Wednesday, February 17, 2016

Race Day

The hot dry air hit my face early Valentine's Day morning as I exited my car. Two Venti Starbucks in hand, one for me and one for Lisa. It was 6:15 am and the sun had barely began to peak over the surrounding hills of  Walnut Grove Park, but I could already feel the weather was unusually warm for a mid-February day.

This time last year, so many people were serving us. It felt strange and almost wrong. We were not worthy of this kind of love. These kind of blessings. Why us? I questioned.

I heard the words "Thank you" fall from Lisa's mouth almost a trillion times on Sunday, knowing what she was feeling...I just smiled, as to say it's ok.

I stood in those running shoes only a short year ago. It's ok.  I was up at 5 am last Valentine's Day too. It's ok.  I fundraised like a mad woman last year. It's ok. I pleaded with God in my prayers. It's ok.

I hated every moment of fundraising for my kids, but serving others has become a large part of  my walk with Christ and is so much more fun.

An international adoption is a ton of money.  It is a paralyzing amount of money.  Money the average person doesn't have just sitting around when God calls you to adopt. Money that seems nearly impossible to imagine, even though you are desperate to free a child from an institution.  Desperate to give them a life, a mom, a dad, a grandma, a grandpa, aunts, uncles, siblings.  You see the amount as so big, and too much.

But our God is bigger than so big and He is much more than too much. God puts people in our lives and plans in our hearts. He gives us a path that we follow, He gives us guidance and determination.


Last year, as we cleaned up our Faith Hope Love 5k, Adam and I decided to continue it every year. Valentine's Day is a day we celebrate love. We decided to sponsor another family adopting each year. To give, like we had been given. To love like our kids had been loved.

The Molnar family is a family whose kiddos went to Adam's School. They have 3 boys, and the oldest was a student in Adam's 5th grade class 3 years ago.  We would occasionally see them at church and catch up with them as the years continued to pass.

That is until last spring, Lisa had contacted me to talk about hosting...
God blessed them with a 13 year old girl, Masha. They shared their life with her this past summer but their intention was never to adopt.
It was only after she went home, back to Ukraine, that they knew what they had to do. If you like to know more about the Molnar's Adoption please click here, or if you feel called to give please click here. (All donations are tax deductible.)

Adam and the girls came around 7am to help put the final touches on the 3.11 mile course. Lily helped draw arrows in chalk, while Yana organized t-shirts and sweatshirts, and Elliot guarded the donuts.
Enthusiasm filled the warm air as the runners began to arrive. Seeing many of the same beautiful faces as last year, and even more new ones gave me a sense of joy.

The race horn blew a little after 8:20 and it started. Runners in the front and walkers in the back, all wearing a grey shirt with the words "Faith, Hope, Love." Volunteers at their stations waiting to cross runners at the street, or pass out waters to those who needed it.

Last year, Alex and Yana were only a distant dream. They were in Ukraine scarcely having 2 meals a day. Enduring verbal abuse from caretakers and teachers, hoping their life would one day finally change.

On Sunday, Alex, Yana, Lily and Elliot ran the race. The Klimas family kids, I am one proud mommy.

Yana ran with her sisters, encouraging them to keep going, telling them they could do it. Holding her heavy four year old sister when she said she could not take one more step or just decided to sit down in the middle of the course.
Alex began the race with the runners in the front.

More than one hundred and seventy people ran or walked on Valentine's Day. They came to show support for an amazing family. They came to show support of an amazing walk of FAITH. They came to give HOPE for a thirteen year old girl. And they came to celebrate LOVE for a great family.


Last year, Alex and Yana were orphans but this year they are my son and daughter. Last year, they lived in an orphanage, this year they participated in bringing Masha home. Last year, Alex didn't get to run, but this year he won the race.


Maybe Masha will win next year. :)

"And now these three remain, faith, hope and love but the greatest of these is love."
1 Corinthians 13:13








  1. A beautiful, tearful read. <3

    1. How are you? Praying for your adventure. How has it been going? Anything specific I can pray for?

  2. Hoping all is well as you wrap up your school year and prepare for summer. As I pray for our host child this summer, I lift up your family as well.

  3. Wow! I have just spent the last 3 mornings reading all your posts. I have such emotion and we haven't even started our journey!! We are hosting a 14 year old boy this summer for 8 weeks. We feel so strongly that God has arranged all if it...I feel like I have already fallen in love with this child. I expect it to not be the same time I have no idea what to expect.
    We already have 3 young children and the thought of keeping up with a 14 year old BOY teenager (coming from an orphanage) is stressing out my kitchen!
    I feel encouraged after reading your blog....and might possibly inquire about how you set up the Feb run. I feel like we will pursue adoption but my hubbs is taking it slower. brain is telling my heart to slow down. Thanks for sharing your lives!
    Cristin Vosburgh

  4. I just want to let you know that I pick up our host child in a few hours. Thinking of you and your family.

    Please email if you'd like to read our host blog. only k8 at yahoo .com

  5. Thinking of you! How's hosting.
    Praying for you, Gods holding you!