This is part 17 of our adoption story. I am only about one-third of the way through the story. If you'd like to read about how God brought Rebekah home to us, go back and start with Part 1 and meet me back here each day as I tell a little more of God's amazing story in blessing us with our daughter.
We had about a week to prepare for the hearing. That week was filled with both preparation with our lawyer and bonding moments with Deer. Two incidences that week stand out as causing a crises of faith for us.
The first one happened one afternoon while Kuhn Joe was sitting at our table discussing the testimony we would give the judges. He wanted us to lie. Mark and I can't remember exactly what he wanted us to lie about. We do remember well, though, the conversation becoming very heated and all parties having to leave the table for a breather. Somehow, our Christian lawyer wanted us to lie. What was up with that? We knew that before God, we could not, no matter the outcome. Like the potential of being bribed, we knew in advance we could not participate in anything questionable. We almost lost our legal representative that day. We think he may have still lied in Thai, without us knowing it. But we spoke the plain truth to the judges on the day of the hearing.
The second crises of faith also included our lawyer. We had many meetings with various social workers, orphanage staff, and others in order to prepare for the hearing. There was a lot of hustling our five-member family around Chiang Mai, along with Deer and her family, our legal counselors, and orphanage staff. At one point, Zoe (then 5) got into the car of our lawyer's wife. We were going to caravan to a meeting. That car sped away, while the other cars waited for final word on a meeting point. In that short time, the meeting was cancelled, but Zoe's car was long gone and they didn't have a cell phone.
Our five year old was driving around Chiang Mai (have you ever driven in Thailand?!) in the car of people we did not know well, and bound for a destination at which we would not be, and we had no hope of reaching her. Moms, can you feel my panic? My five year old was stranded with strangers in Thailand. I was beside myself. I could only pace back and forth in the yard and pray that God would bring her home. She was gone for about an hour, which felt like a lifetime. I was so relieved when the car rounded the corner of our street and her big brown eyes were peering out the passenger window.
The other events that week were really sweet. We had a blast with Deer.