I know Amanda from my college years. We met as orientation leaders on the great campus of Texas Woman’s University. I remember her sweet, bubbly personality as if it was yesterday. During that time, I also had the opportunity to meet the love of her life Wayne. I thought they were the cutest couple. A month after graduation Amanda and Wayne married and settled in Lubbock, Texas to begin their new life.
As they became acquainted with married life, the couple began contemplating trying to conceive a child. While Amanda and Wayne thought this was the next thing on their life’s agenda, God had other plans. Amanda struggled year after year to become pregnant. She began to lose hope while her faith drifted and questioned why things were not lining up for their family as they saw fit. While anger from their situation set in, depression became her worst enemy and food became her closest companion. Amanda’s weight reached an all-time high and unhealthy state. While still trying to become pregnant, fertility specialists were convinced that her weight gain was greatly contributing to her ability to have a child.
One day while working, Amanda met a woman involved in a non-profit ministry. Though tired and weary and still in a depressed state of mind, she felt building a relationship with this kind soul was calling her back to her faith. The woman became Amanda’s mentor and she helped her slowly began to again draw nearer to God. While developing great patience, she still felt unfulfilled. Waiting consisting of 9 long years, had taken its toll.
BRIGHTER DAYS AHEAD::
Amanda began to consider the possibility of fostering a child or perhaps adoption, yet Wayne was adamant that method was not in their plans. In 2013, Amanda became hopeful. Her faith had grown. Her prayers became more fervent. She had hope that this would be the year that God would send their blessing. It was time to take her health back and get her life back on track. Still desiring pregnancy, Amanda ultimately lost over 120 pounds. During the summer of 2013, Amanda crossed paths with yet another woman needing help putting together a display for presentation. Almost ignoring the initial thought to assist, Amanda proceeded to help. The display was information regarding a Christian Foster Agency. THIS was Amanda’s confirmation from God that this was in HIS plan and not solely her own. Amanda’s only worry was once again convincing her husband Wayne that they should try this method. After much prayer, Wayne finally came to Amanda and said, “Let’s do it!”
Amanda and Wayne began the process of fostering. They prayed about each child they came in contact with, hoping for direction on whether or not they could call that child their own. A few children they even had the desire to adopt, but each time, the child would be sent to another family. Through each let down, Wayne and Amanda were discouraged, yet continued their patient wait.
In March 2014, the couple began fostering 1 year-old Elizabeth better known as Lizzie. They prayed as they did with the other 9 children prior. In November 2014, Lizzie’s birth parents signed over their rights and in July 2015, Lizzie officially became the daughter of Wayne and Amanda. Their wait had not been in vain. Lizzie equally became a blessing to them as she had two new faithful parents ready to embrace her with love.
“I always have been somewhat of an impatient person. I truly think God was trying to teach me patience. So many people of course, encouraged me and tried to be motivational, but it is so hard to see the positive while in the struggle. I was so depressed many days. I felt insufficient. But I got to a point where all I could do was bow down on my knees. Even when I didn’t know what else to say, I cried out “Jesus” and he heard my cries then and still today. I would encourage anyone else to be patient and not to lose faith like I did at one point, and to pray without ceasing. God loves you and He truly does care. His plan is far greater than all we can ever imagine. I don’t know what else is in store but we are so grateful to have Lizzie in our lives and we are remaining faithful.”
Amanda’s journey resonates with so many today. I have come across many women who have struggled with or are currently struggling with this issue. Through it specifically does not apply to me today, her story still greatly touched me. Upon hearing, I not only thought of the hurting women, but I also thought about children who struggle daily and are without a home or family or ultimately… Love. No matter our personal struggles, Amanda is claiming victory through all she has encountered and her Zestimony and faith reigns supreme. It is my belief and faith that our job is to continue living carrying on with our daily tasks, and being a blessing to others while we are in our season of waiting and personal circumstances. God will heal, bless, and carry out His will in His timing and not our own. Amanda and Wayne’s family are ecstatic to have Lizzie in their lives. On the official day of adoption, the courtroom was filled with loved ones and there was not a dry eye in the room, including the judge. Amanda and Wayne now have their child, their blessing, and are faithful that so much more is in store for their new family. Lizzie is not almost 3 and I could not resist capturing their family portraits. Thank you for sharing your Zestimony Wayne & Amanda!