Hi everyone! My name is Liz Baker, and I am currently adopting an 8 year old girl from the Philippines! Here is my story.
I am a Georgia native, but attended Grace College in Winona Lake, Indiana, from 2006-2010. While in college, I was recruited to go teach at the International Schools of China after graduation. I grew up with a desire to live overseas one day, so I flew across the globe and started a new life in Shenyang, China. During my first year on staff, our high school started a service trip for our students to the Philippines. This yearly trip became a huge part of my life and work. We helped with a variety of ministries in the outskirts of Manila, but a primary purpose was building relationships with the kids at the Children’s Home and leading them each evening in devotions, worship, and games. Filipino children are so easy to fall in love with, and over the years I developed a special bond with several children in particular. They remembered me when I came back, and I continued to pray for them throughout the year. However, each year when I asked them for prayer requests, their response was the same: “I want a family.”
After praying fervently for seven years for these children to be adopted, and particularly seeing the great need for older children to be adopted, God started opening my heart to the idea of adopting as a single parent. Once I started praying, researching, and seeking council from close friends and family, I received the confirmation I needed from the Lord to begin the journey. This happened in March 2015. The process has been filled with ups and downs and crazy adventures. I’ve completed two home studies in China, one in South Carolina (last year), and one Georgia (this year). I have been fingerprinted in four different countries (China, Thailand, the UAE, and the USA) as I sought to get my FBI background check completed multiple times. I had to submit and then resubmit my dossier, and I have worked with a total of four different adoption agencies. For three and a half years I felt like a hamster spinning the wheel of adoption paperwork, and for over a year I was turned down for each child that I identified from the Special Home Finding list as a potential match.
In the darkest part of my journey, when I felt the most discouraged and completely in over my head, God spoke to me while on a prayer walk. I wrote a blog post about that conversation entitled “Failing Greatly, “ which you can read here: https://lizteachinginchina.blogspot.com/2016/09/failing-greatly.html
. After hearing this truth from God, I was given the peace and confirmation I needed to continue the journey, no matter where it took me. So when my agency of 3 years closed down last April, I chose not to quit, but to find a new agency and keep pursuing the child that I knew God had for me.
The blessing finally came last October, when I received the call that I was matched with a precious 8 year old girl. My heart could not be more thrilled, and I have known since that day that she was the one I was waiting for this whole time. The process has been moving along quickly ever since. I received her immigration approval in January 2019, and I am waiting for her VISA to be finalized before I am given travel approval. My best guess and hope is that I’ll be traveling this April – which is perfect because it’s also her birthday month!
I’m excited to partner with Raise the Dough as I seek to raise the final funds I need to bring my daughter home. Thanks to everyone for your prayers and support!