"Once our eyes are opened, we cannot pretend we don't know what to do. God, who weighs our hearts and keeps our souls, knows that we know, and holds us responsible to act." Proverbs 24:12

“There are no strangers here; Only friends you haven’t yet met.”- William Butler Yeats

Monday, June 22, 2009

it's no coincidence

Finally, the much awaited post about one of China's most precious Princesses, our beautiful Anna Grace Fengqin is complete.

On Father's Day two years ago, after an hour of coaxing and bribing, this beautiful, little girl was placed shoved in my arms.


She trembled with fear as her entire world, in an instant, completely changed. She did not recognize the people she was told was going to be her "new family". We spoke, looked, and even smelled differently. She couldn't understand a word we were saying. All she knew was that everything familiar to her was suddenly gone. Vanished.

So, it's no surprise that going from this...


In Guangzhou, after 5 days with her Forever Family.

...to this:


Celebrating her 2nd Forever Family Day!

has been a challenge, a total surprise, and one that I thought I was never equipped to handle.

In walked God.

Yep, I must say, The Man knows it all!

I never in my wildest dreams would have imagined Anna Grace's attachment issues to be so intense, but it certainly was no surprise to God. It was no surprise to Him that I would be chosen to love and nurture a little girl who's needs I felt totally unequipped to handle. He equipped me.

But, most of all, it was no surprise to Him that I would need a very poignant reminder of how much He unconditionally loves me and loves Anna Grace.

He gave me that reminder. She was etched into our hearts on Father's Day 2007.

His plan, as always, was perfect.

Anna Grace is a constant reminder to me of The Father's love. A love so pure. A love so real, that it's almost unfathomable.

How many times have I disappointed Him?

How many times have I rejected Him?

How many times have I been angry at Him?

How many times have I walked away thinking He doesn't love me?

How many times have I wanted to curl up in His arms but have been afraid because I've felt I'm not deserving of it?

These are all the same feelings my sweet girl has. My answer to all of the above questions is, "Many!"

Yet, how many times throughout all of it has He given up on me and stopped loving me?


Oh, yes! I'm sure there have been many, many times when I've done something wrong that He's shaken His head in total frustration and thought, "What am I going to do with this girl? When is she going to learn?" But he's never, ever stopped loving me. He's never left my side.

And it's that, my dear friends, that has helped make me a better mother.

Oh, being spat on, kicked, hit, lied about, cursed at and betrayed has been very, very hard. But, if I stop myself at the very moment that this is occuring and see Anna Grace through God's eyes, see her as His child, my heart immediately changes. Every single time.

I've also realized in the past few months that she really never knew how to love. Oh, she knows the words to say. She know the actions. But, the feelings are so confusing to her little heart and mind that I think it almost paralyzes her. I've even caught her standing feet away from us with a curious look on her face as I play, cuddle and kiss AJ or Kai. As if she's learning. We're both learning as we go, but there's one thing I know. I love my baby girl with a fierce motherly love that only a mother could have.

This is not to say that she isn't given consequences to her actions. Quite the opposite. She knows that privileges will be taken away with her actions and we are very consistent with this. Very consistent. She absolutely needs that much structure in her little life, but especially in the past few months, I've been speaking to her about the comparison in Jesus' love to a Daddy and Mommy's love. I remind her almost constantly that nothing she could say or do will ever stop me from loving her. Ever.

Although in my mind and heart I know that the love that the Father has for us is completely unimaginable and cannot be compared, I want her to realize that still, two years later, it does not matter how much she tries, I will never, ever give up on her. I will love her till my dying breath.

But you know what the best part is?

I know. I KNOW. She loves me, too! THAT MAKES IT ALL WORTH IT!

These past two years have been a roller coaster ride that at times has made my stomach feel like it's in knots as we spin and turn and soar. Other times it has taken my breath away. But mostly, I love looking back and thinking that when the ride is over, my most overpowering feeling is the one that makes me want to shout, "Let's do it again!"

God knew that with Him by my side, I could handle it. Before time was created Anna Grace Fengqin was destined by Him to be our little girl.

On occasions, I even surprise myself at how well we know each other now. We know how the other one thinks. It's scary sometimes. But, it makes me laugh. Biology is so over-rated! She is completely and unmistakably my daughter and I am honored and blessed to be her Mama!

"I CAN do all things through Him who strengthens me"..... Philippians 4:13




sara said...

I have no words to this except....beautiful!! i am sitting here with tears in my eyes thinking what a lucky little girl Anna Grace is, but even more what a lucky little girl I am!! Thanks for this reminder and wonderful post Ohilda!!

Sherri said...

This was a beautiful tribute, dear friend. I adore the picture at the end!

Praise you, Jesus, for the work you've done in this little girl's heart!

Aus said...

Wow - and you forgot something - He gave you to us so that thru you we might prepare ourselves for that same ride....there is always a Plan in His actions - it's just that we aren't always given that insight. And that is particularly important to us as we work on the process of our next one - and one from foster care to boot. That's GREAT for Chase - but might be difficult for us! So I just had one of those insights that prompted these words - and they were for you to hear - publically or privately - I'll leave that up to you!

hugs and loads of love your way - aus and co.

Faith Imagined said...

Just amazing! She is stunning!

a Tonggu Momma said...

What an absolutely gorgeous post, Ohilda. As a momma who traveled a similar path, I could not have said it better. What a blessing you are.

Undercover-Princess said...

Thanks for making me cry at WORK. :)

What a beautiful post. Happy Forever Family Day to all of you!

Holly said...

Amen! What a faithful God to equip us to walk in our calling.
I have been following your family story since you were in China meeting Anna Grace. It is such a delight to see the difference.
Even after all the heartbreak we've been through in the last year with our failed adoption, this post makes me want to fling my arms wide open again and say HERE I AM LORD-PICK ME!!!!
It is an honor to parent His precious children :)
Love you,

Peg said...

I know it's been a rocky road, but she is worth isn't she? With God's love, everything is possible!!!
Love Peg
Can't wait til August!

La Familia Garcia said...

Wow, what an amazing journey! She's definatey grown a lot, and how humbling that God uses our children to continually teach us! Love the pics!

mom2-4boys said...


You inspire me everyday!! Thank you so much for sharing this journey of faith and love.

What a beautiful little lady she is!


PS We will be arriving in Florida on the 9th of July. I am hoping you will be available sometime between the 10 and 12. I will email you soon!!! Kids getting out of school Friday. It is crazy here.

Sally- That Girl! said...

I didn't realize until now how close our daughter's adoption days were to each other. That means you were in CHina when we were in Guatemala.

We have many older child and attachment adoption issues with our sweet girl as well. But it has made me a better mother and has forced me to parent in a different way.

What a might God we serve who can place the perfect children into our homes!

Terynn said...


I can hardly bear to look at the first two photos. Such raw grief and pain. It makes my heart hurt. At the time of Anna Grace's adoption, I remember thinking that all would be well soon. I really believed that.

I ached laong with you, as you struggled with the attachment issues. Such hard and humbling work. You cooperated so fully with the Spirit, Ohilda. I remember being so proud of you.

But oh!! Look at the last photo!! The last photo is like a slice of heaven!! Look at that child. Just LOOK at her!! :)

Praises for the One Who made it possible to "do all things"!!

The Byrd's Nest said...

I just posted a devotion on my blog by Max Lucado titled "God is cheering for you!"....He really has been on your side and cheering for you and your precious daughter. He KNEW you could handle all of your issues....He KNEW you would turn to Him for advice and prayer...and HE knew long before you were created that you would be her forever Mommy. Love you friend.

Anna Grace`s Jie Jie said...

God is SO good! Anna Grace is beautiful!

Jill said...

Ohilda...YOU and your little girl...truly a love story!! God is good and thank you for reminding ME how he oftentimes waits on ME!

Congratulations on another GOTCHA day...and the photos are absolutely DEAR!!!

Starla said...

Ohilda....I have so enjoyed seeing this girl blossom, and you as you have faithfully leaned on the Savior to get you through. You have been such a blessing to me. Starla

Jewels of My Heart said...

Oh, how beautiful your precious Anna Grace is... she takes my breath away. I love how the Father is teaching you and you are learning... giving all glory to Him.
I can empathize with so much of what you shared... But our God is oh, so faithful to heal their little hearts, minds and souls.
I don't know if you are familiar with Holding Therapy. If not please email me. It was one of the most difficult things I have ever done but oh, how it helped heal my child. I am so thankful that our adoption agency was there for support and was able to share this technique to bring about healing.
Love you sister and I will lift up your precious family before the King of kings.

David and Sarah said...

Beautiful, beautiful post. Thanks for sharing about your little girl and your journey together in this life.

Blessings to you!

Michelle said...

What an absolutely wonderful, honest, heartfelt and special post, Ohilda!!!

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