It is amazing to read and hear the stories about God calling people to adopt. It is even more amazing when that call is for you. Melinda and I had been married for over 12 years with four beautiful children (2 boys and 2 girls whom I am very proud of) when we had the first thought about adopting. However, at that time I was in the Air Force and we were about to move again. We then moved back to Texas, and that is when God really laid it on our heart to adopt from China. God bombarded us with people in our lives who had adopted daughters from China: one of my patients was a little Chinese girl who had just been adopted, neighbors around the corner had a daughter from China, and even the DJs on the radio station I listened to had just got back from adopting in China. To say the least God was sending us a message. However, again we were about to move and leave the Air Force so adoption would have to wait.
Fast forward 2 years and now we had settled and had no plans to move. One day I was looking through a drawer for something, when I found the 2 year old information packet from America World. I started praying that if it was God’s will, he would again put it on my wife’s heart to adopt. Two weeks later she found the America World packet and approached me about adopting. She was surprised to hear that I had been praying for 2 weeks about adopting. Needless to say 6 months later our paperwork was in China and we were waiting for a referral.
God again had plans for us, we could never have fathomed. At the very beginning, we decided to consider special needs after attending an America World Seminar. Honestly, it was because we did not want to wait 3-4 years for a referral. We said we would accept a little girl age 0-5 but always thought she would not be older than 3. After making a heart-wrenching decision to turn down 2 little girls we felt we could not take care of, we finally got the call on May 16th, 2008 for Shayle.
My wife called me and spoke those wonderful words “we got another referral”. She went on to tell me this little girl had a repaired heart defect and she was 5 years old. The heart problem was not a big issue and I had fallen in love with her beautiful little face, but she was 5. We always thought we would get a girl 3 years-old or younger and she was 5. I reviewed the medical information and we decided to lock her file so we could pray about it. That night I went to my men’s prayer group and everyone just kept telling me to take her. I still wasn’t sure about a girl this old. We prayed about it and I started home.
On the way home God answered my prayer. As I was driving, and listening to a Christian radio station a song came on the radio. To this day I can’t tell you what the song was because I really wasn’t listening. However, as the song was ending a little girls voice came on the radio and said “Daddy come over here and get me.” I rushed home and told my wife what had happened. To say the least, we accepted her referral first thing the next morning. Since being home, it is amazing to see how much love this little girl can give. Her first spoken English words were "I love you." Now we have 5 wonderful kids and I thank God I heard his voice that night and adopted an older child. When we first started thinking about adoption, Shayle was just being born. We have found that as everyone says, God’s timing is perfect.
-- Darrel Pierce