Location:FM 529 Rd,Houston,United States
Monday, October 25, 2010
PRAISE THE LORD we have a court date! Our court date is for December 23rd!!! NOW...I'm not gonna lie...my first response was not PRAISE THE LORD! My first response was ??????????? I NEVER thought she was going to tell me a date in December much less the END of December much less 2 days before CHRISTMAS after we decided to leave the boys home for our court date trip!! BREAK MY HEART!!! However, I knew God was whispering to me...remember I'm in control...remember MY timing is perfect...remember how much I love you...remember I work ALL things for your good...remember I hold the universe in my hands...this was not a surprise to God! HE PICKED this date for us! And we give thanks! We probably were not going to have her home by Christmas with a November court date and this way we get to see her as a Christmas present! And just think...we have the privelege of taking care packages to waiting children for other adopting families and now those families have time to KNIT new Christmas sweaters and snail mail them to us (which saves money) for us to take! (OK...that was a little sarcasm thrown in) But we know this is a good thing...even when the circumstances are not what we would have chosen. We will make the best of this situation because we serve the Lord with gladness. We ask for your prayers for our travel arrangements and wisdom for when to go and how to work it all out. We ask for prayers as we wait longer to bring our daughter home and we ask for prayers for all the other families waiting with us. Thank you for walking along beside us in this journey!
14This is the confidence we have in approaching God: that if we ask anything according to his will, he hears us. 15And if we know that he hears us—whatever we ask—we know that we have what we asked of him.
1 John 5:14-15
Oh, the power of prayer! I'm still astounded and astonished and in awe that the creator of the universe allows us to bring our requests to Him personally at the foot of His throne. That the relationship we have with our Savior is encouraged and purposefully planned and cultivated to be an intimately personal one. What a Savior we serve!!
After a frustrating few weeks of waiting on a court date call I was beginning to spend more and more time praying, praying, praying. I didn't know what else to do...I needed to be in His presence to find rest for my soul and find an attitude adjustment. And I was weary...weary of waiting, weary of not hearing any news, weary of feeling so helpless to move forward, weary of being completely not in control of the situation. So I prayed and listened and prayed some more. What I thought I was doing out of frustration turned out to be some extremely sweet times with my Savior. Looking back I can see how God used those times to just meet me in my need and continue to teach me about His character and the power of prayer. And on Friday, God moved through our adoption agency. 4 people received their court dates and there were numerous referrals and people cleared with the US embassy to go bring their children home forever! It was a fantastic Friday! Which now means that we're #1 for a court date!!! Yes, the list is unofficial. But we're so close!! I don't know if we'll get the call today or this week or not for 3 more weeks but knowing there has been movement has been enough to give this parched soul a long, cold drink! I can't wait to share when our court date is because I know prayer works and I know you'll be praying along with us for a successful court date!! Praising the Lord today because this is the day that He has made!! Woohoo #1!!
Friday, October 22, 2010
Make a joyful shout to the Lord, all the lands! Serve the Lord with gladness; Come before His presence with singing.
Be thankful to Him, and bless His name.
Psalm 100:1-2, 4
We're praying for victory today...victory in hearing news of a court date. Victory in moving forward in bringing our daughter home. Victory in knowing that God has defeated the enemy who would love to thwart plans to bring her home. We know that God is faithful to His people and we know that we've been told to be thankful in ALL things. So we strive today to serve Him with gladness...we strive today to be thankful in ALL things. Gladness when the phone may not ring, thankful when the courts may not give out any dates. We are thankful that we are able to come into His presence...that the God of the universe allows US to come into HIS PRESENCE!! We come before Him with singing today. We lay our weary hearts at His throne and serve Him gladly. We know victory is ours!!! His timing is perfect!!
We boldly ask for your prayers for court dates today. We boldly ask for your prayers for our daughter. We ask for your prayers for all the families in this process with us. This process is long and hard and not for the faint of heart but we love because He first loved us. His grace is sufficient and we pray...join us won't you?
Monday, October 4, 2010
I have been thinking a lot about being comfortable lately. About how for many of us one of our main goals is to be comfortable. We buy so many things for comfort...our cars have comfortable seats, we spend lots of time buying comfortable furniture by sitting on it to test it out, we look for comfortable clothing, and have many accessories to help make us comfortable. We like to stay in our "comfort" zone and even have ways to make our temperature comfortable in our homes, cars, offices, etc. We are a society that loves comfort! We seek comfort physically, emotionally, and many times spiritually. We grow up envisioning what will make us most comfortable...a spouse, 2 kids, maybe pets, a certain job, a house in a certain neighborhood...and then we spend time looking for ways to attain these things and then maintain our comfort. Me included...I love a cozy couch, a plush mattress, and some AC!! I like to be comfortable!
What made me begin to notice these things was a cuing in of things spiritually for me. I've been noticing and making the connection that most times that I hear the Holy Spirit whispering to me about something, its usually something that is OUT of my comfort zone. Something that just goes a step beyond what I'm "comfortable" with, something that makes my heart beat a little faster and scares me a little. So then often my response is to push it aside or to think about it so long that the moment passes away leaving me no choice but to pass it up. I think many times we'll take christianity and going to church as long as we're comfortable. We pick churches that have programs, classes, people, pastors that look and think like us. We're willing to pray for things we need like healing, comfort, grace, peace, and prosperity. We want those things...but the minute the Holy Spirit whispers something to us that is convicting and takes us outside those things we tune it out. I say all of this because I DO all of this. I want to be comfortable!
We spent last Friday and Saturday at the Together for Adoption conference in Austin, TX. And I will say that my heart is bursting after hearing the messages and worshiping with 900 other believers who have a heart and passion for the fatherless. I would love to write PAGES about what was shared but I won't do that here...if you ARE interested however in hearing some of the INCREDIBLE messages from the conference then you can go here and download the messages and get some more information. What I will share is that going in to the conference I felt a little self righteous. I was a doer!! I was adopting...I was doing my part in what God has commanded us to do many times over in the bible. Right? Wasn't that "enough" to feel a little self righteous? I mean, come on, I only have a 4 bedroom house. I stay at home and Josh's salary isn't gonna support 13 kids, right? We have 2 cars but they won't seat more than 5 people and I'm not sure our couch can hold more than 4 people either. Adding one more child is good and we're adopting so that is good right? I can just enjoy the conference and be one of the doers! I've always noticed that God has a way of whispering when He wants me to hear something...a quiet whisper that doesn't go away. A whisper that I desperately want to hear but then don't always want to obey. A whisper that says I need to call off an engagement; a whisper that asks if we will fully trust Him in our adoption journey and let Him decide the gender; a whisper that asks if I fully trust Him to decide what my family will look like and the number of children He will place in my home. This question scared me for a minute...you mean you may want me to have more kids? But we can't afford more kids God. Then Dave Gibbons says "What we're saying when we say we can't afford more kids is that God is a dead beat dad. If He calls us to the fatherless and we obey then HE WILL PROVIDE the check!!" And then we hear it explained that if Jesus is the father to the fatherless then He's a FATHER. And if He's a father then he must have a wife and the church is the bride of Jesus. And if the church is the bride of Jesus and Jesus is the father to the fatherless then the church is the MOTHER to the fatherless. Then we hear that the church needs to be louder in speaking out for orphans than Hollywood is and slowly by slowly our arguments and reasons and objections begin to fade away. And slowly by slowly we begin to move towards listening to the whispers and letting our ideas of what WE wanted for our family fade away. What we're left with is a broader picture. One that is far more beautiful and perfect than the one I went in with. A picture of a family made up of many colors from many places sharing many things in a 4 bedroom house with a family that loves them (and maybe a few more used, comfortable couches one day) We look forward to the day when our house is filled with all that God has promised us and will bless us with. We may be uncomfortable in this journey, we may not have as much room as we want, or as much money as we want, or enough time to myself as I want! But I'm ready to be uncomfortable, ready to be stretched for the sake of these children. Because another question was posed...what if we don't? What if we don't step outside our comfort zone and take in these children or visit these children or give to support these children?