Saturday, November 21, 2009

please pray!

"The LORD is faithful to all his promises
and loving toward all he made."
Psalm 145:13 (NIV)

We received some really disappointing news on Friday. One of our soon-to-be son's friends from his orphanage was scheduled for court in Ethiopia. At the very last minute, the hearing was canceled. Sigh.

"M3" has an incredible family desperately waiting to bring her home and unless something BIG happens, they'll be waiting another month before their next court date.

It's all really hard to understand. As parents-in-waiting, we understand God's timing is best and truly we do trust that. It just doesn't make it any easier knowing how long our kiddos have already waited.

One of our adoption friends recently brought home her new son and daughter. Her precious three year-old son shared with his new mama about how he and his sister cried because they wanted their new family to bring them home.

On another sad note, our agency let us know that the delay that happened on Friday could potentially affect our court date on Tuesday the 24th in Ethiopia. Oh, how I hope that's not the case.

There are so many, many children worldwide aching for the love and nurturing care of a family.
That reality just makes me cry. I'm so thankful they aren't alone, that God is watching over them 24x7.

That said, I do believe that God is moved by the faithful prayers of His children. Please keep praying for all of the children. Please pray for beautiful little "M3," that she would continue to trust that her new family loves her and is coming just as soon as they possibly can. And, that her court date would be pulled in.

Please pray for our sweet Luke M., that he would know that same truth. Please pray that God's favor would be shown on their behalf. That all roadblocks preventing our children from coming home would be removed, and that in the process, God would be glorified.

Thank you, from the bottom of my heart. You are such a blessing to us. May God shower His abundant love and grace upon you, my Friend! Thanks for being a part of this amazing adventure with us. :-)

A faithful God and praying friends keep me LIVING A BLESSED LIFE!

With hope & faith in a mighty God,

Friday, November 20, 2009

3 years ago today!

"Even before he made the world, God loved us
and chose us in Christ to be holy
and without fault in his eyes.
God decided in advance to adopt us
into his own family by bringing us to himself
through Jesus Christ.
This is what he wanted to do,
and it gave him great pleasure.
So we praise God for the glorious grace
he has poured out on us who
belong to his dear Son."
Ephesians 1:4-5 (NLT)

Three years ago today, Geoff and I met our precious Sara KangXia. We continue to be amazed and humbled by the incredible blessings He has brought each of us since that memorable day.

We love you, Sweet Sara, and are so honored to be your forever Mommy and Daddy. You are a brave, beautiful, strong, funny and sweet little girl. We are so very proud of you!!!

It is because of the miracle of adoption that I am LIVING A BLESSED LIFE!

Sending sweet blessings your way, Friend!

With JOY,

Thursday, November 19, 2009

The Blind Side

"I've never had one of these before." (Michael Oher)
"What? A room to yourself?" (Leigh Anne Tuohy)
"A bed." (Michael Oher)

I'm so grateful for the impact the Chapman family has made on my family. It was through their passion for adoption that my family has been blessed beyond words.

Steven just posted a video on Show Hope's blog about the new movie The Blind Side. If you haven't seen the preview yet, I encourage you to hop over and check it out. The movie premiers tomorrow night and I can't wait to be able to see it for myself.

Last night, I spent some time buying some essential items for our new son, Luke M. Many adoptive parents can tell you how challenging the homestudy, paperwork and time spent waiting can be. And they're right. It's not an enjoyable process. But, when it's finally time to shop and prepare your home for your new child, those "labor pains" quickly fade.

Aside from finally having your child safely in your arms, being able to actually start doing things on their behalf is a really good feeling.

"M" is an 8 year old boy,who, aside from a few trinkets and the clothing upon his back, owns nothing. Not that things matter when his daily concerns are food, clean water, shelter and staying healthy. It's something most of us take for granted here in the land of plenty. I know I do.

Don't get me wrong, more than the things we can provide for him, I'm excited to pour love into his heart and feed him good, healthy meals. I'm thankful that we have a great pediatrician and dentist to help care for any medical needs he may have.

In the meantime, though, I'm thrilled to be able to do a little shopping. And so, last night, as I picked out a booster seat for the car, a toothbrush, toothpaste, a hair pick (how fun is that?!?), special hair product for his big curls, gloves (can't wait to introduce him to snow!) a hat, and prayed that the clothing sizes I chose will fit, I couldn't help but smile and tear up. It's so nice to be able to do something tangible to start preparing for our new son.

We're almost there. The culmination of many prayers (thank you!), appointments, paperwork and patience will hopefully come to fruition on Monday evening while those of us in the US are sleeping. Oh, how I pray that his uncle is able to make the long trip to Addis Abbaba, and, that all of M's paperwork is in order so that we can pass court.

Please keep praying with us, Friend. And, if you've shared your prayer request with me, know that I've got you covered as well!

Adoption truly is a miracle, and because my Heavenly Father adopted me into His family, I am LIVING A BLESSED LIFE!

Sweet blessings & love,

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Hoops of Hope

"I spent the day with Austin and his family
and found them inspiring.
The first thing I thought as I drove to the airport was:
What was I doing when I was twelve?
And then, of course, the next thought:
What, exactly, am I doing now?"
John Larsen, Former NBC National Correspondent

So, Blogger ate my post when I tried to spell check it and now it's gone. Sigh.
Worse than that, after a two week break, the "piggie flu" decided to make an unwelcome appearance at my house again. This time, it's Liam's turn. Oh, I can't stand to watch my kids be miserable and sick. Sigh.

Instead of trying to remember my previous post, I thought I would focus on something positive and introduce you to Austin Gutwein. I first "met" Austin, Friday night when he shared his amazing story at the Revolve Tour.

(Chelsea and I joined our friends and 7,000 other exuberant pre-teen/teen girls at this powerful youth event. Um, can you say LOUD?!? Whew. Those girls can really hit the high notes with their screams!)

Seriously, it was a really great weekend and the highlight was definitely learning about Hoops of Hope and the incredible work they are doing in Africa.

God is using this generation we are currently raising up in powerful ways. I was reminded this weekend how very important it is that we don't look down upon today's youth because of their age or "lack of experience." Age is insignificant to God when it comes to fulfilling His will. Just as He did in Biblical times, He can and will use the young and old alike.

It doesn't matter how young a person is, we can all make a difference. And, as adults, we can learn from those younger than ourselves and follow their lead.

Austin's book, Take Your Best Shot: Do Something Bigger Than Yourself, would make a great gift for teens and adults alike. (Shhh, don't tell my daughter, but she'll be finding her own copy wrapped and hanging in her stocking come December 25th.)

On that note, I'll stop writing and let you follow some of the links I've posted above so you can meet Austin and learn about his mission work yourself.

I pray you are having a blessed week and staying healthy, my Friend. Keep pressing into the Lord and enjoy LIVING A BLESSED LIFE!

With JOY,