shattered

I’ve thought to start this post a dozen times.

But I haven’t been able to form the words.

It seems there is no way to say it, without saying it.

And to say it hurts so, so much, it steals my breath away.

Our beloved Esther has passed away.

We got a call from our agency late on Monday.

And we were shattered.


Sweet Esther Adaline,

We will not hold you, this side of heaven.

We will not tousle your black hair.

We will not smell your sweet skin.

We will not snuggle you under warm blankets and cover your cheeks with goodnight kisses.

And we ache and struggle under the weight of these truths.

So we cling to the knowledge that you will be in our hearts, always. Our beloved daughter. Our Esther.

And to our belief that His plan is a good plan, and that He is trust worthy. Even when the path is unclear.

We trust that He brought you into our lives for a purpose, precious one. You are so loved. And it is such an honor to consider myself your mother, if only in my heart.

You changed us, Esther. You changed us from the inside out. We will be forever grateful for the chance to love you, fight for you, dream for you, pray for you.

May you rest now, with a heart perfectly healed, in the arms of your Father.

With all our love,

Mama and Baba


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Comments

  1. Oh my gosh. I’m so sorry.

    • Stefanie, I read this last night and my grief for you and your family left me speechless. I pray that God will give you peace, comfort and strength. Precious Esther will never be forgotton as she has touched the lives of many people. She now plays joyfully in heaven and will be united with you one day!

  2. Stefanie, there are no words of comfort at a time like this, but I am so sorry for you loss of your precious daughter. I pray the One who comforts perfectly will wrap His arms around you and your precious family during this time. God bless you.

  3. I’m so sorry to hear of Esther and your loss, I can’t even imagine. My thoughts are prayers are with you all.

    Hugs,
    Julia

  4. Oh Stefanie. I have no words my friend. No words at all. Please know that we will come alongside you in prayer in this. As we know that she is with Him, the ache you must feel is unimaginable to me.

  5. There are no words to say back except I will pray!
    Crying for you!!!

  6. Cynthia says:

    I am broken hearted for you. Lean on Him for comfort. Precious, sweet Esther is with her Father in heaven…and running with that black head of hair blowing in the breeze……we will be praying for your family. Much love, Dear Friend.

  7. oh stefanie… i know that my heart break is just a tiny fraction of yours..i am so very sorry. i hope that the fact that she was so loved if even for a short time by your family brings you an ounce of comfort. praying that God gives you peace beyond understanding during this time.

  8. I cannot even begin to imagine how heartbroken and grief stricken you all must be. Praying that you will know God’s comfort, not just today but in the months and years ahead.

  9. Andrea T says:

    i love you
    praying

  10. My deepest sympathy. I am so sorry.
    Krista D

    • Sarah Horner says:

      Our thoughts and prayers are with your family during this sad time… I cannot imagine the grief you’re feeling knowing that you never held this sweet child in your arms yet loved her so fiercely.

      Sending prayers your way,
      Sarah

  11. stefanie, while i trust fully in the perfect will of God, as i know you do, i join with you now…to sit with you in the ashes grief. i cry out to God on your behalf, asking for His peace and comfort…asking HIm to carry you, to be the Lifter of your head, to help you suffer well through this pain. praise God that He has conquered death…praise God for resurrection…praise God that we have hope! i love you.

  12. I’m in tears for you. I have been praying so hard for you all, and for you to be united so that you could care for that special heart. My own heart breaks for you. Such an angel, safely in our Lord’s arms. You will be united in Glory one day, I know, but that is small comfort now. You will continue to be in my prayers. I’m so sorry for your loss.

  13. Oh you guys, this is just horrible. Please know that out in the wide world there is a sea of people holding her little spirit and your family’s spirit up in prayers during what will be very difficult days…take care of youselves…

  14. Praying for your family that you feel God’s presence and comfort during this time of grief.

  15. Oh, Stefanie, I am so very very sorry to hear this. Esther and you continue to be so loved by their Father in heaven. Praying for all of you.

  16. My heart breaks along with yours. Keeping your family in our prayers.

  17. I’m so so sorry.

  18. I am SO SO SORRY. I know that does not help. I am heartbroken right with you. Prayers for you friend.

  19. I am so, so sorry. There are no words….

  20. There are no words. I’m so very sorry, and I will be praying for you and your family. You are so right that the Lord brought her sweet little self into your lives for some bigger purpose.

  21. holly arnold says:

    I am so sorry and my prayers are with you all!

  22. No words just keeping you all in my heart

  23. Kathleen Denny says:

    May all of you find comfort in your love, strength to face this uncharted course and peace that Esther knows she is loved. With sadness and faith. Kathleen

  24. Stefanie I am so heart broken for you and your family. I pray that God comforts you all.
    I cannot even imagine the pain.

  25. Stefanie,
    I am so sorry for the loss of your daughter! I honestly don’t know what to say! We will be praying for your entire family! My heart is crushed! May God comfort you during this tragic time!!!

  26. Stefanie, i am so, so sorry. I am praying the God of all comfort will be with you and your family in this time.

  27. My heart aches for you and your family. I will pray for all of you. May knowing that sweet Esther is healed and in the arms of our heavenly father bring you peace.

    So very sorry.

    Amy

  28. Dear Lord, Please surround this family with your sweet mercies and comfort. Fill their brokenness with your love. You had a plan for Esther, a perfect plan. Please hold them tight as they grieve for the loss of their daughter and process understanding their lives without sweet Esther.

  29. Oh I am SO sorry. So sooooo heartbreaking. This also happened to a good friend of mine, we were awaiting TA together when she got word her little girl had died and a few days later we got our TA to go get our son. It was devastating. I’m so sorry to hear this has happened to another family. God does have a plan, and someday maybe it will be clear, but oh so sorry for the pain.

  30. *TEARS*

    praying for you all sweet friend.

  31. She was and is still so loved. Praying for peace for all of you.

  32. crushed.

    praising God that Esther had a praying family – a nation praying for her when she was welcomed home by HIM.

    Hugs to you,
    Sara

  33. I’m so very, very sorry. Your family will be in my prayers.

    ~Lynn

  34. My heart breaks for you. There are no words…

    Praying for peace that only He can give,
    Robin

  35. There are just not words that seem right at this time…… praying that the God of comfort and peace will hold you during this time.

  36. There are no words.

    No.words.

  37. I am so sorry to hear this. My heart goes out to you in your suffering.

  38. I am so sorry for your loss.. Praying for God’s comfort for you and your family.
    (((Hugs)))

  39. no words.

    Hugs and prayers.

    Jenn

  40. Oh Stefanie…I am grieving with you. Love and prayers.

  41. Stefania, Chris, & kids

    My heart hurts for y’all. Will be holding you close in prayer.

  42. Oh, Stefanie, I am so, so sorry. My deepest sympathies are with you and your family. How terribly sad for all of you.

  43. I am so sorry. I still can’t find words since your email.

    I am just so upset and wonder why, why, why?

    I can’t imagine your grief.

    Please know we offer prayers for your beautiful family and we will always remember your precious Esther.

    {{{HUGS}}}

  44. I’m so sorry. I just can’t imagine. I will pray for you and your sweet family.

  45. so sorry to hear about your loss….esther was SO LOVED and she will ever be more loved next to Jesus…praying for comfort and peace for all of your family

  46. I am so sorry for your loss. My heart breaks for you and your family. I pray God gives you peace and comfort during this time.

  47. Oh, Stefanie…I cannot even imagine what you are feeling right now. We have friends who have been in similar situations, and I know how much they hurt when they went through it. I am so, so very sorry. Praying that God will hold you in His loving arms, and provide the comfort and peace you need.

  48. I’m so so sorry…I don’t know what else to say. Hugs to you and your family

    Gin

  49. I am sooo sorry.
    You all will be in our thoughts and prayers.

  50. I am so, so sorry to read this news today. I’m just staring at the screen, tears falling down. I cannot even begin to imagine your pain. Cannot. Please know that your family will be lifted up tonight and in the nights to come. God bless.

  51. There are no words. I am so sorry. Praying, praying, praying!

  52. Kelly Payne says:

    I am heartbroken for you. I will be praying for your precious family as you grieve the loss of this precious little baby girl.

    Kelly

  53. I’m so sorry Stefanie and Chris for your loss. I know how hard you’ve worked to bring her home to your loving family.
    Now she is with a different loving Father. She is blessed that she had you praying for her and loving her from afar in her short time on Earth. She didn’t know it then, but she knows it now.
    God bless your family.

  54. I am so very sorry for your loss,
    Cindy

  55. I’m so very sorry for your loss. Praying for the comfort and peace that only our Father can give…may He wrap you up in His love.

  56. So, So, So very sorry.

  57. Oh Stefanie! My heart breaks with yours!!! I will be praying for you, Chris, and the rest of your family as you grieve this huge loss!

  58. I am so, so sorry for your loss. Sending heartfelt hugs since there really are no words…..

  59. Oh how my heart is hurting for you. I am so, so very sorry.

  60. I have no words at all.
    I cannot comprehend this.

    I can only hope that the tremendous faith you and Chris have will somehow comfort you and the children…and will forever cradle sweet Esther in Heaven.

    Thousands of hearts have broken today for a little girl we only knew in dreams…

    I send you our very deepest condolences, Stefanie…there really ARE no words.

    You are all in our hearts,
    Dita, JR and the Children

  61. I am so sorry, Stefanie. Your family is in my prayers.

  62. Sending my love to you, she did not move on to Jesus as an orphan, she had a very loving family that prayed for her every day, she had a beautiful name that her family gave her, she had brothers and sisters that love her very much. That little face is unforgettable – I have never laid eyes on a more perfect little pouty mouth. I guess we are supposed to say that He has her now and she is safe in His arms…and I believe that is true with all of my heart…it is just so hard to feel it on this side I guess. My prayer is for you to feel safe in his arms right now too…I am so sorry. Sending our love and prayers.

  63. Lyndsey says:

    I am so very sorry. We will keep you and your family in our prayers. I am just so very sorry.

  64. I am so sorry!! We will be praying for you and your family.

  65. My heart is aching with you Stefanie.

    Praying for peace, comfort and strength for you all.

  66. I know there are no words to take away your pain and loss but you have me faithful prayers. I know Esther is in heaven looking down painlessly and she must be grateful to know she had the love of a family she never met. My heart aches for you all.

    Love,
    Kim

  67. Dear Stefanie and Chris,
    To tell you I’m sorry cannot even convey my heart for you and the loss of your precious Esther. I know your grief must be inexplicable. Just know, oh, please know that we hold you up and pray you are being held. He will carry you….He promises.

    With my heart and prayers,
    Suzanne

  68. Oh, Stefanie. Praying for you and your family. Esther sits with Jesus now. She will advocate for you, and all the orphans, from her spot in heaven.

    So sorry for the pain. Love and prayers for you.

  69. Mary DeGennaro says:

    Stefanie, As soon as I saw the word “shattered”, I knew that something devastating had happened. As I read the words, I began to cry. I will be praying that the Lord of all comfort will surround all of you with a comfort that reaches to the depths of your aching hearts. I am so, so very sorry. Little Esther, dancing with her heavenly Father. What joy!

  70. I am so sorry for your loss. Those words are trite but have heartful meaning behind them.

    I have been praying for both Esther and Poppy. Take comfort that Ester is now in His arms and that the same arms are there to comfort you.

  71. I am so sorry. As a mommy to a little guy in China that we have yet to meet in person, I am in tears with you. We will pray for your family. Your journey to Esther has been such a reminder to me of how the Lord loves his sheep and will do all that he can for even one.

  72. Sandy Rice says:

    Oh Stefanie-my heart aches for your family. She was truly loved and that is most important. Now she will be held by our heavenly father. I’m so sorry.

  73. I am so sorry to hear about your little Esther. My thoughts are with you.
    The same thing happened to me and my David just as my TA was mailed out.
    I still think of him now, almost 5.5 years later.
    If you need someone to talk…just give me a holler.
    Nancy

  74. Oh Stefanie, I know there are no words to comfort you, but I am so happy you are a family who has great faith to get you thru this tough time. Lean on your friends and family and the Word. We are here from you and praying for you. Please know I am praying for you and your sweet family. Kathy

  75. I am so sorry for your loss. My thoughts and prayers are with you and your family!

  76. Hugs and Prayers. God understands your grieving for your daughter who is dancing in heaven.

  77. Kim Schultz says:

    I’m so sorry….I’m stunned. There truly are no words….praying for you and your family. So very sorry.

  78. Chris and Stefanie,

    I am simply reeling in shock, I can’t even think straight.

    I know your heart is breaking right now. May the Lord wrap his loving arms around you and let you know that this is the way it was always meant to be. You didn’t know this…no, you fought for her…and that’s what matters right now. You did all you could, even though our Father already knew, it wouldn’t be enough.

    Your tears are my tears too. My heart is breaking for you and your family, for the little girl that will always be yours, even though you didn’t get to hold her in your arms, you were still her Mama & Baba… you loved her so very much.

    ‘For God so loved the world, He gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in Him, should not perish, but have everlasting life.’

    Some day you’ll see her in heaven, and what a reunion that will be.
    Praying for you, Jill.

  79. Chris and Stefanie,

    I am simply reeling in shock, I can’t even think straight.

    I know your heart is breaking right now. May the Lord wrap his loving arms around you and let you know that this is the way it was always meant to be. You didn’t know this…no, you fought for her…and that’s what matters right now. You did all you could, even though our Father already knew, it wouldn’t be enough.

    Your tears are my tears too. My heart is breaking for you and your family, for the little girl that will always be yours, even though you didn’t get to hold her in your arms, you were still her Mama & Baba… you loved her so very much.

    ‘For God so loved the world, He gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in Him, should not perish, but have everlasting life.’

    Some day you’ll see her in heaven, and what a reunion that will be.
    Praying for you, Jill.

  80. Oh Stef. Please know that we are lifting you and your family up in our prayers. I pray the love and comfort of our Father surrounds you in this time. Much love to you and your family.

  81. My heart aches for you. Cling to hope and the One who offers it. I’ll be praying for your family. And I won’t forget Esther.

  82. Nicole A. says:

    Oh Stefanie, I am so very sorry for your loss. I just don’t even know what to say. My heart breaks for you and what must be such profound loss and pain and questions. I will pray for you, your family, and precious Esther.

    God bless your sweet baby girl.

    All the best,
    Nicole A., now in LA

  83. I am so sorry… I am heartbroken for you and your family. Please know you are all in my prayers, especially your sweet baby girl, Esther.

  84. oh my gosh, this post made tears come to my eyes.
    I’m so sorry. I’m praying hard for you guys. my heart hurts as i try to think of words to say.
    This must be so hard on you guys. God does everything for a reason, he must have missed Esther way to much that he had to call her back home.
    The Lord is close to the brokenhearted and saves those who are crushed in spirit. Psalm 34:18
    Praying that you feel god’s loving arms and comfort as you go through this very hard time.
    Much love and lots of prayers.
    Kirstie Bikakis

  85. Oh dear Stephanie,
    I’m so deeply sorry, words are simply not enough now. It’s never easy to understand God’s plan, for whatever reason the Lord wanted her with Him.

    My prayers go out to you and your family.

  86. I can’t imagine the heart break you and your family are going through. Our prayers are with your family and that beautiful little angel, Esther.

  87. Sweet, precious Stefanie, I can even begin to imagine your pain. I am so sorry…I am praying for you guys!!! Hugs!

  88. Christy says:

    I am so sorry for your family’s loss. Please know that you are in so many people’s prayers and thoughts.

  89. Melinda says:

    Stefanie and family,

    I am so very sorry for your loss. Sweet Esther was brought into your lives for a purpose and though we may not understand and our hearts are broken we have to trust in His plan. I pray that God will wrap His arms around you and hold onto you tightly as you grieve. Praying for your family during this difficult time.

  90. Oh Stephanie! How my heart is broken for you all! No words can express the sadness I feel. I won’t use the standard cliches, just know my family is praying for yours. Much love to you all.

  91. He wounds but He also binds up, He injures but His hands also heal. Job 5:18
    I would have despaired unless I believed that I would see the goodness of the Lord…Wait for the Lord; be strong and let your heart take courage. Psalm 27:13-14

    these verses are ministering to me right now, in a very different broken place than you find yourself in.
    All the sympathy I can muster in the world will not ease the hurt in your heart for your little girl that you will have to wait to embrace much longer than you’d anticipated. So very heartbreaking.
    We too lost a precious little girl in China. Our story much different than yours. I won’t go into it now.
    I was devastated when she passed. But I have full assurance she is in a place where there is no more suffering or pain and that I WILL see her one of these days, when it is my turn.

    No more words, just prayers for your family as you walk through this valley of grief. He walks it with you.
    Love,
    Holly from Purpose Driven Family

  92. Dear Stefanie,

    There is no more profound loss than that of a child. My deepest sympathies to you and your family.
    You are in my prayers for the peace that only our Father can give.

    Big hugs,

    Gail and family

  93. I am so sorry for you all. My heart has broken for you. Rest knowing that her heart is perfect now.

  94. Heather says:

    Stefanie,

    I am so sorry. My prayers go out to your family and for Esther. May God bless you with the sure knowledge that she is healed and that you will one day be reunited. May he give you peace in your heart and in His arms around you.

  95. My heart is breaking for your family. No words….hugs & prayers

  96. Oh Stefanie….my deepest, deepest sympathies are with you & your family right now. I hold you all up in prayer..I pray you all feel the comfort that only our loving Father can give right now. You have my hugs and prayers, sweet friend. Heartbreaking…truly heartbreaking…
    XOXO
    Patricia, Frank & Kiara

  97. I am soooo very sorry: some things we will never understand this side of heaven. …… but we KNOW Christ is holding her now. So very sorry for you and your family. I will be praying for you!!

  98. Anna B. says:

    Stefanie, my whole heart and soul aches for you. Thinking of you all. Praying for your continued courage and comfort only God can give you.
    With love,
    Anna

  99. I am so, so sorry. I know there are no words that can provide comfort so we will pray for you.

  100. Stefanie,

    There are no words. My heart if breaking for you and your precious family. Please know I will lift you all up to our heavenly Father for peace during this most difficult time. Find the stillness my friend.

    Sheila

  101. Words fail me. I know words can’t console. My heart breaks for you. I will pray that our Loving Father will wrap you in His arms of love. Praying for you.

  102. The Charles Family says:

    Dear Stefanie, Chris and Family,

    We are so, so sorry for your loss. You are all in our prayers.

    May God bless you with His peace and comfort.

    Sue and family

  103. My heart is just in shock for you guys. How your arms must ache. I’m so sorry.

  104. oh, Stefanie. I am so, so sorry for your loss. Really, and truly…..anyone who has ever been matched with a child knows how they are yours even if you’ve never been able to hold them or kiss them.

    And, she was SO LOVED while she was here….and she was known to so many of us. And, now she is SO LOVED by Her Creator. When you get to heaven, I know He will introduce you to your daughter!

    My heart breaks for you. We will be on our knees here for you and your fmaily.

  105. Oh no no no no Stefanie!! I am so so so very sorry. I literally gasped as I read this post. I am trying to wrap my ahead around a way to provide some feeble attempt at comfort for you. Will email you soon.

  106. What heart breaking news, keeping your family in my thoughts and prayers.

  107. God Bless….out of everything bad comes something good….when a door is closed a window is opened…my deepest heartfelt wishes to you……
    I will never leave you nor forsake you. Hebrews 13:5 even though it may seem like it at times..He will NEVER forsake you or leave you!
    peace of God…

  108. Oh Stefanie :( My heart is aching for you and your family right now :( I can’t imagine how painful this must be. You and your family are in my prayers! He will carry you through this. I pray you feel his love and comfort during this time :(.

  109. I am so deeply sorry for your loss Stefanie,
    Your family will be in my prayers as my heart aches for you.

  110. Oh my heart. I am so very sorry Stefanie. Please know that we are praying for you and your family during this very difficult time. Having buried our sweet little boy, there is no deeper pain and my heart aches for you and your family. Praying for strength, peace that passes understanding, and the full knowledge of His love to pour into your lives in abundance as you navigate through these deep waters of grieving. The years go by and while they say time heals the pain, I think it only brings distance. It always hurts and especially on the days that I allow myself to touch the wound. Whatever the reason, whatever the purpose, one thing I know to be true. He is faithful to complete that which He has started and He will find a way to count even this tragedy for His glory – always taking the worst the world offers us and finding a way to form it into wonderful reminders of Him – “And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose.” Romans 8:28. It is hard to imagine how He can take something so unbelievably painful and create anything good out of it. It is hard to want to even consider that there might be something more that He wants for us when all that we longed for is gone. I know this, because I’ve seen Him take our ashes and create beauty – change our sadness into joy – our mourning into dancing. When we adopted our daughter from China, we had no idea how miraculous the journey would be…blazing reminders of God’s goodness scattered like sunshine all along the way. Her birthday – the same as our son’s. Her age at Gotcha Day – the same as our son’s age when he was killed by a drunk driver. The month we embraced her for the very first time – the same month our lives were forever changed on my DH’s birthday when we were hit from behind and our little boy was in an instant safe in the arms of Jesus. To the world these are fate-filled coincidences, but to us, these are the outpouring of His goodness and a reason to rejoice again. Making all things new – that’s what He does. And someday, some glorious day – we will be made new too! As for now we journey again with Him back to China; this time a new son to love. Trusting Him to provide all that we need and equip us to parent each of our children. I have to believe that our little boy is smiling up in heaven knowing his Mama and Dada are loving our precious children placed in our hearts by God’s very own hands. I have to believe he knows the cost. The sacrifice. The agony. I have to believe God’s plans, though not my own, somehow brought me to this place and this place is where He wants me to not just survive, but thrive under His wing. In one moment, everything changed for us. But that one moment does more than define us – it refocuses us. It brings Him closer to illuminate the dark places as we give over the final burst of control that we thought we had, that we counted on. Suddenly, all illusions are laid bare and there is no controlling anything and we are left shaken and forced to decide to trust completely or not at all. He will equip you for this journey too as He calls you to ruthlessly trust His plans. I know He loves 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

    Praying He holds you all close,
    Shelly

  111. I’m so very, very sorry for you and your family.

  112. Love you. So many are praying for your family today, Stefanie. YOU are so loved.

  113. I am so sorry…precious baby is home now….I am praying for ya’ll right now!!!!!!!!!!!!

  114. Oh sweet Esther, how this family over here in Colorado grieves with your family waiting for you. There are some things that words just cannot express adequately.

    I just have to believe that while you waited for your Mama and Baba to come to bring you home, all the while Jesus was whispering to you just how loved and wanted you were. I have to believe that the God of the Universe was showing them to you in your dreams as you waited! We were praying that and I just have to believe it! He is just too faithful not to have answered those prayers!

    Your life, sweet Esther, has had a profound impact already and it will not stop now! You are a treasure and I take comfort in the fact that you are indeed safe in Jesus’ arms and I betcha anything you are playing with our Timothy, Andrea, Megan and John. I just betcha.

    We will continue to pray for your family you left behind.

    Their hearts are broken…and amazingly, yours is whole.

    With Love,
    Linny, Dw, Autumn, Emma, Graham, Liberty, Jubilee, Isaiah, Elizabeth and Elijah
    xo

  115. my heart breaks, and my mind spins with questions, but mostly I just wish that my heartache could take away just a small piece of your massive grief. HE will show us the reasoning in this but it is just too hard to wrap our minds around right now. I’m am so broken for you. I will be praying for you and your entire family for peace and understanding. I am so sorry.

  116. Heather says:

    Although there are no words, as another mom I just have to say my heart aches for you, and I’m sure my tears are only a drop compared to yours. I will be praying for you and your family, and I will rejoice with you in the knowledge that Esther is being so loved by a love we can only imagine.

  117. stacey milchman says:

    Your post brought tears to my eyes.
    So sorry for your loss.
    Praying for you and your family.

  118. Stefanie,

    You all are in my thoughts and prayers. As you know, God was aware of your plans. We do not know His, but I know you will hold her in heaven and live with her for eternity. She’s safe in His arms. Hugs, Darlene

  119. Oh Stefanie and Chris, What a terrible terrible loss you are all going through. I have no words, just tears and a heavy heart. Know what an inspiration you are and know that YOUR sweet girl is home…our prayers and thoughts are with you and all of the kids during this time. Much love, Ashley & Evan

  120. Oh, Jesus…Jesus…please comfort the broken-hearted and someday, in some way, turn their ashes into beauty, and their mourning into dancing.
    Amen.

  121. Oh I am so so very sorry. I know she was loved beyond belief, from half-way across the world, from an incredible family who will always hold her tightly within their hearts. Prayers for you and yours during this time. May you feel the comfort of His arms around you.
    Nancy

  122. ((hugs))

  123. Oh Stefanie and Chris and family,
    We are so saddened to hear this news about your precious Esther whom was So Loved. My heart is heavy for your family.
    HUGS. Prayers. Love, Cindy

  124. I’m so sorry. There are no words except to wish for a peace to come to you as time passes and you are surrounded by the love of family and friends.

  125. Oh sweet Esther you did not pass as an orphan. Praises to the Father for your wonderful loving family – Precious family, I am so very sorry for your loss. Stefanie you all will be in our prayers. Hugs, tears and love. Ashley

  126. So very, very sorry. There are no words.

  127. I am so sorry Stefanie. I am praying for God’s peace to wash over you and your sweet family. I think we are all grieving with you.

    Love, Kathy

  128. Ohhh I am sooo sad to hear this. Precious Esther was soooo loved! My heart aches for y’all, her forever family. God brought Esther into your life in an incredible way – His plan is perfect, praising Him that He asks the little children to come to Him, so that He can hold them for eternity!
    Love y’all!

  129. crazynobody says:

    I’m in tears right now.

    I have to be honest with you, I not someone who prays or believes on same level as your family or your followers but after reading this I got on my knees and talked and prayed to the best of my ability. And as agnostic as I thought i was, I know someone heard me.

    I am SO sorry for your loss and I will continue praying for everyone who is affected by the loss of Esther

  130. I’m so sorry for the loss of your sweet Esther. My thoughts and prayers are with your family.

  131. I am so sorry! Prayers for peace & comfort that only God can give.

  132. Sweet, precious Esther…I am so very sorry. Praying for you, Stephanie, and for your family. We will all miss seeing this beautiful girl and the life she would have had with you. So very grateful that she was (and is) dearly loved.

  133. There are no words. I’m so sorry. I am praying for your family–healing, wisdom, and discernment as you move forward.

  134. Kristiana says:

    You are so that baby’s mother and family. You loved her and prayed for her…and so much more that a parent does for their child. Somehow, I know she knew she was so loved. I will be lifting you and yours up in prayers. So comforted that you know and trust the Great Comforter. He is Faithful.

  135. I’m so incredibly sorry for your loss.

  136. Kate/globalgirl says:

    No words… just…

    support

    Take care.

  137. Stefanie, I have no words. Praying for comfort in this time of great mourning. I am just sooo sorry!

  138. My heart breaks for you and your family. I cannot comprehend the pain you must be experiencing. Praying for God’s peace and strength during this time.

  139. I am so sorry to hear of your loss. Although there are no words that can comfort you now, I know that your sweet Esther is in Heaven, where there is no pain, or suffering and I know she is looking down knowing that she has a Mommy and a Daddy that love her so much. Please know that your family is in our thoughts and prayers.

  140. I am so deeply sorry for you loss. Praying that God will give you peace and comfort.

  141. Chris & Stefanie,

    I’m so sorry. Sending hugs your way. Also praying for His comfort and peace for all of you.

  142. I join with the others in saying that I am so sorry for your family’s loss.

    Truly, she was a loved and cherished little girl. And while you have no real way of ever telling that to her now on this side, I am certain, as Linny so beautifully said, that ALL the while, the Holy Spirit was preparing her heart to be loved by you all. AND now she is fully enveloped in the purest, truest love dancing with abandon while SHE waits for YOU.

    Hugs to you all, and prayers covering you now.

    Tracy

  143. There are no words to express the sadness upon hearing your news. I will pray for you and your family to find peace.

  144. Rochelle says:

    Oh my goodness…I simply have no words. I’m so very, very sorry.

  145. you are in our thoughts and prayers…all of you.

  146. I am so sorry for your loss. Sue

  147. So very sorry! My So Loved shirt has just became even more meaningful for me to wear and I will think of you sweet Esther each and every time I wear it!! Hugs to you!

  148. Oh Sweet Stefanie,

    I am so so sorry. Praying that the God of all comfort will comfort you now as only He can. Trusting in His sovereign will, asking Him to envelope you in His perfect peace, and knowing that He will work even this together for good somehow.

    May God bless your sweet family and hold you tenderly in His arms as you walk through the grief.

    The secret things belong to the LORD our God, but the things revealed belong to us and to our children forever, that we may follow all the words of this law. Deut. 29:29

  149. ann reed says:

    Stefanie,
    I am so so sorry to hear your devastating news. I am heartbroken for you and your family. I know how hard you fought for your sweet Esther. You will be in my prayers.

    God Bless,
    Ann

  150. Stefanie and precious family~

    I am numb thinking about how you must be hurting so. There aren’t any words I can say to take the hurt away. I am so sorry for your loss. So, so sorry. I have full confidence that Esther’s passing will bring glory to God in a way nobody could imagine. She was beautiful on this earth and now she is beautiful as she radiates in the presence of her maker.

    Love and blessings~
    Lisa

  151. I’m so sorry for your loss. You are in my thoughts and prayers.

  152. Crystal says:

    My heart is absolutely broken for you. I am so, so sorry for your loss. I will be praying for sweet Esther & your family.

  153. So so Sorry for your loss, Oh my goodness I am so sorry for you all. Will be praying for you. Much love to you

  154. My heart is breaking for you Stephanie…I’m so very sorry. I will be praying for your whole family during this difficult time.

  155. Words can’t even convey the appropriate sympathy.
    May God give you the peace that passes all understanding.

  156. toryjeff says:

    Oh Stefanie….our hearts fill with your sorrow!!! God needed a Family, a special Family, to LOVE Esther before he brought her home. You fullfilled that place so well. Your daughter is now watching over Your Family and Blessing them everyday with the GRACE of the Lords love that fills her soul. There is a message from the Lord in all this…. Awaiting discovery!!! He has Blessed you with this challenge, knowing your Family along can handle it. Esther knows the glory and love she was to feel in the arms of You, Chris and the Kids. Her Heart GLOWS with the joy of knowing how LOVED she was!!!!!

  157. Oh my gosh, Stefanie. I’m so sorry, I’m so grieved. There just aren’t words. You will be in my thoughts and prayers.

    Lib.

  158. With heavy tears and our hearts aching for you, we want you to know how very loved you are and that you are in our thoughts and prayers. I will not even pretend to know what depth of pain and confusion you are feeling right now, but our Father knows. And we pray that He holds you close and wraps you in His mighty arms during this very hard time of loss, and that He gives you rest in His divine comfort. Indeed, Esther did not leave this world an oprhan, but a very loved little girl and as your daughter. I’m just sorry you did not get to hold her on this side of Heaven. Keeping you in our prayers and sending BIG hugs your way. Love to all of you.

    ~Tanya

  159. Oh Stefanie, I don’t always write comments on your blog but I am a faithful reader. Please know that you and your family are in our prayers. I know that there are so many people laying you at His feet right now and I pray that you are feeling Jesus arms wrapped around you. Big hugs my friend

  160. I am so sorry for your loss. Praying for you and your family.

  161. We are so sorry for your immense loss. Our hearts break for you all.

  162. So very, verry sorry for your loss.

  163. Stefanie and family, There are no words that express my heartbreak for you all. Praying for peace and comfort for you. My deepest and most heartfelt sympathies.

    Deb

  164. I am heartbroken for you guys. Praying for you & your family.

  165. Dear Stef, Chris, and Family,

    I have thought about this, prayed about this, and pondered this…While I have not experienced this type of loss, I have experienced your faith.. I have seen it in action again and again! And, like so many have said here, I have no doubt that you will continue to shine your light during this very dark time. You are a family that glorifies God in all that you do. You also have the ability to find joy in all things… None of that is easy when your hearts are breaking…

    You stepped out on faith in the biggest of ways to bring precious Esther home. You reached out and blessed all of us with your testimony about what it takes to trust and to obey. We have seen the blessings in that, and unfortunately the pain too. You have touched hearts by your willingness to ALWAYS say, “send me!”

    The Bible tells us that He will never leave us.. I believe that with my whole heart. We know His Word never goes void. You have proven that to us with every word you write from your heart!.. Many have come to their knees for you today. Begging for peace, restoration, and healing. We know that God loved Esther so much He needed her home.. But, still we question why? Why now? Why her! The earthly part of our hearts grieves today! We also rejoice that she is healed! And, one day you will hold your baby girl! And, when you do she will thank you for the way you loved her!

    “So do not fear, for I am with you; do not be dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you: I will uphold you with my righteous right hand. ~Isaiah 41:10

    Love,
    Diana

  166. I remember in Esther’s referral information, that it said she would get tired when she crawled. After I heard your news today, the very first words that went through my mind were from Isaiah: “But they that wait upon the Lord shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings as eagles and they shall run and not be weary, and they shall walk and not faint.” I know that’s true for your precious Esther right now.

    So very sorry for your loss.

  167. Oh Stefanie, I am so sorry for your loss…

    Praying for you all, with much love.

    Tamela

  168. Stefanie, I am so, so sorry. I will be praying for you all.

  169. Cynthia says:

    i am so sorry for your great loss… may Jesus hold you in His arms the way He is now cradling Esther. may your heart be healed the way Jesus has healed her. God loves you deeply, truly, may His love and peace wash over you and your family.

  170. The only thought I keep having past the sadness is thankfulness that your family brought Esther to a place of significance that every child deserves. She became more than a face on a waiting child list…she became a daughter & sister. She really is “so loved”. Your obedience & her story have touched many hearts.

    Continued prayers for your family ~ Dardi

  171. Julie Anne says:

    I’m so sorry to hear of your loss. We are praying for your whole family.

    Julie Anne & Anna FuBin

  172. I am so sorry for your loss. I cannot even imagine what you are going through. You are in our thoughts.

  173. My heart is breaking for you…so sorry :( There aren’t any words really except that I am praying for you.

  174. I am so sorry. So sorry, Stephanie. There are no words. Just know you and your family are in my prayers.

  175. I am so very sorry. Sigh, I have nothing to offer but prayers. I will pray for your family and that Poppi will be with you soon.

  176. Omigosh. i am stunned. Sorry doesn’t seem fitting yet there are no appropriate words. My thoughts are with you and your family.

  177. I am so, so sorry for your loss.

  178. I am so very sorry for your loss.

    ((hugs))

  179. Sweet Stefanie…my heart is breaking for you all. I cannot even imagine how difficult this loss is–not only for you and Chris, but for your children who have also been holding Esther in their hearts. I know I told you earlier that I would share our story with you but as I typed it out, I just felt like God did not want me to share it right now. So I will save it for another day. Please know that all of your efforts for Esther were not in vain…He has a purpose in it all and He is working out His perfect plan for His glory. You will see it eventually. And in the meantime, I know you are hanging on to Him and trusting His goodness, even when you are utterly shattered and broken. He loves you with a perfect love and never allows us to suffer a needless tear. Not one. I know He will bind up all your wounds and teach you deep things as you ‘share in his sufferings.’
    Praying for you, sweet friend.
    {{big hugs}}

  180. Our hearts are broken for you and your family. There is nothing we can say to ease your pains right now. We have endlessly supported y’all through this all and will continue to do so. As always you all remain in our thoughts and prayers!

  181. Weeping in NC…..

  182. I’m so sorry. :(

  183. I am so sorry. We will be praying for your family during this difficult time. may God give you peace!

  184. I am so sorry for your loss. I pray God gives you peace and comfort as He holds your precious Esther in His arms.

  185. So so sorry to hear this about your little one. Unfortunately another little life gone too soon. Our little Malia passed away before we could get to her in China in 2008. Numb was all I could feel when I got the news, just numb for days. Praying for peace and understanding for you and your precious family.

  186. I am so so sorry to hear that your beloved Esther passed on. I know it must be devastating for you guys. Hugs.

  187. We are so very sorry to hear about Esther…May she rest in peace and forever be in your hearts.

    You and your family are in our thoughts and prayers xoxo

    Janice

  188. Oh my Stefanie I am so so sorry. I know how much your heart must ache. Please know that you and your family will be in my thoughts and prayers. Hugs!

  189. While our hearts are breaking into a million pieces, Esther’s is perfectly healed. She is with the Great Physician now, and we humbly ask Him for healing, to help our hurting hearts during this moment.

  190. I am so, so sorry for your loss. I know our God is a God of comfort…but I also know He is big enough to handle our questions, our crying out, our anger, and anguish. I pray you will freely let it all out to Him, knowing He will remain faithful all the while. I am so glad Esther had a family to hold her close in heart. We will keep you all in prayer.

  191. Stefanie and Family:
    I’m so sorry…I have no words that will help ease or fix this hurt for you. I am joining in prayer for y’all. This breaks my heart for you. I’m so very sorry for your loss.

  192. Oh, Stefanie…..
    Our hearts are just breaking right now!
    Thank you, and Chris for fighting so hard for sweet Esther. I can’t EVEN imagine what ya’ll have been going through since that phone call on Monday.
    PLEASE know we are all praying…….praying hard for your family.
    And Esther….
    Well, she is a “Pixie angel with eyelashes a mile long” dancing in heaven with a healthy heart.
    So sorry, just so, so sorry.
    We love you.

  193. I am so very sorry for your loss. I can only imagine how heartbroken you must feel.

  194. My heart breaks with yours as you grieve. I pray your comfort comes in the fact that sweet Esther felt your love and now is held by her heavenly Father. What a comfort to know that we do not have to grieve as those without hope. Praying for you.

  195. My heart hurts for you. I’m glad she was so loved even if she never knew it.

  196. OH NO!!! Lord, only you can bring perfect peace into and out of this. Show your stuff, please……PLEASE!

  197. Robyn Windsor says:

    I am so sorry to hear your sad news. My heart is just aching for you. You will be in my prayers.

  198. April Z. says:

    My heart just sank when I read your post and even though I’ve never met you or Esther I can’t help but cry. I pray that God will comfort you and your family and that Poppy will bring much joy and healing to your family. I bet that when Jesus told Esther about the family that worked so hard to get her that her heart filled with joy. She was such a beautiful little girl and I know you will miss her so much and grieve her loss deeply.

  199. Stef & Chris,

    I am just sick to read your post about Esther, I cant imagine the pain you are in now. Im so very sorry. We adopted a little heart angel from china. she came how very ill. Their little hearts need corrected at a much earlier age. You are in my prayers.

    Hugs
    Sue

  200. There are really no words that one could say right now – but please know you are being held up and prayed for in huge ways. i cannot even imagine the pain you are going through right now. May you feel the love of God and so many others holding you up.

  201. April C. says:

    Stefanie, Praying you will feel His presence in a mighty way. Praying that you and your family will find comfort and peace that only He can provide. He is sovereign and good always. So very sorry for your loss, so very thankful she is home and healed.

  202. My heart breaks for your family! Praying for you all!

    Hugs,
    Tracey

  203. I am so sorry. My heart is broken with yours. Esther was so loved by her mama and baba.

  204. Heather says:

    Stef – I am so, so saddened by this udden news. How my heart breaks for you. I pray that God will use this tragedy for great things. She is SO LOVED…..

  205. be near, sweet Jesus….

  206. praying for you and your family in this difficult time.

  207. Truly Blessed says:

    I’m so sorry to hear this news, oh, how difficult this must be for your family. I’ll be praying for all of you.

  208. Veronika says:

    I’m so very, very sorry for your loss. Please know that I will pray for your family continually. {{ hugs }}

  209. Oh my heart hurts for you. Love to your whole family during this time…

  210. I am so sorry. My heart breaks for yours. Praying for your beautiful family….

  211. My heart is breaking for you and your family. Know that we are keeping you all in our thoughts and prayers.

  212. Kathie Hikade says:

    I am so sorry for your loss. My thoughts and prayers are with you!
    Kathie in NY

  213. I’m so very sad to read this tonight. I believe God used this precious child, whom you never met, to stretch your faith and trust in Him. Just think back to the wrestling, and stepping out that you did in your journey to her?! I’m thanking God for her presence in your life, however short that was. Sleep peacefully, Esther…
    Donna

  214. Moriyah M. says:

    Stefanie and family,
    There isn’t much that can be said at a time like this. Sweet Esther has touched so many lives, and her story especially impacted mine. Through tears, I still rejoice that she was and is SO LOVED and that she was and is a beloved daughter who will greet you with joy and love someday. You and all your family are in my thoughts and prayers. May our Father wrap each one of you in His love and comfort when it is so hard to understand.

  215. Annie L says:

    Oh, my heart is broken for you, I am so sorry. May you feel His arms wrapped around you in these coming week more then ever!!

  216. Julia Anderson says:

    Oh my dear Stefanie,
    My heart breaks for you and my eyes are filled with tears. She is SO LOVED.

  217. Stefanie, I know I emailed you earlier but again, I wanted to tell you that I am praying for you and your family. I know that your beautifully strong faith in our Father, will carry you through this incredibly painful time.

  218. Michal Dillon says:

    I will pray for you all. I have nothing else to offer. My heart is broken for you, for Esther….I am so very sorry.

  219. Dear Stefanie,
    I am very sorry about Your loss. This is unbelievable. Your family is in my prayers during this hard time. May she RIP, sweet baby girl ESTHER.

  220. Oh Stefanie…I am so sorry! Nothing I can say will be any different, any more profound or helpful than the 174 folks before me but please know that my heart is aching for you and your family….I can only imagine what it would be like to lose a child this way. There are no words!! Jesus loves you and your family and Esther…we all do! Lots of love coming to you, prayers being lifted up for you, and praise for Him as He certainly knows how to care for you all in this storm! Love you!!!!

  221. Oh, Stefanie. My heart just completely dropped when I read this. I am so sorry for this tremendous loss. I can’t even imagine how you must be feeling right now.

    Dear friend, I am praying for you.

    Esther is So Loved, that’s for sure.

  222. Sarah Strand says:

    He heals the brokenhearted And binds up their wounds He counts the number of the stars; He calls them all by name. Great is our Lord, and mighty in power; His understanding is infinite. Psalm 147:3-5

    My heart breaks for your great loss, and your family is in our prayers. May Jesus give you hope and comfort in His promises.

    Your beautiful little star, your Esther, has been perfectly healed in His presence. She is so loved by so many!

    sending you love and prayers

  223. I am so sorry for your loss… My prayers will remain with you…

  224. Lisa H. says:

    I’m so sorry for the pain you’re experiencing right now! We’ve shared a similar experience, where our daughter had a congenital heart issue and suddenly went into cardiac arrest and moved on into her TRUE forever home, before we were able to bring her to our home. I think of her and still count her as our child, and sometimes, I even pray and ask God to give her a hug from me. Interestingly, we had named her after my mom-in-law who had died a few months prior to our match with this child, and now they are together, waiting for us. It comforts me to know that while we never got to hold her in our arms or physically love on her in this life, we gave her the dignity of valuing her life, of seeing her precious worth, and loving and praying for her from across the world. She didn’t die belonging to no one, with no one to cry or care. I pray that God will comfort your heart in His own tender way.

  225. My heart aches for you on the loss of your daughter. My first thought was “Thank God she had a family to love her” my second thought was the tragedy of her loss and that you never got to hold her in your arms. I am just so, so sorry for you. Having lost a son to cancer, I wish I could tell you that time heals all things, but it does not. Time just allows us to learn to live with the pain. Be good to yourself. Allow yourselves to grieve. I know my son is perfect and happy in Heaven, but, selfishly, I still wish he was here with me–and selfishly, I still wish Ester was here, waiting for you. Sadness for you all . . . you are surrounded by so many who care. Blessings, Ann

  226. Praying for all of you and thinking of little Esther who touched so many of us that never got the chance to meet her on this side of Heaven. Amy

  227. I am so sorry. I am so grateful that you truly understand that she is with her Heavenly Father, who loves her so. May you always feel her presence. Praying for your family.

  228. I am so sorry. I’m praying for you and your sweet girlie, healed and with Jesus. Your poor broken hearts – I wish there were words that could heal them, but only time and love will do that. If only things were clearer – but it must be that you were chosen to be her family for a reason. Your love honours her little life so beautifully. Love Fi

  229. I am so sorry Stefanie. What a privilege to know of Esther through the story of how God confirmed her as YOURS. And because of that, we were allowed the privilege of praying her home. We trusted those prayers would bring her into your arms. But we now see she is safe in the arms of Jesus. He promises to never leave or forsake us. Through your generous sharing, Esther touched many lives; including mine. Thank you. And again, I am SO sorry for your loss. Praying for you and your family from Hong Kong. Kim

  230. Elizabeth says:

    So, so sorry for your loss. We’re praying for your family.

  231. We wish you and your loved ones all the strenght in the world. We are so sorry sweet little Esther has passed away. We will be thinking of you…
    Love from the netherlands, Kirsty

  232. Oh Stef, Chris, and kids – I can’t try to consol you here…there aren’t the words to do that. I know all too well how bonded a parent can become to a child that they just haven’t met yet, and it’s just wrong for a parent to loose a child…I would say that Christ promised us a safe harbor with our Father – but never promised us a calm passage to get there. Esther is home, and one day I know that you’ll have that chance to hold her.

    Esther – look at how many people you’ve touched – you are – in fact and Angel who’s time on earth brought all these folks together….nice work little one….well done.

    Feel my families arms around you…

    hugs – aus and co.

  233. Stephanie, we are so sorry to hear this. We are praying for you and your family. Also for the caregivers of Esther as I know they must also be crushed. She is now a healthy little angel looking down on each of you knowing she was loved and wanted very much.

  234. Stefanie,

    I don’t comment often, but am a daily reader of your blog. I am so sorry for the pain your family is going through right now. I am also so in awe of how God works….That sweet little Esther did not leave this earth unknown, as an orphan, but loved and known and treasured as a member of your family!!! What a blessing that every time I (and 600 others) put on our So Loved tshirts, we will forever be reminded of God’s beautiful work in Esther’s life and your faithfulness.

    Praying for your hearts.

    Lara

  235. I’m so sorry for you loss. We are all so loved by our Heavenly Father. I pray that you will feel His comfort in these coming days. I already think of Esther and Poppy each time I wear my so loved shirt. She made an impact in her short life. I pray that Poppy is safely in your arms very shortly.

  236. I am so sorry, more than I can say – my heart is broken for you. Esther knows how much you loved and fought for her, and will watch over you and your family.

  237. My heart aches for you and your family. There are no words.

  238. This makes me so sad. I am sad for you. But, I am really sad that Esther never got to experience the love of a mother, of a family that was forever hers. This is NOT FAIR. I know life’s not fair. But THIS is truly unsettling.

    I am so very sorry, sweet Esther.

    Love and peace to you and your forever family.

  239. There are no words. I am SO VERY sorry for your family’s loss!!!

  240. I am so sorry this happened. We prayed for your family today in devotions at my school.
    Joy

  241. Take heart in that your baby girl is with Jesus now…and you’ll meet someday. I’m remembered of the song “Praise you in this storm” Every tear you cry, He holds in his hand…

    I know you’re strong, don’t forget to tell Poppy all about her sister…keep the memory alive. You can never take those away….

    Love you my friend,
    Diane

  242. So incredibly saddened by this news. Please know we are thinking of your family.

  243. So very sorry for your loss. This little girl touched so many people. So many tears being shed for her.

  244. Oh Stefanie,
    I am so very sorry. Tears are flowing as I write these words. My heart goes out to you and your family. I am praying that God will wrap His arms around you and you will feel His presence, His comfort, and His grace.

    Love,
    Marca

  245. Dear Stefanie and family,

    I am so very, very sorry for your loss. Esther was so loved by so many people. I’m praying that God will wrap you in His presence and comfort during this difficult time, and that He will strengthen you in every way. Seeing your faith in the midst of the good times is awesome, but seeing your faith in God’s character in the midst of the hard times is on a whole different level. You and your family are SO LOVED too.

    Love,
    Ginny

  246. I am so sorry I just read your blog-
    I really don’t know what to say but I wanted to let you know I am praying for you. I don’t know you or your family well but I read your blog and you so kindly helped me when we were bringing Anna-Grace home with your wonderful t-shirts! I know your heart is heavy but remember she is with Jesus. when MJ passed away it took me a long time to understand why, why he would take her from me when we only just began our relationship as Mama and daughter but I realized that Mj is he’s child and I was a stepping stone from Mj to Him! Mj is whole now something I could never due for her. I pray your family would have peace and comfort knowing that Esther is with Jesus and one day you will all be together!
    Love in Christ,
    Carrie Kreuer

  247. My heart hurts reading this. I can only hope that the comfort of knowing that Esther is with her Father will take you through until He introduces you to your daughter in Heaven. Oh what a glorious day that will be! Praying for your family and that sweet Poppy will soon find her way to your arms!

  248. Rachel Stahley says:

    My heart is breaking.

  249. Laura Teresinski says:

    I am so sorry to read of your loss. My prayers are with your family and Esther.

  250. I am sorry for your loss. May God bring your comfort during this time.

  251. Crying with you, and praying now that YOU feel So Loved by this sea of hearts lifting you and yours in prayer.

  252. Begging God for His comfort and love to surround your family. ((hugs))

  253. Nikki Pivovar says:

    I’m praying for your family. So, so sorry. I’m hoping Poppy will come home soon.

  254. Amy Patzer says:

    My heart is breaking for you. Sending you hugs.

  255. Michelle and Sheppard Parker says:

    Stefanie, our hearts are so heavy for you and your family. Please know that you are often in our thoughts and prayers.

  256. So sorry to hear… may God surround ALL of you with His loving arms and give you peace.

  257. Heather says:

    As everyone else has so lovingly stated, I am just SO very sorry for your family’s loss!!! We’re praying for all of you and simply cannot fathom the loss of my child. I just bet she is gazing down on you all while playing in the presence of His love and mercy! Hugs to you all!!!!

  258. It hurts to read this, Stefanie. I am very sorry to hear about Esther. You and your family will be in my prayers.

  259. christy says:

    No words– only prayer. I am so sorry and my heart aches for you right now. Your family is in my prayers.

    Christy

  260. I am so very sorry. Your family will be in my prayers.

  261. I am so sorry for your loss. What heart breaking news.

  262. Stefanie, I am so sorry for your loss of Esther. May God be with you.

  263. I’m at a loss for words………………..so very very sorry for your family’s loss. Please know that your AOW family is mourning with you and we are here for you to lean on………………hugs

  264. Desiree says:

    We can trust in the eternal plan, but sometimes it hurts. All is well, and all is well, and all shall be well. We are praying for you, and rejoice that we could know Esther. So very very sorry.

  265. Stephanie and Chris,
    There are no words…….I’m so very sorry. Our family will be praying for all of you. She’s with her Daddy now with a healed heart. Rest in peace sweet Esther.

  266. Kimberly E says:

    I have come back several times to comment here, but can’t find the words. Only tears and sadness for you and your sweet family. Esther is so loved. By her family and countless others. Her story has and will continue to touch so many. We love you and will pray for you.

  267. Please find the song “Close To Your Heart” by Matt Reddman and Steven Curtis Chapman and listen to it. I think it will be comforting to you.

    • Found the lyrics for you…..

      Though hope is clouded

      It has not left us

      Though pain runs deep now

      You’re deeper still

      And You are holding

      All things together

      Hold us together now

      Chorus: We have this hope

      An anchor for the soul

      We have this truth

      A compass for the heart

      You’ve gone before us

      And You are with us

      And You will carry us through

      You will carry us close to Your heart

      Here is confusion

      Where is the meaning?

      But we are trusting

      Your Father love

      And You are holding

      All things together

      Hold us together now

      Chorus 2x: We have this hope

      An anchor for the soul

      We have this truth

      A compass for the heart

      You’ve gone before us

      And You are with us

      And You will carry us through

      And You will carry us close to Your heart

      Close to Your Heart

      Safe in the arms of Jesus

      She’s safe in the arms of Jesus

      We’re safe in the arms of Jesus

      We’re safe in the arms of Jesus

      We’re safe in the arms of Jesus

      Safe in the arms of Jesus

      We’re safe in the arms of Jesus

      She’s safe in the arms of Jesus

      Chorus: We have this hope

      An anchor for the soul

      We have this truth

      A compass for the heart

      You’ve gone before us

      And you are with us

      And You will carry us through

      You will carry us close

      You have carried her home

      You have carried her home to Your heart.

  268. We are praying for you and Chris (and family). We are so sorry for your heartache and loss. Many Hugs and much love, Bob and Jill Shelton

  269. Praying for a comfort that can only come from His love…for you and your family.

    Love and blessings,
    Robin

  270. heart breaking. in so many ways. =( praying for all of yall.

  271. I just can’t stop thinking about her Stefanie. Or you. Went to bed praying for you, woke up praying for you, and it hits me in the heart again every half hour or so. I know you know. I know you know that He’s got this, that He’s got you, your family and sweet Esther in the palm of his mighty hand. But Lord how it hurts!

    I think often of your husband’s wise words about pain and suffering, they have truly changed my perspective on life. But being called to live that is a much bigger challenge. I’m so sorry you’re being called to that table right now and am praying that the distraction of all the little feet in your house, and the Lord’s grace will pull you through.

    I read your blog daily and rarely comment. But this one pulled me out of hiding, because I couldn’t hold it in. Esther was LOVED, truly – and I hope that love changed her life as much as it changed yours. She’s in heaven right now with Jesus, and in the end, I know you wouldn’t want anything less for her. God bless all of you today, tomorrow and always.

  272. Chris and Stefanie,

    What devastating news…..I’m so very, very sorry. Keeping you all in my thoughts and prayers.

    Wendy

  273. So sad to hear this, so very sad. Words fail me. Praying that peace reigns in your home even in your grief and that He will supernaturally be able to turn your grief into dancing in His perfect timing.

  274. Oh, dear sweet Stefanie…I was crushed when I read this. We know there is a purpose…although we may never KNOW on this side of heaven what that purpose is. I am praying for your family…Romans 8:28.

  275. Stefanie, Chris & Family- There are no words. My heart aches for you. Know that we are lifting you up in prayer.

  276. Jennifer says:

    Oh guys….I have no words. I am utterly shocked. Know that you are covered in prayer. I’m not sure what else to say… Sending so much love your way.

  277. Jennifer says:

    Prayers for your broken hearts. It is beyond our understanding. In order to love deeply, you have to be prepared for deep hurts, too – a heart cannot do one without risking the other. Esther was worth that risk and so much more.

  278. Teresa Morgan says:

    You are in my prayers.

  279. I have no words….. you are all in my prayers…..
    Praying for God’s peace that surpasses ALL understanding…
    Love,
    Daleea

  280. thinking of you. I truly am.

  281. Oh Stefanie, I am so sorry… so, so sorry. My prayers are with you… maybe He will let me take a little of your pain as my own…

  282. Dear Stefanie and Family,

    I just read this today. I just cannot seem to find the words………..

    My heart hurts, and tears well up just thinking about your enormous loss. This was one of my great fears while waiting to bring our daughter home. I can’t even begin to imagine your pain. I know that God loves you and yours, including precious Esther. I trust with all my heart that He has a plan, even though in the darkness it can seem impossible to see.
    I can’t understand and I don’t know what to do, but to fall to my knees and pray. And so I will, lifting you all up to our good Father, praying for help, for Him to come in a real way, to hold you, to comfort you, to bring you a peace that passes our understanding. To lead and guide you, to heal your hearts.
    I am so so so sorry.

  283. Liberty says:

    One heart made whole . Many hearts breaking. One divine plan. He gives and takes away. Blessed be the name of the Lord.

    Prayers and hugs.

  284. God loves Esther too much, so He took her Home. She is now in an awesome place, called Heaven. God bless Esther’s soul, God bless your beautiful family, and God bless little Poppy.

  285. I can hardly believe what I have just read. Tears are flowing down my cheeks as my mommy heart aches for you and your family right now. My first thought was “no, God, this can’t be true…” but who am I to question God?

    I will be praying for you… especially that you continue to see God’s glory and strength… even in this pain.

  286. Oh Stefani, I am so sorry. She isn’t lost at all, you know right where she is – in the arms of her loving Father, no better place to be. I know there are no words that can console such raw emotion, so I give prayer for you and your whole family. God Bless you and your family. Hugs.

  287. Anne and Mike says:

    Our hearts are broken with yours. We have been thinking about your family and Eleanor all day.
    We are with you in your grief.
    love,
    Anne and Mike

  288. I feel your heart ache and cry with you. I can’t imagine being so close to getting my baby and getting this news. When my nephew died at 18 days old, the song, “You Were Loved” touched my heart. I immediately thought of it when I heard the news of your sweet Esther.

    You Were Loved:
    We all want to make our
    place in this world
    We all want our voices to be heard
    Everyone wants a chance to be someone
    We all have dreams we need to dream
    But sweeter than any star you can reach
    Is when you reach and find
    you’ve found someone
    You’ll hold this world’s
    most priceless thing
    The greatest gift this life can bring
    If you can look back and know
    You were loved.
    CHORUS:
    You were loved by someone
    Touched by someone
    Held by someone
    Meant something to someone
    Loved somebody
    Touched somebody’s heart along the way
    You can look back and say
    You were loved.

    You can have diamonds in your hand.
    Have all the riches in the land
    Without love do you really have a thing
    When someone cares that you’re alive
    When someone finds their
    world in your eyes
    Then you’ll know you’ve
    found all you need
    You’ll hold this world’s
    most priceless prize
    The sweetest treasure in this life
    If you can look back and know
    You were loved
    CHORUS
    So many roads that you can take
    Whatever way you go
    Don’t take that road alone
    Better you should know…
    You were loved by someone
    Touched by someone
    Held by someone
    Meant something to someone
    Loved somebody
    Touched somebody’s heart along the way
    You can look back and say
    You did OK
    You were loved.
    So remember to tell that one
    You are loved.
    Lyrics: You Were Loved, Wynonna Judd

  289. Tahseen says:

    So very sad to read this. You are in my thoughts and prayers.

  290. Kelli Hunter-Campbell says:

    I’ve been following y’alls journey for some time now. I am just so sad to hear of this devastating loss. I will light a candle for your family and I will pray for your comfort. That sweet baby is in the arms of Jesus now. She’s not hurting. It’s those left behind that hurt now. She is whole and she healthy and she is waiting for the day when she will be able to hold her family in her arms.

    I’m just so incredibly sorry for your loss. Hold tight to one another and hold tight to Jesus and trust in Him with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding.

    God Bless

  291. Lindsay says:

    I am in tears. I cannot imagine your grief. May the God of all comfort wrap you in peace through the days to come. You are in my prayers.

  292. Dear Stefani,

    My heart is breaking with yours for the loss of your sweet Esther Adeline. What an amazing time she must be having – to be held in his arms! I am so sad and I cannot even imagine the pain you must be experiencing . . . .”He will wipe every tear from their eyes. There will be no more death or mourning or crying or pain, for the old order of things has passed away.”” Revelations 21:4. I’m so looking forward to that day.

    I just heard the song “Light and Shadow” by the David Crowder band. You are probably familiar with it but if not you will be greatly comforted by it.

    May God grant you His peace.

    xo ellie

  293. Oh, Stefanie, my heart is simply aching for you. I cannot imagine what you are going through. I can however relate to you that Esther is and was your daughter if only by heart. He brought her into your lives for a purpose, for His plan is so much grater than ours. We are hanging on by a thread to see if His plan is the same as ours in regards to Kelaih, who has in my heart been my daughter since the day I laid my eyes on her.

    Please know that you, and your entire family are in our prayers.

    Mandi

  294. Stefanie,

    Chills crept up my spine and tears flowed as I read your post. I can’t imagine how you are feeling. Know that many, many people are thinking of you and praying for you and your family — and for your beautiful Esther. My God forever hold her in his hands. I’m so sorry.

    Heather

  295. Carolyn G. says:

    I am so deeply saddened for you and your family. I was inspired and encouraged when you told about your journey to this precious Esther. The Lord obviously gave you a deep love for this child! I pray now that HE will comfort your grieving hearts and fill you with HOPE! In Christian love and sympathy~ Carolyn

  296. I know that there is nothing right to say at this time, but you and your family are in my thoughts and prayers. I am so thankful that sweet Esther received your love, your family’s love and all of us in that are blessed to follow along with you through the internet and most of all God’s love. In such a short time Esther gripped not only your heart, but ours along with you. Thank you for sharing your joy and your grief, your faith, hope and joy; may God give you comfort in only the way he can provide.

  297. Praying for all of your family for God to comfort you with His love and joy.

  298. Stefanie,
    I ache for you and your family. Sweet Esther. So precious to Jesus and now safe in His arms. I follow your blog as well as many other adoptive parent blogs and I have not ever adopted…but you inspire me to step out in faith and think about the possibilities that God has bigger plans and that maybe He could even use a mediocre person like me. And you know…I believe that you are extraordinary and that He still has plans for you in this whole story of Esther. Such a simple child yet she changed many of us. She didn’t know it….but her life was used by God. The way you wrote about her and told her story….wow. I love that Esther was used by God to speak to so many of us in different ways.

    I’m so sorry for your loss. I am sorry you will not be able to hold her here on earth. But rejoice that you will hold her in heaven some day. Bless you dear Stefanie. Thank you for sharing so much with us and allowing God to use you and your sweet family.

  299. I just came across your blog on facebook, and read your post about the loss of your precious Esther. I am so sorry for your loss, and praying for Gods arms of comfort to surround you all. I went back and read previous posts on your journey to Esther. We also are an adoptive family and have adopted a little girl with a severe heart defect from China. Because of severe complications she may never get the operation she needs. What you wrote about God revealing things to us in portions, when He knows we are ready to handle it is so true. That has defienetly been our journey with Lily.

    I know He bought Esther into your lives for a purpose and He will reveal that to you all in His timing. Even though you never held her in your arms, you held her tightly in your heart, she was yours, and one day you will be with her. Praying for you all

    Rachel

  300. I am so grateful that your family chose Esther and that she is So Loved. Thinking of the incredible freedom and beauty she is experiencing now in heaven, but knowing the incredible grief that you bear. In the way that only He can, I pray that God brings healing and comfort, and uses all this for the sake of others.

  301. Catherine says:

    My heart weeps for you and your family. I know that everything happens for a reason and that she is all better now and I’m glad you are finding some peace and understanding in all this. What a roller coaster this sweet girl has put our hearts through! She and Poppy have brought hundreds of people together- no small feat for babes who don’t even talk yet. She will never be forgotten and you will always cherish your sweet Esther. Hugs!

  302. Melissa says:

    I an so sorry for your loss. I don’t even know the words to say to a Mama with a heart grieving like yours. I pray for comfort and peace that passes understanding for you and your family. Thank you for sharing your family with us through your blog.

  303. Oh no!! I’m so sorry for your loss. I couldn’t believe what I was reading. Like someone else said before me, His plan for Esther was much greater than ours. May she rest in peace, and let perpetual light shine upon her. God bless x

  304. My heart is heavy for you loss. Prayers.

  305. First, Stefanie, know that my heart is broken for your grievous loss.
    I think of this, too: when she tries to fill her lungs to sing to her Creator she CAN now. She can SHOUT praise.
    Esther has achieved what we all pray for all our children – she has glorified her God with her life; she has rung the bell and called others to Him. Namely her Mama and Baba. You may be so proud, Stefanie. You should be.
    All my love to you

  306. Oh MY! Sweet, sweet child! Prayers for your family for healing and understanding in this …
    Praise that she is completely healed and in the arms of God right now … but now your heart hurts so very deeply. I pray that God’s purpose for this path you have been on becomes clear in the coming days.
    How sweet is it that you chose the most beautiful name for her and planned her future with such beautiful hope, prayed so fervently over her. For sure this has not been wasted. Not a moment, not an ounce. You held her in your hearts as a family and that has made all the difference.

    Valerie

  307. Lynn Kiefer says:

    “When this tent we live in- our body here on earth- is torn down, God will have a house in Heaven for us to live in, a home He Himself has made, which will last forever.” Praying for all of you and knowing that all your efforts and love had a purpose. Our hearts cry with you. Take care of yourselves.

  308. I just want you to know my heart breaks for your loss. God knows every tear shed and he cares about our hurts and loss. I am confident that sweet Esther knows she was deeply loved by her Mama and Baba and you made a difference in her life as she did in yours.

    Sending you love, hope, prayers in this season of unfathomable grief.

    Karen
    aka dannysgirl on RQ

  309. My heart is breaking for you and your family. I am truly sorry for your loss.

  310. shirlee says:

    I’m so so sorry, Stephanie.

  311. Stephanie:

    This exact time last year, we were mourning the loss of our precious McKenna. She was just 2 years old when she passed away. We were weeks away from our TA. I know words cannot take away the pain you are feeling, but know that your little one and McKenna are together in the arms of Jesus. I just read the book “Heaven is Real” for my little McKenna. Not that I needed confirmation that Heaven is for real….I just found it fascinating to get the perspective of a little boy who went there and came back to say what it was like. Please know that you and your family are in my prayers. My heart just breaks for you. Time will heal the horrible pain.. Esther deserved your families love…even thousands of miles away.

    Nikki

  312. This is such sad news. Keeping you and your family in our prayers.

  313. Oh, I gasped when I read this. How can this be? I am so very sorry for your loss. You are right – she was much loved in her short life. I am praying for you and your family.

  314. This makes me cry. I can’t even imagine what it does to you.

  315. No words. Just crying and praying for you. We may not understand God’s plans this side of heaven, but He holds Esther in the palm of HIs hand.

  316. I’m so very, very sorry. Sending prayers to you and your family.
    Julia

  317. Laurie H. says:

    So very sorry for your loss. I can’t imagine how much it hurts. Praying for you.

  318. My heart is broken for you for the loss of your precious daughter. We humans are limited and can never understand everything. But – you were obedient to God’s request of you. He asks us to be obedient and you were. Hold that in your heart as solace. You have pleased Him!

  319. Danyelle says:

    Stephanie…I am so incredibly sorry for your loss. There are just no words…I can’t imagine how much this must hurt. Keeping your family in our prayers.

  320. Reading this a bit late…but I wanted to say how sorry I am for your loss. Praying for your family

  321. I will keep you all in my prayers. I know your beautiful daughter is with God and that brings comfort to you but I also know you’re in deep pain. I am so very sorry for your loss. God Bless and Rest In Peace precious Esther Adeline.
    Star

  322. Words cannot express how sorry we are for the pain that you and your family are feeling. I know that you know your sweet baby girl is engulfed in love and safe as she can be. Death is not the end. It is the beginning of a new life with Him, the one who knew her before she was ever formed, God is made of pure love, how else could He give his own Son for us to live forever in heaven. When I lost my first baby a friend gave me a book, Scences Beyond the Grave by: Marietta Davis Edited by: Gordon Lindsay. Please, when you feel able, read the chapter in this book concerning Babies in Heaven and the Parents left here on Earth. I has helped me may times with the pain. My prayer for you is one of strength, peace, and understanding. Joy will return again, He promised. Blessings-Joy

  323. I’m so sorry… writing this in tears right now. I’ll be praying for you and your family.

  324. No words. I will be praying. I know you will find some comfort in knowing she is in the arms of Jesus. Praying!

  325. Praying for you and your family.

  326. There are no words…You and your beautiful family are in our prayers. I am so very sorry.

  327. ooooooo says:

    Im so sorry for your loss. My thoughts and prayers are with you.

  328. Melanie says:

    Oh, there are no words. I’m so sorry. Praying for you and your beautiful family.

  329. paulette says:

    My heart, love and prayers are with you and your family.

  330. Our internet went out a couple of days ago, and we just got back on yesterday evening. I went to catch up on blogs and saw this. Stefanie, I am so so sorry. Little Esther already touched so many lives without ever actually meeting them. Praying for peace for you and your precious family. <3

  331. I’m so very sorry. You are in our thoughts and prayers.

  332. I am so so sorry. I’ve been reading your blog for a long time. Several months ago, my husband and I sat reading one of your posts and decided to start our process and do what we were called to do-adopt. I came today to check things out since it’s been a couple of weeks. I am sitting here with tears in my eyes, praying for your family. God has used you to change our lives. We will pray for wisdom and peace for you.

  333. I am so, so very sorry.

  334. I’ve been following your blog for a little while…since we started our own journey to adopt from China. I am so very sorry for your loss. There really are no words. Sending up many prayers for your family and sweet Esther!

  335. machell says:

    Stephanie and Chris,

    Just catching up on your blog … I am so sorry … you are in my prayers.

    Machell

  336. May God’s peace surround you all.

    With love and respect for your beautiful family

    Becky

  337. Jessica says:

    I am so very sorry for your loss. I hope you know that so many people hold you and your family in their hearts and are grieving the loss of your sweet Esther. You are all in my prayers.

    Jessica

  338. I’m numb….and so deeply saddened for your family’s loss. If my own heart is heavy, I can only imagine the weight you are feeling. May the God of ALL COMFORT surround you with His PEACE and guide you in understanding during the days, months and years ahead. Know you are loved and prayed for often during this enormously difficult time.

    Cyber hugs,
    Eva

  339. Kirsten says:

    Praying for your family as you walk through this valley. We know God is good, all the time. This does not diminish the pain we experience in this world however! Aching for you as you long to hold your daughter…

  340. “Very truly I tell you, unless a kernel of wheat falls to the ground and dies, it remains only a single seed. But if it dies, it produces many seeds.” John 12:24

    Esther is with our Heavenly Father’s care now. And she know’s what you have done and what you mean to her. God bless…

  341. I am just catching up and am so sorry to read this. My heart breaks for your family.

  342. Stefanie- I am sorry to send my condolences so late. My heart goes out to you.

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