Speaking of God's plan... God told me from the beginning that His plan was for us to do this 100% debt free. I questioned how in the world that would happen, because we, like most people, don't have an extra $28,000 just lying around, and I stay at home with the kids, and Michael doesn't make the best income... Even though I KNEW it would happen, one way or another, and often worried how it was even possible, I was constantly reminded of this verse:
"And my God will meet all your needs according to the riches of his glory in Christ Jesus." - Phil. 4:19
Again, that doesn't mean I never doubted or worried... Believe me, I did!! But I am SO happy to say that God has provided to meet almost ALL of our needs. With the help of friends and family donating, helping out with fundraising efforts, and lots and lots of prayer, along with MAJOR sacrificing, giving up completely unneeded things, and saving on our end, we had paid over $8500 towards all our adoption costs. With the help of our church, and now Show Hope and HandinHand (if we get the full amount), we are almost completely funded. We have just about $4000 to go!
HandinHand is a matching grant. They will match up to $2500, making a total grant of $5000! What a HUGE blessing! We'll be sending out support letters to friends and family and if anyone else is interested in donating, your donation is tax deductible and is to be sent directly to them, NOT us (and just write our name on the envelope, not on the check)! All donations must be in their office or postmarked by September 8 to be able to be matched. Please send them to:
Hand in Hand Christian Adoption, Inc.
Michael and Amanda Nunez
18524 Juniper Street
Gardner, KS 66030-9147
We had also applied with Katelyn's Fund (another grant) and had an interview with them on Monday night. Let me tell you... They were absolutely incredible. We spoke with 3 of the board members at first and ended in prayer after almost an hour with a total of 5 of them. I cannot say enough good about them and feel so absolutely blessed to have had that interview with them. They prayed over us, our family, and our adoption, along with a few other prayer requests that we had. Ilana had been having nightmares nightly for the past month or so. These were not just ordinary nightmares a typical 4 year old has. These were much more than that and scary even to me. Michael and I honestly felt like she was being spiritually attacked... We briefly talked to the board about this and when they prayed, they prayed specifically for her and the spiritual battle going on and that God's angels would surround our home and family and fight (yes, I know, we sound crazy, but we are total believers in the spiritual battle out there. It is SO real)... The next morning (and keep in mind, she has not had a single GOOD dream in over a month) she woke up in her own room (another big thing - we'd been finding her on our floor beside our bed every morning) and said she had the best dream... Wanna know what she dreamed about? Nothing more than... Angels! It was just incredible... The Katelyn's Fund board and their prayer team at their church will continue to pray for us and our adoption journey these next several months. Even if we do not get this grant, we feel so blessed to have the spiritual support and prayers from them and that, to me, is most important!
All in all, we've raised about $24,000 in just 6 months. How absolutely incredible is that?! If anyone asks how, my only answer is "Only God!" It's just so awesome to think about... I never, ever, would've imagined it would go so smoothly and quickly! I have no doubts about the next $4000 and know God will provide one way or another!
A few have wondered what we do if we end up having more than enough, between the grants and our own fundraisers... I am being completely honest and truthful that every single penny we make from fundraisers and donations will go to Ethiopia. If our adoption costs are all paid for and we still have funds left over, that money is going towards items that the House of Hope (the transition home) and our child's orphanage needs. Clothing, bottles, vitamins, formula, diapers, wipes, etc. Along with saving up for our adoption, God placed it in my heart to also save up for these types of items. We want to help not just one child, but as many as possible while we're there. We plan on packing LIGHT and taking as many things to give away as possible each trip! If anyone is interested in donating items, I'll be posting more on this later as the time gets closer! :)
Thank you to everyone who has supported us, spiritually, financially, and just been there for us. It's been an incredible journey and we are so blessed and thankful for each and every one of you!!