Monday, April 25, 2011

Can You Help Get Three Kids Home From Rwanda?

Our friends the Gundersens are adopting three children from Rwanda and are in need of help. Would you consider donating to that cause today? Click on the button to the right or go to to help.

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

A Testimony to God's Provision

Thank you to everyone who prayed for us while we were gone! The Lord heard your prayers and we all arrived safely home in one piece and without any major medical conditions. Thank you for caring so well for us!

This most likely will be one of our final blog entries on this blog (turns out there isn't as much time to write these days!) and we think it fitting to give as much glory to the Lord as possible for providing the money we needed in order to adopt. So let me share with you how the Lord has provided every dime we needed to bring home our four kids...

Our adoption journey started a few months after Dave and I were married. We lived in a 450 square feet apartment, had $40,000 in student loans, weren't making enough money to pay our bills, and Dave was still in college. But dear friends of ours adopted and they told us about how destitute their little girls were before they adopted them. They told us that many girls who age out of the orphanages go into prostitution and how the orphanages simply did not have the resources to care for the children so that left them very sick. Feeling very moved by what we heard, on our way home from our friends' house, we decided that we would for sure adopt no matter what.
About a year later the Lord gave us very high paying jobs which allowed us to pay off all of our debt and the next big expense was to save up for was our adoptions. At that time were were going to adopt two children through Vietnam which would cost about $80,000. The week we turned in our application to adopt, both of us were laid off of our jobs and Bush announced the recession. But we decided to still go ahead and pursue the adoptions knowing that the Lord had a special place in his heart for the helpless and that he would provide.

So we got new jobs and made probably 10% of what we were making before. To top that off, both of us were full time Masters students and were only working part time. But we just kept praying...

Vietnam closed to international adoptions which led us to Ethiopia. So instead of $80k in fees, we would only need to come up with around $30k. We are pleased to say that the Lord provided every single dime we needed:
  • Friends and family contributed to our adoption fund
  • We received thousands upon thousands of dollars in grants
  • Our new employer reimbursed us $16k for our adoptions
  • Friends threw us a wonderful shower which took care of all the baby items we needed

We got Kaden and Makyra home and even had some money in the bank. We praised the Lord for his provision and thought we would move on...

However, soon after we brought them home we really felt as if the Lord was leading us to adopt again (See previous blog if you want to read about what led us to this decision) but this time I wasn't working and we didn't see any realistic way to fund the adoption. So, at first glance, this looked like a "closed door" but we just prayed that the Lord would provide.

And PRAISE THE LORD, even though for this adoption we received very few grants, He decided to use other means to provide this $30-$35k. Such as:

  • Dave's employer again will reimburse us $16k
  • There is a significant tax rebate for families who are adopting this year
  • Friends we hadn't seen since college heard we were adopting and decided to mail us their tax return.
  • A couple in our church got married and instead of asking for presents at their wedding, they asked all their guests to contribute money to adoptive families in our church.
  • Our church also helped us financially.

So, in sum, the Lord provided around $65,000 within the span of a year and a half for two people who started off as full time students working part time jobs.

We write this because we want everyone to know that the Lord answers prayer and that the Lord is not limited by finances. His Word is very clear that he cares deeply about the orphan, widow, world missions, and so on. He is committed to these causes and he has all the resources in the world to see to it that the orphans are cared for. Often he directs these resources to those who will care for them.

Unfortunately, the orphanages in Africa and the streets of Africa are still full of children that need to be adopted. So if you are thinking about adoption, but are hesitant because of finances, let the testimony of how the Lord has provided for us compel you to adopt. It is not irresponsible to look to the Lord for provision, it is faith.

"For from him and to him and through him are all things. To God be the glory forever. Amen."

Romans 11:36

P.S. For future family/ministry updates, please visit our blog at

Monday, March 14, 2011

Updates from Stacey

Hey friends, thanks for your prayers.

I have some updates from Stacey:
1. Zoey has scabies and an umbilical hernia. Scabies are yucky, itchy, and contagious - but treatable with a topical creme. The hernia is not a huge deal, though it could require some minor surgery.
2. We passed Embassy! So Stacey and Karen will definitely be bringing the kiddos back on Thursday, 3/17/11 at 6:30pm. You are all invited to our Airport Party! (see below)
3. The trip has been very hard. Stacey has not slept barely at all due to jet lag and the kids have not been adjusting very well.

How you can be praying for Stacey and Karen:
1. Endurance, endurance, endurance - especially on the plane ride home.
2. That the kids would sleep on the plane ride home.
3. That Zoey would start feeling better and that the hernia would resolve itself and not need surgery.
4. That God would use this time to draw Stacey and Karen closer to himself and remind them of his love in the midst of trials.

Sunday, March 13, 2011

Please Pray for Zoey

I just received a text message from Stacey. It said that Zoey has an abnormal bulge on her stomach next to her belly button (maybe a hernia?). She said she also has sores all over her body. I did not get a lot of info as she told me she could not get to a computer. Please pray for baby Zoey.

Saturday, March 5, 2011

The Results are In: Our Daughter's Name is Zoey!

Well friends it only took one day to get 41 responses. We have decided to spell our daughter's name: Zoey!

The score? 30:11

We Need Help Spelling Zoe(y)

Friends Stacey and I have reached and impasse and we need your help to resolve a spelling issue. Here are the arguments:

Zoey - this is my (Dave's) preference. Adding the 'y' seems to eliminate any possibility of someone calling her 'Zo' (like Toe). I also think it is cool to have a name with both a 'z' in it and a 'y.'

Zoe - Stacey's preference. This is the more common spelling. So, peer pressure I guess :)


Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Another Prayer Answered! Off to Ethiopia!

Another answer to prayer! The US Embassy has cleared all of our paperwork and given us the green light to come pick up our kids the week of March 14th. So myself (Stacey) and a friend (Karen) will fly out March 11th and are planning to return March 17th.

We've recently found out that our kids are only 9 days apart (Elias DOB 7/11/10 and Zoey DOB 7/20/10). We thought that was a fun fact being that their are very different in size.

We would love your prayers during this transition. Namely that our hearts would selflessly love our children at all hours of the day and night and that we would die to ourselves as we seek to serve and parent them well.

Thursday, February 17, 2011

A Call (Yet Again) for More Prayer

Well we have some good news. Our case was submitted to the US Embassy in Ethiopia today.

The potentially not so good news is that the Embassy has been declaring "investigations" on adoption cases. This means that they could require an interview with the birth mom or additional documentation. They could pass us immediately and then we would get to pick-up our kids soon after or they could require an investigation which would mean there would be indefinite delay (months? We just don't know). So, we really want to get our kids home and think that is what is best for them as well so we ask you to pray with us that the Embassy would pass us immediately.

Thank you so much!

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

The Lord Answers Prayer!

Meet Zoey Lindsay Salam Hare...

Meet Elias Daniel Ewenetu Hare...

Zoey's Story:
Zoey is 5 months old. Dave (who is currently with them in Ethiopia right now) reports that she is crawling, yep crawling. Pretty incredible. Here is what Dave emailed to me about his experience with Zoey...

"She is soooooo cute. When I came downstairs I met her grandfather (Melese). Totally unexpected. I was able to talk to him for a little while, he was very nice. His daughter (Bogalech) had given birth to Zoey and brought her to his house. She then left and never came back. He does not know who the father is nor where she went. He was very sweet and wanted a picture to take with him. Zoey is chill, but quite adventurous. She would not stay in one place. She laughed and laughed. I spent a few hours there with Zoey. It was so much fun. I love her. I was not sure how I would feel during all of this. But I feel so much love and joy."

Zoey means "life" in Greek - looks like we rightly named this little one!

Elias' Story-A Product of Rape but no Less Precious:
Elias is currenty 6 months old. Dave had the opportunity to meet his mom today. He emailed me about his experience:

"She was very sweet and very young. She told me she was very happy that her son could go into a home where he would be taken care of. She blessed us. I asked the translator to ask her about his father. But the translator already knew. She had been raped. They did not know who the father was. It was quite a bit of news to get right at that moment. I cried. I am so happy that we can adopt a boy who was the product of rape. And I am so proud of her. She was really happy when she drove away because she knew we would take care of him. What a bold little girl. I asked a few more questions and hugged her. She left."

We praise the Lord for the selflessness of Elias' mother and for bringing something beautiful out of such an aweful crime. He is no less made in the image of God because of how he was conceived and we love him to death already.

We praise the Lord for the selflessness of Elias' mother and for bringing something beautiful out of such an aweful crime. He is no less made in the image of God because of how he was conceived and we love him to death already.

"To you the helpless commits himself; you have been the helper of the fatherless."
- Psalm 10:14b
The Ethiopian courts just today declared these children to be ours and if all goes as planned, we will be returning to Ethiopia in six weeks to bring our kids home with us.

Friday, January 14, 2011

Leaving for Ethiopia in 9 days...Please Pray!

Just wanted to give you all a little update...

Dave is headed to Ethiopia next week to appear before court in Ethiopia. If we pass court we will be bringing our children home about 6 weeks later.

Please pray that we will pass court this first time and that everything that needs to happen for this to take place would happen (i.e. birth-parents would be present, paperwork would be in place, etc).

If we pass I'll send out some pictures!

Thank you for the prayers,


PS To those interested, Elias is now 5 months old and Zoey is 4 months