Last May I was in Orlando, Florida as a part of my job (sponsoring 60+ high school seniors, tough job, but somebody has to do it). One afternoon I took some time off and met two wonderful ladies. They were once “just kids” in the church youth group (circa 1985). I was the youth pastor. Tisha and Alisa have become godly women who inspire me.
We rendezvoused for a 25 year reunion at a nice restaurant at Downtown Disney. Our lunch turned into a 3 hour conversation that was just a little bit of heaven for me. Toward the end of our time I had decided that one of life’s greatest privileges is meaningful conversation. We spoke openly about our lives and all that God has been doing in our 25 years. Our passion for God, life, and one another is mutual. Our fellowship was rich, rich, rich.
In that conversation Alisa showed us pictures of her kids. They sure are growing. And then she announced that they are expecting a third! What? I was happy, but I thought, “Wow, that’s great, but you’re how old?” By the grace of God I did not say that outloud , no insensitive outbursts… this time. — She was absolutely glowing, and that made me very happy.
Then Alisa said, “Here’s a picture of him.”
A sonogram? No. She turned the page in her picture book and said, “Here he is, we love him so much already!”
It was a photo of an infant. I took a double–take. This baby had a severe cleft-palate. The light went on and I understood. Bill and Alisa were adopting a special needs child. And these words spilled from my heart, “How beautiful.”
This weekend, the first weekend of February, 2012, Bill and Alisa are in China. They have been waiting since last May for the travel documents
that would permit them to go get their son.
I remember Alisa’s famous words to me that day. “We have prayed to be found faithful in doing God’s work. We have friends who have adopted unwanted Chinese baby girls, and then we learned about little boys with special needs. They need families too. We thought ‘if not us—then who?’”
She talked about Bill’s job in the Air Force and the kinds of medical benefits his family receives. They have viewed their assignments in life, their gifts and abilities, as a part of God’s sovereing design. As stewards of all that God has done in their lives, they want to be used as God’s instruments of love, grace, and hope.
This weekend little Mr. Hudson will join his family. After more than ten months of praying and planning for their son, Alisa will hold her son.
To God be the glory.
And by the way, Alisa was firm in the fact that she wanted his name to reflect his birthplace and unique story that is a gift from God. The name “Hudson” is from one of China’s most famous missionaries, Hudson Taylor , 1832-1905.