For The Least Of These You Did For Me

Welcome to our family's blog. We are the Duryea family and we have seven children. You might be wondering why we chose this name for our blog. Well, to begin with we have three beautiful biological children and three beautiful children from China. I'll share our journeys to China to bring home our beautiful children later. For now, I'd like to share why we chose this name for our blog. The Lord showed me this verse when we were first seeking adoption. The Lord chose to grow our family through adoption. However, the Lord has also opened our eyes to the needs of orphans , especially in China. We consider "...looking after the orphans and widows in their distress..." James 1:17, as a way of life for us, a calling.

As I read through the many stories in our adoption agency's storybooks, there are countless stories that begin with "...after many years of experiencing infertility, we started the adoption process and are now a forever family"

If you are one of the countless couples that have experienced infertility, let me share with you the wonderful way of starting a family and at the same time providing a home for a needy orphan. God loves you and cares about you. "For I know the plans I have for you," declares the Lord, "plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future." Jeremiah 29:11. If you are feeling hopeless, let me promise you that the Lord hears your cries. If you haven't ever trusted in Jesus and put your hope in him, do it now. Your life will be better than you could ever imagine. I never planned or dreamed I would go to China (3 times) and have this wonderful family. My plans surely would have never been as wonderful as they are today.

I had endometriosis for many years, yet I was able to conceive and have three beautiful children. After Sarah was born in 1998, I experienced severe problems and had surgery. However, I was unable to conceive, probably due to the scars left by endometriosis. Like many of you I had emotional scars as well. Even though I already had three children , I still felt called to have a larger family. Many months, tears, and prayers later we considered adoption. I heard about the plight of baby girls in China and the one child policy that left them abandoned. As we were praying about this, David's family in St.Louis was having a first time ever family reunion. I knew this wasn't coincidence, because David's cousin, a single mom, adopted two girls from China. One was 5 years old and the other was 9 months. This gave us the opportunity to meet them and talk to his cousin about adoption. When we came home we saw an advertisement for an adoption seminar in our area. We attended and were ready to start the paperwork to begin our adoption for a baby girl from China. Our lives would never be the same again.

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

A Christmas Blessing

We want to thank everyone for their loving and generous donations for our adoption. We can't thank you enough! The outpouring of love, support and prayers has shown us the love and care of our Heavenly Father. There have been  so many times people from our  church family would suggest resources for us to use for Luke;  fundraising ideas, adoption funding websites, sign language teachers, speech and hearing centers, etc. All of this shows us God's care for Luke and that we don't need to walk this road alone. So many times, even now, I still ask the Lord if he is sure that he wants us to do adopt this little boy. It is going to be so different and difficult at times. But the Lord always answers me with his reassurance of his deep love and care for the orphans, the least of these. If you want to see the kingdom of God, visit an orphanage, see the despair on their faces, and you will see God.

Recently, there has been a many robberies in the county where we live. It has been so numerous that our sheriff's department called everyone to make them aware of the problem. Now I started thinking about the mission trip that our church recently went on to Ethiopia to bring eyeglasses and shoes to the people in the Amhara region.
 They were so grateful, you would have thought they brought them a new flat screen TV. Many of them needed eyeglasses badly and the others had never worn a pair of shoes before. To put things in perspective, I started thinking about the robberies. No one would ever steal my shoes nor my eyeglasses. They would steal the things that we bought because we desired them and not because we needed them.
For the people in Ethiopia, for the orphan, for the people around the world without clean drinking water, etc. their needs are great.  We have so much in this country. We can live with less and give more!

Tuesday, December 6, 2011

Our Dear Pastor, Mark Spansel Writes About Our Adoption

Dear Friend,

One of the core characteristics of God is His Fatherly care over His children.  It is no surprise then that James calls caring for the fatherless orphan one of the truest expressions of religion (James 1:27).  Whether through hardship, war, abandonment, or death, there are millions of children who will never experience the tangible love of a human father.  Thanks to families like the Duryeas, yet one more beautiful child will not only experience that parental love and care, but will be taught of the Heavenly Father’s love and care.  I can’t tell you how much I admire David and Laura’s faith to trust God in the leadership of their home.  It is nothing short of a divine calling that they have from God and they are simply doing all they can to delightful obey what the Spirit has told them to do. 

Please pray for them, partner with them, and support them as God has provided you with the means to do so.  In the days we all have remaining here on earth, may we use them with the kind of purposefulness that this family is.  Let their example inspire you to greater faith as well!

By Grace,

Mark Spansel
Lead Pastor, Leroy Community Chapel