Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Middle of the Night Musings

I have not slept much the last couple of nights. 

So many things on my mind like our next fundraiser, starting an adoption grant agency, orphan care in general, different paths to adoption, different families who have adopted recently or are in the process of adopting.  

This is so much bigger than our current adoption!
God won't let me let it go.  The trick for me will be praying through all these things instead of just thinking and planning.  I'm better at the latter but learning about the former.  

A new friend who I've made through this adoption journey, Rachel, recently posted about a family doing a giveaway fundraiser like we've done... Which led me to their blog and their story.  Another story of God setting the lonely in families.  This couple has now started an organization that seeks to be a voice for orphans around the world.  They also take care of an orphanage in Uganda.  Huge way to tangibly live out James 1:27. 

You see, I keep learning about all that God is doing through other people, and it grips my heart.  It makes me wonder what He has planned for us.  Multiple adoptions, special needs adoptions, waiting children adoptions... Then I look around and realize we are limited for now.  We can do what He has called us to do for now.  We can be faithful to what He has called us to do now.   We/I don't have to worry about doing it all.  

Then I read this post.  I hope it's as encouraging to you as it is to me.  "Whatever" we do for the least of these, we do unto Him."

Thank you to everyone who is on this journey with us.  Thank you for "whatever" you are doing!  

Sunday, October 28, 2012

30.

Yep, I've entered into a new decade. 

Lots of people have asked me if 30 was a big deal for me, and I can honestly say no.  I can understand how it is for some people, but it hasn't been for me.  


I've actually felt 30 for awhile. ;) 

Celebrating 30 was fun, and my friends and family helped make it very special.  We had our housewarming/birthday party on the 20th.  During that weekend, I had some quality time with my sisters, best friend who came to town from West Virginia, Mom who came down from North Carolina, my husband, and everyone else who came to our party.
With my honey at movie night.
On my actual birthday, I got to worship with Matt and Ginger at our church.  It had been about 2 months since I had been able to be in the service, so it was extra-special.  (Though I probably should have stayed and helped fill in all the gaps in the children's area... but that's another post.)  After the church gathering, we had family dinner at Grandma's with homemade birthday cake, cards and presents from family. My mom even joined us which was a treat!  
Thanks for birthing me 30 years ago, Momma!

Then, we ran some errands and spent some of the gift cards I'd gotten.  I'm not really much of a shopper, but I do like using gift cards.  Got some clothes and some stuff for the house.  Then we went home and watch The Interpreter which I had been wanting to watch. After that movie, we packed up leftovers from the party and took them to Mark & Steph's for movie night.  Mom met us over there again which was wonderful.  We watched World Trade Center and used their internet to check for Facebook wishes.  Birthdays definitely have changed since Facebook. :)  Ginger also made a fruit pizza which we had with the party leftovers at movie night.  It was delicious! 



After movie night, I enjoyed being able to go home and not worry about having to get up early for work.  Ginger and I had a breakfast date at Bear E Patch the next day then ran some errands before she had to leave town.  But it was a great way to end a wonderful weekend. 


Friday, October 26, 2012

30th Birthday and Housewarming Party


Last weekend, most of our favorite people were able to be here and celebrate with us!  Thank you so much to everyone who came! 
Ginger and Lauren finally got to meet!
We had a nice drop in with turkey/pumpkin chili, a Fall salad, honey/corn muffins, Brunswick stew, ham biscuits, regular chili, cinnamon rolls, and S'mores!  Special thanks to Emily, Gail and Mark who made all the yummy food!  And special thanks to Ginger, Valerie & Laura for doing all the setup work!

Family by our new fire pit!
We especially enjoyed getting to spend time with our family and friends from out of town and the friends who are local who we hardly get to see.  We loved having the combination of friends from church, work, Cares, the old days, and even our brand new neighbors.  And we missed all of you who weren't able to make it.  

Settling In

 September 14, 2012   Closing Day!   Our First House!

We've been in the house over a month now.  It definitely feels like home.  


After some painting, cleaning and organizing...

and figuring out where to hang all our pictures...
 It's home. 

 

Saturday, October 13, 2012

Home Study Legit, Again

Technically, when we moved into the new house, our Home Study was no longer accurate.  Had we been picked by a birth mom in the transition, it's something that could have been taken care of quickly, but after 3ish weeks in the house, we wanted to be 'legit'.


This past Thursday, our social worker from Bethany (we'll call her "E"), who is now more like a friend, came by to check out the new digs.  It was SO great to see her again in person.  We hadn't seen her since June 2011, but we've exchanged lots of emails and phone calls.  After she checked out the new house, we sat down and just talked.  We had lots of questions for her, and she was such a good sport to answer what she could.  

Ever since she left, I've been soooooo thankful that we are where we are.  We truly love working with Bethany, especially in our part of the State, and we truly trust that OUR baby will be arriving at the perfect time.  

Now, our attention will soon turn to fundraising again.  The thought of getting the call that we've been matched but not having adequate funds is a little intimidating.  

Here are a few specific requests we have for now:
  • Pray for those who are facing unplanned pregnancies
  • Pray for God to work mightily in the hearts of these ladies, for them to choose Life for their children, whether through Parenting or Adoption
  • Pray for those who have chosen an adoption plan to have comfort and wisdom through the process, for picking their path (agency, attorney, open vs. closed, etc.)
  • Pray for OUR birth mom specifically
  • Pray for us to have wisdom with our fundraising.  We don't want it to be all about us but a way to help raise awareness for adoption, for orphans, and for God's heart for the fatherless.  
  • Pray for the grants we've applied for.  We're currently waiting to hear from Caroline's Promise, Gift of Adoption, and Help Us Adopt

Tuesday, October 2, 2012

Sowing Seeds

In my last post, I wrote about why we are pursuing this particular path to adoption.  There are SO many options, and many of them less-expensive.  
I wanted to write a little about why the cost of a domestic infant adoption was never a huge deterrent for us.  

Let me start by saying that we are not millionaires.  We didn't don't have an extra $25k sitting in a bank waiting to be used for this eternal purpose. We have modest incomes and had a significant amount of debt when we started this whole process.  But we weren't worried.   We also weren't naive.


Before we were married, I was on staff with a college ministry where we raised our financial support.  I learned in that time that people want to invest in what God is doing.  Not everyone can live in a closed country and share the Gospel as their full-time job.  But, people can invest in that mission and be part of what God is doing in that country.  I had supporters of $5 to $200 a month who each got to be part of how God worked when He allowed me and my team to be on the mission field.  Without their prayers and financial support, we couldn't have been there as long as we were.  My supporters invested in sharing the Gospel with unreached people because they knew it was something God cared about.  He commands us to go, but not everyone can go.  Those who support the go-ers also get to be part of the go-ing. In the same way, not everyone is called to adopt, but people can still be part of adoption through giving and/or praying. 

Trusting God for the finances has been one of the best parts of this journey.  We knew know He will provide because He loves orphans.  We are pursuing something that is part of His character.  He is Father to the fatherless (Psalm 68:5).  Jesus Himself was raised in a family that was not completely biological.  James writes "Religion that God our Father accepts as pure and faultless is this: to look after orphans and widows in their distress and to keep oneself from being polluted by the world" (1:27).  He "sets the lonely in families" (Psalm 68:6).  Adoption is something God cares about. He will provide. 

The remaining $10,000 or so needed for the adoption?  (*Our price is expected to increase once we get a new home study done if we haven't gotten a placement soon.)  We are still committed to adopting without debtWe will continue to apply for grants, do fundraisers, work side jobs and put money aside.  We don't expect God to drop it off miraculously in our mailbox (though He COULD).  We will work diligently and faithfully.   And we will continue to invite you to sow seeds of investment into this part of God's story.  You may not be called to adopt, but you can still share in God's heart for adoption. You can be part of this story. Information on how to become part of this adoption is available here