Bracelets for Our Brothers
Help Us Bring Our Brothers Home
Why Bracelets?
Posted on November 28th, 2016

“Each of you should use whatever gift you have received to serve others, as faithful stewards of God’s grace in its various forms.”  ​ Peter 4:10
When Neil and I were first reviewing the files of our two girls, we discovered they had a love for all things artistic.  When we were on our first trip to visit them, we went to a play place similar to Chuck-E Cheese-- pizza and play.  At one of the play stations, there were arts and crafts the kids could do for a small fee.  We paid for the girls to be able to make bracelets.  We quickly discovered they had quite the knack for it.  We also discovered that there were lots of tools available to them to make the bracelets, but they chose not to use any of them.  When we asked our translator to ask them why they didn't use them, they responded that the orphanage didn't have any of those tools so they preferred to make them using only their hands.
The girls worked tirelessly to make us several bracelets.  With orphanage-induced short attention spans and strange behaviors, this was one of the only times we saw them quiet, engaged, thoughtful, and creative on our first trip.
The five month wait between our first trip and second trip to take custody of our girls was torturous.  Neil and I wore our bracelets every day as a reminder of why we were doing this and as a source of strength.
Like most things in their lives, since coming home, their bracelet making has improved.  Their ability to think creatively and make new designs has come a long way.  Their willingness to be committed to excellence and craftsmanship has come a long way.  They can now focus on this tedious task for many hours at a time.  The have gained the courage to take risks and try new designs.  They are able to critique and evaluate their work and decide if someone would want to spend money on the bracelets or if the product is not up to their standards.

Therefore, in many ways, the bracelets are a beautiful metaphor for our lives together.  Our girls started with so much potential, but they lacked the love, support, resources, and encouragement to take risks and to have a foundation on which to build.  Now that these fundamental aspects of life are in place for them, they are blossoming.  They are thriving.  They are doing and achieving at incredible rates.  Although they still use their hands only to make the bracelets, the bracelets are are far more intricate and detailed.  But the two pictured above will always be our favorite, and we still have them in a safe place.

Scripture tells us a lot about using our talents for the service of others.  I have realized since beginning this project with my girls, that part of the reason our first adoption was so difficult was that I didn't have a real sense of purpose and drive.  Making the bracelets as a family has given us all a sense of purpose, service, and a way to get that energy out in a creative and productive way.  There is tangible evidence of our love for each other and for our future sons.  We can proudly display our love everywhere we go.

​“Now there are varieties of gifts, but the same Spirit; and there are varieties of service, but the same Lord; and there are varieties of activities, but it is the same God who empowers them all in everyone.”  1 Corinthians 12:4-6

Our family fundamentally believes that God provided us with this talent to be used for the good of others.  For right now, that good is for the brothers of our daughters-- our future sons.  However, we pledge going forward to never stop using our talents for the service of other families who commit themselves to adoption.  We believe in His provision.

 


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