Here is the "short" version of how we got to where we are now: preparing to move our family to Ukraine indefinitely.
I (Kim) have wanted to be a missionary nurse for as long as I can remember. I went to college directly out of high school to get my nursing degree with a minor in missions. All throughout my teen years, besides having big hair and horrid fashion sense, I also had a huge love for missions. I traveled overseas every summer throughout high school and college, and as I went, God cemented those dreams of caring for orphans through nursing deep in my heart.
Jed had his first taste of foreign missions in 1999 when he and his dad went to Albania to serve the Kosovar refugees. During that visit Jed's world view dramatically changed, and his heart for the world grew enormously. That was a pivotal time for Jed's parents as well...they ended up moving to Kosova as missionaries after that trip, and still serve there to this day!
When Jed and I met we knew we both had hearts to serve orphans and serve overseas. We just knew deep down we were not going to stay in America forever. So, we prayed, served in the church, and waited on God's timing. While we waited to serve orphans overseas, we served the orphans in our community by becoming foster parents. We fostered medically fragile babies for several years, and in March of 2012 we adopted our son Seth through foster care. If God kept us in the US just to give us Seth, he was well worth the wait. :)
Now down to the nitty gritty. Here's when things began to get a little crazy:
Fall 2010- Kim read this post on a blog (randomly, I'd never seen that blog before that one night) and our lives would never be the same. Finding out about need of the disabled orphans in Ukraine was like a punch in the gut- in a good way! We knew we had to act. It was different this time.
February 20, 2011- We found "the one" and fell in love. We could not ignore this little boy. Again, we knew we had to act.
March 2011- God began to speak clearly that we should go ahead and pursue the adoption!
May 27, 2011- After much prayer we sent in our commitment papers to Reece's Rainbow.
June 2, 2011- We received word on this day that our boy was being adopted by another family. We were devastated for us, but happy for him. Now he would never see the inside of an institution. Now he wouldn't have to go one day more without knowing the love of a family. But what did all that mean? We knew we were being obedient...now what, God?
August 2011- We waited on God and He continued to speak. We decide to "step out of the boat" and see what He is up to in Eastern Europe. Maybe instead of adopting one child, we are supposed to go to Ukraine and use our professional skills to help many children? We say "Yes" to God.
April 14, 2012- We left on a jet plane to go check out what the Father was doing in Ukraine...not sure of what would happen when we arrived...but very sure in the One who is sent us!!!
May 2, 2012- Back from Eastern Europe. Boy did God speak! We said "Yes" to Him and started preparing to move our family to Eastern Europe. WAHOOOOOOOOO!!!!
October 2012- We rented out our house and are living with a friend for free!!! Saving, praying, paying off student loans, waiting on the Lord for next steps.
February 2013- We began fundraising and sharing our story, spreading the word about God's children in Ukraine.
March 25, 2013- We are invited to volunteer at Mission to Ukraine in Zhitomir, Ukraine, Praise God!!!
May 2013- We visited Mission to Ukraine to nail down some details of our move.
If all goes well with visas and support-raising we plan to move to Ukraine in November 2013.
Step by step we say "Yes" to Him, and step by step He is making the way!