I don’t know if I have ever really told Elias’ story. We don’t know much. Only what we’ve been told.
The only reason I tell it is to show how protected he was and how his exit from that place was orchestrated entirely by God and not by us.
On February 20, 2011, he was left on the steps of a hospital. As far as we know, there was nothing with him.
Many babies are left in public places: parks, bus stations. But I think the fact he was left near a hospital shows a thoughtful concern for him.
February in Qingfeng is pretty cold. The average high this week was around 35 degrees- yet when he was found he had a perfect body temperature. How long he was there we don’t know.
After he was found, the police were alerted and after searching, they could not find his parents or other relatives, he was confirmed an abandoned infant. We have a copy of the newspaper ad that was placed for him. It is in a column with pictures of other abandoned children.
The police took him to the Puyang City Social Welfare Institute (SWI). Both children and adults can live in an SWI, while a Children’s Welfare Institute is just for children.
According to his physical condition, his birth date was estimated to be February 19, 2011. Therefore he was abandoned at one day old.
He was given the name Pu Min En.“En” means grateful or grace. The rest of his name refers to ” citizen of Puyang City”- all the kids at that SWI had the same last name. His very name promised a legacy of sadness.
After his adoption, we re-named him Elias (“the Lord is my God”) Jordan (“descending, flowing down, the River Jordan”).
When my other two were one day old, they were attached to my side. Not only because they got kicked out of the hospital nursery for crying and waking the other babies, but because I wanted them with me. Elias was lying outside, alone, in the cold.
But now he’s here. Plucked from a city of millions, here with us now.
So… next week we look forward to celebrating. No, things haven’t gone perfectly. But we will celebrate the fact that he’s here with us.
And we look forward to the unraveling of God’s plan for his life.