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But as for me and my house, we will serve the LORD-Joshua 24:15

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

An Extravagant Gift

When we originally began thinking about the adoption journey to China we knew we would not be able to afford to bring all 4 children with us.  I had a peace about it and knew that we would figure out a plan for them while we were gone.  We didn't know what that plan was going to be exactly, but we trusted God would provide.  We knew it would be hard to be apart for 2 whole weeks, but the sacrifice would be worth it.  However, God had a plan that we could not even begin to imagine!  Someone wanted to provide the funds to enable us to bring all 4 of our children plus someone to help us along the way.  What?? We couldn't believe it.  Our first reaction was...maybe they just want to help by loaning us the money.  We knew that we could not do that because we had already taken a loan out for the adoption itself.  So... a couple of weeks went by and we thought...what a nice offer, but we just can't.  Then we were told that it was not a loan, but a gift.  What?? How could that be?  For some reason, I struggled with accepting such a gracious gift.  I realized I do it all the time to my heavenly Father.  He has offered such an extravagant gift...a free gift of salvation.  God had sent His one and only Son, Jesus Christ, to die on the cross for my sins and there was nothing I had to do in return...it was finished at the cross.  Eternal life given to me and to all who believe.  It didn't depend on my past sins, my current sins or my future sins.  I was bought with the blood of Jesus and all He wanted for me was to repent and believe.  And so often I make it so much more complicated.  I forget and want to "do" something so I can earn His favor.  As if there is anything I could do to deserve such a gift.  I believe this is how I reacted to this gracious gift being offered to our family.  I began to think that I can't accept this gift.  I don't deserve this gift.  Does this person know that I have not been a perfect steward of the money that God has blessed us with?  Does this person know that we have made financial mistakes and if they knew would they still be willing to provide this gift?  Well...after much prayer and discernment (and a little help from sweet friends) we have decided that God has provided this opportunity through this person and that it is not all about me, but maybe God is using this for something else.  Bigger than I know.  Maybe my kids are supposed to be there...maybe Lily is supposed to meet her family altogether.  I don't want to guess God's ultimate plan as to why we have been blessed by this gift (as I love to do sometimes), but just accept and praise Him for He deserves all the glory forever and ever.  So with that...we are happy to say that we will be going together as a family to bring Lily home.  We are humbled by this extravagant gift and we will forever pray for blessing over our dear sister or brother in Christ who has wanted to remain anonymous.  If you read this...Thank you for so graciously being a part of our adoption journey.

1 Corinthians 1:3 says, “Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of compassion and the God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our troubles, so that we can comfort those in any trouble with the comfort we ourselves have received from God.” 

Wednesday, January 4, 2012

A Smiling Lily!

We received a wonderful surprise yesterday from our agency...recent pictures of our little Lily! She looks really happy and well taken care of.  I have been waiting to see her smile and I didn't know if I would see her little smile until after we came face to face...so this truly was a special gift :o)  It is bittersweet to see the pictures and see how much she has changed. It just makes us want to leave right now before she grows anymore. She also seems to really enjoy her stuffed animal panda. About a month ago we were able to send her a care package and that is the panda we sent her through ladybugsnlove.com. We also sent her a small photo album with pictures of us in it and a camera. We hope they are using the camera for pictures that we will develop. It would be so nice to have for Lily. So...here is our most recent picture of lily!