2012-11-08 / Living

‘Doing something to serve the Lord’

Oxford couple adopts three children
BY CASEY JOHNSON
Contributing Writer

OXFORD — A few years ago, Denny and Mindy Thybault would’ve have told you they were done raising children. But as the pitter-patter of six toddler feet echo throughout their country home in Oxford, it becomes evident that someone had other plans.

“I think the Lord wants us to adopt,” Denny, 47, said after spending some solitary time bow-hunting in the backyard. A rush of emotions swept over Mindy, 46, but predominantly, she felt God was confirming a notion she received several days earlier. The diagnosis for their lives became clear that day, and is currently manifest through three curly-haired little girls bearing Hebrew names.

Liran, 2, and twins Ayala and Chaya, 1, were rescued from the foster system and abortion by the adoption. But the Thybaults would say the credit belongs to God.

Denny and Mindy have embarked on a journey they believe God calls everyone to take.

“We are a voice to bring justice,” said Denny. “It is our duty, we don’t have a choice.”

Life in the Thybault household is now centered on a command given in James 1:27.

“Religion that God our father accepts as pure and faultless is this: to look after orphans and widows in their distress...”

Denny and Mindy spent more than 20 years involved in what they call mainstream

Christianity. Denny was a deacon, and they spent much time absorbed in the activities and events of the church. But after transferring the hours spent at church to sleepless nights, diaper changing, and full-time parenting, Denny said he wonders what all those years of prior service meant to God.

“After 20 years, I finally feel like I’m really doing something to serve the Lord,” he said.

God spoke to Denny of what their current service means one day during his studies. As he tried to bottle-feed a crying Liran and delve into the word of God, He found himself saying, “Lord, this is really, really hard.”

The word of the Lord spoke to his heart, “Yeah Denny, this is the hardest thing you’ve ever really done for me. This is pure and undefiled religion… Denny, you’ve moved me.”

Every diaper change, every moment awake at night, every bottle, and every tear instantly became a service to the Lord, and the Thybaults carry a spirit of joy in their every moment.

“They are my world now,” said Mindy. “And we love it.”

And their world has changed drastically in the last three years. In the midst of having their spirits awakened to adoption, Denny said the Lord called him to walk away from his construction business.

“The Lord said, ‘Denny, you’ve laid your life down for these little ones, now lay your company down,’” Denny said. Which, for the growing Thybault family, meant laying down all income as well.

But Denny and Mindy said that their entire 20-year marriage has been based on following the voice of God, and He has never led them astray. Liran was born exactly nine months after they began the first adoption process. And six months later, as they became interested in a second child, their caseworker informed them of the twins.

Chaya and Ayala were on a hopeless waiting list for parents. No one wanted the complications that came with Chaya’s heart condition – a condition for which the doctors knew she would have to receive immediate post-birth surgery.

“Okay Lord,” the Thybaults said. “We say yes.”

These days, as Chaya keeps up with her slightly taller sister, and climbs into her mother’s lap for a morning snuggle, she proves herself a healthy child — wholly deserving of the love she has received.

With tears in her eyes, Mindy describes the chances newborns have of knowing that kind of devotion. She said every year in the United States, 1.2 million babies are aborted, and 40,000 more are placed in foster care.

“We stand in the gap between abortion and foster care,” she said. “To bring awareness that adoption is an alternative.”

The calling God placed in their hearts is one they hope to spread to the world through Justice Village — an organization they’ve launched to educate and encourage others about adoption.

“We believe that the Lord will raise up a sea of people saving babies from abortion and foster care,” said Denny.

Today, they are living this mission by traveling to churches, sharing their story, and enlightening people about the duty to care for the orphans. Justice Village was formed to bring awareness to the need for domestic adoption, facilitate adoptions through the couples coming soon agency — Bound for Life adoptions, and to help birth mothers make the decision to give their life by matching them with a Christian family.

After raising three children and becoming grandparents, the Thybaults said adoption wasn’t even on their radar. But with three adopted children gracing their home, the couple now says their family will continue to grow.

To contact them about speaking engagements, e-mail the Thybaults at dennythybault@justicevillage.org. For more information about justice village, visit www.justicevillage.org or like their facebook page at www.facebook.com/pages/Justice-village.

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