we talked a lot. We were having trouble with the decision factor of what age child or children we would be open to accepting into our home from foster care. You see, we were only ONE training and ONE final walk through of our home to being certified as a foster-to-adopt family and would be completing those items once we got back home from the trip.

—– A little back story, 3 yrs ago almost to the day while Robin was working with WLI in Tulsa, in a hotel room there, we *finally* got a certain video to download that changed our adoption path and revealed the ONE little girl out of millions that owned the name that had been divinely planted in our hearts over a year earlier (Una, our youngest daughter home from China October 2016!).

*You can read the full story and see pics on our FaceBook page titled “One For Ju Too – Adoption Journey Page” by scrolling to the beginning of the page.

——– Fast forward to the second week in Nashville.——–

It was morning and I was checking messages on my phone. I had a message from a friend who is a China adoption program director. She had been looking at the shared list when she happened upon a child whose eyes she said looked familiar to her, and she immediately thought of our family. Her message was that “He has your husband’s eyes.” When I saw the boy’s face it was like I had seen it many times before. He looked familiar. I thought maybe I had seen him advocated for before today but it felt like more than just seeing him, maybe I had prayed for him before? My adoption director friend said that there is video that *won’t download*, I KNEW that the video would help to confirm, videos are harder to confuse than photos- the sounds, the scenery, the child’s movements and expressions. Meanwhile, I had shared the photo with Robin, who was in class at WLI. His text response was, “Oh. My. Cuteness! He looks familiar?”. My heart kinda stopped for a beat or two. I told him that I had the same thought and about the video. We waited a couple days while praying for God’s Will to be made clear and we finally received the video. It had not been viewed by anyone except those in China, my China director friend, myself and Robin, THAT day. His file was brand new. We couldn’t have seen him before. Robin and I agreed that we had to pray more specifically and really seek God’s Will. Later that day we headed to downtown Nashville to attend the WLI commissioning ceremony. We discussed the boy, we prayed for him and discernment, a sign of some sort- a very clear sign. Just moments later while parking on the roof top, the curve around dead-ended us into a giant mural. Robin stopped and we stared at it, then at each other unable to speak for a moment. The message and the detail were very clear to our hearts, like a sudden heavy-holy presence laid over us. The mural read, “One day I will rescue your brother, too.” picturing a giant dog wearing an American cape around his neck holding a girl to his chest, in the foreground a dark barred window where a small boy is sitting alone. I wanted to touch the painting because it MUST have still been wet, like some heavenly graffiti artist put it there just for us to see it. Nope- it was dry, and still there when we left the ceremony. But, that mural- that giant sign was definitely no coincidence. Right there in the parking lot we said it out loud; “He is ours!”

Buckle up here we go!! We are all so excited! Robin and I are feeling very humbled to be called a second time to a world changing mission, ransoming a priceless soul who was born to be a Brannon! Isn’t God’s love for us all just incredible!? Thank you for reading our story and praying over joining us as we bring Ju home.


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 “Brannon 8176”, 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

Faith Adoption Fund Matching Grant!

January 25, 2019

We are excited to announce that we’ve received a 3k matching grant from Faith Adoption Fund administered through Lifesong! We are sincerely for this opportunity. We are praying over this campaign and each of you reading that you will be blessed in your life and most of all have a closer and deeper walk with our Jesus as you are seeking his heart for the fatherless in this world. We pray that our grant will be matched and our sweet boy home in our arms before his 4th birthday June 28th! We pray for every step to unfold before us in His perfect time and that our faithfulness will provide every penny. We are also praying for Ju’s heart- that he be well prepared for the transition- for leaving his foster home- and our hearts for him- to handle his every need with God’s strength and grace. Thanking God for you! 

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Our family story

January 25, 2019

Warning‼️ Long personal post❗️This is our family story in a nutshell if your the curious type read on… 😉

 

Robin and I met on MySpace- before it went south. 😂 We had a mutual friend and through that friend I stalked- I mean- learned that Robin also attended a Tuesday night worship service for singles (Kairos Brentwood Baptist in Nashville TN) that I had been going to for over a year! It is a big church with a great ministry for singles. Eventually after chatting on MySpace and some texting we bumped into each other in person at the singles worship service and a few months later I got an out of the blue text asking if I’d like to go to the symphony with him to see one of his favorite musicians. He knew I loved classical symphony because it played on my MySpace page. After that first date on leap day in 2008 we were together every weekend and spare moment. We were married on January 1st 2009 at the church where he was the worship minister, Joelton Church of Christ. He loved me and my 10 year old daughter as his own. He even wrote vows to her and gave her a special bracelet on our wedding day during the ceremony. Since then we have lived and served at churches in TN, OK, AR, and TX following God’s calling each time with our whole hearts. We’ve been blessed with 3 more daughters now ages 7, 5 & 5. Our oldest 20yr old  is now a junior at Harding University in Searcy AR. The seven and eldest five year old were born to us biologically. Our youngest five year old (one whole month younger) came home from China in 2016. That journey was truly an honor- front row seats to God’s amazing mountain moving miracles on behalf of His precious little ones. Remembering the blank stare on her face- wondering if she ever smiles while we waited to meet her for 14 months- to now, her WHOLE face smile thats truly real and contagious, reminds me that sometimes saying yes to unknown scary things than be your BIGGEST blessings. We are so excited to be called again! When we finished Una’s adoption in 2016, we knew we would adopt again. We knew that we would try to go through the foster system (again) to avoid the expense. Even though our hearts were and remain completely broken for the children in China and all over the world that are undoubtedly less fortunate, if there is such a measure once you’ve lost your family. None the less we pursued fostering to adopt again, this time getting all the way to the end of the process just before our final walk through when— BAM!!!!—-we saw his face. You can read more about that story on our Facebook page One For Ju Too.  For now I need to tell you that going back to China… while a huge blessing- has been extremely arduous of a task financially. Satan has tried to block us at every turn. Our van stopped passing inspection and stacked up mechanic bills-still stacking, our AC was flooding the second story of our home- in July – in TEXAS! Our dryer stopped drying- our fridge stopped cooling, our freezer stopped freezing and then just stopped. The same week our home study was complete and a big bill due. We already had PA for our boy in China, our 7 yo developed an infection in her tonsils (complication from recent multiple strep infections) that required they be taken out immediately. The same week of her surgery I slipped and fell out of the shower. I needed knee surgery, ACL reconstruction and months of physical therapy. She and I are both mostly recovered now (praises!). It took me out of work for 2 months, plus hospital debt that is using up the extra income we had planned to pay for adoption expenses fees. I am absolutely not complaining as I’m telling you these things but explaining our situation. I’m sure it’s no surprise to you. These things happen to those who are being called to His purposes. I’ve come to *almost* feel flattered by the attempts on our finances. We must be doing something worthwhile! Every family in this endeavor surly needs and deserves help bringing their child home and every child is equally deserving of a family to love and call their forever. We are prayerful and believing that God has a way already planned – we need but be still. Except for the paper work, fundraisers, grant applications and alllll the obsessing over the three and half second video we have of our soon to be son! Of course. ☺️ 

Bless you and thank you for your consideration of journeying with our family! 

 

 

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Comments

$100

Ashley

Feb 8, 2019

“Cannot wait to see you bring your love bug home!”

$250

Randy

Feb 1, 2019

$100

Sharon

Jan 29, 2019

“Love you all!”