Harder Family

Harder Family

Tuesday, February 21, 2017

Traveling to China

John 14:18 “I will not leave you as orphans; I will come to you."

On February 9, we received news from China that we were approved to travel to China to get our boys. I have waited to share the news until I received our itinerary from our agency. A week from today I will board a plane for China and will begin a whirlwind adventure to pick up our boys. When I saw our itinerary, it made my head spin a little. Fortunately, China approved us to pick both boys up in one week (this saved us 6-7 extra days in China). This resulted in a crazy week of travel. We will be traveling approximately 2,300 miles over 5 days!! My goal is to absorb as much as I can about China while I am there and see as much as we can of the provinces we will visit. I want to have pictures and memories with the boys from their country that we can look over later. 

Since receiving word about travel, it has been crazy around the house. I have been packing, teaching, prepping school work for the kids while I'm gone, cleaning house, and working on the last little bit of paperwork for travel (I don't think there will ever be an end to all of this paperwork). Trying to pack light for a 20 day trip is not easy, especially when you will be in two totally different climates. Beijing and Shandong are much colder since they are up north (it will be like Chicago). Sichuan and Guangzhou are more warm (like Florida). As much work as everything is to get ready, it is very exciting. We are bringing our boys home!!!

God has been so gracious and good to us through this whole process. On Saturday, we received a letter in the mail, written entirely in Chinese. We had a feeling it was written by one of the boys, but we weren't sure which one since we do not read Chinese characters. Then I realized something amazing. Weeks before this letter arrived in the mail, I had invited a family from church over for dinner. This family just happens to speak and read Mandarin. So hours after we received this precious gift in the mail, we were able to hear what the letter said. Isn't God just phenomenal?? The letter was written by Shan Chen and he told us all about Chinese New Year and asked how we are doing.

On Sunday, I received a message through we chat (a popular Chinese app), that on Tuesday at 1pm there time, we could talk to Shan Chen! That meant that at 11pm last night, I was able to chat with Shan Chen for about 8 minutes. It wasn't super long, but it was wonderful to see his smile and speak with him. He asked me when I was coming to China to get him. It was so wonderful to hear that he was just as excited as we are for his adoption. At the end of the conversation (since he had to to go back to class), he blew me kisses and told me that he loved me. All of the crazy travel will be worth it to hug and kiss this sweet boy again.

I will be blogging while I am in China (as long as my VPN works). So check back to see pictures of our trip and the boys! 

Prayer Requests:
1. Please pray that we are able to talk to DJ before we leave. It has been a little crazy trying to figure out who we need to speak with to arrange talking to him. I just read a text this morning that he now has a cell phone to use, so please pray that in the next day or so we can connect.
2. Pray for safe travels to China, as we are in China, and when we come home.
3. Please pray for Wayne as he will be home juggling all the kids, school, and work. 
4. Please pray that the transition for the boys goes as smoothly as possible. I am preparing for the boys to grieve, since they are leaving everything they have ever known in China. Please pray that communication doesn't get in the way of helping them through the grieving process.
5. Pray that God is glorified through this trip and that every person we meet we can point them back to Him!


  1. Excited for you! Praying for your boys' hearts as they begin this journey.

  2. Praying for you, Rebecca, Wayne, and all of you girls!!!!! :) Get ready for the boy balance ;) Sending you all loads of LOVE!!!

  3. So thrilled for you!! I wish I could stow away and go with you. �� looking forward to pics and updates.