All of the items were given to us by our friends, James and Stephanie. James and Stephanie were in the Ethiopia program to adopt a daughter. Their adoption journey did not go as planned and they lost four referrals. They recently decided to withdraw from the Ethiopia program. As you can imagine this has been a very difficult time for them. My heart breaks for them and it really is so hard to understand why this has happened.
Stephanie contacted me a few weeks ago to ask if I would like the items they bought when they traveled to Ethiopia. She wanted to give us the items, so we could sell them and use the money to help bring our daughter home. I have to be honest, at first I did not want to accept the items. I knew they were meant for the their daughter, but she really wanted us to have them. I am humbled and honored that in the midst of their pain, they have chosen to bless our family and our daughter with this gift.
A few weeks ago, Justin and I received a matching grant from Brittany's Hope. Brittany's Hope is a grant organization that helps adoptive parents bring home their special needs' children. Brittany's Hope was created to honor the founder's adoptive daughter, Brittany, who passed away in 1999. All of the money we make in this auction will be matched by Brittany's Hope.I think the story of Brittany's Hope and the story of James and Stephanie are similar. They are both stories of hope in the midst of pain.
Please pray for our friends, James and Stephanie. They are trying to figure out what their next steps are and I know they want to follow after the Lord. You can visit their blog, Life in the Gateway City, to read more of their story.
I plan to post the auction items tonight, so stay tuned.