Closed Doors and Doorstep Deliveries

God answered my prayer in a very specific way.

Tiffany Castleberry February 06, 2015
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You are going to have to bring a baby to our doorstep.

That’s the phrase I prayed to God after we got the news that we weren’t chosen…again.

Not long after our son came home from Ethiopia in 2012, we knew God was calling us to adopt again. We tried adopting from Ethiopia a second time and saw doors shut all around us. We switched our paperwork to the Haiti program but that never felt right either. We took classes to adopt from foster care, but it had been months with no progress. We did all of the paperwork to adopt an infant domestically through private adoption, but after presenting to several expectant moms and not being chosen, we were spent.

Emotional uncertainty followed by disappointment can really wear you down after a while.

The day after we got an email saying that yet another expectant mom chose another family, my husband said he didn’t know how many more times we could go through this. Maybe we missed it. Maybe this wasn’t God’s plan for us. Maybe we were supposed to be content with the children we had and move on.

But that didn’t feel right either.

I prayed honestly.

“God, I don’t know how much more of this we can take. We want to follow you, but this is hard. We want to let you grow our family however you see fit, but we aren’t going to pursue any more children. If you bring us a child, we will say yes, but at this point you are going to have to bring a baby to our doorstep.”

It was an emotional prayer. I was defeated. But God is so kind and gentle. He knows my innermost thoughts and the motivations of my heart. He heard me, and He answered.

Two days later I was going about my normal routine when I got a series of urgent texts and voicemails from our DHS (state) adoption worker. When we finally connected, she told me that there was a little boy who needed a family. He was legally free for adoption, but there were a few loose ends to tie up. If all went well, we could adopt him. If not, he would have to leave us in the next couple of weeks. Were we interested?

Oh, and we needed to decide right now because she was on her way to pick him up.


We haven’t heard from you in months and now we have a few minutes to decide if we want a child, given no information AT ALL about his situation other than his age?

I called my husband at work. After the initial shock wore off, he said, “I guess so.” At that point we weren’t obligated to adopt him. We would take him as an emergency foster placement and see how it went.

Two days later, after a whirlwind of activity to get our “adoption only” paperwork changed to “foster” paperwork, our adoption worker brought us our son.

Right to our doorstep.

That detail was not lost on me. She could have asked to meet at McDonalds, or for us to pick him up at her office, but she didn’t. God was so gracious in my frustration. He orchestrated an exchange that would prove this child was the answer to my prayer.

We said yes, and a couple of weeks turned into forever on November 22, 2014.

I can’t adequately describe the joy my little Sam brings to our lives. But for me, an even greater joy is knowing that the God of the universe hears the cry of this momma’s heart. He is gracious to forgive my emotional outburst and gently lead me down His chosen path for my life.

If we had been chosen by one of those precious expectant moms, or if another international adoption had worked out, we wouldn’t have Sam. He is the perfect addition to our family, and I thank God for closed doors and doorstep deliveries.


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Tiffany Castleberry

Tiffany and her high school sweetheart husband live in the country near Tulsa, OK, with their six children (so far!). They are allowing God to grow their family as He sees fit through birth, international adoption, foster care adoption, and private domestic adoption. Tiffany is a homeschooling mom who loves Jesus, adoption, and cupcakes (usually in that order). You can find more of her writing on her blog, Stuff and Things.

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