Monday, December 24, 2012

Do I really have time for this?

I sent out Christmas cards early this year.  We had such a fun year to review that I found it easy to pick out some great pictures of the family to highlight our best times.  We went to baseball playoff games, we traveled with our kids individually and I got to travel to New York and Ethiopia in the last couple of months.  We celebrated 20 years of marriage with 20 wonderful friends and made new friends through our World Vision marathon endeavor.  We supported many water well projects and I found Africa to be on my mind more this year than ever before.  We went through heartache and celebrated successes.  Our newest success is that our son, Jacob, got accepted to the University of Michigan.  But this week represents the week that we should have been in Ethiopia last year.  Our court date was December 21, 2011 and we were very upset to find out the program was being restructured so our plan was postponed.  Lately, I wake up early, finding myself praying for my little girl I had the privilege to hold and laugh with only a couple of months ago.  I have found myself waking up totally frightened that I may never get my court date.  I haven't blogged since October because I never knew what to write about.  Maybe you want to hear about my dislike in the international adoption process, my fear of never getting to adopt my daughter or maybe the frustration I've had with God and His plan for how long all of this is taking.   Not particularly happy Christmas thoughts.  When I go off and want to cry and scream I have to say God's word is always my comfort.  It's not always me knowing where to look - in fact, it's never that. It's wonderful people who have come into my life that share with me what God has brought to them.

These things I plan won't happen right away. Slowly, steadily, surely, the time approaches when the vision will be fulfilled. If it seems slow, do not despair, for these things will surely come to pass. Just be patient! They will not be overdue a single day!"  Habakkuk 2:3      - Living Bible Translation

My friend sent this to me after a long overdue FaceTime conversation.  I shared about our newest development; Just that we are waiting on paperwork to be signed and people aren't available to sign my daughter over to us.   Slowly! Steadily! I was reminded in our wonderful Christmas program at church yesterday that this was not my vision.  This calling to adopt came out of just being willing and wow, I did not expect any of this.  So, I'm glad I didn't take pictures that captured my hopelessness and ones that showed me crying.  I know new pictures of Scott meeting our daughter will come very soon and pictures of my kids playing with their new sister will be taken soon enough. This time next year I can sit in our wonderful Christmas program and watch my daughter share in the lighting of the candles (Blaire's favorite part).  May we all take a moment to sit in silence and remember our Savior's birth and I hope it has new meaning to you for 2013.  I hope we all have time for that!

Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Coincidence? I think not!

I was preparing to speak at a MOPS (mothers of preschoolers) group last week. I had the privilege of speaking about our well-drilling opportunities in Tanzania, and talk about my adoption process. How we were called to adopt is a great story. We hit some bumps in the road but after I shed some tears and feel sorry for myself, I look to the Bible for some comfort. I mean it has been a long unknown wait. I told the young moms to 'plunge' (their years theme) into God's word and I must say this is where I draw strength. I also told them to 'plunge' into the unknown and was reminded of a story from the Bible in Acts 10 but also retold in the book called, Wide Awake, by Erwin McManus. Two men, Cornelius and Peter, from different backgrounds and not interested in one another and highly unlikely to ever meet up. But God orchestrated a great meeting for the two to come together and why? For God's glory. For Him to get the credit. I used this story at MOPS to illustrate how we limit our vision. I quoted McManus and said,'God isn't simply trying to inspire you but call you to a more heroic life'. It's such a cool story, I urge you to read it. The day after , I looked up my daily devotion that was called In Motion and it was based on Acts 10. I start out reading, 'there are no coincidences in life. I work in unexpected ways to set just the right people in positions where they can do the greatest good.'
I started reading it for me. It reaffirmed the whole timing of my adoption. It is not in vain. The fact that I have a friend I met 23 years ago in Texas, living in Ethiopia now, minutes from my daughter is not a coincidence. If I were to say,'How lucky am I' who would get all the credit? Acts 10:22 says,'Cornelius...was divinely directed by a holy angel to call you to his house and to hear a message from you.' The devotion ends with saying,'I've already set in motion to bring about a good result.' I believe this with all my heart.
I haven't quoted a song in a while and these days I'm loving Mark Schultz song, All Things Possible.
I know mountains can move
I've seen what You can do
In my weakness
So my heart will believe
If I wait I will see
My God doing, what only He can do

And when that song comes on the radio it's never a coincidence.

Wednesday, October 10, 2012

The Adoption Marathon

I'm happy to say my Chicago Marathon #2 is over! My best time yet and I'm recovering very well. I have been training for about 8 months and the training paid off. A marathon is a funny thing. Your body is ready but your mind plays tricks on you between mile 18-24. A time period that has you hating life and everything in it and makes you wonder why you ever paid money and signed yourself up to such a crazy event. But mile 24 comes around and you start to pick yourself up. The end is nearing and you know you can endure the pain to get through to victory. Crossing the finish line makes me want to hug strangers (don't worry I didn't) but it also brings on the tears. You realize what you've just been through and you praise God it's over! Well, my running training is done (for now) but I'm in another marathon in my life. One that makes me not wonder why I signed up but one that keeps me in the mile 18-24 zone. Adoption is a beautiful thing! I'm happy for the families I know that have been enjoying their kids they have received through adoption and I keep waiting for my happy reunion. When does this race end? I have to be honest, today was a hard 'training' day. One where I let my mind go to the unhappy place. The place where I sat and looked at all my pictures and videos I have of my daugther from my visit back in September and asked God 'why so long'? I allowed my body to break down and sob. You know, the kind of sobbing that worries the dog. Reese came over and put her paw on my lap and I just laid down, cuddling her tight for comfort. My friend reminded me I'm in the toughest marathon yet. She reminded me that even when my muscles are cramping and sore I continue to run. She said, it's not about the time but about crossing the finish line. So, I'm praying for mile 25. That's when I get a court date. And mile 26 is when we will return to bring her home. During the Chicago marathon I ran with family (Jacob stayed with me for 11 miles) and had Blaire cheering along the streets with other friends and church family. It was so great to hear people call out my name, cheering me to victory. That's really what gets me through. I have a great cheering section during my adoption marathon. Many have said the right thing at the right time and pray constantly for our daughter and paperwork to be signed in Ethiopia. I could never get through this alone. I don't know how people can get through life's trials without knowing God is in control. It's only because I've trusted God over and over that I can be sure He cares and loves me and loves my daughter more than I ever could.
Acts 20:24 'I consider my life worth nothing to me; my only aim is to finish the race and complete the task the Lord Jesus has given me - the task of testifying to the good news of God's grace.'

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Running for Clean Water

I just ran another 9 miles today for my marathon training. I sometimes really enjoy running by myself. The other day I was weak and needed our training group to encourage me and get me through but today was an 'all the stars were properly aligned' run and I felt great! Sunshine, cool breeze, I was singing out loud to great tunes, I sped up my last mile and felt like I could run more. Now, talk to me after my 20 miler next week but I'm going to revel in this feeling for a while. I run with a bottle of water in my hand. A cold, clean bottle of refreshing water. I can clearly picture myself walking with a bucket of water on my head for about a 1/4 mile from a well to the nearest village. This was when we visited Tanzania and rejoiced with the women that only had to walk that far to bring clean water to their families. What about all the women that have to walk farther and for disease-ridden water at that? Its the saddest thing. Something as easy as turning on a tap is taken for granted until you are met face to face with a woman with the same dreams for her children as myself. I'm running the Chicago Marathon Oct. 7 with World Vision and supposed to raise money to put in new wells in Kenya. I haven't even begun my fundraising and shame on me. I'm terrible at asking for people to raise money but if we didn't buy 5 bottles of water or 5 cups of coffee this week and gave $10 to this cause it would add up quickly. So, I will be starting up a webpage this week and I will shamelessly ask for donations. I have the privilege of going to Ethiopia in 10 days. I will be visiting a friend and have a chance to meet my daughter for the first time. I hope to run there too. I want to breathe in the African air and let it soak in that at this point in my life I'm capable of running and making a difference. I will cry and laugh and rejoice that God has given my family this blessing to make a difference in a little girl's life. Just one step at a time, just one dollar at a time, one well, one life. The race is 40 days away. Will you support this great cause?

Friday, August 10, 2012


Usually that word conjures up feelings of weakness or giving up. Waving the white flag of surrender can mean,'I can't handle this anymore, I'm done - you win, I lose.' I guess it matters who you are waving the white flag to. I'm currently reading a book called Dangerous Surrender by Kay Warren. I know, I started this book a while ago and referenced it before in my blogs but I'm reading it with a friend and soaking up all the goodness. "Prayers of surrender have the power to radically alter the course of our lives" I remember when we first said YES to adoption. It hit me so strongly that I fought it for a few days. But when I let go of what I thought my future would hold I had a great sense of peace. Then it was this fun announcement that we were going to have a little one around again that involved toys, Sesame Street,cute tiny clothing and everyone was excited for us. Then I remember someone at our agency telling us that adoption isn't cute! Well, we are at the 10 month mark of waiting for a court date since we first got matched with our little girl. Her 3rd birthday is on Sunday and I can't lie, it's been difficult to wait. In the third chapter of the same book, I read about being 'Gloriously Ruined'. Its what happens to you when you step out of your comfort zone. When you embrace an uncomfortable act like volunteer in your city's homeless shelter or care for the sick. I guess I've been Gloriously Ruined when we said yes to God's plan. Scott's aunt wrote us after our latest adoption update and it touched me so much. She said,'I'm praying that the Lord will become dearer in such a way that looking back you would be unwilling to give up these difficult experiences if it meant not knowing the Lord in the ways you have learned of Him through them.' What thing in your life are you afraid of embracing, saying yes to, surrendering to? Having even a little faith in a big God is enough to get you through. Who knows what you're missing out on. 2 Corinthians 12:9 - The Lord said, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness." P.S. Thanks to everyone who asks about our daughter and our case and to those who are praying. We're still waiting on paperwork to be approved on the adoption home front through a new Ethiopian procedure. Great things are happening though, and our daughter will have a birthday party today with cake with my friend who lives there.

Monday, June 4, 2012

Why I Run

I began this blog when I thought it would be good for me to write about our adoption experience. It's still alive but just not moving. I know God has not forgotten about us and with each monthly update and pictures of our precious daughter I long for her more. My newest update on Friday just made me break down and cry because I'm missing out on all the new learning experiences. But today I'm reminded of Psalm 115:1 "Not to us, O Lord, not to us but to your name be the glory, because of your love and faithfulness." So, I continue on with life. Blaire is entering her high school years and Jacob is entering his senior year! We are planning some summer fun and of course, training for the Chicago Marathon this Fall. I run with a group from our church , all running for World Vision and raising money for clean water in Kenya! So, when we meet each Saturday for our group run we listen to a team member to tell us 'why I run' and this Saturday was my turn. I was running the 6 mile loop one gorgeous, sunny, calm morning when I noticed I was running with a grin from ear to ear. I started to think about why I run and three words came to me. They all conveniently start with the letter 'M'. So here they are; MOTIVATION: I have loved running since I was a kid. I ran track and cross-country but didn't begin running races in my adult life until about 7 years ago. I started out with 5K's and 10K's then a few duathalons but a marathon was never on my radar. Scott came to me two years ago and announced he wanted to run the Chicago marathon and did in 2010. I followed him around the city and spotted him four times and at the end he saw the look on my face (it must have been that ear-to-ear silly grin) and said,'you are so running this next year'. He signed me up and motivated me to train all summer. After my marathon a friend told me that I motivated her to run her first marathon and she did this past February. Jacob is also running his first in Chicago this year and I'd like to think we had something to do with that decision. I get motivated every Saturday morning running with our church group and listening to their fabulous stories. You never know who you are motivating so keep sharing your running stories. MUSIC: I love listening to my music! If I'm not running and talking to someone I have my earphones in. I remember mile 24 in Chicago and I was ready to quit. Pressing On by Reliant K came on and got me moving again. The song Running Down A Dream by Tom Petty is great any time throughout a run. Sometimes certain songs remind me of certain people so I find myself praying for them. I listed my favorite 10 songs to run to on Saturday so here they are; Discotheque - U2, Black and Gold - Sam Sparro, The Veil - David Crowder Band, Everybody Wants You - Billy Squier, The War Inside - Switchfoot, Rebel Yell - Billy Idol, Whyyawannabringmedown - Kelly Clarkson, Pressing On - Reliant K, Runnin' Down A Dream - Tom Petty, Feel So Close - Calvin Harris MONEY: Last year I ran for ME but this year I have a better cause. Clean water for Africa. I have had the priviledge of seeing a water well go in in Tanzania and see the faces of the people who are delighting in it. A healthy convenience we take for granted. This past week in our city we had a water main pipe break. We were told our water could be contaminated. So, it didn't really change my life. I grabbed a few water bottles from my garage cupboard and was fine for a few days. At mile 4 in Chicago I remember the sea of orange World Vision shirts and grabbed a bottle of water they were handing out. I carried it throughout the whole race and now I run with a bottle of clean water to remind myself why I'm training, remind myself why I'm running, remind myself why I'm fundraising. What a great cause! My three M's: I run to motivate, I run to listen to my music, and I run to raise money for clean water in Africa!

Monday, May 7, 2012

a little thing we call Post-Its

I can't believe I'm admitting this but I need all the help I can get to remember things. I 'share a brain' by putting everything in my phone calendar so an alarm goes off to remind me to call someone, or order something and my kids use it to add to my on going grocery list. But nothing can compare to the ultimate invention of Post-Its or as I affectionately call them - Sticky Notes. My desk is swimming in them at the moment. Everything from phone numbers to websites, school reminders to 'buy a birthday card for so and so'. They are the best invention! Scott got carried away when two Christmas' ago he took my daughter last minute shopping to the Office Depot. You wouldn't think you could fill a woman's stocking with stuff from Office Depot, but he did. I got sticky notes with dogs on them, cute sayings and every color of the rainbow! Thanks...honey. But we actually ran out! My favorite use for Sticky Notes is to write verses from the Bible on them and stick them on my mirror (or car steering wheel). There's something about waking up and reading a quote from Psalms or a quote from a great author to cheer you up and start you on the right path. Deuteronomy 6:6-9 says These commandments that I give you today are to be on your hearts. Impress them on your children. Talk about them when you sit at home and when you walk along the road, when you lie down and when you get up. Tie them as symbols on your hands and bind them on your foreheads. Write them on the doorframes of your houses and on your gates. My son actually has that verse hanging on his door (among others) and my daughter has also adopted the sticky note method. What's on my mirror at the moment? Micah 6:8 But he's already made it plain how to live, what to do, what God is looking for in men and women. It's quite simple: Do what is fair and just to your neighbor, be compassionate and loyal in your love, And don't take yourself too seriously— take God seriously. (I really got all that to fit on one normal size sticky note.) Philippians 4:7 And the peace of God, which passeth all understanding, shall guard your hearts and your thoughts in Christ Jesus. And A quote from Steven Furtick - We cannot expect God to move if we are not willing to do it His way. So, as I look down at my messy desk I'm reminded I have to get to a few other things today but before I go just a piece of advice. Change up your sticky notes. They can become too familiar and therefore less effective. Also, color it up!

Monday, March 26, 2012

Gold Seals

I love getting gold seals. In third grade I got the most gold stars in a math quiz competition and won. Funny now, since math is not my strong suit. Getting gold means winning and I equate that with the red ribbon (which means first place in Canada) and I earned many in track and other competitions throughout my life. Well, today gold seal means my work is complete in the world of adoption. We are given a list of documents we have to dig up from birth certificates to financial statements. Friends write their recommendations for us, we have pictures taken of our family and we write a letter to Ethiopia telling them why we want to adopt. Then we get them notarized. There are special requirements for the notary and we finalized them last week. Today I sat in the DMV for 60 minutes and had a man approve my notaries and made my paperwork all official. Then, I copied every page four times. You'd think I would be a pro at all this since this is our second time around. We originally had to collect these documents two years ago when we initially sent off our request for a child. Paperwork is daunting for me but after my initial shock of having come through two years and find out it's all going to expire in two months, I got right to it.
I've been praying for my daughter all day. I've had a smile on my face and feel like I would do anything for her now that we have a face and name to this girl. Our updates are encouraging in the fact that things are still moving forward. Still no court date though. I would never tell anyone not to adopt because of time and paperwork.
The hard does not minimize His goodness but allows us to experience His goodness in a whole new way. - Katie Davis
God has got this and I'm so glad because I'm sure I would mess it up if it were up to me. I love when people ask about the process and love when others are anxious and even upset. It gives me a chance to give God the glory. It's ok and we will have our daughter soon enough. As for now, we have filled her room with a friend of Jacob's who needed a place to stay and I am volunteering one day of the week in a kindergarten class and I'm studying Nehemiah with a great group of ladies and training for a half marathon and full later in the year. So, I'm awarding God a gold seal for constantly reminding me of His love and His control and His goodness.
Jeremiah 32:17 - Lord and King, you have reached out your great and powerful arm. You have made the heavens and the earth. Nothing is too hard for you.

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

A Family Challenge

Week after week we are challenged at church to live our lives more fully to bring God glory but throughout this Hole in our Gospel series we were rocked by how little we care. We have been in the process of our adoption for two years. We already said Yes to God in this area but I know God wants more.
Winter Break was three weeks ago and Scott was taking Jacob to Utah with some dads and sons so Blaire and I wanted to do a Mother/Daughter trip. We decided on San Francisco and tack on a visit with a lifelong friend of mine. Scott sat us down around the kitchen table to have a family meeting before we left. He handed each of us some money and said we can spend it however we wanted except 10% had to go to someone in need. I have to tell you that this totally put a new spin on vacation. It wasn't just for ourselves but we prayed to be open-handed with our money and looked for a need.
We found the airport wasn't full of people in need. Mostly business men who were too into their cell phones. On the plane we didn't sit by anyone who looked needy. (mind you it's hard to talk to someone when you have earphones in your ears most of the trip watching a movie on the ipad). Oops! But once downtown and walking around the streets of San Francisco we definitely saw people sleeping outside and carrying their possessions on their backs. Blaire decided we should buy them some food...and decided to give half her money! I don't know if she saw the need was so great but I couldn't complain. We went to Subway and bought 10 subs and started our mission to hand them out. Our first stop was an elderly lady that we soon found out was named Barb and when Blaire handed her a sandwich her face lit up. We decided to chat with her and ask her where she was from and where she would spend the night. Blaire handed her some money as well. It was great to see her be so giving. We stopped at another woman named, Dawn,who maybe was a little younger than me. She was crouched down on the street corner where everyone gathers at the street light. I bent down to chat with her and she couldn't really look me in the eyes. When she received the sandwich she immediately started to feed her two dogs. They are the reason she can't sleep in a shelter at night but they were her 'babies'. I gave her some money and told her I hoped she would keep warm that night. The smiles were what Blaire noticed that night. We continued down the street with our sandwiches and they were all very appreciative. I remember these individuals like it was yesterday. What makes them different from me? They all have a story, they all matter! Why can't I go down to my very own city and get involved with people more often? Life gets in the way? Why is that?
I know this challenge brought me back to when I was young and headed down to Toronto to do projects like that. Except I don't want this to be 'a project'. It must be apart of my everyday life. Even more importantly I need to begin each day asking who will God place before me today? I'll leave you with the words of a great Brandon Heath Song
Give Me Your Eyes

Give me Your eyes for just one second
Give me Your eyes so I can see
Everything that I keep missing
Give me Your love for humanity

Give me Your arms for the broken hearted
The ones that are far beyond my reach?
Give me Your heart for the one's forgotten
Give me Your eyes so I can see

Sunday, March 4, 2012

Finding a blog for your needs

Do I take my blogging seriously? Not at all. That's why I want to refer you to another blog. It reminds me of Miracle on 34th Street when Kris Kringle refers the Macy's customers to shop at Gimbels for their shopping needs. I came across this blog one day while I was jumping into another conversation between two bible school friends of mine. They were talking about one's recent trip to Africa and then I found out one of them is adopting. The person they were sharing information about is Katie Davis and I immediately found a youtube interview of her. After inviting my husband to watch and later my son, I couldn't get enough information about this 22 year old who is affecting so many lives in Uganda. I know her faith, obedience and compassion will move you. She has a book called Kisses From Katie and her blog is I found her book in our local grocery store and read it in a couple of weeks. I cried, I rejoiced and I'm not sure what I'm supposed to do with it. She is very candid about her feelings of leaving her loved ones in the U.S. however, when she returned home for a short while she found her heart and life was in Uganda where she has now adopted 14 girls. Now do I have your attention? The way she writes about each of her girls and everyone she meets is inspiring and makes me want to know people more deeply.
We have finished a month long challenge at our church reading the last book I recommended by the president of World Vision. The Hole in Our Gospel. I have seen friends sponsor children, sign up for a mission trip, commit a day a week to serve in our community, volunteer for community outreaches, teens go dirty and hungry for a week to raise money for Haiti. All getting out of their comfort zone. Hopefully people will be moved to commit to adoption too. I'm amazed at what God is doing.
Matt 25:31-40
31 “When the Son of Man comes in his glory, and all the angels with him, he will sit on his glorious throne. 32 All the nations will be gathered before him, and he will separate the people one from another as a shepherd separates the sheep from the goats. 33 He will put the sheep on his right and the goats on his left.
34 “Then the King will say to those on his right, ‘Come, you who are blessed by my Father; take your inheritance, the kingdom prepared for you since the creation of the world. 35 For I was hungry and you gave me something to eat, I was thirsty and you gave me something to drink, I was a stranger and you invited me in, 36 I needed clothes and you clothed me, I was sick and you looked after me, I was in prison and you came to visit me.’
37 “Then the righteous will answer him, ‘Lord, when did we see you hungry and feed you, or thirsty and give you something to drink? 38 When did we see you a stranger and invite you in, or needing clothes and clothe you? 39 When did we see you sick or in prison and go to visit you?’

40 “The King will reply, ‘Truly I tell you, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers and sisters of mine, you did for me.’

Thursday, February 16, 2012

Not my Idea

I'm reminded today of the moment I wrestled with God about adoption. It was a time in my life that I could have done anything. I'm a stay at home mom but I could go into leadership in bible study. I had the opportunity to teach kids full time at our church. But God had other plans. I was listening to a former pastor at our church speak one Sunday and the topic was 'Jesus Isn't Quiet'. Dave Nelson said this,"You know when it's Jesus speaking to you when it's something you wouldn't have thought up on your own, and when it just doesn't go away". Wow! You know when I went back to hear the message again he didn't say that part. It stuck with me.
I just finished the book The Hole in our Gospel by Richard Sterns. It challenges readers to get up and do something. You may not know what it is but are you willing? I prayed to God that He would use my life in a mighty way. So God said,'adopt'! And I told God no! Multiple times. I came across magazine articles and pictures of friend's adopted kids and I couldn't shake it. It was everywhere. I kept this from Scott for a few days until I thought if I told him he would tell me I was crazy and put an end to it all. To my surprise, without hesitation, he said,"let's do it"!
This was insane. We were almost 40! Our kids were so settled in their routine and this would mess up room assignments in the house and vacations. I just sold all our toys and books at a garage sale that summer. We have nothing! I'm a planner. Scott and I were going to travel more, do missions together. It was so upside down! It was like I heard God audibly say,"Exactly"! Matthew 16:25-Whoever wants to save their life will lose it, but whoever loses their life for me (Jesus) will find it.
I asked God to bring our kids on board and within days Blaire brought it up, all without ever talking about adoption before. Soon Jacob was praying and agreed.
That was over two years ago. I'm challenged again to get up and do something and keep reminding God I already agreed to this adoption. What more does He want? If I'm serious about following Jesus, it's on going. Read the book The Hole in our Gospel but beware. God is on the move.

My adoption update: They are processing cases from the area my daughter is from and her region is next. I read this today. Psalm 27:14 Wait for the Lord; be strong and take heart and wait for the Lord.

Friday, February 3, 2012

Emotional Roller Coaster

I used to be a roller coaster fan!  I remember my first experience. I was coaxed by my oldest sister who ensured me I would be alright.  Because she would go on with me I put my trust in her at 8 years old....and I survived.  Even though this same very old wooden coaster called The Flyer was the place of many accidents on the Exhibition grounds in Toronto.   It has since been removed from the Ex.
I had a similar incident with my daughter when she was about 7 or 8 when we dragged her on North America's longest wooden roller coaster (in Ohio).  I kept looking back to see if she was ok while most of the time her face was buried into her Daddy's chest.  I thought for sure she would cry at the end and be upset with me for telling her she'd be ok.  The photo captured during the ride would convince anyone that we were bad parents for taking her on at such a young age.  But, Blaire is a strong girl and after she walked off the ride she smiled and said, 'let's go on it again'! 
I was reminded of these two incidents when our pastor at church spoke last night and said, 'Truth will lead you to trust every time'.  My daughter and I trusted in the truth we heard about our safety. When we read about the disciples riding in a boat with Jesus and a storm threatens their life they freak out and yell, "Teacher, do you not care that we are perishing?". Well, don't I find myself feeling this way when I hear bad news about our adoption case? A sharp turn on the roller coaster and we hear the government is putting things on hold.  "Lord, do you not care about us or our daughter?"  Then I'm reminded of the truth.  Just like the disciples had Jesus, He is watching over us and my daughter.  (heading up the exciting hill with anticipation) When I fear and doubt I'm reminded that we have a promise.  I know God has our daughter in His hands.  His ways are higher than mine.  Just when I think  I could have a court day tomorrow we dip down on the roller coaster and told now the courts are closed for three weeks.  More waiting time. 
Every twist and turn in life is the journey.  My journey is created just for me.  I have to tell myself every day to just strap myself in, sit back and throw my hands up in surrender. Enjoy the ride!

Read Luke 8:22-25 and give God your fear.

Favorite roller coasters: Millenium Force at Cedar Point, The Dragster at Cedar Point, The Beast at Kings Island, The Minebuster at Canada's Wonderland, Fire and Ice at Islands of Adventure, New York New York rooftop coaster in Vegas.
The best by far?  Adoption! and Can't wait to see the snapshot of our faces when we get to meet our daugther for the first time.

Wednesday, January 25, 2012


How many times have you prayed the prayer, 'Lord, please keep my kids safe'?   Probably more times than you can count.  Since I've sent my kids on a bus to school (which is only the last 4 years) I've gotten into the habit of praying for the kids on the front porch as I watch the bus drive away.  I feel such an overwhelming peace when I pray,'God, I know they are in your hands'.  And then I can go about my day.
I guess it's no different when I pray for my daughter every day who I haven't yet met in person.  She's 2 and although I pray for her daily, while looking through all the pictures they send me in a monthly update, I question His timing.  Why was our court date post-poned?  Why can't we bring her home now?  

On New Years day I was on the beach in Mexico watching the sun rise by myself.  I was being a little more reminiscent on this particular morning with it being a fresh new year and the sights were gorgeous.  Sunrise, ocean, beach; it all screams out God's handiwork and I was praising Him for all the good things in life.  All of a sudden my thoughts drifted to the other side of the world.  All I could see is my daughter's face and I couldn't control the tears.  I cried out to God for a word of encouragement. When can I meet her?  When will she be home with our family?  Is she safe?  I had my ipod on and scrolled through my favorite music to hit the right song.  A song that God would speak through.   I finally turned it off and sat in silence.  This is a skill and I don't have it.  Be still and know.  I bought this verse on a Christmas ornament for my whole family just 8 days prior but haven't come close to mastering it yet.  Be still, Bev.  I was, and then prompted to turn my ipod back on a while later. It was on shuffle and the song Safe by Phil Wickham came streaming into my ears.

You will be safe in His arms
You will be safe in His arms
'Cause the hands that hold the world are holding your heart
This is the promise He made
He will be with You always
When everything is falling apart
You will be safe in His arms

It's the one thing I think about most. It was just the comfort I needed. God was telling me 'I got this'!
Ps. 46:10  Be still and know that I am God. 

Thursday, January 12, 2012

Inching Forward

I'm amazed at how a little bit of good news can change my attitude.  One minute I'm  grouchy at a slow driver on the road and then I'm praising God when I have a pleasant experience checking out of a store.  My children can make me angry as they rush out the door and leave the milk, cereal and bowl out for me to clean and then they come home with a smile and a story to share about school.  Does this happen to you?  Call it what you will (and don't say female mood swings) but I like it.  It's a swing between your will and God showing up in your life. 
I emailed an update on my adoption yesterday.  There are lots of confidential information that I can't blog about at this point so I keep family in the loop. We are told that some new guidelines that have been put in place have been pushed through for some cases.  Obviously not ours or you would hear about it.  Instead of being disappointed, God has taught me to thank Him in every situation and in every bit of news.  (be it good or bad) But we are inching forward.  Someone got good news about their case and that means one more child is closer to having a new, loving family.  My daughter is in God's care and I sleep at night with that assurance.  Not sure when I began to think this way.  I truly believe it's been a process.  A wise and older family member (that could be any of them because I am the youngest, remember?) told me that they have only gone to God with the 'big' things in life.  But only now, realizing that God enjoys and invites us to 'converse in all facets of life'.  I love this realization.  This is inching forward to a closer walk with God. I guess since I've made some big moves in life I've had to go to Him with every little thing.  Don't get me wrong, it doesn't come natural.  As we get older, life gets harder but hopefully we get wiser.  Wow, that's a whole other topic.  But not for today. 

If you will humble yourselves under the mighty hand of God, in His good time He will lift you up. Let Him have ALL your worries and cares, for He is always thinking about you and watching everything that concerns you. 1 Peter 5: 6-7 TLB

Monday, January 9, 2012

A New Year, a new endeavor

I began to write this entry on January 1 but was in Mexico and couldn't get my blog up and running.  Regardless, it's still a new day, a new year and I have new goals and new endeavors.  I love fresh starts.  It brings me back to when I was a kid and I moved in grade 8 (first sign I'm Canadian, I know) and had to meet new friends.  I took up a new sport (basketball) and fit in to a new crowd. Life at 13 was good. New endeavors have been a big part of my life, especially when we moved our family to the U.S. and had to find a new house, new neighborhood, new friends and a new church.
So, why blog? I stay at home and volunteer in my kid's schools and in our church.  I'm not a linguist by any stretch of the imagination.  My sixteen year old blows me out of the water in this department.  I thought about blogging so much that my answer kept being, 'why not blog'.  Well, I have a couple reservations.  A huge one is that I've been known to be a little on the private side.  I don't let you in until we really get to know each other.  On vacation I was reading the forward of a book by Kay Warren called Dangerous Surrender.  This statement jumped out at me; 'you can impress people from a distance but to deeply influence others you must allow them to get close to you'.
Another reason is that I don't always think my thoughts are worthy of sharing.  Sounds like a lack of confidence.  I have confidence in so many areas of my life but I guess growing up as the youngest of 5 makes me sometimes want to take the 'back seat' (literally in our '78 station wagon). I was reminded of the movie Julie and Julia.  Where a young woman sets out to create a new dish by Julia Child every day for one year.  Her passion attracted many readers.  My faith in Jesus Christ has always been apart of my upbringing, and as an adult it has become an essential element to my life.  The Bible has been my lifeline and so many of my thoughts, experiences, and decisions I've made for my life reflect God's guidance.
Our newest adventure is following God's call to adopt and so this is my journey worth unfolding.  I was reading a fitness magazine and came across a life coach's book called Your Journey Matters.  So, there you have it.  We all have stories to tell.
So here's me embracing the blogging world.

2 Corinthians 5:20 We are therefore Christ's ambassadors, as though God were making his appeal through us.