… welcoming newness

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{{click HERE to watch the video! You will laugh & relate!}}

As a soon to be adoptive mama of twins girls, I’m looking forward to the many, many experiences we will share as we snuggle in the life of a family of 4 in one quick swoop!

We have quite a few hilarious stories from experiences with our nieces. Some we will tell without much push, only a couple others we’d prefer to laugh about to ourselves. I almost feel as if we’ve had a crash course in parenting because we’d have our nieces as much as we possibly could before they moved to Ft. Bennings, Ga and we continue to host them for a month or so during the summers.

When I tell you there are moments when I’ve felt that I’m ruining these kiddos because I lost it because they took forever eating or wasted food, or I was too tired to read another story, or because I didn’t give hugs after I disciplined like my husband did. (Hearing a little person say  “Uncle T loves me because he gave me hugs.. and you don’t” will break. your. heart.)  Then on the other side of the coin, I know I’m doing it all right. The evidence is in how we play and sing and laugh together. How the girls feel comfortable and loved enough to snuggle and climb in bed or on the couch with us whenever they want. How the little one feels free to say “You know I don’t drink white milk right?” and how the big one has diagnosed me with “no preggatosis” (which  means I can’t get pregnant, thank you Doc McStuffins!!!)  and text/call us incessantly. I love how they know and believe that the people they love with such fierceness love them back more than they could ever imagine.

For we loved them first.

I love how they accept us – the faults, the mistakes, the good times, and the spectacular memories.

Unfortunately, there are millions of children who have yet to feel such a love and safety in their entire lives. There are children whose understanding of love is warped and damaged and broken. Children who have never felt safe.

Just the same, there are children who are loved deeply, but who find themselves in less than ideal situations. Situations that have separated them from their loved ones which leaves them in a place of loneliness and experiencing a loss they don’t quite understand.

No matter what the situation or circumstance, these children need love. They need a safe place to rest, grow, and blossom. They need to be surrounded by people who aren’t afraid of them or their story, but who are willing to love them with a love that can change their minds about life.

They need the someone who can literally change the course of their life.

Before deciding to adopt privately, we were also considering fostering to adopt. And, I hope once we’re settled in and have time under our belt with the girls, we’ll revisit the idea of serving as a safe, loving place for children who need us. I love the idea of adoption. How we are literally loving another the exact same way Christ loved us. We were broken and headed for the ultimate worst when we were saved and brought into a new family; a family who believes in us, who supports us, and loves us to our best. The redemption that occurs in our lives spiritually and the redemption that can occur in a child’s physical life through adoption is real.

The adoptive community is the most beautifully eclectic, supportive, welcoming, and loving community I have ever been a part of. I  know that in some way, no matter the family or culture or even belief system – it revolves around love. Loving another the way you want to be loved and watching this once sad and hurting child thrive and blossom is the most encouraging and heart warming experience yet.

Maybe you’re wondering how you can also serve as a sweet spot in a kiddos life…. Maybe you haven’t been able to shake the idea of fostering to adopt or adopting. Could be that you have a desire but don’t quite know where to begin. If you fall in any of these categories, check out Ad Council‘s services. They’re a wonderful non-profit organization that serves our communities in some amazing ways.

I’m glad to that they’re serving as the liaison that will connect these children who need and desire a home to families willing to open themselves up to be everything any child would need…

An imperfect yet loving, caring, and selfless parent/caregiver. A supporter. Someone who won’t judge their story or circumstance they had no control over, and love them well.

Can you do that?
If so, connect with Ad Council to see where and how you and/or your family can help just one.

…  here’s to loving as we’ve been loved. Serving as we’ve been served. and, giving another the chance to have a life better than they ever could have imagined.

 

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… moving past comfort

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I had the most amazing text-versation with a fellow adoptive mama today and my heart has completely broken what she shared with me.

Just a link.
A little link that led me to the most heart wrenching information I’ve come across in a while.
Here it is —-> click.

Did you scroll through? Did you see the numbers? Did you find your state?

I’m in Texas.
Everything is bigger here – including the number of children waiting to be adopted. THAT crazy, bigger than any over state’s numbers number doesn’t include kiddos in foster care.

Yes. Maybe it’s because we’re the second largest state in the country but Alaska is the largest and are even in the thousands while California, the third largest state, has about 600 less children in need of homes.

It’s heart breaking.
But, did you see the number of churches in each state?
Ouch.

It wasn’t really until the very end of last year that my heart begin to sink for the orphan. Not because I didn’t care about children who didn’t have homes, but because they weren’t on my radar. I really didn’t know anyone who’d adopted (a couple of people separated by distant degrees) and I was still very much hoping to land myself right back in my doctor’s office for more fertility treatments.

But, since then, my eyes have been opened to a population of children who need homes. Who need to be loved on. Who need the love of God shared with them. Who need to know what trust and consistency and true love really looks like.

We are planning to privately adopt – we want a newbie and the odds of us getting on is slim in the system, our wait may be a while. But, my heart seems to be aching to DO something in the wait.

I’m praying though.
Praying for my heart and my husband’s.
Praying for our vision for our family.
Praying that we as a body of Believers…. We as Christians will take on the concerns of Christ.

Caring about the widow and orphan just as much as we care about forgiveness and mercy. Tithing and attending church.

The widow… The homeless… The orphan are a portion of our population that can’t function the way a lot of us are able to. Widows no longer have that leader, that protection that they are used to. (I can’t imagine losing Thomas, I’d imagine I’d feel lost and alone having a difficult time adjusting)…… For whatever reason, the homeless are without a home. Unable to provide for themselves for whatever reason.
And, the orphan. Children. Babies. And, toddlers who are subjected to more in their short lives than many of us will ever experience.

Who stands in the gap for the least of these? For the broken and hurting? The defenseless?

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If it is anyone, it should be us.
Christians who understand what it is like to feel broken and defenseless…. Needing a rescuer….. Someone they can lean on, someone to help them bear their burdens and protect them from the dangers of the world.

To show them, if only for a little while, that while on Earth there is someone who cares for you, who will intercede for you, and who will tangibly sacrifice and show the love of God to you. Teaching them about the love of a Savior who heals broken hearts and comforts the soul.

But, we love our comforts. We love having more space than we need because we “need” it. We love our comfort zones – unwilling to stretch ourselves for another. We don’t see how we can “add another” forgetting that we have more than most have and what we do have is given to a God who we KNOW provides all of our needs and gives us extra to fund our wants. It forces us to focus our attention on someone other than ourselves.

We don’t see how we can help either because we really don’t want to or are completely unaware of the various ways we can.

Stretching and sacrificing for the good of others is HARD. It’s uncomfortable. It’s scary. It’s unconventional. It’s counter-cultural.

But, our God asks us to for His sake. Because He sacrificed and stretched for us. He did hard things too. He lived in a way that was counter-cultural, too. For others. He understood that His sacrifices were for the absolute good of other people.

I hate that I was one of the Christians who buried my head in the sand, who was unwilling to see past myself.

Our lives were never supposed to be about us. But, how we so easily focus on ourselves and make excuses for why we won’t pour ourselves into the lives of others.

I saw this on a friend’s IG and cringed at it because for so long I needed to be pushed, paddled, pulled, and urged.

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… here’s to writing and dealing with what hurts. With what’s embarrassing and difficult.

But, will you stretch with me? Will you get frustrated with me and ask God to reveal to you what He wants you to get fired up about? What He wants your God centered passions to be?

Just go. Do it. And, serve our God with me with gladness. Pouring yourself out for His sake, knowing that He will provide your every need and walk side by side with you through it all.

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… patience

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when I tell you I have completely fallen in love with the scripture. I have fallen head over heels in love with God’s word.

Sounds strange, even to me, because I’ve been a Christian forever, but when I began to truly seek after God, I began to see Him in so many different ways.

When I was forced on my knees through our infertility, I began to learn so much more about Him & I came to know Him much better.

I see His word differently now than I ever have before. I crave it. The scriptures I favorited are now welcoming more and more favorites into the fold and I’m seeing even more of God’s character revealed to me. It’s amazing.

I have no idea what God has planned for us. But, I am trusting Him wholeheartedly. I am believing Him and faithfully praying about what He would have us to do next.

I love how God plans our lives before He places us ever so carefully in our mother’s womb. He knew we would seek after Him and need to hear something from Him in our most difficult times. He knew that we would run to Him with tear streaked faces pleading for relief. He knew exactly what we would need and He has provided it for us.

He knew we would need encouragement and a bit of a push to get us going when we found ourselves stuck. So, He gave us His word. Full of wisdom and insight, encouragement and models. He gave us a body of brothers and sisters to unite with and lean on.

He is here with us always. In various forms – His written word, song, prayer, His Holy Spirit, & others around us.

They all encourage us to be joyful, resilient, patient, long suffering, tolerate, hopeful, and faithful.

Just do it. Lean on Him. Seek after Him. And, give Him room to love on you.

… here’s to accepting the love of a Father who will never leave us or forsake us and to trusting His word and believing in Him enough to obey. It’s hard to so worth it!

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