Tuesday, December 30, 2014

The Greatest Gift of All

To tell the truth, this post could be what sums up my whole blog. There is so much more to this story that I feel I can really get into words. Most of the story your already know. So many of you that are my friends here know this about me, but just in case you don't I need to back up just a bit... (music)

In 2003, in China a baby girl was born.

She lived in an orphanage for fourteen months. (sigh... I can never get used to that, not ever)

While she was there God was in stirring in our hearts. Although it really wasn't a stirring, it was more of an earthquake. Because we never ever 'dreamed of', 'talked of', 'considered' adoption. It was like one day we wished to be pregnant, and the second it was placed in our hearts we were utterly, totally, convinced, excited, over-the-moon that God would choose us to build our family in such an amazing way.

In August of 2004 we traveled to China to bring our Anna Jiang Qian home as our daughter forever. (I can never get used to that either, not ever)


Some ten years later Anna began to hear a stirring in her heart. A sort of desire, an aching.

At first she began to leave all kinds of notes all over the house to beg us to adopt another baby.

They still hang inside drawers. They are still taped on walls. They are there when I open the door to grab the laundry detergent.

Anna talked about adoption every day. She left daily notes on our pillows. Daily notes for over three months. She did not miss one single night.

When she wrote to Santa back in early December she asked for a baby sister.

And then something changed in her heart. As if an earthquake that Scott and I felt back in 2003 Anna shifted for 'wanting a baby sister' to wanting to help orphans.


We know this because...

On Christmas Eve this year Scott and I found a note on similar paper to the notes on our pillows nightly on the little stool holding the cookies and milk for Santa.

This is the letter.


Dear Santa,
Merry Christmas!
I'm so excited
to see what you
bring me! I've
been trying SO
hard to be
good and it's
so challenging.
But I'm almost.
I was good most of the


time.  Thank
you for the
books!  They
are priceless
treasures.  I have
a Christmas
request.  I want
all the kids
in the orphanage
to get a home.
Every kid. It might
take some time


and I understand
that but I really
don't think it's
very fair that
they don't have
familiys.  Please
help them.
Love, Anna

PS Abigail
has been good
to.  If you ask
me, I'd say she
was better.


I cried.  Again.

On Christmas morning Anna awoke to this next to her letter on the same stool holding the cookie crumbs.


We were busy that day and didn't get back to it until later that night after all of the Christmas festivities.

But she put the disc on our TV. She leaned forward and watched this as tears filled her eyes and her smile was the biggest I've ever seen.  Just that look on her face... oh that look on her face.  



I gave her this letter that "I didn't know what it was". It had arrived earlier in the week and was addressed to Anna.

And she opened it.

She read it outloud and I cried this time.


A Show Hope sponsor for life. Santa's greatest gift to her. Ever. Anna would be a part of their newest program to bring hope to orphans in their care centers.

'Her' baby filled her heart that night in a way no other gift could.

We knelt together as a family and prayed for her baby.


And it was the greatest Christmas night ever.

Oh how we can learn from our children.

I am so blessed to have Anna continue our love for adoption.

I pray that God continues to work through our family. Each one of us.


Proverbs 13:12 ~ "Hope deferred makes the heart sick, but a longing fulfilled is a tree of life."

Other videos we watched that night... way too late in the night.


  1. I cannot imagine a more perfect gift...
    This made my eyes water and my heart smile, Tara...
    What a blessing you ate to so many.

  2. Oh my goodness...I have tear running down my face. What a beautiful gift! What an amazing daughter you have my friend!

  3. What a beautiful, precious, perfect gift!

  4. O.k. totally made me cry... what a lovely gift and more amazing is your beautiful little girl with such a big, kind, caring heart! Blessings to you all!

  5. This made me cry! What a beautiful heart she has and what a special gift!


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