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Why Ethiopia

This video comes from Together for Adoption. Great site. Great video.


Adopted for Life

First of all, let me just say that I LOVE this book. It wouldn't be an exaggeration to say that I've read it 5-6 times over the past year... I tend to pick it up every time I get a little frustrated with this whole process and need some solid, Biblical encouragement.  It also wouldn't be an exaggeration to say that this book played a powerful role in helping us decide to begin the adoption process. I could preface this by giving a lot of personal endorsements as to why it's so good, but I think I'll let this quote speak for itself.
The gospel of Jesus Christ means our families and churches ought to be at the forefront of the adoption of orphans close to home and around the world. As we become more attuned to the gospel, we'll have more of a burden for orphans. As we become more adoption-friendly, we'll be better able to understand the gospel.  I want to call us all to consider how encouraging adoption- whether we adopt or whether we help others adopt- can help us peer into the ancient mystery of our faith in Christ...
It is one thing when the culture doesn't "get" adoption. What else could one expect when all of life is seen as the quest of "selfish genes" for survival? It is one thing when the culture doesn't "get" adoption and so speaks of buying a cat as "adopting" a pet. But when those who follow Christ think the same way, we betray that we miss something crucial about our own salvation. 
Adoption is not just about couples who want children- or who want more children. Adoption is about an entire culture within our churches, a culture that sees adoption as part of our Great Commission mandate and as a sign of the gospel itself. 
... what would it mean if our churches and families were known as the people who adopt babies- and toddlers, and children, and teenagers. What if we as Christians were known, once again, as the people who take in orphans and make of them beloved sons and daughters?
When we adopt- and when we encourage a culture of adoption in our churches and communities- we're picturing something that's true about our God. We, like Jesus, see what our Father is doing and do likewise (John 5:19). And what our Father is doing, it turns out, is fighting for orphans, making them sons and daughters.  


Would you allow these people to adopt?

For our dossier, we have to send some pictures of the two of us together, and since we haven't had pictures taken together in about 8 years, our friend Brian came over and took a few for us. It was a rainy day, so he came up with some creative ideas inside our house. Here are some of my favorites:


Please, Buy This Music

We're always on the look out for new music and in past years have really enjoyed a lot of the groups that are bringing back some of the old hymns (Indelible Grace, Red Mountain Church, etc). When I was on iTunes recently, looking at new music from Sojourn, I saw a band called the Shelly Moore Band. I listened to the preview of a c.d. called A Hymn Project and was immediately hooked... the lyrics are great and the sound is amazing as well. You can preview the whole thing on iTunes or listen on their website. On iTunes, the c.d. is only around $6- you can't beat that! I rarely get this excited about any music, but this really is that good- you really need to buy the whole c.d.- have I said "really" enough? You won't be disappointed!

Here are some of the lyrics from one of the songs:

Jesus I am resting, resting
In the Joy of what Thou art;
I am finding out the greatness
Of Thy loving heart.
Thou hast bid me gaze upon Thee,
And Thy beauty fills my soul,
For by Thy transforming power
Thou hast made me whole.

Simply trusting Thee, Lord Jesus,
I behold Thee as Thou art,
And Thy love, so pure, so changeless,
Satisfies my heart;
Satisfies its deepest longings,
Meets supplies its every need,
Compasseth me round with blessings;
Thine is love indeed


More Family Time

As I said in our last post, we enjoyed a lot of quality time with our families over the past week. Just this past weekend, we were able to go up to Michigan to spend time celebrating my mom's birthday. We had a great meal (thanks, Chad and Amy!) and lots of fun playing games outside and sitting by the campfire. We love you all and wish we could spend more time together! Here's the one good shot I got with my mom and sisters...


Favorite Things: Family

We love spending time with our families, and this week is full of family celebrations! Don's youngest sister, Sarah, graduated from Wheaton college, and later this week we're celebrating a big birthday for my mom (though I won't publicly announce which one!).

Here are some pictures from our time together, first from Sarah's graduation:

This is a picture of Don's two sisters, Sarah and Ashley- with Ashley's two little girls. My sister-in-law (Rachel) and I watched Ashley's girls during graduation... I think we got the best deal- undivided time with these little sweeties is hard to come byWe did have two diaper explosions in less than an hour... but that's another story. 

I always try to take advantage of an opportunity for us to get a picture together. We never take good pictures though, so we'll just move right along...

This is a picture with my sister-in-laws from the party afterwards. Cute girls! Them, not me... 

Don, his brother (Joe), and Sarah at the after-graduation party. 


Mother's Day- a little late

I meant to post this on Sunday, but I got a little self-conscious... what's prompting me to post it tonight, however, is the desire that God receive all of the glory for the work He has done in our lives over the past years. Greater than my desire for self-protection, is my desire that all people would know that God is good and does good- in times of sorrow and in times of rejoicing!

I can honestly say that these past years have been, at the same time, the most painful and the most precious. Now that we’ve begun the adoption process, there is much less pain with our infertility… but we don’t have to go back very far to remember the intense grieving and loss that we’ve gone through. Even more significant though than the feelings of loss, was the way we experienced the nearness of the Lord and the tender mercy that He showed to us during that time.

Responding to Trials

Recently, I came across an old email that Don sent me a couple of years ago. We were in the midst of our struggle with infertility, and I was in need of some encouragement. I suppose Mother's Day has me thinking about all of this again, and even though the pain doesn't feel as "stinging" as it did then, I still appreciate these words just as much today!


Heaven: A World of Love

One of my favorite books on heaven is called Heaven: A World of Love by Jonathan Edwards (1703-1758). It’s a short book that was adapted from one of Edwards’s sermons. Here’s an excerpt from the first chapter:
The God of love himself dwells in heaven. Heaven is the palace or presence-chamber of the high and holy One, whose name is love, and who is both the cause and source of all holy love. . . . And this renders heaven a world of love; for God is the fountain of love, as the sun is the fountain of light. And therefore the glorious presence of God in heaven, fills heaven with love, as the sun, placed in the midst of the visible heavens in a clear day, fills the world with light. The apostle tells us that "God is love;" and therefore, seeing he is an infinite being, it follows that he is an infinite fountain of love. Seeing he is an all-sufficient being, it follows that he is a full and over-flowing, and inexhaustible fountain of love. And in that he is an unchangeable and eternal being, he is an unchangeable and eternal fountain of love.



Here is one of the designs that we are going to use for our adoption t-shirt fundraiser. Isn't it great? My friend, Anne, at www.givestudio.com designed it for us. She has a lot of really cool products that you should definitely check out! Anne was the first one to encourage me to run in the 5/3 Riverbank Run (25k) back in college. We enjoyed many long and frosty runs together during those training days! Thank you, Anne, for using your talent to help us with our adoption! 

We haven't had the shirts printed yet, and we haven't officially begun raising funds, but we'll let you know when we do!