If I'm really being honest here, I will admit right now that I still have a bit of a twinge in my stomach whenever I think about all of those unsold chickens! Although, thinking about Sonya's contemplative inquiries following the chicken delivery to the Rescue Mission quickly dissipates these initial "feelings" of angst. Sonya - "Mom, I'd really like to learn more about this place. Is it run by Christians?" or "Mom, do any of these men have drinking problems?" or "Mom, these men really need to stop smoking."
The day following the parking lot sale, when I was probably at my lowest point emotionally due to extreme exhaustion, that is when God revealed to me that our fund raiser was not about being blessed with a lot of money but about receiving blessings of a very different nature. God showed me He wanted me to think on those things. So I did.
Here's the list of blessings that came through the sale and through not selling the chickens:
1. All our friends and church family who showed up at 6-7 am ( I was just reminded that some friends came and helped as early as 5:30 am!) and stayed as long as they could or even until the very end, without complaint but with joy, enthusiasm, generosity and kindness. (And all the men who came over the day before to help us load the uhaul! So sorry! I didn't mean to forget about you on the first write-up!)
2. All our friends and church family who continue to show up and walk along beside us through this extremely joyous yet stressful time in our lives.
3. All our friends, church family and strangers who endeavored to make considerable donations of goods to our sale to make it even possible. I do not forget for one moment just how much effort it took to sort through belongings, box them up, arrange for drop off and make sure they were worth selling.
4. All the people who purchased Sonya's art work to support her in paying for her own airline ticket to China. Btw, she wants to use part of her earnings to go toward her sister's ticket as well. (You gotta love that girl!)
5. All of the words of support and comfort spoken to me by friends, church family and the Lions Club members when I burst out crying when realizing we were not going to sell 400 chickens and make 1,800.00 to put toward the adoption as I had originally anticipated. No one, not one single person, accused me of being a big, fat crybaby for having a big, fat meltdown over the reality of it all. Because really, as a GROWN woman, it's really kind of embarrassing to break down in front of perfect strangers and people I have only known for the last year or two who share no history with me to know that I actually am very stable and not be made to feel ashamed. Thank you, thank you for that!
6. The pure JOY I felt in my heart when Dennis Stoll of the Lions Club suggested we make a donation of leftover chicken to the Rescue Mission. Man, did that feel "right on"! To feed the hungry, now what can be better than that (besides rescuing an orphan, that is)? Which God can do btw, through us, when we are willing to do our part.
7. Watching some people purchase more chickens than they had planned on just to soften the blow.
8. Having a dear friend hand me $80.00 a few days later to cover our chicken losses. Because of her generosity and willingness to obey the urging of the Holy Spirit, we did not lose a single cent on the chickens!
9. Watching people get excited over finding treasures at our sale which would bless them. I did want to make money, but it was equally important to me that no one leave our sale feeling gouged or taken advantage of but looked out for and blessed.
10. All of the prayers on our behalf lifted up to God our Father to bring to fruition His good and perfect will involving the adoption of our precious little girl! We know we are blessed beyond measure! We do not take your love and kindness for granted! Thank you, thank you for caring so much and not making us walk alone through our long and at times gruelling wait.
So here we go again, preparing for our next big sale on Friday and Saturday, June 3rd and 4th at 819 Bimini Lane located in Caribe Community off of Reed Road and Lake Avenue. Almost immediately following our parking lot sale, more donations were coming in to help us make more money for Mei Mei's release. Randy calls me a "Maniac" because I just keep on going and doing what needs to be done for the cause of our little one. It's really God, though, who provides me with the impetus and drive to keep at it. Of my own accord, I might decide to sit in the corner of a room, pull my knees up to my chest, put my head down and cry like a big baby non-stop. Seriously.