Since it's been a little bit since we talked about Emily (Be so thankful you don't live in our house right now. Fifty percent of the conversations around here are about Emily, traveling for Emily, China, and how life will change once Emily is here. Another 35% of conversations are about the new barn, building the new barn, arrangements for getting the barn done, and how life will change once the new barn is done. Are you seeing a theme here? Conversationally, Kenton and I can be like two ships passing in the night. Really, you'd be bored to tears!)
All that to say...We have a name!
This little one will be Emily MeiPan (May-Paun).
That's the short version. Those of you who aren't into details may want to tune out now!
Still with me? This is EMILY! The child we think about and plan for and pray for every day. Mostly hourly, and sometimes minute to minute. I worry...throw it into God's hands, have peace, start to worry...and well, I'm sure you're seeing another general theme here.
Emily's Chinese name is Pan. It's pronounced paun and means hope! Is that perfect or what? We kept Kaitlyn's Chinese name Ying for her middle name and I really wanted to do that with Emily. BUT...Emily Pan looks a little off to my western eyes. Mei (May) means beautiful and little sister. So we added Mei to Pan for Beautiful Hope.
One special thing that happened, the day after we requested to adopt Emily, I was reading to Davis. The story was about a little African boy who traveled many weeks to attend a mission school. One day he asked the teacher's wife what that thing was that she was sweeping dirt into. When he got to school he announced, "My name is no longer Tisese, 'the-animal-which-runs-through-the-woods'. Now that I am a Christian, my name shall be 'Dust Pan' forever!" Dust Pan? "I want to be a dust pan, so that when I go home I may carry out the dirt from the lives of my father, my family, and all my friends. I want to be a Dust Pan for Jesus!"
Dust Pan's father was one of the most famous witch doctors in that part of Africa, and usually killed more than six hundred people every year. He put to death anyone who offended him by poisoning them, burying them alive, or tying them to ant hills and letting the ants eat them. But Dust Pan's faith and love won the hearts of his whole family--even that father. Both his parents, his three sisters, and all five brothers were converted and became Christians. Then Dust Pan began to share the Gospel with others in his village. When the missionary returned the following year, he found three hundred and sixty-four new Christians waiting to be baptized, all through the witness of one young boy. What a lot of sin, darkness, and dirt had been carried out of that corner of Africa, by one Dust Pan in the hands of Jesus!
Beautiful Hope! How could we not retain her name after that?
We are currently waiting on our Letter of Acceptance from the Chinese government. We tentatively expect to travel sometime between July and September. Of course, we would be thrilled to pack suitcases and leave YESTERDAY but red tape prevails.