It was love at first sight.

Dave and Shari Thomason of Jacksonville became instantly attached to a young child all the way from Russia. According to the couple, his smile and personality — his whole being — captured their hearts, so much so, they decided to make him a permanent part of their family. On April 12, seven-year-old Zack officially became part of the Thomason family.

“Ten Russian children came to our church, each looking for a ‘forever family,’” Shari said. “We immediately fell in love with the children, but by the time we began to consider adoption, they were all spoken for. So we began the process ourselves.”

The couple already have one son — Nick, age nine, but they still wanted to add another son to their family.

But Shari said the process and “journey” wasn’t easy.

“When we began, we knew it would be quite expensive,” she said. “We had no idea how we would find the funds to do it (adopt), but we took a leap of faith because we felt called. So many were praying for us — not that the money would just fall into our laps, but that we would continue to be faithful in God’s provision.

“Word got around that we were adopting, and one day we got a call from a man in New York who said, ‘How much do you need? It’s yours!’ We consider this man an angel sent from above.”

Shari said, since then, she and her husband have been given help and support for the family.

“This community, especially Central Baptist Church, has really come together to complete God’s plan — through donations, gifts, prayer, and support for our family,” she said. “We’ve truly been given the opportunity to see God’s plan for this boy unfold right before our very eyes.”

So how is Zack adjusting to his new home, surroundings and brother Nick?

“Zack is doing wonderfully,” Shari said. “He adapts so easily and has already learned quite a bit of English. He loves living out in the country! Sibling rivalry, however, is a new phenomenon in our home, so we’re having to deal with a little bit of that.”

According to the Thomasons, this Mother’s Day was especially meaningful.

“We (were) in San Francisco for Mother’s Day, with my mother,” Shari said. “I (noticed) that my husband put two Mother’s Day cards in my suitcase; one from Nick and one from Zack.”

Shari said she is relieved that the adoption process is complete, and she is enjoying being a mother — of two.

“I feel a huge weight has been taken off my shoulders,” she said. “I’m so glad to be rid of all the paperwork so that I can just be a mother again. I look forward to spending lots of time with my boys.”

For more on the Thomasons’ adoption process, visit the family’s Web site at

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