Over the past 20 years, we’ve always found ways to love and minister to children and youth. Our work has included teaching in public schools, working with youth at church, being house parents for at-risk teens, mentoring kids in one-on-one relationships and raising our own family of three great kids. In 2009, we began talking about adoption, but we didn’t have a clear understanding of how or when that was to happen. Over the next several years, we continued to think and talk about it occasionally, but didn’t take action. In August of 2012, we were made aware of an 8 year old boy with special needs in Eastern Europe who was in desperate need of a family. The Lord began to speak to us about him. We prayed and asked how we were to respond. By January 2013, we had made the decision that God was calling us to adopt this particular child.

We were not financially prepared to take on the $30-35,000 commitment. We had very little in savings and none set aside for adoption. We knew that to adopt would require faith in God’s provision for this child. In addition, we knew that because we had already identified and been matched with him, our process would have to move quickly to satisfy the government of his native country. Along the way, God has blessed us richly with many who love our family and who have a heart to see the orphan redeemed. They understand how costly it is, both emotionally, spiritually and financially to buy back a life. We made it through approximately 1/3 of our adoption finance journey with a fundraiser, saving back whatever we could, generating extra income from extra work, and through the generous support of friends and family. But we needed still more.

As we began the adoption grant process, we prayed for direction. We could not apply everywhere because of the time involved in each application process. Christian Orphan Fund was recommended to us, and we felt that the Lord was leading us to apply. Our interactions with our contact person were so positive, and once our application was in, we only waited a few days to receive a reply. It has been an overwhelming blessing to receive grant funds from COF. While we haven’t reached our total financial goal, our faith has been so encouraged by COF’s generosity. Just when we were feeling discouraged, we have a renewed energy to continue in humility and boldness, asking for more on behalf of this precious child, and to continue to sacrifice our wants for his need.

We cannot thank you enough for sowing into his life and the life of our family. We know that this seed you have planted will bring a rich harvest of so much more than we can even ask or imagine.

The Johnson Family (Jason, Kristin, Hallie, Nora, Asa…and soon…Elijah)