We were married in July 2000. During the ceremony the pastor had me (Alicia) recite my vows from the book of Ruth. Part of those vows recited was, “Your people will be my people, and your God my God. Where you go I will go…” From this beautiful moment I always wanted to name our daughter Ruth. Little did we know at that time that God would take us on the other side of the world to find our daughter. We knew from the beginning of the adoption process that we would go back to China and adopt a second daughter…her name would be Naomi.
In March 2006 we adopted our first daughter, Ruth, from China through AWAA. [On a side note, Ruth was being called Ru in China.] God took us through the NSN process for this adoption. The thought of SN never crossed our mind. It was not the path that God had us on at the time. However, He had a different plan for our second adoption.
During March 23 & 24, 2007, I was attending a Biblical Counseling conference in Houston. We were already in the paper work process for our second adoption. During this training, I heard a session entitled "Counseling and Prenatal Diagnosis." Dr. Dan Wickert was the presenter and he made a statement that God used to penetrate my heart. He said, "Most people expecting a baby will say that it doesn't matter if it is a boy or girl, just as long as he is healthy and has ten fingers and ten toes. However, is God still sovereign and good even if the baby does not have ten fingers and ten toes?" His point was: What if your baby is not healthy or is not perfect…what will you thoughts be about God then? The topic was put into perspective of counseling couples that receive this kind of news. However, I could not stop thinking about that statement in terms of our next adoption. My heart was softened and drawn to the possibility of a special needs child through this statement. After returning home that weekend, Keith and I talked about this possibility. This led us to apply to the Special Needs[(now, the Waiting Children] program with AWAA, a month before our dossier was complete. We completed the SN inventory profile indicating the needs we felt would work for our family. We selected several and put our trust in God.
On Feb. 6, 2008, we received the call about a little girl. God quickly reminded me of that statement made in that training session that first softened my heart to this path. I then realized our new daughter did not have ten fingers. We had checked numerous needs that we were willing to accept; however, limb difference was the one we received. God had chosen this precious little girl to be a part of our family before we even applied to the program. While she was just a couple of months old, God had begun preparing our hearts for her. We are now home and so blessed to share our lives with both Ruth and Naomi!
Keith & Alicia Smith