Long Road to China - Our Adoption Story

Trustmark National Bank account set up:

Donations can be made nation wide at any Trustmark National Bank through the account:
Phillip Smith or Niki J. Smith's Adoption Account

If you would like to mail a donation, please mail it to
Phil or Niki Smith
P.O. Box 332
Rienzi, MS 38865

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

As you know, we will be traveling to China, the Lord willing, in a few weeks. We have a fundraiser at Pizza Inn on July 2nd starting at 5:00 pm and ending at 8:00 pm. I can’t express how much they have helped in our adoption adventure. They are great, and please support them by eating there every chance you get- you won’t regret it! Great food and excellent service. They donate a portion of the register and we wait tables and take tips/donations. It will be a lot of fun!

And at the onset of this post I want to tell each person that has contributed to our mission, either in monetary donation or prayer, or both, how indebted we are to you. Without your support, this mountain would seem impossible to climb. If you know much about me, you know that I’m a very private person so it has been so awkward to be in the position to ask for help. God has really been with me through this process and I have the comfort of knowing that we are simply doing his will and following his purpose for us. I’m so lucky to have found what I’m supposed to do in this life while I’m still a young guy (Ok, that is a relative term. I’m sure some of my students are reading this and thinking “is he really talking about himself!?” LOL!) So, this is our last fundraising push before the trip. Hopefully, we will have some other things also- garage sale, Green Market, etc., to help bring GiGi home.

Ok, I think it is important for you to know what this journey costs. This goes against my natural privacy, but I want to give a peek behind the curtain to let you see what is involved in this adoption process. All of these figures are pretty good estimates: $6000 agency fee, $5500 orphanage fee, $2500 upfront post adoption expenses, $2000 home study, $1000 biometric fingerprinting by Dept. of Homeland Security, $1000 visa/passport/clearance, $800 in Fed Ex fees (seriously), $250 medical clearance, $500 in courier fees, $20,000 travel, -fights in China, hotel, etc. for a grand total of about $40,000 (give or take a few bucks when it is all said and done). Plus the medical cost of whatever it may takes to have a possible couple of surgeries per year for several years + the cost of a never ending supply of Tagament for my soon to be fully developed ulcer! Just kidding (sorta).

So, ok that is a realistic look behind the curtains of adoption. Does the cost worry me? Sure, no doubt! I truly believe that God will provide the way and means, but he has never promised that it would even remotely resemble easy. It is easy to sit back and say, “Ok, that is a load of money, why don’t you just NOT do it? I mean we don’t do things we can’t afford… right?” A few years ago, that is probably what I would have said and I still think it totally applies to mansions and climbing Mount Everest (unless God has called you to do this).

I did not approach God with this mission, He approached me. I know that is a very difficult thing to understand when you are searching for your purpose in life. I thank Him daily that I have found GiGi and my life-journey has started. I know that this is not the end of our adoptions and God has many other plans, but I must concentrate on this now. Yes, I’m a private person and I didn’t throw those figures out because it is easy for me to be open. I did it to help show that I am going to follow what he has laid before me, but this is not a couple of thousand dollar deal. You don’t go to the bank and borrow $40,000 with a cute little Chinese girl as collateral- You scrape, totally forget about ever being in the black and constantly seek donation and prayer. It is what they call an “upfront, non-refundable, out of pocket expense”. Which is probably no big deal if you have deep pockets, but we, like most people who adopt, start at ground zero (or a little below!) I’m gonna post about the other side of the adoption process pretty soon. It doesn’t involve money, but it is probably as stressful. I know that I will have to one day stand before my God and give an account for everything I have done in the flesh, and when you adopt, you get to rehearse that speech before the powers that be in both US and Chinese governments a few times! Thank you so much for all you have done for us! God will Bless you!

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