Thursday, December 31, 2009

End of the Year Questions

Yesterday I read a great post and wanted to share it with you. I will be taking these questions with me on the plane and hopefully it will help me to reorganize and refocus my priorities. I like to stop several times a year and reflect where I am at. It helps me to see where I have deviated and also let the Lord show me areas in my life that need attention. Needless to say this past year I have neglected this more than usual.


The beginning of a new year is an ideal time to stop, look up, and get our bearings. To that end, here are some questions to ask prayerfully in the presence of God.

  1. What’s one thing you could do this year to increase your enjoyment of God?
  2. What’s the most humanly impossible thing you will ask God to do this year?
  3. What’s the single most important thing you could do to improve the quality of your family life this year?
  4. In which spiritual discipline do you most want to make progress this year, and what will you do about it?
  5. What is the single biggest time-waster in your life, and what will you do about it this year?
  6. What is the most helpful new way you could strengthen your church?
  7. For whose salvation will you pray most fervently this year?
  8. What’s the most important way you will, by God’s grace, try to make this year different from last year?
  9. What one thing could you do to improve your prayer life this year?
  10. What single thing that you plan to do this year will matter most in ten years? In eternity?

Whitney writes:

The value of many of these questions is not in their profundity, but in the simple fact that they bring an issue or commitment into focus. For example, just by articulating which person you most want to encourage this year is more likely to help you remember to encourage that person than if you hadn’t considered the question.

Whitney also offers an additional 21 questions to help us “consider our ways.”

Read the whole article here.

HT: Justin Taylor

Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Walking by Faith

I am sorry I haven't made any updates to the boy's situation. There is not a whole lot to tell. All efforts were blocked and we do have some limited information that I am hesitant to divulge online for fear that it would hurt our case. I am hoping that we can share more of the pieces of this story when we get over there.

I know I keep saying this, but your prayers are so appreciated and felt. Things are soon approaching for our leave date. I am a little overwhelmed and relieved at the same time for some forward movement. We continue to pray that our desires would be secondary to what the Lord's will is for us and for Jonathan and David. Nothing is too big or difficult for the Lord and we are leaning on Him and trusting that He knows best and ultimately that He is in perfect control. I quake at the thought of me being in control. I would mess everything we rest in HIM and wait.

Today I read Isaiah 53
53:5-7 says "Surely He has borne our griefs and carried our sorrows; yet we esteemed Him stricken, smitten by God, and afflicted. But He was wounded for our transgressions; He was crushed for our iniquities; upon Him was the chastisement that brought us peace, and with His stripes we are healed. All we like sheep have gone astray; we have turned - everyone- to His own way; and the Lord has laid on Him the iniquity of us all. He was oppressed, and He was afflicted, yet He opened not His mouth; like a lamb that is led to the slaughter, and like a sheep that before its shearers is silent, so He opened not His mouth."

This was just a small portion of a glorious text. I sat there weeping and realizing that the Lord bore the full wrath of His Father and He bore the weight of the world's sins on His shoulders. How little is my pain and suffering compared to Jesus'. I rejoice in these struggles if to only be close to my Savior and to fellowship with Him. Though we had never thought this adoption journey would lead us down this path, we rejoice and thank Him through it all. In our weakness His strength is evident and our heart's desire and prayer is that no matter what the end of this story is, the Lord will get all the credit and praise. His ways are not our own, but we rest in His perfect sovereignty and plan, even if we don't fully understand or comprehend it.

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

On A Mission

The last few days have had another full range of emotions. The verse that keeps running through my head is this: "The steadfast love of the Lord never changes. His mercies are new every morning. Great is thy faithfulness." When things keep changing and stresses keep coming, the Lord's love is always steady. His truth never changes. His grace is always sufficient for that particular moment. I try not to think beyond today, because I know that the Lord hasn't given me the allotted graced for those days ahead. He only gives me the perfect amount this moment. I shudder and almost cry thinking what it would be like to go through hardships and life without the Lord. All the untruthfulness and confusion that we have experienced has made me even more thankful for the Truth of His Word that NEVER changes and is the foundation to our lives and in all the craziness we feel.

We have a christian driver and interpreter that is working for us in Ethiopia. He has helped several families in the past and we were blessed to come across the right people to get the connection to him. He visited the transition home yesterday and they told him that the boys were back with their father. After talking to the person that is connecting us, we decided that the only way we will know the truth is to find out for ourselves.
So as of this morning we received this email: On A mission. Our "helper" in Ethiopia is driving 6 hours one way to their regional orphanage to try to find out what is happening.

So my plea is this...please pray for our helper and please pray that the truth will come to light. I don't know if the transition home is helping him with info in regards to where the boys are located, but we are confident that the Lord will help him. I am praying that the Lord will prepare our hearts for whatever we hear. Believe me, I have cried my tears and at some level I am not sure how I will feel if I know they are with their father. We will still want to meet them regardless of where they are at.

Jason gently reminded me yesterday that we want to adopt children who desperately need a family. If the boys are able to go back to their family and are taken care of, that is our greatest desire for them. It's about their well-being not ours!

Also yesterday we found out that most of our funds are in for our trip!! Again, more tears shed with thankfulness for the Lord's provisions and clear hand upon this journey that He has called us to. Thank you all who gave to our trip. We thank the Lord that He moved through you to bless us.

Sunday, December 20, 2009

Thank You all For Your Prayers

Things are starting to wind up pretty quickly. I can't believe we are literally a few weeks from going to Ethiopia. Time seems to be a blur in my eyes and I literally have to will myself to slow down and enjoy each day's blessings.

Thank you all for your prayers for us during this past year and this past week for our boys and our transition of moving to Ethiopia for awhile. What a joy and privilege it is to be used by our Lord. This journey has been hard, but I wouldn't trade it for the world. He has taught me so much about myself and HIM and trusting in Him, you would think that would be an easy lesson!! :)

The latest update we have is nothing....we tried to find out an explanation as to why the boys are no longer up for adoption and back with their family(especially after we had heard encouraging news a couple months ago). After talking to others, our instincts do have some grounding. The opinion is that they may be with their family, but probably not. We really don't know what is happening. We are so ready to go over there and find out what is truly happening. I am frustrated by the lack of communication and help we are getting from the people that are supposed to be doing this stuff!! We feel very alone in this endeavour.

The Lord has brought some people into our path that are and will help us out in Ethiopia to find out what the truth is. Please continue to pray. In all honesty, this last piece of news was hard, but hardly surprises us because we keep having one obstacle after another. We know we are doing the right thing and are at peace with pursuing these boys to the very end of whatever the Lord has for them and us.

This past week, I kept wanting to know what the last chapter would be in this book of our adoption. It hasn't seem to reach the climax yet! :) At some point everything has to start fitting together somehow.

So we continue to trust the Lord and wait and pray that His will be done and knowing full well He is capable to move mountains.

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Something Doesn't Add Up.

So we got another update today. Shimeliss told Hope adoption which told Lisa that our boys are no longer available for adoption and that they are back with their family. Shimeliss had mentioned that he had already told Lisa that, which he hadn't. SOMETHING DOESN'T ADD UP. We have been offered new referrals and new children TWICE and since the boys are back in their regional orphanage again, they have no jurisdiction over them. My fear is that this may just another way for them to get us to move on?
If they are back with their families again, great, I can deal with that and are would be happy that they are with some sort of family. But something in my spirit doesn't feel right. I can't put my finger on it. Our updates have hardly ever seemed to add up and sometimes been contradicting. I have no reason to trust them, even though I want to.
PLEASE PRAY FOR US, we need wisdom. I feel so trapped, angry, devastated and in tears. I can't let this rest until we have more details, because of course, we didn't get any of those.

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Merry Christmas

I posted this video last year and again I find myself praying for our sons this Christmas season that the Lord would hold them close and all the other orphans in this world that don't get to experience a family's love. I pray that the Lord would hold each of them closely to His side and that they would experience His peace and love midst pain and confusion.

Sunday, December 6, 2009

Gracie Reading to Allie

Gracie loves to read and her goal has been to read to Allie. She always asks Allie if she wants a book read to her. So proud of our girl!!

Thursday, December 3, 2009

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

Why We Are Going To Ethiopia

Dear Family and Friends,

Many of you know that we are in the process of adopting two boys from Ethiopia. Some of you have also heard of the Lord's leading in our next step of faith: the Meyer family is moving to Ethiopia for next semester (January through June). We will be working under the leadership of SIM (Serving in Mission). SIM is an interdenominational mission organization whose main focus is to glorify God by evangelizing, ministering, discipling, and establishing national churches that fulfill the Great Commission. My main ministry opportunity in Ethiopia will be teaching the Gospels at the Evangelical Theological College in Addis Ababa in Ethiopia. We would love to explain how the Lord has worked in our hearts to lead us to this exciting decision.

We began to be confronted with the idea of moving to Ethiopia as we meditated on the meaning of the gospel. It all started when one of our agency workers recommended that we seek a referral for a new child because of certain difficulties in the adoption process with our two boys. Those words were unthinkable and unsettling, but the situation brought the gospel into clear focus. We owe our salvation to the relentless, loving, patient pursuit of God. God in Christ took a "whatever it takes" approach to redeem and rescue us when we were helpless sinners. Therefore, we long for our relentless, loving, patient advocacy for these boys to serve as a model of the gospel.

Having resolved that we were not going to give up on them because God never gave up on us, we considered how we could expend every effort and use up every option at our disposal. The gospel surprised us again with its challenging, yet compelling beauty. The glory of the incarnation is that Jesus left heaven to come to earth and dwell among us in order to bring us into God's family. Suddenly, the distance did not seem so great between Louisiana and Ethiopia. The "sacrifice" seemed surprisingly small to leave the comforts of America for Ethiopia when we compared them to Christ's loving act of leaving the glories of heaven for the hardships he faced on earth. We are gladly bringing our family to the boys rather than waiting to bring the boys to our family.

Our time in Ethiopia is now about so much more than the adoption of our two boys. We have a chance to proclaim the true gospel. One of the problems in Ethiopia is a false teaching that Jesus is part God and part man, not fully God and fully man as the Bible teaches. It is no coincidence, but providence that they assigned me to teach a class on the Gospels! We long to see the Ethiopians worship Christ in His full glory because He alone is worthy of their praise. "Let the peoples praise you, O God, let all the peoples praise you" (Ps 67:3). Our prayer is not to be seen or to be admired as we take this step. Our prayer is for Christ to be seen and admired in all the stunning beauty of His majesty. O how we long to see Him more clearly and proclaim His glory more faithfully and passionately in and through this mission. It has the potential to be the biggest catalyst for spiritual growth that we have ever experienced together as a family.

My main purpose for writing this letter is to enlist an army of prayer warriors for prayer support for our ministry in Ethiopia. We are also beginning the process of fund raising. We will need to raise $19,504 to cover flight costs, medical insurance, and living expenses while in Ethiopia. The financial support for this trip must be raised before we can leave the U.S. on January 11. If the Lord leads you to partner with us financially, you may return your gift with our STA#33929 on the enclosed response card to the SIM office. SIM will send you a tax-deductible receipt for your gift. Please know that this is not a "we will mention prayer in passing, but we really hope you give money" kind of letter. We pray that the Lord will lead you as He sees fit. We pray that He will raise up many to give cheerfully to this cause, but our greatest need is for many more to intercede for us faithfully before the throne of grace because His grace is our greatest need. We know that apart from Him we can do nothing (John 15:5).

Yours in the greatest cause,

The Meyer family

202 Iris Park Drive
Pineville, LA 71360

SIM information

P. O. Box 7900

Charlotte, NC 28241


Sunday, November 22, 2009

Running A Half-Marathon

Yesterday I did something I thought I'd never do. I ran a half-marathon, 13.1 miles. I couldn't have done it without the accountability and encouragement of my running partners, who are 10x better than me. I aspire to run like them someday!! I ran my personal best, which shocked even myself. I finished in 2 hours 11 min. The funny part was that I actually placed second in my age catagory. My response was complete shock. It was a smaller race and there must not have been a lot in my class. I told Jason that the Lord had a sense of humor, making my first race one that I place. I am sure that will be the last time!! Here a few pictures from yesterday. It rained that day, so I was wet. The rain actually made it more refreshing when we ran.
From left to right. Anna Magee(she was the one that I ran with until mile 10..I couldn't have done as well as I did without her). Carine Mattix(she was my 5 am running partner...she is an awesome running and encourager) Brenda Pierson(LC biology professor that ran sometime with us on the weekends). Jon(LC student that is a cross country runner that on a whim decided to run the half-marathon and had never run that far in his life. His time: 1 hour 45 min!! Puke!! ;)

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Photography Mania

cheek to cheek with my princesses!!

Enjoying the pumpkin patch and collecting mini pumpkins!!

Beautiful fall weather and doing a little hiking. We had to find walking sticks!!

Behind Jason and the girls is huge cane plants. The girls had fun exploring the woods!

posing in front of a cool mushroom. Have yet to find out what it was. Lots of flowers and berries too. The girls thought each find was a treasure and gushed with excitement. Trying to take picture shots in my mind of all these memories.

The following pictures were taken when the girls dressed up for a little tea time with mommy. I thought they looked too cute to pass up. K...just a proud mama!! :)

Allie thinking that vacuuming is a blast!! What a goof-ball.

Saturday, November 7, 2009

A Shimmer of Hope?????

Some good friends of ours, the Stutzman's are adopting three siblings from Ethiopia. Jake the father has gone over there due to problems with the progress of their case. While he was over there, he was able to ask about our case. They told him that the situation with the boy's father had been resolved and that as soon as someone can travel to the region, that they can come back to the transition home. We were estactic to receive this news, but also very cautious. We have gotten wrong information in the past and don't want to set our hopes in this too much. So we continue to pray with fervor that the Lord will continue to put His hand upon our case. We see this as another sign that it will be very good for our case if we were over there. It seems that if they can put a face and family with the case that it may help things possible move more quickly.
We never give up hope that the Lord will work in mighty ways!!

BTW....tomorrow is Orphan Sunday.

A challenge: Satan does not want to see orphans or broken children united with families. Please pray, support, or encourage someone who is or has adopted and be prayerful if the Lord is leading you in this direction. It is a mandate in the Bible to care for widows and orphans!!

Monday, November 2, 2009

Life's Inconveniences

this from an out-of-print book, The Life and Letters
of Janet Erskine Stuart. (Says one who was her assistant for some years),

"She delighted in seeing her plan upset by unexpected events, saying that
it gave her great comfort, and that she looked on such things as an
assurance that God was watching over her stewardship, was securing the
accomplishment of His will, and working out His own designs. Whether she
traced the secondary causes to the prayer of a child, to the imperfection
of an individual, to obstacles arising from misunderstandings, or to
interference of outside agencies, she was joyfully and graciously ready to
recognize the indication of God's ruling hand, and to allow herself to be
guided by it."

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Morning Reading

Isaiah 30:15
"In returning and rest you shall be saved;
in quietness and in trust shall be your strength.
(but Jerusalem was unwilling)

"Therefore the LORD waits to be gracious to you,
and therefore he exalts himself to show mercy to you.
For the LORD is a God of justice;
blessed are all those who wait for him.
....He will surely be gracious to you at the sound of your cry. As soon as he hears it, he answers you. And though the LORD give you the bread of adversity and the water of affliction, yet your Teacher will not hide himself anymore, but your eyes shall see your Teacher. And your ears shall hear a word behind you, saying, 'This is the way, walk in it,' when you turn to the right or when you turn to the left."

I have been reading through Isaiah. It amazing how God's word is ALWAYS relevant in our lives. I am thanking God for his promises and fresh new grace and mercy for today only!!

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Soberly Resolved

Our adoption updates have been few and far between. Our case seems to be stuck in limbo and no one seems to know the specifics of what is being done to move the case forward.

This morning we were given more discouraging news. They think our case could go on indefinitely and some of these cases have been going for two years!! The advice that was given to us again was to be matched with new children. Jason and I are at a loss of what to do because we feel connected to these two precious boys. We don't want a new referral. This seems to solidify even more that we are needing to go to Ethiopia next year. We were waiting to make it official, but at this point Jason and I are planning to live in Ethiopia from Jan-June. He would teach at a Bible college and hopefully while over there we can figure out what is happening with our case and possibly our presence would move it along quicker. I feel like we are missing some major pieces to the puzzle and us going over there will help us understand more what is happening and possibly bring in some extra resources to get the job done. If we don't adopt these boys, they will probably stay at an orphanage indefinitely as long as they live.

Our tenacity and determination is still there. I think we are a little sobered to the task that lies ahead us. The Lord is in control and He is and will be getting all the glory through this whole process. We could not be or do what we are doing without the strength of the Lord!!

To be truthfully honest, it's been hard again lately. So many changes and uncertainties are lying ahead of us. I feel sometimes that it is a lonely road to travel. Every day is a fight to rest in the sovereignty of God and every day to rest fully and completely in His hands. Jason and I want the Lord to use us as He sees fit. This is about Him. This whole adoption has less to do about us and more to do with the Lord and the orphans in this world that need a family and a chance to hear the gospel.

At this point we will not be accepting a new referral or new children.

Our prayer is this: "Lord, be with these two precious boys. Hold them close to your bosom. Protect them and sustain them. Give us strength God, we so desperately need you. We feel weak.....but You are strong in our weakness. Help us to finish well. Let everything we say and do bring honor and glory to You, O God. No matter the outcome, you are perfect and good and Holy and we rest in Your perfect understanding of the adoption process. We rest in You."

Friday, October 9, 2009

Our Daddy is Cool!!

I know it is not Father's Day or Jason's birthday, but I am so thankful and undeserving of such a wonderful husband and father who adore his girls and prays diligently for the arrival of his sons. The last couple weeks I have tried to capture things that are dear to my heart and wanted to brag on my husband for a little bit.

Ever since the girls were babies, Jason has always put his girls to bed and had a sweet time of tucking them in, reading to them and blessing and praying for them every night of their lives, except when he is gone. He has always done catechism with them, bible verse memory or now lately has added reading through the Bible and acting out certain parts. The girls always remind him if he has forgotten something!! :)

We were in Minneapolis last weekend and brought back a stuffed animal for each girl. A moose for Gracie which she named "Boom" and a black bear for Allie which she named "Rocky". I am not sure why we bought them more stuffed animals, but they seemed to love them. I have no further comment about this video....just plain silliness!! :)

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Family Verse

So a few posts back I had shared a song that speaks appropriately to where the Lord has placed us in our lives. Today I wanted to share with you our family verse that we had chosen way back when our girls were first born. Every time I read it or mediate on it, it fills my heart with hope and utter joy for my Savior. So here it is; may it encourage your heart as well.

"Oh, the depth of the riches and wisdom and knowledge of God! How unsearchable are his judgments and how inscrutable his ways! For who has known the mind of the Lord, or who has been his counselor? Or who has given a gift to him that he might be repaid? For from Him and Through Him and to Him are all things. To Him be glory forever." ~Amen~

Sunday, September 27, 2009

Random Videos

I love this video. Their laughter is very contagious!!

Gracie(#2 jersey & long ponytail) is playing soccer this season and here was a little excerpt of her game. You can hear her little sister cheering her on!!

Allie's soccer team. She is the #2 jersey and she makes a goal in the beginning of the video. The other team didn't show up, so the parents played the kiddos. It was really fun for everyone...even the parents!!

The girls have taken to doing their own personal movies. Here is Allie's along with some 4 year old commentary! (sorry about the vacuuming in the background. It's always interesting what your kids are doing when you are busy in the back doing something.)

Gracie's movie with her own commentary.

Thank you all for your continued prayers and support for us during this time. We planning towards moving to Ethiopia in Jan-June. Jason is getting an opportunity to teach at the Ethiopian Bible College there. More details to come and quite the story how God has moved our hearts to go to Ethiopia for the spring semester. We have no preconceived notions that it will help our adoption, but hopefully our presence can count for something. God has done a great work to get our hearts to get to this point....anyway will fill in more of the plans later!

Friday, September 25, 2009

Another Disconnected Piece of Information

It seems like our updates come in torrents!! This afternoon after inquiring about a DNA test, we found out that they did indeed know that this man is the boy's father(wondering why they told us wrong info earlier). The problem now is that he has voiced doubt about the adoption and so the MOWA in the southern region(which is like equivalent to our social workers here) is investigating as to whether or not he can even provide for the boys. We are really confused if he doesn't want us to adopt them or if he genuinely wants them back. All they said was that he was having doubts.....that can be interpreted a lot of different ways.

My big concern still is that these boys are in limbo and that they are back at this orphanage again, where we have no idea as to whether or not they are getting good care. I have always prayed that no matter what happens that they would get to be with a family, either us or their biological family. We just did not want to see them stuck in an orphanage the rest of their lives.

To be honest, we do not know how to process this information or how long all this will take. I am feeling very numb and at loss of words on how to even pray other than O Lord, please move this along for the sake of our precious boys. I am still going to call them ours until the end, no matter what direction it takes. I have no doubt that the Lord has led us to them and all this has happened for a purpose and reason in our lives and theirs. I am just weary and tired and I know that the Holy Spirit takes the groanings of our hearts and takes them to the Father.

Thank you all for your prayers and support....they mean more than you will ever know.

RRR...RESTING in God with RELENTLESS love and a RESOLVE to bring home Jonathan and David.(or whatever is best for them)

A Long Overdue Update

This week has been difficult for me to handle. It has been around 2 months since their regional court date and barely any news to sneeze at. I am not directly frustrated at our agency, but the agency they are partnered with.
After almost two months, we found out that whatever the father of the boys said to the judge, the judge thought that he may not be their father. Our agency said this has happened before with other cases that the judges don't believe that certain birth mothers were not old enough to have their children etc... and that they take out ads in local papers to find people to vouch for them and be witness in court that these parents are legit. So our case feels like it is at square one again. This also means that they are no longer at their transition home but were taken back to their region's orphanage again. We found that out today too. The fact that they are back at their orphanage again really breaks my heart. The one thing that has brought us peace during this waiting time is that they were at a good place getting good care and contact. I am worried that this will not help their attachment issues or add to the stress with being jerked back and forth during this time.
Right now we are trying to find out if a DNA test can be done to find out or solidify that he is their father and that we can move on with our case. It seems to be another huge waiting mountain and frankly I am feeling a little worn out.
Please continue to pray....I don't even know what to ask for anymore that I haven't already asked. Just pray.

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Bringin' It To the Lord

Yesterday was a normal day full of business and responsibilities. As with each day, I am at some level always thinking about our boys and the adoption, even if it is more subconscious. I have found lately that I will be doing fine, but at times will casually go down the path of our adoption sequence and what is or is not happening and then I lose it. Right in the middle of whatever I am doing. For one that has considered herself an even keel person, I have been rather emotional this past year!
So...back to yesterday!! I was a mess and I started to pick up the phone to call someone that would have totally understood how I was feeling. Something stopped my hand and Phil. 4:6 ran through my head. "Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God." I let go of the phone and realized I needed to be going to my Father in Heaven that knows perfectly the state of my heart.
I recommitted in my heart with the Lord yesterday to go first to Him before going to my husband or friends with my burdens or concerns or even joys. Spending time with the Lord and being reminded about His promises and His Word will filter a lot of my anxiety and hurt, if I would first place it in the most perfect and capable hands of my Lord.

Thursday, September 17, 2009

What does Rain and Turkey Legs have in Common?

We have started a new trend in our house. If it's pouring down rain and warm outside...go out and get wet and have some fun. The girls now beg to go outside when in rains. Every once and a while I join in. This particular day I decided to take pictures instead. They loved to get into this little stream that runs through our ditch and kick water at each other and run back and forth in it. Allie also enjoyed throwing herself into the water!!

Chasing each other. All I remember is the squeals and giggling....ahh, a good memory.

OK, I had to include this picture. It reminded me of a kicker for a football team. Man, can she get that leg up!

Allie posing for Momma!
Gracie posing as well!!
A good friend of ours gave us some turkey legs. Gracie was so excited to "eat the chicken on the bone" She cleaned up the whole leg!! It was fun to watch her.

I couldn't help but include this picture of Allie eating her breakfast in her XL pajama t-shirt that we got from Delta after being stuck in Atlanta overnight with no luggage. The girls love wearing them for some reason.

So what do turkey legs and rain have in common?? Absolutely nothing! ;) Just a catchy phrase!!

No new updates on the adoption. Hoping to hear something the end of the week or beginning of next?? Who knows!

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

Our Theme Song For This Period of Our Lives

video can be seen here

Jesus, Draw Me Nearer

Jesus draw me ever nearer
As I labor through the storm;
You have called me to this passage,
And I'll follow, though I'm worn.

May this journey bring a blessing,
May I rise on wings of faith;
And at the end of my heart's testing,
With your likeness let me wake.

Jesus guide me through the tempest
Keep my spirit staid and sure;
When the midnight meets the morning,
Let me love You ever more.

Let the treasures of the trial
Form within me as I go-
And at the end of this long journey
Let me love you at Your throne.

Monday, September 7, 2009

A Few Random Happenings

Gracie lost her second tooth. This time around the tooth fairy left her a note along with the money. Gracie was thrilled and carried the letter around with her everywhere and I probably read it a dozen times. She is already working on her third one!! She had learned about the tooth fairy last time and was excited that she had visited again!!

Yep, Whitefield got roped into this one. "Super Cat"!!

Gracie and Allie in their Sunday cute!!!

Guess what....girls can play with toys meant for boys too. Not only did she enjoy herself, she got pretty dirty too!!

The girls have been begging us for jobs to earn money. It's hard to come up with things that they can do that is just family responsibility. I always remember thinking that there was always plenty on the farm to do!! I suggested that they pick up the sticks in the back yard. They wanted to rake, I did not think they could do it, but went ahead and gave them the rakes. To my surprise they got together a rather significant pile. Way to go girls!! We are so proud of you!!!

Lately they think it's fun to sleep together in either one or the others bunk bed. You can hear them giggling and talking away for about an hour before they either fall asleep or one decides they need a little more space. Here they are playing some silly game where Allie sleeps on Gracie.

School is in session. We started early this year with the knowledge of the possibility of our adoption going through. Here the girls are working on their worksheets. Hey....and they are still smiling!! :)

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

More News and More Grace Given

Yesterday was another normal day and also one that brought along more news about our boys. It wasn't good and through it all I feel like the Lord has given me a peace that surpasses my own understanding.
We were told that the father of the boys was also at the regional courts when the boys were taken there(first time we knew that one of the parents was alive). We don't know a lot of details and they are trying to get more information to further understand what actually happened. All they know is that whatever the father had said to the judge, I am assuming in regards to questions asked to him, the judge was not satisfied with the answers and kicked out our case again.
The reason our case is at their regional courts is that the national judge was not satisfied with the paperwork and kicked it back to their region. So we are a long way, it seems, to being done with this adoption process. It was very hard news to hear and my heart again seemed crushed; but another thought continued being present in my heart. If God wanted this case to pass, it would have been so easy for it to go through. There is a reason why this is all happening and even though I don't fully understand, I must trust in Him. My own abilities and strength has proven to be weak and insufficient and the promises of the Lord has carried us through this process.
I felt like the Lord had prepared my heart the day before with helping me to realize that I wasn't staying vigilant over my heart and that the deep void I felt in my heart for Jonathan and David was being filled with other things besides the Lord. I was checking out emotionally sometimes, feeling emotionally exhausted and sometimes very frustrated and anxious. I thought I was doing OK, but I realized I had let myself slip. Daily and hourly I am trying to fill this void with the joy of the Lord, mediating on who He is, His good and perfect character. He loves Jonathan and David more than we ever will and He loves us enough to give us the privilege to go through this trial. Not only has it helped paint a clearer picture of my spiritual adoption, but our journey has given us so many opportunities to share with others about spiritual and physical adoption, God's faithfulness and his mercy and above all even that these struggles bring glory to our Father in heaven because through our weakness, He is strong.

My staying phrase that I continually try to put before me is this: "THE JOY OF THE LORD IS MY STRENGTH". I am striving to continue to find joy and gladness in my Savior and that when I focus on Him, His strength sustains me.

Romans 5:2-6
"Through him we have also obtained access by faith into this grace in which we stand, and we rejoice in hope of the glory of God. More than that, we rejoice in our suffering, knowing that suffering produces endurance, and endurance produces character, and character produces hope, and hope does not put us to shame, because God's love has been poured into our hearts through the Holy Spirit who has been given to us." FOR while we were still weak, at the right time Christ died for the ungodly

Friday, August 21, 2009

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Update Number 2 Today!!

Here are some more sounds like the man they were looking for just showed up at their care center and said he needed to take the children back to their region to see the regional judge. He was very vague about what the problems were. Rahel, the attorney in Ethiopia, was pretty upset with him because this is the third time he has had to do this. We don't know why he has had to take them twice before.
Anyway, please pray for the childrens' safety. It's a long trip and I am sure it is emotionally taxing on them because they have no idea what is happening to them. Just praying that everything will be sorted out this time. They are hopeful for another update this week; but I am not holding my breath!
Thanks for the prayers

Good or Bad??

Today we got some news, not a lot; but at this point I am thankful for anything!! The good news is they are in contact with the man that needs to give them info about the boys. The confusing news is that he has to take the boys back to the region that they are from and present them before the officials there again. From what I can gather this has happened more than once.
Lisa, our agency director, said that each region has a local MOWA office and court system that they first have to pass before they are allowed to be matched with a family. Then after they are matched, their paperwork along with the family's is presented before the national MOWA and courts, which is in Addis Ababa. From what we can gather or make of this info. is that the courts in Addis decided that the paperwork that they have isn't sufficient and that they have to go back to the region they are from and get more background info and send them through the local offices again before going back to Addis. This seems to have happened at least twice or more. They are saying that it's either good sign or very bad sign. It may mean that there is real problem with the boys papers, or family or guardians.

All this to say is that prayer is still very important even at this time when they are working on things. I am glad to hear that there is work being done and our papers are not just sitting in a pile somewhere. Please pray for the people in Ethiopia working on this that they can get the papers or the cooperation that they need. I have faith that God is bigger than this problem and whatever happens that His perfect will is being done. So we continue.....

RRR...RESTING in God with RELENTLESS love and a RESOLVE to bring home Jonathan and David.

Monday, August 17, 2009

Love Package #3

It's a simple package. Full of love and sentimental care. Both Gracie and Allie gave one of their favorite toys away(I didn't ask them to do this). Gracie loved her frog, but wanted her brothers to have it. Allie said that boys like balls and picked out this little soccer ball. This is our third package for Jonathan and David and each time it gets a little harder to send it off and pray this will be our last one to commission someone else to hold our boys and tell them we love them. To touch each thing that their hands will hold and wonder if they will really understand and feel the love that is sent to them in this package.
I don't ever boast of understanding God's will and timing and this is no exception. I pray daily for His strength to make it through and to turn my worries and anxieties over to Him. I know everything He does is for our best and for His glory and I have prayed for both. Today is a little harder, but my God is bigger than my tears and pain.
I pray every night the same thing that Jason prays over our girls ever since they were babies.

"Jonathan and David, may the Lord bless you and keep you. May He lift up His countenance upon you and be gracious to you and give you peace, joy and love. " I add: "May you feel His smile on your faces and feel Him so ever close to you. The Lord loves you more than I will ever be capable of doing and I put you, Jonathan and David, in His strong, loving and tender and capable arms."

Friday, August 14, 2009

How Hot is Louisiana??

Yesterday Jason's divisional secretary came across this squirrel and posted it on his blog! HILARIOUS!!!

Monday, August 10, 2009

On a Lighter Note(Part 1)

I have not been very good about posting pictures for all the grandpa's and grandma's. So this post will be dedicated to our summer happenings and pictures. These are pictures of our time in Tehucana, TX with Jason's former professor from Southern Seminary, Dr. Jim Parker. He has a cozy place tucked into the middle of Texas that we got to enjoy for a few days of R & R. Thanks Jim.....we all loved it!

discussing the intricacies of life. This was Allie's favorite thing to do.....sit on the porch and each snow cones.

And boy.....did Jim have all the flavors a kid could ever want!!!

Gracie has always been our little florist and this time was no exception. She kept Jim supplied with all sorts of arrangements when we were there. Here was her centerpiece of supper one night.
He has a good sized herd of miniature donkeys and goats. They were so fun to watch. The girls even helped water them one night. I thought this little billy goat was cool.

Some of the donkeys were really tame and the girls enjoyed petting them.

Here we are visiting an old fort with Jim. The girls especially enjoyed all the exploring.

Gracie and Allie with their water bottles were previously pretending to shoot at the Indians out of the holes made for guns on the top of the fort. Here Gracie thinks I am one and shooting at me!

Here is Jim with the girls...all trying to stay cool and have fun!!
I thought this sign was funny!! What a special moment to remember!! :)

The girls loved to swing on the porch, here are a few of my artistic attempts!!

The girls and I hanging out!

Here is Simba and I talking....he is a good listener.

The was one of the highlights of our trip. Jim has a donkey trained to pull this little buggy around. It was a blast!
Over the summer we have enjoyed playing this game called heroescape and building all sorts of fun boards. Jason has even used it for their history lessons
This is our fourth week of school. We decided to get an early start with the uncertainty of the boy's adoption. Gracie is first grade and Allie is in "free-k" as she puts it. I am homeschooling both girls and it has been going good and the girls seem to really enjoy it.