In 1995, 40,000 healthy infants were placed in adoptive homes in the United States, while 2,000,000 American couples were seeking to adopt.
-The Kiplinger Washington Letter, October 1996
So Ruth departed and went and gleaned in the field after the reapers; and she happened to come to the portion of the field belonging to Boaz, who was of the family of Elimelech.
Sometime in September, 1995, in Indianapolis, Indiana, a 15-year-old girl happened to become pregnant by her boyfriend. After she found she was pregnant, the girl happened to go to a clinic that happened to be staffed by a nurse who happened to be a friend of a couple who had just happened to tell her they had decided to adopt. The nurse spoke to the girl and found out she was interested in making an adoption plan for her unborn child because her parents had thrown her out, and she knew that she and her teenage boyfriend were in no place to raise a child. The nurse told her about the childless friends and the girl agreed to meet them.
Sometime in November, 1995, the girl and her boyfriend met the prospective adoptive parents for dinner. The group hit it off and all agreed to pursue an adoption. The couple set the girl up with an adoption attorney and the couple started going through all the steps necessary to become an adoptive family. Throughout the next seven months, the girl and the couple stayed in contact through the mutual friend at the medical clinic, and by the spring of 1996 all the paperwork and home studies and background checks and medical evaluations were complete and ready for the adoption to take place.
Sometime in February, 1996, in Cincinnati, Ohio, a 17-year-old girl happened to become pregnant by a teenage boy she never saw again. Later that spring, she decided to place the child for adoption and happened to connect with a local attorney whose practice was limited to adoption. The attorney found a married couple living in Louisiana who agreed to adopt the child and pay the girl’s living expenses during her pregnancy (which happened to be prohibited under Ohio adoption law).
Toward the end of May, 1996, the 15-year-old girl in Indianapolis gave birth to a little baby boy at Methodist Hospital, the same hospital where the wife of the prospective adoptive couple happened to work and on a day she happened to be working. As well, the doctor who attended the delivery happened to be a friend of the wife and figured out who the girl was and told the wife that the birth had taken place.
The day after the 15-year-old gave birth, her parents, who had wanted nothing to do with her during the entire pregnancy, came to the hospital and forbade her from going through with the adoption. The girl, not really knowing what to do, called the attorney and canceled everything. A week later – ironically while the adoptive couple happened to be in the attorney’s office discussing next steps – the girl called the attorney and said she was having second thoughts. A few days after that, the girl decided to keep the child permanently, leaving the couple with all the prep-work done for an adoption but no child to adopt.
Sometime in late September, 1996, the 17-year-old girl in Cincinnati, now over eight months pregnant, happened to become offended by the prospective adoptive parents in Louisiana and so decided to call off the adoption. Because of the arrangements made with that couple, replacement parents had to be found outside of Ohio. The attorney contacted friends of hers in Connecticut who leaped at the chance to adopt the child, but because they happened to not be in the adoption process at the time, found that they could not clear the necessary bureaucratic hurdles in time to be eligible.
On October 8, 1996, the girl gave birth to a little baby boy at Christ Hospital in Cincinnati. Because his future was unknown, and because his birth-mother’s last name was Fisher, his crib was labeled “Male Infant Fisher” in the hospital nursery.
On October 9, the attorney – now desperate for an adoptive couple – contacted another attorney she happened to know in Indianapolis who happened to represent the prospective couple who, because of the adoption that happened to fall through five months earlier, had all of their paperwork in order and were dying to adopt. Also, because Indiana happened to pass a new adoption law earlier that same year that specifically allowed it, and because the man’s job had happened to have a profitable year unlike any that followed it, they were legally and financially able to pay the living expenses of the birth-mother. On October 10, a call was placed to this couple who, because the wife happened to have the day off, were able to drop everything immediately and drive to Cincinnati to pick up their new son. Once there, this couple happened to have good friends who lived in Cincinnati who had an 18-month-old daughter of their own (and thus had all the necessities for a newborn), and who insisted that the new parents live with them while the paperwork was processed between the states.
That’s the story of how Male Infant Fisher, born October 8, 1996, became William Arthur Loy on October 10, 1996. It’s a story of God sovereignly working out detail after detail after detail – none of which seemed miraculous or remarkable and much of which was completely unknown to us (Will’s future parents) – to accomplish His ends. It involved the excruciating experience of a failed adoption that seemed tragic at the time to the experience of having only a few hours’ notice that we were parents. Seven months of anticipation that ended in enormous disappointment followed by six hours of stunned apprehension that ended in enormous joy.
There is nothing – absolutely nothing – that has shown God’s sovereignty in the life of the Loys more than the stories of how each of the three kids became part of the family.
Today marks 21 years since Will became a Loy. It’s an amazing and God-glorifying anniversary. There is no doubt that he’s a gift from God.
[The picture at the top of this post is of a list we made – notice the calendar at the top right – of names we considered for Will. Since we only had six hours’ notice before becoming parents, we actually spent the first few days of his life trying to name him. ‘William’ won out over ‘Arthur’ (his grandfather’s name), so they became his first and middle names.]