Thursday, November 29, 2012

The Renno Family ~ 31 Families of HOPE: Day 29

Meet the Renno Family!: Ryan and Melissa Renno and their new precious Gideon who JUST got in their arms THIS week forever!

Melissa, what first tugged on your heart about the Fatherless?

Ryan told his parents as a child that he didn’t want to have biological children, that he wanted to adopt. This was after he watched a documentary on CL/CP with his dad…how crazy is that, right? Then after a 3 year journey with infertility, we knew God was asking us to lay down our plans and trade them in for His and, as always, His plans were far better. 

Tell us one unique thing about your family/ministry.

We are about to complete a special needs adoption and through this journey have really met a ton of other adoptive parents. I am in partnership with Kelly Raudenbush, in starting the Baltimore Area Moms Through Adoption Facebook group in conjunction with her Philly Moms Group. I have spoken at MOPS events about adoption as well. UPDATED - they just got united with their son!

What was one challenge either before, during or after your child(ren) came home?

The biggest challenge for me, BY FAR, has been learning what true surrender looks like. I am a definite control-freak so it’s been VERY difficult to let go of trying to control everything and just embrace it all, good and bad, to see that God is in control….NOT ME!!! It’s incredibly hard to have to depend on other people to take care of something that is SO PRECIOUS to us.

If you could tell a family that was considering adoption one bit of advice what would it be?
I would tell them that we have learned over and over again on this journey that God’s got this. It is true that He will finish the work He has started. If you truly feel that God is calling you to adopt, SAY YES!! He will give you His strength to see it come to fruition. We had LOTS of delays and hiccups (that’s a nice way to put it) throughout our journey, but every time we thought whatever was going on was the worst possible thing that could ever happen, looking back it ALWAYS made sense, even the really really hard stuff! I do not believe that “Everything happens for a reason”, but I do believe that God can take anything and make it beautiful and that’s what He has done for us time and time again. 

What verse was especially encouraging to you during your adoption journey?

I don’t think I can pick just one so I will share two:

“Hope deferred makes the heart sick, but a longing fulfilled is a tree of life.” Proverbs 13:12
*To me, this verse really speaks to how amazing it’s going to feel to FINALLY have our son in our arms. We have been longing for almost 3 ½ years for a child and we believe this journey has made our coming reality even sweeter. 

“Before they call I will answer: While they are still speaking I will hear.” Isaiah 65:24
*I guess this is self-explanatory, but God truly does know what we need before we even ask. It’s so humbling to know He loves us that much!

Share one blessing that has happened because you said YES and followed God on this journey.

God honored the prayers of my best friend and I in an INCREDIBLE way!….this is such a cool story. I’ll link the blog post I wrote about it.

If you could share one other thing that is meaningful to you on the topic of adoption/orphan care, what would it be?

One of the most incredible parts of this journey is witnessing how strong the community of adoptive parents and families has been. I have never experienced so much love and support from people I barely know. I have made so many instant friends that I couldn’t have made it through all of this without. Some of them have traveled far distances to come to my long-awaited baby shower, or met me on a work trip to meet and hang out for a few days. It’s just awesome! I have made forever friends all because God placed us on these similar paths. These are some of the only people in this world that truly get what we have and will experience. Soooo grateful! Makes me cry just typing these words!

Thank you, Renno Family, for sharing HOPE with us here at Reaching Hearts!  Be sure to check out their family blog to learn more about their journey and to see a ton of amazing pictures of their precious family who is all now TOGETHER! Also, Melissa's FB group for adoptive moms is:

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You can also find info about a new devotional for adoptive/fostering mommas at

Be sure not to miss the rest of the "31 Families of HOPE" series:

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