This past summer our family undertook a “reverse missions” trip. The idea was to host a 13 year old orphaned boy from Ukraine for the summer and share the Love of Christ with him. At the end of the summer he was to go back to the orphanage and spread what love we had shared. I can remember laughing while signing agreement with the Ukrainian government that we promised to send the child back at the end of the hosting program; as if we were going to keep him. Then we were asked if we would also host a 15 year old girl from the same orphanage. What is one more child at this point, right?
I can still see Yura walking down the hallway at Midway and thinking how he was even more handsome in person than in his passport photo we received. Anya was tall and full of self-confidence. It took us four hours to get home from Midway that day. Yura’s car sickness was something I had never experienced before. We would drive a mile and then have to pull over for him to get sick. We ran out of bags and napkins so it was the side of the road for at least a half hour at a time. The poor child was so green he looked like Gumby. As he crouched on the shoulder of I294 and I rubbed his back and wiped his mouth I fell in love. The thought of him not having a mother to rub his back when he was sick or to bring him water in the middle of the night made me sob; I knew it was over for me.
We had an amazing summer with the kids and our family seemed complete. Then it was time for them to return to Ukraine. When I told Yura he would be leaving the next day he quietly walked out the door, got on his bike, and road around the neighborhood for almost an hour. When he came in I could tell he had been crying but put on a tough face and went to his room. He didn’t want to go. He had three brothers, a Mom, a Dad, a comfy bed and most importantly he had his OWN toothbrush. But it was time. As he walked down that same hallway at Midway I felt like part of my heart was leaving.
By God’s grace we now have the opportunity to adopt Yura as our own. The same offer was made to Anya but she chose to stay in Ukraine. We have begun our adoption journey to bring Yura home to his brothers who miss him tremendously. We are praying that God will lay it upon your heart to contribute to that journey. If a monetary contribution is not possible we are asking for your prayers.