love isn't a language
Before we even knew we would ever adopt from China, God allowed our lives to intersect with the Sun family. They attend our church and after first meeting we immediately became close friends. They have supported us every step of the way in our wait and after bringing Elie home. They helped us learn Chinese culture, introduced us to amazing homemade Chinese food and taught us key Mandarin phrases. They are a gift.
They were such a huge help when we first came home from China. They made Elie feel at home in a strange new place. They translated for me and Elie... over and over again. They loved us. They made us food. They prayed for us. They were foundational in our transition to a family of 6.
This Christmas we had the joy of having them over for dinner. Their first "American" Christmas dinner. Grandpa and Grandma had never cooked a turkey and loved learning about all of our traditions.
I think sometimes in America, those of us who have been here for so long forget to show hospitality to those who are experiencing our culture for the first time. Whenever Kevin and I have traveled overseas, we always enjoy our time in spent with families in their homes. You get a real taste of local life away from the tourism. We love spending time with our friends here in the states who are originally from other countries.... learning about their birth country and their family traditions. We long to be a family who shows this kind of love to others as well.
Our eyes were first opened to the reality when we were waiting to adopt Faith. We met an Ethiopian-American family at Kody's preschool and invited them over for dinner. During the meal we learned that although they had lived in America for a decade this was the first time they had ever been invited to a meal in an American home.
In February, the Suns invited us to share Chinese New Year with their family. They allowed us to step into their family tradition and be a part.... we loved every minute of it!
Red Envelopes from Grandpa - filled with money for each child. a chinese tradition
delicious Hot Pot. for a pregnant mama craving protein this was a dream.
Kevin learning to make dumplings
Elie totally in her element. This girl is a chopstick champion.
Ending the night with karaoke. perfect.
Think about who you could invite to dinner. Who could you build a friendship with that would enrich both of your lives and open your eyes to a whole different world? Be adventurous and try some new foods. Step out and have a conversation with someone from another country... it's okay if you don't always totally understand each other. Grandpa and Grandma speak very little English and we speak very little Chinese, but it has shown us that love can be shown without knowing each other's language.