July 7th, 2021 we did our final post adoption report. We have officially completed every step of our Liberian adoption. What a thing to celebrate! However, we wish we could tell you adoption was easy. We wish we could say it always felt “worth the work.” We wish we could say we loved our time in Liberia. We wish we could say it’s for everyone.
But it’s hard. It’s the hardest thing our family has ever been through. Liberia was hard for us. The process was lengthy and frustrating. And we aren’t so sure adoption is for everyone.
It’s going to require a lot of work, a lot of sacrifice, a lot of emotion, a lot of perseverance, and a whole lot of leaning on God.
Looking back to January of 2019 when we arrived back on US soil, I would have said I’ll never go back. That we would never do this again. But here we are today with these two amazing girls. They have changed our lives. They have changed our family. And they have changed our relationship with Jesus because they are every good thing that’s worth fighting for.
Their hearts are pure and genuine. They leave this ripple in their wake that makes me wonder if anyone can ever be the same after encountering them.
We have struggled to get to this point. Some days it’s one step forward and ten steps back. They long for parts of Liberia that we cannot give them here. Their hearts cry out for missed friends, family, and even spicy Liberian food.
But Anointed and Dennise have big dreams to match their big hearts and we get to be a part of making those come true. Anointed says that she will return to Liberia one day with her children to spread the good news about Jesus. She wants all of Liberia to know the love of her family and of her God. Dennise plans to earn her way through college running track. She dreams to run in the Olympics and be the world’s next fastest woman. They are strong, they are beautiful inside and out, and they will change the world!
Small World stuck by us and encouraged us when we were ready to give in. We are thankful for that. We are thankful for the kindness in that organization from every individual we’ve had the honor to work with. Our family is truly grateful for Uncle Albert and how tirelessly he works on the ground in Liberia and his efforts to stay connected with the girls now. We will return to Liberia one day; our hearts have been softened to the needs of the Liberians and the goodness that fills that country.
There are many times on this journey that we didn’t feel adequate. Times we struggled with having nothing else to offer the girls but “worldly” things. Times we were certain that we weren’t equipped for this. Times we wondered if our family was going to survive the struggles… and we were probably right, if we tried to go this alone. We learned how present God really was in adoption, how He breaks hearts for what breaks His. When you pray big prayers for your life, be prepared for God to answer in big, earth shaking ways.
~Joey, Amanda, Mason, Denni, Myles, Ryder, Anointed & Dennise Butler