From Rehab to Royalty

There she lay, this frail little body, skin paper thin, grayish in color, tubes connected everywhere fighting off tremors that terrorized her body, day and night. The ravenous symptoms resembled living with a severe flu bug and a migraine headache 24/7. Stimuli of any sort was just too much for her nervous system to handle. Unable to be held, comforted or even spoken to, this premature newborn lying in a dark room was going through drug withdrawal.

Three months later she would find herself in her third foster home with new noises sounds, smells and stimuli to adapt to. With no more tubes connected, alarms going off or little needle pokes enveloping her she was onto the next phase of recovery.

Her body tone rigid, still fighting tremors in her muscles, she needed to focus on learning to eat from a bottle. With the process of feeding initially hindered by tubes and sickness, her innate suck swallow mechanism had been compromised and needed some therapeutic assistance. She simply could not successfully intake the proper amount of formula into her little body to thrive. That process would prove to her foster parents to be anything less than an arduous and fearful challenge to endure.

With winter approaching and the all to familiar cold and flu season knocking at the door this slowly developing baby would soon be diagnosed with RSV, asthma and chronic ear infections, requiring more meds, and a breathing apparatus to assist her difficult journey of recovery.

For the next three years this little girl would experience therapy after therapy, diagnosis after diagnosis. From ear tube surgeries and tonsil removal to daily Physical Therapy for muscle tone issues. She would combat symptoms pointing to the inability to walk normally without leg braces while learning how to socially integrate into environments so over stimulating to her nervous system that she would cause harm to her own body as a coping mechanism.

Was she to ever catch a break on this road to recovery? Would she ever relate to "normal"? Exhausted but thankful, her foster parents wondered if any of this would turn out for her good?

To the credit of the one sovereign and merciful would.

Finally at the doorstep of adoption with much prayer, this little warrior would be renamed Amanda which meant "worthy of Love". As if her little heart had somehow fully grasped the depth of the meaning to her name, precious Amanda began to grow and thrive and heal in ways that were astounding to those around her. She learned to laugh and play and even create using new textures and tools, and musical instruments. She made friends and tried new and exciting things. This fragile Lily was beginning to bloom.

With the gift of the agency Antioch Adoptions by their side, encouraging them, to look to the future, Amanda's parents began to realize this little girl has a unique God given purpose for her life. Everything she had endured, experienced and participated in until now was preparing her for many special moments to come.

Amanda had developed quite a tenacity to overcome hardship and trying new things out of the ordinary. She was excelling in academics and got to a place where she began to love life and what it would present before her. She participated in sports such as soccer, track, softball and even boy's football. The harder it was the harder she worked proving not only to herself but to anyone who had witnessed her journey that God was doing a new thing in her.

Now in her freshman year of high school halfway through her football season Amanda found herself in a whirlwind of even more exciting opportunities as she was voted Homecoming Princess and ASB President for her class as well.

On display in radiant beauty, standing in the spotlight with her crown on her head, a stunning dress fit for royalty and her good ol' football cleats completing her outfit, Amanda was reminded how far she had come. Peering out into the cheering crowd, incredibly grateful, this princess took it all in knowing that she had initially come from rehab but now proudly stood in royalty.

Her Mom believes much of this extraordinary story started the day she was adopted.  Antioch Adoptions gave so much to this family in times of great need. This story and many more simply would not be possible without the help of so many keeping Antioch Adoptions open by their incredible donations. This month is what they call "Double Impact" month for fundraising. What someone might give in dollars is matched 100%. Could you consider giving today to Antioch Adoptions so more stories like this can be celebrated in the future? 

Author's bio: TINA URY currently resides near Seattle Washington, Over the years she has had many opportunities to serve the Lord in various areas from Women's Bible Studies, marriage ministry and Children's Ministry to writing, directing, acting and comedy. She really enjoys speaking to groups on various topics concerning the faith through humor, drama and the Word.

Tina is married to her amazing husband Colin of 24 years. Together the Urys have 2 biological boys and adopted their two little girls.

She takes interest in many things such as outdoor activities like hiking, biking, skiing to indoor luxuries such as reading and studying the Word. When she "grows up" she'd like to make a full time career out of ministering to people through speaking, humor and teaching from Gods Word.


    Worthy Of Love

    “In Christ, and in loving memory of Pastor Ken Hutcherson”, said the closing greeting of a very articulate and Biblically sound letter from a fifteen year old. What a testimony… However, there is an even more profound thought which screams the insanity of God, or is it the inferiority of man (Isaiah 55:9). At a desperate moment of organizational transition, Amanda was breathing life back into an organization (Antioch Adoptions) which fought to give her life through a loving Christian family when she desperately needed it as a drug-exposed and medically fragile newborn. How, or is it why, does God Almighty orchestrate these amazing life moments and occurrences? When did the tables turn?

    PICC stands for Pediatric Interim Care Center and its mission is to bring babies safely through natal drug withdrawals. As such with a significant collection of mental and physical ailments Amanda Ury was not expected to live a regular life nor develop as a normal child. Ahead of this infant’s life were years of intensive therapy and likely disappointments. So why would the young family of Tina and Colin Ury, already with two biological sons, choose to put themselves through waves of emotional trauma and other burdens by adopting such a challenging infant? Maybe a bit of that clue lies in excerpts of the poem written by Amanda’s mother.


    They named her Amanda which means worthy of Love.

    A special gift no doubt from the good Lord above.

    Adoni knew her before she was born, declaring purpose and life in a world so torn

    So when this Lily came so frail and small He strengthened and comforted her sickness and all.

    She grew and grew getting stronger each day, “To God be the glory” her foster parents would say.

    So many obstacles she overcame because Jehovah- Rapha declared his name.

    With Mommy and Daddy and brothers to love God added another angel from above.

    Now two baby girls awaiting adoption this unique family thrilled with that option…

    Without a doubt Amanda battled, especially early on, through years of intensive therapy. She was learning to work and to play, growing and changing in her own special way. In the safety of caring parents and a secure home she made significant strides and adjustments. With school and friends, church and sports, music and horses, but most of all Christ-like love, she grew into an amazing, beautiful, gifted, and determined young lady. Resolute to defy the odds spiritually, emotionally, and physically she even took on the challenge of playing on the school’s football team as a teen. It is a unique kind of strength from God Almighty which built in her the beauty of a Homecoming Princess and the brains of an ASB Class President as well.

    In Amanda’s words (letter), “I believe God’s love is something that has the power to change lives especially in a world like today… I am reading a book called The One Factor and how the power of one act can change thousands, and your “one” organization (Antioch Adoptions) changes many lives including mine.” Hence, her loving memories of Pastor Ken Hutcherson. Amanda also has a deep desire to make a multi-generational impact through adoption. In the steps of two generations before her with regards to her paternal lineage, she also wants to adopt some day.

    Dr. Ken Hutcherson’s vision to address the plight of orphans and kids in foster care, removing all barriers to adoption (financial, perception, and practical), and place children in Christian adoptive homes is alive and well. Double Impact for Orphans in the month of October is designed  to double Antioch Adoptions’ fundraising efforts in anticipation of placing kids in forever families (homes) just like Amanda. It is about VICTORY (Rev. 12:11) and a renewed legacy (Rom. 8:14-17) like only Christ can do. In other words, such and impact on the life of an orphan transforms generations to come in the exact same way God The Father has transformed yours and my future for eternity by His adoption of us.

    Please join Amanda, the Ury Family, and Antioch Adoptions in making Double Impact for Orphans a great success by donating to this campaign.

    Simply Click Here to donate today.

    In Christ,

    Ezechiel “Zeke” Bambolo, Jr.

    Executive Director, Antioch Adoptions