The bad news is there is still a rift in the leaders as to whether I can adopt all 10 of the children. I know this is what the 10 want, they want only to be with me. This is clear to anyone who has had contact with them. Although it is encouraging knowing there are leaders who see the need for the children to get back together with me and agree with me adopting them all, there is still at least one leader who doesn't want to see it happen. Please continue to pray they can discuss the issue in light of what do the children desire and seek to meet their desires. I know this is the right thing to do and it is a blessing knowing I have some supporting me. I get the fact there are many reasons they could come up with to be against the children being adopted by me and brought to the US but God will ultimately bring about His will to bless the children. There is no way they could ever be divided and they know my feelings. We discussed all this many times when they were with me and they know I would never give up fighting for them to return to me.
I will be sending another email to Maggie instructing her to encourage the leader to meet the children's desire. It is also best to have the "story go away quietly" by not having it come up in the Chinese press again. I know the leaders do not want the story to be in the news again and especially if it means anything that would cause them to be offended. It is obvious that the children would say things they probably should not say but after all, they are just children. I hope to be able to talk with them, comfort them we are making progress and they don't need to comment to anyone about the last two years.
The leaders can not just lock the kids down for the rest of their childhood and I know God would never allow that to take place. These are Christian children who love the Lord, love me and many others. Knowing the kids have already been under some very trying circumstances, it is time to "move on" for them. It is obvious the best is for them to all leave China and the story goes away. Pray we can make continual progress in that direction.
I have no interest in "stirring up the already muddy waters" but I also don't want the children to suffer anymore. This has been hard on me and grandma and Maggie but we all know it has been hardest on the 10 children. Pray for mercy and pray for grace, in that order.
It is encouraging to know that I have support but there is also resistance. This story is so familiar to us as there are so many stories in the bible, time does not afford me the time to tell all the stories. You know them well anyway. Some of you are reading historical biblical stories right now and God will show you what I am talking about. In all these beautiful stories God delivered and His Name was glorified. This is my prayer, this is your prayer and I know the children understand this as well.
I have not had a peace about filling out the adoption forms as it includes the names and ages of all the kids. I have already been informed by the adoption agency that Blaza could not be adopted as a 19 year old. Now we know Blaza is "a teenager" again. This is amazing as it puts him back as a child with the others. We all know his mental capability is very limited and I believe Blaza will always be "a child" in his life. I love the fact that the Chinese authorities can come up with a very practical way of solving the "adult/child" issue. I am not totally clear as to the motivation of "making him a child" but at least it favors staying with the 10 and helps in the adoption process. Keep praying. This whole saga has been unprecedented and I expect it to continue this way. Glory to God. The Lord Jesus Christ has been magnified, will continue to be magnified and ultimately Jesus will see this blessing all the children.
I return on the 30th of August to Beijing and yet I hope we can see more progress before I go back. I have prayed God will begin to "stream-line" the process form this time forward and I know HE will.
Thank you "Prayer Force One" for your daily petitions to God and support in so many ways.
Ray and Blaza, Hannah, David, James, Rebekah, John John, Joanna, Sarah, Joseph and little Deborah
God has been very serious about the treatment of orphans and widows and even the people of Israel were not exempt from these clear instructions.
"Thus says the Lord, “Do justice and righteousness, and deliver the one who has been robbed from the power of his oppressor. Also do not mistreat or do violence to the stranger, the orphan, or the widow; and do not shed innocent blood in this place. 4 For if you men will indeed perform this thing, then kings will enter the gates of this house, sitting in David’s place on his throne, riding in chariots and on horses, even the king himself and his servants and his people. 5 But if you will not obey these words, I swear by Myself,” declares the Lord, “that this house will become a desolation.”’” Jeremiah 22:3-5
Enclosed is a picture of Rebekah's birthday a few years ago. Birthdays are not allowed for each of the children at the "protection center". This alone would be be very sad for the children knowing I would always prepare a cake, gifts and much love for each child each year. God is teaching them some very tough lessons. Pray for mercy, pray for grace, and in that order.