Friday, April 22, 2011

Supporting The Stewarts

Just in case you missed the post on Tuesday about the Stewart Family, I'm reposting it again on Good Friday.  Last year on April 22, 2010, Chrissie lost her life for over an hour in the PICU.  We were so very grateful that God brought her back.  It seems crazy to me that this anniversary falls on Good Friday, the day Jesus gave His life for you and me.  He did this so we could have eternal life, and as much as I was grateful that God sent Chrissie back to us last year on this day, I'm even more grateful that Jesus gave His life for us so we will be able to live with Him in heaven forever and ever and ever. 

I pray that every person on this earth will receive His precious gift, the gift of His blood, shed for you and me.  I cannot imagine missing out on eternal life in heaven.  I pray each and every Believer will be given a heart like His, one that loves, helps, and serves the least of these, as His Word tells to do.  Please help bring Ian home.  It's Day 4 of the first week of Boss Your Heart Memorial Blitz.  Show your support for the Stewart Family, in memory of Chrissie, in celebration of all Christ has done for us and continues to do.  It takes an army to bring just one orphan home, and we need your support to help us spread the word to God's army of supporters!!!  Please repost this plea to your Facebook, Twitter, blog, email, etc. to spread the word, and most of all, please pray, just like you did for Chrissie, that God will raise the ransom to rescue precious Ian!

Here are links to Day 4 of Chrissie's battle, April 22, 2010 (most of these are really short posts, like only a sentence or two):  Post 1, Post 2, Post 3, Post 4, Post 5, Post 6, Post 7, Post 8, Post 9, Post 10, Post 11, Post 12 (if you can only read one post, read this one, Post 12), Post 13 (well, Post 13 gives Post 12 a good run for its money)

Oh, and there's a 15-year-old girl in Haiti who needs a paper-ready family to commit to her within the next 4 weeks, or she will forever remain an orphan.  Click HERE to read about her.  Please pray for her and spread the word in search of her forever family!

Here's Tuesday's post, introducing you to the Stewart Family, who were led to their son, Ian, by Chrissie, through God's sovereignty:

It is  my great honor to introduce to you this week's featured child/need:  Ian, who is being adopted by The Stewart Family.  I was brought to tears when Gretchen Stewart contacted me a few weeks ago to let me know their story, which came about because of Chrissie.  Oh how I wish I could have a record of every family who was moved to adopt because of Chrissie!!!!!  Hearing stories like this is like a sweet salve to our hurting hearts.  I hope you'll be blessed by reading The Stewart's story, and I pray you'll bless them abundantly with your prayers and support!

The Stewart's Adoption Story
Written by Gretchen Stewart

Her smile saved him – and us!

I first came across the world of blogs in 2006, after my son Ari was born with some special needs. I was searching for answers on how other parents lived life with a special child. 4 years later, after turning reading blogs once a week, into a daily habit, I came across a small button for a little girl with a big smile, asking for prayer. Her name was Chrissie. Her smile had me hooked, and before my head knew what my hand was doing, I clicked.

That one click brought me here, to Lorraine’s blog. That one click also changed the lives of my family and many of my friends. I followed Chrissie’s story, sometimes 3 times a day while she fought the most elegant of princess battles, while she bossed her heart – and reached out to so many others to actually change their life paths. I went back and read through the Patterson’s blog, I learned all about Chrissie. I learned she was adopted, and I found a link there amidst her story, and before my head knew what my hand was doing, I clicked on Reece’s Rainbow.

Then…Chrissie went to heaven. Her presence though, never left me, nor the many images of her joyful smile. The pain her family felt when she had to go, and the victory they found to get back up and keep on going…I knew that had to result in something really positive. So, with the mantra, “Boss your Heart” playing over and over in my head, and with princess Chrissie smiling down at what I felt like was our family, we stepped out beyond what we thought was the limit of our faith, and we answered the call to rescue another.

This is Ian. He just turned 5. He has been an orphan since birth. Cast away because he has Down Syndrome, because of his ethnic heritage, and because of his bad heart. His chances for adoption? Millions and millions to one. The chances I would fall in love with Chrissie’s smile and her story, and be so moved by it that we too would adopt a child? Who even knows?  But odds, when GOD is a part of what is happening in your life, are not important. God knew it would be Chrissie that would shine a light from heaven to lead us here.

Last week we met Ian for the very first time. Our son. Chrissie’s memory was never far, as we crossed over and back more than 10,000 miles. This incredible gift, the life that Chrissie’s story and legacy has brought to us by helping us to have the will and faith to adopt an orphan with special needs, is something I can never tell that sweet girl thank you, thank you, thank you, for enough. Adoption changes you, forever. Orphan adoption changes you in ways you never imagined. Our family has been so blessed through this incredible journey, and it never would have happened without me seeing Chrissie’s sweet smile one day almost a year ago.

We didn’t know until last Monday that Ian’s little heart needs help. We thought it was taken care of in infancy, we thought he was good to go. He’s not. We were asked to make an on the spot decision – to refuse or accept heart surgery for him there, in Russia. We refused. Reece’s Rainbow has seen the loss of several children recently who had families coming for them, but who faced heart surgery under archaic conditions. Ian is thin, small, and needs to come home to get fed up, get loved up, and get seen by American doctors to prepare him, and us, for his own heart battle.

Our prayer now is that Ian’s heart will wait until we can return to complete his adoption. How long? Well, that depends on all of us. We have USCIS approval and our court dossier is ready for submission. All we lack now is the remaining money to free our boy and bring him home. Russian adoptions are some of the most expensive out there, and for Ian’s life, we are glad to lay before him $47,566.00. Today, we remain $18,000.00 short. We cannot return for Ian until we raise that amount. If we can raise it fast, like before the end of May, Ian will come home this summer, before the doctors try to operate on him there.

We humbly invite you to help! and we thank you too, for sharing in another one of Chrissie’s powerful works, so that we might save Ian and get him home in the next 2-3 months.

We have a unique and beautiful fundraiser happening right now for Ian. Our perfectly imperfect fundraiser can be found on our blog, where you can also see video of our little man dancing to the a,b,c’s the first time we met him!

or here

Ian has an extensive website too, that loves to be shared!

In Him,
Gretchen, Craig, and Ari – The Stewart Family

To DONATE to help Ian come home, click HERE!

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