SWO Stories: Racquel Mabry and Generational Adoption
By Racquel Mabry
I am the proud daughter of Steve and Vicki Parker. My journey to them, however, was not an easy one. I was a little girl in a crisis situation and they adopted me into their hearts and home. My mother had endured years of abuse from my biological father before he took her life. I was almost 5 years old when I was adopted by my mother’s sister and her husband (Steve Parker). After about 5 years, my aunt left us: choosing her addictions over motherhood. I was 10 years old and had lost my mother and been abandoned by another. I was devastated. My dad, Steve, continued to love and raise me as his own. When I was 12, he began dating Vicki Holloway (Brody’s mom) and I remember being so excited at the thought of finally, just maybe, having a mom. They married a year to the day after they started dating and that was the beginning of our huge, wild, loud, and beautiful family.
Fast forward about 20 years to 2007. Zach and I were engaged and I remember telling him I hoped to adopt someday. He knew how close adoption was to my heart because of the nature of my childhood, and he was more than supportive. We married in 2008, and by 2013 God had blessed us with 3 beautiful boys. The delivery of my last son was traumatic and almost resulted in losing both of us. We were told I was at a higher risk of having that same complication with subsequent pregnancies, and it was then that we felt God pulling at our hearts to adopt. We applied to our adoption agency in the spring of 2014 and we welcomed home our sweet girl in the spring of 2016. Those two years of waiting for her were the darkest moments of my adult life. We went through two failed matches, one of which I attended the gender ultrasound. I wrestled with fear, anxiety, and doubting God’s goodness in a way that I hadn’t before. In the moment all I could feel was the pain, but looking back I can see that God’s hand was in it all. He knew Ella needed us and we needed her. What a good and sovereign father He is!
I am profoundly grateful for adoption. It has molded me into the person I am. But as beautiful as earthly adoption can be, it’s just a living example of our adoption as God’s sons and daughters. Paul beautifully lays out our adoption in Galatians 4:4-7. We were children of darkness born into the sin we inherited from Adam. Jesus paid our penalty, which was death, and through Him, we receive adoption as sons and daughters! What a glorious truth that is! Being adopted into the Parker family changed my life, and adopting my daughter has brought me unimaginable joy— but being adopted by God saved my life.
Racquel Mabry and her husband, Zach, have served at Snowbird Wilderness Outfitters for over fifteen years. She now directs part of the local Classical Conversations school. Zach teaches and leads worship at SWO, and directs the SWO Institute program. He also serves as a pastor at Red Oak Church. At home, they are busy raising their four kids and making disciples through daily relationships with others.