This blog is a chance for us to tell our story and shine the light on the God who wrote it.

It is also a place for me to bring into the spotlight the millions of orphans around the world who are waiting for the Body of Christ to fulfill God's command to "care for orphans and widows in their distress" (James 1:27)

Soli deo Gloria... (All Glory to God Alone).

7.23.2011

Without Finding Fault

"Do not throw away your confidence,; it will be richly rewarded. You need to persevere so that when you have done the will of God, you will receive what He has promised." (Hebrews 10:35-36)

The challenges come, and our faith is tested. We read the Word to each other and email his promises during the day. We pray together and our faith is strengthened, and we know the peace that does not come unless it comes through storm.

"Consider it PURE JOY, my brothers, when you face trials
of many kinds..."


Our focus slips. We fall into control mode and we want to fix this. What we once decided to consider 'pure joy' seems to wear us down.

"Your faith is so weak..." the enemy whispers.

Strange that he whispers that for this has been our prayer: that we would be found faith-FULL. And this is what we tell when others ask how to pray for us in this adoption: Pray that we would be found faithful.



We desperately need wisdom from above and know how to find it...

"If any of you lacks wisdom, he should ask God..."


But then those words... I remember them. "Your faith is so weak..." And I wonder if I will just mess it all up anyway. If perhaps I will not hear from God or be guided by Him because I am not ready for these gifts of suffering for Him, of hearing from Him. Perhaps I will not be found faithful.

And then I read these words. These words I have read now nine hundred times since my friend Dawn led me to these verses my junior year of college. These words God spoke through James and I know them but never have I focused on just these three... right in the middle... not really the 'point' of the passage, I suppose.

"If any of you lacks wisdom, he should ask God,
who gives generously to all without finding fault and it will be given to him."


Without finding fault!!!

My heart jumps when I read those precious words and I remember once again Amazing Grace and that, no, even I am not out of the grip of that grace. And I move from doubt to that place where it feels like I am standing under a waterfall of grace and it just keeps flowing. If I stay here long enough I think I just may be convinced: He gives generously... loves lavishly... without finding fault.

For I am no longer defined by my faults, and in this journey, yes, I will be found faithful. Not because I'll 'get it all right'. But because all is made right in Him. And, stray as I might, at the end of the day, I will be found in Him.

And ever before me will be this that He asks of me... only to Believe.

"But when he asks, he must believe and not doubt
because he who doubts is like a wave of the sea, blown and
tossed by the wind."


So will you pray for us... that we will be found faithful? That we will hold unswervingly to that hope that we profess... knowing that He who promised is faithful (Heb. 10:23). And that when we screw up... and I do mean when... will you pray that we will call on the One who gives so generously without finding fault?

And can I pray for you as well? I would love to know how I can lift your needs before our Father. It would truly be an honor, and I will look forward to rejoicing with you as God hears our prayers... Just leave a comment or email and know that I will take seriously your request for prayer.

Any scripture not specifically labeled can be found in James 1:2-6

7.21.2011

We Are Grafted In

We are 'guests' for a few days on a wonderful site called "We Are Grafted In"... so come on over and check it out! I was excited when introduced to this site which features posts from various bloggers about adoption and orphan care from a Christian viewpoint. What's great is that the moderator takes the time to find these posts on subjects of interest and brings them all into this one spot. I've become eager to check it out each day and have been really inspired and encouraged by a number of the articles. If you want to check it out, just go over to the sidebar, scroll down, and click on the button for "We Are Grafted In". Our story of how God led us to little M will be up for a few days.

7.14.2011

Beniam's Adoption Video

Ben's Adoption Video



So here's the deal. I am not really good with this whole not-saying-your-real-names thing. It just feels so impersonal... and plus I always forget. So I convinced Scott (that would be my husband) that I just had to use our names. Which is fun cause now I can write a post about how God gave us our new daughter's name.

But for now, I wanted to share with you this video we made after we brought Beniam home from Ethiopia. I have been working on his three year post adoption report and thought I would celebrate almost being done with sharing this video!

And yes, his name is Beniam. Beniam Ananya. "Beniam" is the Ethiopian version of "Benjamin", which means "son of my right hand". Ananya was his birth name. And I will never forget the feeling of the presence of God in the room as Ben's birthmom told us the story of how she decided to name him Ananya. Ananya is actually a biblical name... it translates as "Hananiah" whom you may also know as "Shadrach" in the story of Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego being saved from the fiery furnace. I'll share the story soon! But for now, I hope that you will enjoy the video... our way of marking this special time in our family and also of celebrating the gracious God who brought this family together.

"The Lord has done great things for us, and we are amazed."
Psalm 126:3

7.02.2011

He is With Her... And That is Enough


Our hearts continue to long for little M... Our oldest daughter had her sixth birthday last month. Z is a girl who knows what she wants in life, so when I asked her if there was anything special she would like for a birthday gift I was sure she would have an answer ready. And she did. You know what she said?

“Little M...”

I was taken aback at first, having braced myself to respond if the gift she requested was something we couldn't afford or didn't think she should have. Her request was simple enough. She wanted her little sister home. God is preparing all of our children, and it has been beautiful to watch.

Sometimes I am overwhelmed when I consider that we have missed the first two years of our daughter's life. Wow. So much happens in the first two years of a child's life. I can hardly even stand the thought that we will be away from our other children for two weeks when we go to China to bring Little M home. But two years?! We have missed so much.

But then I am reminded that the One who is bringing her into our family has not missed a thing. He was there when she was born and the day she was given away. He knows what makes her laugh and what makes her cry. He has been by her side for every one of her many hospital stays.

And you know what this realization causes inside of me?

Sweet release.

Because it isn't about me! And the reality is that this is true for every single one of my children. Even the ones that I have parented since birth. Far too often I fall into this thinking that everything about my children's future depends upon my stellar parenting. Which is an awfully heavy weight to bear, considering how much I mess up as a parent. And all that comes from this kind of thinking anyway is 'control- mommy-mode', and nobody wants a piece of that. That's some freaky stuff, y'all.

What I long to learn now, and what these journeys of adoption have been teaching me, is to release my children to their Father every day. To parent out of a place of faith and grace. Faith that God is in control, and He loves these precious little ones far more than I do. Grace to let them be who God created them to be and not burden them with heavy expectations or the worries of a mom who always fears for them.

Don't get me wrong. Just like with our youngest adoptive son, there will always be a heavy sadness there when I think about the time I missed with Little M. I know that there will be a huge learning curve for me to get to know her and understand how to best parent her. But you know what gives me hope? This verse...

“The Lord confides in those who fear him...” (Psalm 25:14)

So I will ask Him to confide in me. I will turn my back on the worries and fears and quiet my heart and wait. I will wait for Him to speak to me. I will ask Him to confide in me about His precious daughter, Little M. I will take all the energy I would have spent worrying and fretting and spend that time praying instead. Teach me, Lord, how to love her and serve her and teach her in a way that she understands.

And I will hang on this promise-

“If any of you lacks wisdom, he should ask God,
who gives generously to all without finding fault,
and it will be given to him.
But when he asks, must believe and not doubt.
Because he who doubts is like a wave of the sea
blown and tossed by the wind.”
(James 1:5-6)

So I will believe. For this is the “work of God”, is it not? To believe. ( John 6:29 ) And just think... as I sit and type, He is actively caring for my sleeping ones here in our home and their little sister on the other side of the world. All at the same time. Let the strivings of Supermom cease. There is someone far more capable.