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3 Months


Today marks 3 months of being on the “official” waitlist. We don’t know our “official” number on the list, but“unofficially” we’re 17th in line for a boy.

Some months our agency processes many referrals (in October, there were 8 infant boys referred to families) and other months are much more quiet (the past two months, barely any).

We would really appreciate your prayers, and here are some specific ways that you can join us in prayer:

For Ethiopia:

  • Pray for the many, many orphans in Ethiopia; pray that they will be united to loving families
  • Pray that God would raise up more people to adopt from this beautiful country
  • Pray for the protection of the children; pray that they would have someone to love and care for them while they wait for their "forever families"
For Our Agency:

  • There are many children stuck in the system right now; pray that our agency would be able to obtain the necessary paperwork so that these children can be referred to the waiting families
  • Pray that the court process would go smoothly for families; pray that the adoptions would be finalized and the children would be able to go home to their families
  • Pray for referrals- more children going to more families!
  • Pray that America World would continue to find favor with the Ethiopian government and that God would bless their efforts in Ethiopia
For Us:

  • Pray that the Lord would bless and multiply our ministry to orphans
  • Pray that Christ’s love for the fatherless would be dwelling within us
  • Pray that we would honor God by trusting and resting in him during this time of waiting
  • Pray that God himself would be our highest joy and satisfaction
  • Pray that we would receive our referral soon!


The Incarnation

I found this book on our shelf tonight and decided to start reading it. It's called Come, Thou Long-Expected Jesus, published by Crossway. There are several short sections by various authors that can be read each day to prepare for Christmas. I haven't read very much of it, but based on what I have read, I'd definitely recommend it.  

The following quote is from today's reading by J.I. Packer; it's a little long, but really good. 
How are we to think of the incarnation: The New Testament does not encourage us to puzzle our heads over the physical and psychological problems that it raises, but to worship God for the love that was shown in it. For it was a great act of condescension and self-humbling. "He, Who had always been God by nature," writes Paul, "did not cling to His prerogatives as God's equal, but stripped Himself of all privilege by consenting to be a slave by nature and being born as mortal man. And, having become man, He humbled Himself by living a life of utter obedience, even to the extent of dying, and the death he died was the death of a common criminal" (Phil. 2:6, PHILLIPS). And all this was for our salvation. 
The key text in the New Testament for interpreting the incarnation is not, therefore, the bare statement in John 1:14, "the Word became flesh and made his dwelling among us," but rather the more comprehensive statement of 2 Corinthians 8:9, "you know the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, that though he was rich, yet for your sakes he became poor, so that you through his poverty might become rich." Here is stated, not the fact of the incarnation only, but also its meaning; the taking of manhood by the Son is set before us in a way that shows us how we should set it before ourselves and ever view it- not simply as a marvel of nature, but rather as a wonder of grace. 
For the Son of God to empty himself and become poor meant a laying aside of glory; a voluntary restraint of power; an acceptance of hardship, isolation, ill-treatment, malice, and misunderstanding; finally, a death that involved such agony- spiritual, even more than physical- that his mind nearly broke under the prospect of it. It meant love to the uttermost for unlovely men, who "through his poverty, might become rich." This Christmas message is that there is hope for a ruined humanity- hope for pardon, hope of peace with God, hope of glory- because at the Father's will Jesus Christ became poor and was born in a stable so that thirty years later he might hang on a cross. It is the most wonderful message that the world has ever heard, or will hear. 
We talk glibly of the "Christmas spirit," rarely meaning more by this than sentimental jollity on a family basis. But what we have said makes it clear that the phrase should in fact carry a tremendous weight of meaning. It ought to mean the reproducing in human lives of the temper of him who for our sakes became poor at the first Christmas. And the Christmas spirit itself ought to be the mark of every Christian all the year round. 


Christmas Tree

Last Saturday was the perfect day to get our tree. We've been doing the same thing for the past several years, and now it's become a tradition that we both look forward to each year. Here's a sneak peek:

First, we head over to Cosley Zoo, which is kind of like a rescue center for local wildlife.

Normally, we go and get a cup of hot chocolate when we first get there, but in the past years they've raised their prices (first it was free, then $.50, then $.75). Now, I know $.75 isn't a lot, but come on, it used to be free! We weren't willing to go along with this, so we went without the hot chocolate this year.

After we get our hot chocolate (we'll have to think of something to replace this tradition in the coming years), we go and look at the animals (mainly the owls and hawks).

Then, we walk around and try to find the perfect tree in our price range... not an easy thing to do! After that, we strap it to the truck and bring it home.

Once we get home, we set up the tree, have a nice dinner, then spend time decorating the tree together while listening to Christmas music in the background. After the tree is decorated, we make cookies and homemade frosting.

I don't know what it is about traditions, but I love having them! And, I look forward to starting even more once we have our little ones home with us!


Last Chance T-Shirts

We'd like to close out our t-shirt fundraiser, so if you'd like to order an adoption t-shirt, please order in the next week. Click on the "T-Shirt Fundraiser" link above to place your order.   


Someone Made My Day...

There was no name on the package, so I can't even thank the sweet person who blessed my day and my entire Christmas season by leaving this special basket at my front door yesterday. I really can't describe how thankful I am or how meaningful this was to me. And since I can't thank the person or people involved in this, I'll just have to thank the Lord and pray that he gives this person an added blessing in their giving.

It's an advent basket with gifts to open each day from now until Christmas. I can't even imagine what's inside, and I can't wait to find out... and I think Don's just as excited about it as I am!

The first gift from today was an advent calendar. Isn't it beautiful? I can't wait to hang it in the house and use it to count down the days! It's going to be special to us this year, but I'm sure it's going to be even more fun to use with our children some day!

Each day has a verse tucked inside of it to help us rejoice in the birth of Christ this season. I'm so thankful for this gift and pray that God truly does use it to help us rejoice in Him this Christmas!