A Greater Understanding of God's Love for Us

November is National Adoption Awareness Month. In celebration of  National Adoption Awareness Month, we're sharing stories from different families at Redeemer.

The following blog is from Stephanie Sund, a member of Redeemer, reflecting on the adoption of their daughter, Mekdes.

I had the immense pleasure of spending a morning alone with Mekdes last week while my other two were at school (we're at two different schools again this year).  I suggested going out for donuts, she asked if we might be able to go for a bike ride instead.  Yes! That would be MUCH healthier, great idea!  We packed up our bikes and headed to the lake for a ride.  It was a beautiful fall day with yellow leaves reflecting in the lake and I was so glad to be there, on the bike I hadn't ridden in ages, with my girl who is a beacon of light and joy in my life- so incredibly far from where we were a year ago! But, this time, instead of reflecting on how she has changed, I started thinking about how much I have changed because of her.  I am so much healthier now because of her and here are a few examples:

  •   I have never exercised as much or as consistently as I have since Mekdes came home, what at first was a stress relief is now a healthy daily habit.
  • I am more organized, first because with 3 kids I just need to be, but also because Mekdes needed routine.  Getting our family into routine made me realize how much we all thrive in knowing what is expected of us when. I feel that we flounder less with our time and get more done with less stress.  Life has enough kinks to keep us from getting bored, our routine helps our lives run smoother!
  • We eat more beans/legumes, Mekdes really likes beans and it winds up that the rest of the family enjoys them too.  I started visiting the dry goods section of the grocery store and making more recipes with legumes and vegetables, only eating meat 2-3 times a week.  Some meals, like the  sprouted bean soup I made tonight, wasn't my favorite, but it was full of good food and both my girls devoured it, so I'll make it again.
  • Spiritually I feel that I have a greater understanding of God's love for us and adopting us into His family.  He doesn't love us because we are beautiful, in His love we are made beautiful.

When I look back at the first difficult year with Mekdes I don't think so much of how hard it was, the predominant thought is HOW BEAUTIFUL IT IS! It was a beautiful year! Yes hard, but my goodness, what a gift to see this child's life transform before us! I was thinking all this as we pedaled along, and out of the blue Mekdes said, "Mom, I love you!" and I wanted to jump off my bike and squeeze her so tight, because I love her SO much and she is such a gift, and I began to wonder if I would be so awestruck by my love for her if we hadn't struggled so hard to get here.   We began to peddle uphill and Mekdes spoke up "I don't like the uphills, downhills are much funner." Then as if to answer my question, she continued "Guess you can't have the downhills without the uphills." And as we sped down the hill, Mekdes shouted into the wind "Thank you downhill!" and in laughter my heart echoed  "Yes! Thank you! Thank you! Thank you downhill!"

AdoptionClaude Atcho