Many times during that journey, we wondered why God would ask us to adopt a 4-year-old from Ethiopia. On Saturday, we had spent time with several people from our church, as well. They threw a “big boy shower” for Dawit so they could get to know him.


 

For more than two years, our family has followed a path on which we believe God had put us. Many times during that journey, we wondered why God would ask us to adopt a 4-year-old from Ethiopia.


After having custody of him for almost a month, we think we might have an idea of what part of that answer might be. God didn’t want our lives to become too normal. Dawit is the antidote for normal.


Sunday was a big day for us. Our church does baby dedications. The significance of this event is basically introducing the child to church members and those members promising to do their part to help us raise the child in a Christian environment. In most churches, I would think this was mostly a formality. But not at our church.


Since we started on this path, these people have supported us both financially and spiritually. When they made that promise, I believed them. But I don’t know if they know what they have gotten into while promising to try to keep Dawit on the straight and narrow. Just when you think Dawit can’t do anything else to surprise you, he finds a way to blaze a new trail.


Sunday morning before his dedication ceremony was no different. We hadn’t taken Dawit to church yet. He doesn’t understand the language, so we thought it might be easier on him to ease him into the church scene. But Sunday was important.


I was in the shower and his mother was blow drying her hair. Apparently, Dawit needed to use the restroom, but he didn’t know how to let everyone know. So he left us a present on the floor mat near the front door.


Since we don’t keep toilet paper at the front door, he just pulled his shorts back up. Thankfully, he knew he had a problem. So he stayed at the front door.


I came out of the bathroom and told him to come down the stairs while I finished getting ready. He didn’t move. I went to the stairs to ask him what was wrong. That’s when I smelled the present he had left for me.


I would love to report how calmly and with what joy I rectified the problem. But I don’t want to lie. Trying to get him in the bath without getting it all over me and him both was tricky.


I got him cleaned up while my wife cleaned the floors and walls. I then took the mat outside to be hosed off. Then we finished getting ready for church. It was just another day with Dawit –– anything but normal.


On Saturday, we had spent time with several people from our church, as well. They threw a “big boy shower” for Dawit so they could get to know him. Like I said before, they have supported us and waited with us for two years while all of the T’s were crossed and I’s were dotted. Now that he is home, many of them are as excited as we are.


When we talk about how great our friends from church have been to us, many people are shocked. A few people I have spoken with said they wished their church did things like that. Some have said they need to find a church like that.


I can’t help but wonder if that reasoning might be a little skewed. Sure, you could plug into a church that already had such great outreach where members take care of each other when a need arises. Or, you could be the member who started that kind of ministry at the church you attend now.


Being on the receiving end of this kindness is a blessing. But being a blessing to others is even more rewarding.


I don’t know what we would have done without our church. If your church does this now, get involved. If not, get it started. It’s a great way to make a difference in someone’s life.