For many families, the decision to adopt begins as a “sense”—an acknowledgement that God may be calling them into a greater story that he is writing for them. For Kyle and Amber Robinson, this sense began once they realized that there were more than 140 million children in the world who needed loving parents. They knew God was leading them to add to their family through adoption.
A CHILD WAITING
One year ago, there was a little girl on the other side of the world, waiting. She was born with a serious heart defect, which left her very sick and in great need of medical help. Abandoned, she might have ended up in a state-run orphanage, where there wouldn’t have been sufficient resources to care for her well.
But God had a different plan for her life. He began orchestrating endless intricate details to write a beautiful story for this precious girl called Eisley.
THE CALL TO ADOPT
Amber and Kyle began to feel the desire to start a family four years ago. After years of struggling with infertility and walking through the heartbreak of a miscarriage, they began to sense that God’s plan for their family might be different from what they originally thought. What they did know with certainty of faith was that whatever God’s plan might be, they would trust in his unfailing provision.
Not long after, Kyle and Amber went to dinner with a couple from their church who had recently adopted a daughter from China. After talking to them, Kyle and Amber felt the first sense that perhaps they should pursue adoption over further fertility treatments. As the Robinsons sought God’s plan through prayer, they began to feel deeply that he was calling them to adopt a child from China. However, they had no idea whether they could afford to adopt and were fearful that the process would be too hard for them.
Given the fact that the minimum age for parents to adopt from China stands at 30, Kyle and Amber had a little over a year to wait before they could formally begin the adoption process. They knew the road ahead wouldn’t be easy, but they also knew in their hearts that they were following the path God intended for them. What they couldn’t know was just how perfectly God was arranging their journey, entwining their hearts with that of their future child.
DISCOVERING SHOW HOPE
One thing that helped Kyle and Amber through the days of waiting was a shared love for Steven Curtis Chapman’s music, which they both grew up listening to. In fact, Kyle’s very first CD was Steven’s album The Great Adventure, which he received from his parents as a Christmas gift when he was around 10 years old!
During the time they were waiting to formally begin the adoption process, they attended one of Steven’s concerts when he came to their area. During the show, they heard wonderful stories about the work Show Hope was doing around the world for orphans and about the care being provided to waiting children in need of medical attention at Show Hope’s Special Care Centers, like Maria’s Big House of Hope (MBHOH) in Luoyang, China. That night, they bought the Shaoey and Dot Adoption Story by Steven and his wife Mary Beth to read to their child someday.
After the concert, Amber wrote an entry in her journal detailing all she had learned about Show Hope and MBHOH. They purchased Steven’s Glorious Unfolding CD at the concert, eventually referring to the album as their “adoption anthem” because it gave them the hope and strength they needed during those long, difficult days of waiting. Understanding more about the care that was being provided to children in need of families at MBHOH gave Kyle and Amber a great deal of encouragement, because it provided some hope that their future child might also receive the love and attention he/she would need as they waited. Though they heard a great deal about Show Hope’s growing reach to help more children, there was simply no way to ensure that their future child would receive that level of care. Still, they continued to hold out hope.
This was the Robinsons’ first exposure to MBHOH and the work of Show Hope, but it wouldn’t be the last as they moved forward in their adoption process. The next would occur while researching the costs associated with adoption, which Kyle and Amber realized they wouldn’t be able to cover on their own. Amber also knew that she wanted to stay home to care for their child, which would also add to their financial need.
Taking everything they had learned about Show Hope into account, they knew that a grant from the organization would be an answer to their prayers, so they sent in their application. Shortly after, they learned that they were awarded a grant! It was a cooperative grant given in combination by Show Hope and Tapestry, a church-based organization in their area that focuses on serving families as they travel along the adoption journey. Kyle and Amber were relieved and thankful that the Lord had provided for their family in this way.
The couple sent their dossier to China on the same day Amber turned 30. Six weeks later, they received their official login date and were given a time-frame of one to nine months until they could expect to receive a referral. To their surprise, they received the referral in just TWO days, along with the first photo they ever saw of their daughter!
The file included details of their daughter’s medical history, through which Kyle and Amber learned that she had significant heart issues and had recently undergone heart surgery. The couple had a cardiologist at Children’s Medical Center in Dallas review her file, and they learned that she would likely need additional surgeries in the coming years, as well as lifelong follow-up appointments to properly treat her heart condition.
Given this hard news, Kyle and Amber immediately turned to prayer, asking for God’s guidance. They were already aware of how precious children with special needs are, and they had seen how Show Hope was enabling more children with needs like these to have the hope of a family. It wasn’t long until it became undeniably clear to them that this precious girl was their daughter. They officially accepted her referral and received pre-approval from China on Christmas Day 2013.
Beyond the photo they were given and the basic information on her heart condition and treatment to date, Kyle and Amber had no other details about their daughter or her whereabouts. As they waited for her on the other side of the world, they prayed that she would receive the care and attention she needed as she recovered from surgery, and they left the rest in God’s hands.
THE BIG DISCOVERY
In an effort to learn about her history, the Robinsons requested an update from their adoption agency. After several weeks, they were excited to receive six additional photos of her! With longer hair and four teeth, she was already looking so much older than she had in the original referral photo. Since the initial information didn’t provide details about where their daughter was receiving care, Kyle and Amber tried to piece together as much information as they could from the photos. One thing they were able to determine was that she was in Luoyang, China. It was at that point that they noticed one small detail in the photos that led to a big discovery. Kyle noticed a unique “key hole” doorway and suddenly remembered where he had seen that same architecture before: in photos of Maria’s Big House of Hope on Show Hope’s website!
Excited at the prospect of their daughter receiving care in a place about which they had learned so many good things, they quickly went to Show Hope’s website to scour for any information that might be there about their daughter. They scrolled through photos of all the children in MBHOH’s care and found what they were hoping for—a special prayer page that Show Hope had listed for a little girl in their care named “Eisley” as she recovered from heart surgery. Eisley’s photo matched the ones that Kyle and Amber had received from their adoption agency. This was their daughter and she was living at Maria’s Big House of Hope!!!
Kyle and Amber were moved to tears as they learned that their daughter was being nurtured and cared for by loving people in a place they knew and trusted. Not only that, but they also now realized that there were people around the world praying for them (as Eisley’s forever family) just as they were also praying for Eisley herself!
The Robinson’s joy overflowed as they pieced together God’s perfect plan for their family. While they had worried about whether their daughter was receiving the care she needed, God had brought her to a place where she would be safe and nurtured. And not just any place, but a place about which Kyle and Amber had come to learn and trust through a shared love of Steven Curtis Chapman’s music! Who else but God could orchestrate such intricate details?
TOGETHER AT LAST
During their travel to China to bring their daughter home, Kyle and Amber felt it was important to make the effort to visit Maria’s Big House of Hope and see the place that played such a large role in their daughter’s survival. During their visit, it quickly became clear to them how great an impact Show Hope and their Care Centers had on the life of their daughter. God used the care provided to not only save the life of their daughter, but also to expose her to the love and nurture she needed to thrive and form healthy relationships. Their daughter laughed and hugged her former nannies and little friends, and it was plain to see that she had been loved and treasured by her caretakers.
Today, their daughter is expressive and vibrant and the Robinsons are confident that it is because of the priceless love she received at MBHOH during that critical time in her life. Her physical life was rescued and her emotional development was nurtured during her time under care. So many children just like Eisley are in desperate need of holistic care, and by the grace of God, this is being provided at Show Hope’s Special Care Centers!
GOD’S PERFECT PLAN
For the Robinsons, it was a long and, at times, difficult path to becoming a forever family, but they never stopped praying for and following God’s call. Looking back, it is so clear that God knitted together every single detail of their incredible adoption journey.
Through the generous support of thousands of donors, sponsors, and supporters, God provided the medical care that Eisley needed. In fact, he used many of those same donors and sponsors to also help provide the finances needed for her to have a forever family. Many, many people joined together to be a part of this little girl’s miraculous story.
Now, Eisley is home with Kyle and Amber, and they have named her Willow Mei. Willow is Kyle and Amber’s first child, but she won’t be an only child for very long—the Robinsons are planning to adopt again!