Ok so I know I have been needing to start this for a while, but I didn't know exactly where to start. So I have decided to start with the story of how we went from being the Cate 5, to the Cate 8. I think this will give you the background so that you understand as we continue this blog telling the stories of our walk of faith, the spiritual lessons we are learning, and the funny things our kids do, so here is the story...
We went back to the states in December for the holidays and to visit our family and church, planning to stay until the 23rd of January. The trip had been going really well, but then on the 21st of January we got a call from a that lady we used to help take care of her son, Benjamin, 4 years ago when we lived in the states. We used to watch Benjamin to try and help this single mom get back on her feet, but to make a long story short, after months of trying to help, and even talking about adoption, the Lord closed the door, and we ended up moving to Brazil. So we went to Brazil and didn't hear from her at all for 4 years, until 2 days before we were supposed to return to Brazil. While we were in Brazil she had twins. So she had not been doing well, and didn't have the ability or support to take care of the kids. Again to not go too much into detail, there were many problems at home, and social services was called to step in and do something with the kids. So a friend called us(since we just happened to be in the states) when she knew that she was not able to care for the kids anymore. So we went to her appointment she had with social services that same day(two days before we were to leave). Trusting that the Lord had us there at that time to help those kids even if just for a time, we decided to take them home that day, and see what God would have us to do. That morning in my normal daily devotions I was reading in Matt 18, and in verse 5 Jesus says "Whoever receives one little child like this in my name receives me." So that was confirmation that it was the Lords will to take them in and help them in some way, but thinking that it would be to help find a loving home for them, but not thinking to take them back to Brazil.
So we decided to have Dani stay with all six at our assistant pastors house and try to figure all this out, while I would go back to Brazil to the church, and the ministry. So I get everything packed, rented a car, had my tickets, and begin the 4 hour drive from Tampa to Miami to go to the airport, to go home to Brazil. About 5 minutes into the trip God begins convicting me through a Bible Study I was listening to in the car. The text was 1 Sam 13, when Saul makes a sacrifice without waiting for Samuel, and the whole thing was about being careful not to get ahead of God, even when it seems like a spiritual thing to do. God was convicting me, but I brushed it off and continued driving and put on another study. This time it was 2 Sam 5, when David goes to battle against the philistines and he prays for direction from the Lord, and God gives him victory. Then the philistines come back again, and David does not assume to just go up again, but seeks the Lord again, and God tells him not to go up, but to go a different way, but still gives victory. So God convicted me again that He has a different way for this to happen, and not just to do what I think in my mind, but to be lead by the Holy Spirit. So after an hour and a half of being convicted and fighting against it, I finally listened and turned around and went home.
So I canceled my ticket, and in time God confirmed to us that it was for us to adopt these three kids. So over the next two weeks we had two court appearances, a home study, a stack of paper to fill out that was thicker than a strongs concordance, and several visits from social services. Thank God the judge had favor on us and let the kids stay in our custody until the adoption is finalized, but that will stll take three months to happen. After those two weeks I did end up coming back to Brazil on my own, but in God's timing. If I hadn't been there for those court hearings we would not have been able to keep custody of the kids or do the homestudy, so God had a purpose in mind, and HIS timing is always perfect!
That is our latest huge step of faith in this journey we are on, and now I hope that I can continue to record on a regular basis the way that God is working all these things out on a daily basis as we continue in Him day by day.