Wednesday, May 23, 2007

Lana was just leaving the house for work when she got the email. She read it quickly, called me up, and asked who sent this to me. I told her Judy did, and Lana in pique of frustration and maybe a little anger told me to just keep those emails and don’t send them to her any more and she had to go. She hung up the phone and blew out of the house on her way to work. This did not faze me nor did it dampen my thoughts of where this might lead. From the time I got Krista’s initial email from Judy I felt completely at peace and ease of where this path might take us no matter where that might be. This was not something I wanted, not something I didn’t want; I was just totally ready to follow the road. Lana, on the other hand, is one that needs a little time to become acclimated to a new idea and once she does, she catches fire on whatever God leads her to. So, the initial resistance from her really meant nothing, after she had a chance to think about the situation she would enlighten me on what she truly felt about the situation.

Lana returned from work and reread the letter from Krista. She then read this blog from start to finish. The picture of Edgars with the butterfly on his finger and the whole story on the blog touched her deeply. She wanted this boy to be part of our family. She also knew she was supposed to send the message on to others. Lana did send the email on to her support groups, friends and our church family, printed out the picture and went back to work. As she happily bounced into work, she held up the picture of Edgars and announced, “Is there anyone you know who would like to adopt this boy?” Everyone started to laugh and asked her what our son James had done that we want to place him for adoption? The 2 boys look so much alike and we have a photo that is almost the same of James. She filled them in on what was going on and in her mind we were just a phone call away from an addition to our family.

That evening Lana informed me she wanted to move forward. So, I sent an email to Krista, indicating we would like to meet Edgars. We cancelled all of our weekend plans and waited for a call or an email back. That call back from Krista never came. It never came because Krista and her family had taken Edgars to another town to meet the family who had expressed an interest in adopting Edgars also. They had received the letter before us and had already contacted Krista and Jennifer before we even knew about the situation. On Friday evening, we received a call from Jennifer letting us know Edgars was meeting a possible forever family and they would let us know how that went. The children, including Edgars, were leaving on Tuesday I believe and were supposed to return from this visit on Sunday evening. We then made arrangements to be off work to go see him on Monday because we just felt we were supposed to be his forever family. Now all we had to do is wait until Sunday evening and find out when we would meet Edgars.
Edgars Arrival for 2007 Summer Visit: 19 days and a wakeup

Thursday, May 17, 2007

Edgars Arrival for 2007 Summer Visit: 25 days and a wakeup
First a little about the Johannsen Family. My wife and I met on the Internet and were married in July of 2001. We have a 10 year old boy who is everything any parent could ever ask for. He is smart, funny, good in school, popular, a good athlete, well mannered, and loving. James is more than any parent could ever expect out of their child. As you can tell I love him dearly. My wife Lana, is really Svitlana, and she is a native Ukrainian and James was born there also. We were able to have children of our own but never felt the need, we had James. We talked about adopting a Ukrainian child, but always decided against it because we had James; it also is not looked on favorably by the culture in Ukraine even though they desperately need help. Our family was comfortable and close and we felt so complete. There was no need to add to it other than our three Dachshunds, Calico cat and our Parrot. We live happily in a wonderful small town 80 miles southeast of the Atlanta Airport. We are active in our Church and Lana has been the key in starting a mission program back to her village where they are just finishing a church and have had 3 very successful mission trips in the last 4 years. Our life was full and our mission laid out in front of us, or so we thought.

It was right around the first of the year, and I was in the office at work, It was almost deserted as most folks were taking vacation when I received an email. This email was sent to me by a wonderful Christian woman about the heartbreaking story of this great little boy who had found a family who loved him and wanted to bring him into their home and were unable to due to a reason beyond their control. This little boy was from Latvia. It was a letter that Krista had sent out to a couple of people and they sent it on and on and on. My wife and I get all kinds of things like this because it seem everyone thinks all of those countries over there are part of the same country almost as if the Soviet Union was still around. So, I walked to the woman’s office who sent me the email, spun a chair around backwards, sat down, leaned on the back and said, “Ok, what’s the deal?” She calmly looked at me and said, “I was told to send it to you.” “Why?” I asked. “I don’t know, I just was told to send it to you,” she responded. Since I didn’t know anyone on the email list other than the person who sent it to me I wanted to know who told her, so I asked her. She coolly calmly said,- “God told me”. At that I got up with out saying anything else, went back to my office and sent it off to Lana.

Wednesday, May 16, 2007

Hello to all of you who are drawn to this blog as I have been. My name is TJ Johannsen and our family is welcoming Edgars into our home this summer for a hosting. In the near future I will be posting regularly on our journey, what has brought us to this point and where we are headed. From what I have been told many people from all over the world visit this site to follow this special little boy's journey in the effort to find a forever family. The power of this story is compelling, I find myself rereading it over and over again even after I know the story by heart. My additions to the blog are in large part a diary for Edgars and myself to always have as the years go by to remember this special time, the rest is to open up this story to the rest of you who care about a little boy who needs a family and love. I will post my first installment in the next day or so. See you then.
Edgars Arrival for 2007 Summer Visit: 26 days and a wakeup

Monday, May 07, 2007

Outpouring of Devine Love.

The greatest and most wonderful of all the blessings the Holy Spirit offers us is the outpouring of God’s love.

… God has poured out his love into our hearts by the Holy Spirit, whom he has given us.

Romans 5:5

The Holy Spirit reminds me of this verse every day now since our mandatory Orientation last Saturday. It is not human love. It is God’s love. The whole, endless, unconditional love of God. What a blessing it is that we are God’s channels of His love!
I pray that each hosted child will experience this love and will carry it through all their lives.