Taking a Detour

So I’ve been wondering and waiting. Waiting for something to come to my life that feels like IT. Something to do, get involved in, become passion about, serve with. Something missional, global, and in great need. I found it on Facebook.

While scrolling through the nonsense (no offense) I tapped on a Projectonefourtythree.org   link. Hosting kids – ahh that might be fun. I picked out a few families, sibling groups of course, (because why would you get one when you could get two?) and put the info in front of my husband.

He didn’t look at our calendar, he didn’t spend hours in prayer, he just said “Yea, let’s do it.” I love following his lead.  I called a random number to get more info and ask a few basic questions. This was Saturday night, just a few hours after my thumb thoughtlessly grazed my newsfeed.

The phone rang.

Someone picked up!

She was the President of the ministry!

She not only knew the girls, but had interviewed them!

On a Saturday night!!!

We spoke for about 30 minutes. She had answers to every question. Sisters, 7 and 15, healthy and hopeful. She couldn’t be happier for us and them. She spoke very highly of their character and was impressed with their personalities. Our excitement built as our hearts pounded.

They are from Central Asia, they speak Russian, they want to go on rollercoasters and see the ocean. They want to come. They look sweet and spunky, sassy and sincere. They hope for more then just an American summer. 5 weeks – 5 weeks they will be part of our family. 5 short weeks.

And so they are coming. I’m working on getting a bunk bed, and finding some clothes for them without knowing their sizes. I need to figure out a few Russian phrases and plan some freezer meals. I’d love to paint our guest room something a bit more feminine. Extra toothbrushes, a new box of crayons, new linens not to mention another mattress. Scheduling some dental and eye appointments, planning a mini getaway at a beach somewhere. The errands are just the beginning. Yea!

And I’m so happy. So happy to throw myself into this. This is going to be the best summer ever. Literally. Because the reality is that these girls will become part of our hearts, as all our kids do. They already are loved and prayed for and wanted.

This is missional. This is global. This is what the Lord has in store. This is better then I could have hoped for. This is…

This is so so good.

Taste and see that the Lord is good. Blessed is the man that trusts in him. Psalm 34:8

 

 

 

 

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This Easter means…

For years -forever, I’ve celebrated Easter. Peanut butter eggs, pastels, and a spring version of tinsel, peppers my childhood memories. Similar to Christmas, my family had a few unique but delightful traditions for this holiday. Instead of eggs, my mother would and still does hide “nests.” Coffee filters filled with grass, candy, and quarters. I always compared my stash of goodies with those of my friends. I don’t know, my pile always looked better. They never got silver coins AND chocolate.

But there’s a bigger question about today. (Says someone who sincerely appreciates the Kit Kat and peanut butter egg for breakfast.)

Why do we actually celebrate  this day? What is it we are actually celebrating?  Let me tell you in a very personal way.

Just a few short weeks ago I entered my mom’s hospital room. It wasn’t the first time I had come close to loosing someone I love. Mom-mom and Pop-Pop passed away when I was a teen; but there’s no one on the planet like your momma.

She was non-responsive for the first few moments I was in there. She was flaccid, struggling to breath, and quite honestly looked pathetic. I felt there was little I could do for her. I knew I needed to do something for me. I snuggled into her bed, careful not to dislodge any IVs or disrupt any monitoring. I didn’t care if the nurse came in and found it awkward. I was just a kid who needed her mom.  That scene was a reflection of 30 years ago; me as a little girl, swarmed by the adoration of my parents, received by me in no better way then physical affection.

As I laid there I wept  silently. I felt so helpless and she seemed so distant from life, I found comfort in her shoulder and singing to myself.

Forever He is glorified. Forever He is lifted high.

His perfect love could not be overcome.

Oh death where is thy sting?

All through the struggle and darkest days I’ll remember the empty grave!

No guilt on life, no fear in death, this is the power of Christ in me. 

It it was through these lyrics, written by many believers, over decades of time, true in their meaning, and powerful in song, that I was reminded that death and loss were not in control.

It had been conquered.

He had crushed its head.

Eternity was waiting.

This life is fragile and feeble and short; but belief in the sacrifice of Jesus Christ for the atonement of my sins, and the fact the Christ was not overcome by death but is the Living God, gives us life eternal.

He is not fragile or feeble.

He reigns forever.

Before I can understand.

After my earthly life.

Beyond my imagination.

He will not be defeated by death. He can not be overcome. And because of his great compassion and mercy He has welcomed anyone into his family. To joy eternal. To reign with him forevermore. Beyond death.

He has proven his power.

The  grave IS empty.

We serve a RISEN Savior.

And that’s what we are celebrating.

Happy Resurrection Sunday.

Heartbeats of Change

Recently three of my kids spoke about how their lives had been changed by a recent mission trip. (I use this term lightly – as one of my kids is in their 20’s.)

“My life was changed…. ”

“I see things differently…”

You can say this about so many things – here’s one of the many ways adoption has changed me.

I can’t watch entertainment like I once did. Stories mean much more to me, strike me deeper and at a different place then they used to. This isn’t only because of our impending adoption, but also the tragedy I saw in South Africa.

I can’t watch anything without dreaming about my kids. For example,

Annie – she suddenly stops being an annoying little perfection in a red dress and instead an actual orphan who deserves the mansion she gets.

Les Mis – The song Bring Him Home took on a whole new meaning. I suddenly had an allergy attack.

Hotel Rwanda – I wanted to jump into my TV and grab those kids out of that life and into mine!

Lilo and Stitch – When Lilo punches the little girl, I may rewind that scene more then I should.

and yes,

The Lion King

Nyants  ingonyama bagithi baba
Sithi uhhmm ingonyama!! 

(That is not a typo – those are the lyrics to the opening anthem Circle of Life.)

I actually allowed the thought to scroll through my head while on an actual African safari “Huh this really looks like the Safari at Animal Kingdom.”

American idiot party of one.

I’ve become a documentary junkie – I want as many recommendations for education as possible. And with every one I watch I feel I find three more. Anything that has anything to do with forced labor, sex trafficking, the least of these, third world countries, adoption, attachment, interracial families, and the fact that we are consumers without thought for the people we extort and the planet we violate.

I’ve changed much of the way I shop. I will continue to do so.  I feel like I never need to go to the mall again.

I have a lot to learn about food and where it comes from – and what I can do about it.  Does anyone know where I can get humanely treated grass fed chicken for less than $26 a pound?

And parenting – I’d like a cheat sheet on parenting a non white child in a white community after they’ve been ripped away from all they know and forced to fly 16 hours “home” with total strangers. May I borrow yours??

The fact of the matter is – that people change slowly – hearts beat and with every passing heartbeat we have an opportunity to change the rhythm of our own. What it beats for. What the purpose is. What our purpose is.

I’ve struggled a lot recently – to figure out what my goal should be for the next X amount of months we have kidless.  Slowly – I feel the Lord is showing me, through what I have become passionate about, and encouragement I’ve received from people I trust. I dont know how to save all the kids. I do know I’m working toward ours. Whatever it is I need to do I’m going to do it. I’m going to make that my priority. Give it my time. Follow this calling. See where it leads.

I’m going to be changed. My worldview is shifting and I like it. What’s changed your life? If you can’t think of anything – maybe that should be your next big thing.