I was looking at this sweet beautiful face this morning as she came in and signed "mom pain still?" I signed "yes still" she lifted her hands and signed "God help moms pain fade away, Amen". Then leaned over and planted kisses on my lips, hands and face and signed ILY with our hands entwined together. I look upon the beautiful little face of this precious little girl who on Jan 24, 2013 stepped into a room, not knowing what stepping into this room meant for her life, and we met for the first time that day she had no language and was bruised to pieces. I look at her now and tears flow down my face. She is a beautiful, sweet, caring, loving, smart, funny, goofy, silly, friendly, and charming little girl. She is also learning rapidly and she is such a very enthusiastic little girl. Her past was beyond rough, more than a 6 year old should ever endure in their life time. The fact that a mother in China chose to give her life and give her away is not lost on me. We always say we are blessed by adoption, and many people tell me how beautiful adoption is, but when I look at all 3 of my adopted children and all they have been through: pain, suffering, abuse (all forms), neglect, abandonment, hunger, loneliness and fear.... is that beautiful? Now you add the trauma of starting over in a country so foreign it is almost alien, with people who are complete strangers and look nothing like you or anyone else you have ever seen in your lifetime and now they have control over your life... there is nothing beautiful about what they have experienced in their lives. But God promises: "to bestow on them a crown of beauty instead of ashes, the oil of joy instead of mourning, and a garment of praise instead of a spirit of despair. They will be called oaks of righteousness, a planting of The Lord for the display of his splendor." These promises don't happen over night, there is a lot of work and love, time and patience involved. There are times of struggle, anger, pain, and for us the "oh my word what did we do moments..," and then there are moments like today where I look upon this little face and the tears flow and i know that I know that we are watching the beauty from ashes. This face this morning is a definite display of His splendor! I love this little face tremendously! For those of you adopting or thinking about adopting or who have already adopted, hang in there the beauty does come. Adoption is NOT easy, but it is SO worth it!