Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Why should we eat like kings and queens when they have nothing to eat???

This is the question my 10 year old proposed to me tonight. Righ is out of town again this week and we just returned today from a visit to my parents. So, on the way home I decided we would stop at Papa Murphy's for a take-home pizza. Sydney simply stated, "I'm not eating dinner." I was so confused by her response, but just went inside and ordered. When we were back in the car she asked me to buy her some bread at Kroger. I said, "Okay, if you'll tell me why you want bread for dinner." Then her question, "Why should we eat like kings and queens when they have nothing?"

Now, her heart breaks for her brother and sister in Ghana. And it breaks for a one year old girl she has never met. And it breaks for the orphans living all over the world who do not have a home. In light of this, we are posing a challenge for everyone. The Rice Challenge. Here are the details. Instead of eating a "real" meal, eat rice and drink water one night. This in itself is a reminder to what the poor will be eating, IF they are eating. Put the money in a jar that you would have otherwise spent on your meal. If you feel led, send us the money you would have spent. We will be traveling to Ghana soon to bring our children home. We are going to deliver food to the different foster homes while we are there. This is one way you can help feed children in Africa. Feel free to pass this "challenge" along to anyone you know. The more people involved the better.

African orphan awareness t-shirts

They are here, our t-shirt design. We are so excited about these. We are so burdened with the orphan crisis throughout the world, but God has delicately placed our hearts in Africa. I love the way He does that! Some people are drawn to Ukraine or China or South Korea or Ghana. Together we make a complete body for Christ.

Details on the shirts:

chocolate brown

child sizes - xsmall, small, medium, large, xlarge

adult sizes - small, medium, large, xlarge, etc.

$20 each or buy 4, get 1 free

$5 shipping

Proceeds will go to help us and the Beebes, (our friends awaiting their referral from Ghana) pay for our adoptions. We will also use this money to buy supplies for the foster homes while we are in Ghana. Please pass this along to anyone you think might be interested.

Back of shirt

Front of shirt

Monday, April 26, 2010

Please pray

Our representative in Ghana will be traveling to the region where our children were born to try to schedule court there. This could be the difference in a quick court date or an extended one. Please pray diligently tonight and tomorrow for God's will, but also for mountains to be moved so we can bring our beautiful children home. We appreciate each and every one of you. Please pass this prayer request on to anyone you can think of, too.

1 Thessalonians 5:17 Pray without ceasing

1 Peter 3:12 - For the eyes of the Lord are on the righteous, and His ears are open to their prayer. But the face of the Lord is against those who do evil.

A God Meeting

Righ left for Utah today for the week. It is one of those dreaded week long trips that he dislikes so much. The whole company will be there and it is work from 7 am - 10 pm every day. As he and I were talking yesterday afternoon, we decided to look for what God could possibly want him to do. And we prayed for him to listen for God to speak to him this week. After talking with one another, he remembered the president of the company spent some time in Africa working for World Health Organization. As many of you know, most Americans are vaccinated against everything imaginable. Not so in Africa (or most parts of the world). For one thing, it isn't affordable. I read an article about a mom in Haiti after the earthquake who walked hours to have her young children vaccinated against 2 deadly, preventable diseases when a Nashville, Tennessee family took a medical mission trip. The mother fell at the teenage daughter's feet and wept, thanking her and her family endlessly for saving her children's lives. You see, disease is rampant in the midst of poverty and disaster and the mother felt these 2 vaccines could save their life. The same could hold true in Africa, which God has so carefully placed on our hearts. I listened to Righ talk yesterday about how his dream is to find a way to vaccinate the children of the world, but Africa especially. Meningitis is rampant there and that's his company's newest vaccine. He saw the connection and decided to approach this president about how this could become a reality. Guess what? At the meeting today, the president stood up with other key employees and talked about this very thing. About how he wanted to help the orphans, but in particular the children of Africa become vaccinated. There is no other explanation except that God arranged all of this. Righ plans to have one-on-one time with this guy sometime while he is there. Guess what else? The president has expressed interest to someone else about how he wants to meet Righ. God again! He continues to amaze me. Please be in prayer for God to give Righ the words He wants him to speak. And for the president's heart to be softened even more.

Thursday, April 22, 2010

The long anticipated letter

We have our approval letter in hand. Thank you, sweet Jesus, and friends for praying! It is here and it will go to Ghana. We will wait for a court date, which typically happens very quickly. Things are changing so much in Ghana adoptions right now. Please pray we will be issued a full and final adoption decree instead of a 2 year interim decree.

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Approval letter is on its way!!!

USCIS emailed us this morning and our letter, yes the one we have been waiting on, mailed out today. So thankful and full of praise! Now, we'll wait for it to arrive in Ghana and the government there will schedule a court date.

Wednesday, April 14, 2010


We went to the travel clinic in Knoxville yesterday for our typhoid and yellow fever. Since we are all traveling, we all needed them. Yellow fever is a requirement to be allowed into Ghana. Needless to say, our children were less than happy about our appointment. I think Aiden asked at least a hundred times, "Do I have to get a shot, Momma?" My answer was always, "We'll see!" Our older kids always say when they hear that answer it doesn't look good for them. Back to the story. We arrived and I realized we did not have our checkbook. Well, the clinic only accepts cash or check. By the way, yellow fever is $110 per person. And we never carry that much cash with us. However, the day before I had gone to the bank to cash a check. I couldn't remember exactly how much money we had (I had spent some at the grocery), but decided to count it. Don't you know, I had exactly $550 in my purse. The exact amount we needed to receive our vaccines. Without this money, they would not have given us those shots. God knew what He was doing, though, as always. So we got our shots and went on our merry (or unmerrily) way. :)

I forgot to tell you they told us they NEVER bill people for vaccines, but they gave us our typhoid and billed us! God was certainly in control of that appointment. Just another confirmation to us that we are following His plan!


I have been so consumed with our adoption the last few months, I feel I am neglecting so many other things. I check email countless times during the day and in between everything else I'm trying to do, my three wonderful children fall between the cracks. Before I know it, it's dinnertime, then bedtime. My house still needs to be picked up and laundry needs to be done. I feel like I haven't spent any time with my children (who I homeschool) and I have stuck them in front of the television WAY too much!!! I wonder where has my day gone? After melting down completely this afternoon, I met a friend in town and she helped me talk through everything. I realize I am trying to do too much. I need to slow down, enjoy my time with these three children before our others come home. I need to make priorities and realize our family is undergoing a major transition. Before long, I'll be a mother to 5 children under my roof. I cannot wait (oh how I cannot wait), but until that day I am vowing to take a step back from everything except my family. I need to focus on my responsibilities for them, my husband and children. The other thing I realized today is for the last couple of weeks, I have been trying to do everything ON MY OWN. Not possible! I can only do things through Jesus who gives me strength. Phillipians 4:13

I lift up my eyes to the hills. From where does my help come? My help comes from the Lord, who made heaven and earth. Psalm 121:1-2 He is my Helper, my Comforter, my Supporter! I need to put Him first and ask for His guidance.

Please continue to pray for our family and our sweet children in Africa. And I thank God for sweet friends who will pray for me and with me. Friends who will drop everything when I need something and for a husband who walked in the door tonight as I walked out just so I could be rejuvenated!

Monday, April 12, 2010

God has perfect timing

A friend just sent us the link to this video and it spoke volumes to me. Sometimes it is so hard to wait for our kids to come home and sometimes it is easier. I know everything is in God's timing and He is perfect. I do not doubt that, but knowing my children are in another country is too much to bear sometimes. Do they know I'm coming? Do they have the photo album we sent? Do they realize their lives are about to change drastically? So many unknowns. Adoption is very unpredictable most of the time. We have no idea on timeframe. We can speculate, but it is just a guess. Once our approval letter arrives in Ghana, they will schedule court. After court (I think), I'll travel by myself to file our I600 petition. The children will be able to stay with me while I'm there, but I will have to leave them behind. Pray for this because it will be one of the hardest things I will ever do. Once I'm back home, we'll wait for our petition to be approved. This could take a few weeks or months. Things are changing in Ghana right now so no one truly knows. Like I said before, though, God has perfect timing. It is not my timing, but His own. Through this, we (and everyone else) walking through it will need to find peace in Him. Rest in Him. I need to lay my children, who are ultimately His children, at His feet. I need to have faith that He will take care of them. He loves them so much more than I do, which seems unimaginable. He loves all of us like that. Something I am reminded of so much lately is these two precious children are only 2. There are 147 million orphans in the world. God is moving on so many people's hearts right now, but He needs more of us to take care of these children! Jesus said in John 14:18, "I will not leave you as orphans; I will come to you." Enjoy the video and let your hearts be touched.

(I have been trying to upload this video, but each time I am almost there my computer kicks off. So frustrated! Go to youtube and search for Amos Story-Aaron Ivey. It will be worth your time.)

As angels hold you tight, may you sleep in peace tonight, my little ones

Saturday, April 10, 2010

God Gave Me You

Today has been a difficult day for me. We have a houseful of kids, which we love, but even more today I realize my two children are missing. My sweet boy is in Africa and I'm here. You see, I am missing him even more today than usual because there is a little boy spending the weekend with us who is his age and his size (almost exactly). Everytime I look at this little boy, I see my sweet son and cannot wait for him to be here. It has been so precious to watch Aiden ride his power wheels tractor with him. I realize before long it will be his brother sitting beside him. I know everything is in God's timing and I'm praying for peace today. I am so thankful for this song, though, because it is such a reminder to me. God is always right beside me, holding me up. He will never leave us.

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

Dossier is in Ghana

We received an email and our dossier arrived in Ghana yesterday! Yay! Now, we are still waiting on our approval letter. Keep praying, we need it so they can schedule a court date. No other real updates. We are just trying to get everything in order. Our last set of vaccinations will come next week. In other news, we are having a great week. The kids and I are visiting my parents in KY. We have been camping in some gorgeous weather. It's so nice to have a mini vacation! We'll keep you posted!

Monday, April 5, 2010

Oh Special Day

Today is our sweet girl's 3rd birthday, but we will not celebrate with her today. We will wait and do that when she comes home. It is so odd to have children living halfway around the world and even odder for one of them to celebrate a birthday. You see, birthdays are a VERY big deal in our family. It is the one day each year that only belongs to that special person so we celebrate their unique person! So, today we will pray for our little one in Ghana and have a blowout party when she comes home. Please pray for her today especially, but pray for Sydney, too. Her heart is breaking because she cannot be with her sister. I can explain and reason with her all day long, but her heart still hurts. She just wants to be near her, to hug her, and tell her how special she is. It won't be long, though, and we'll be able to do all of that. :)

Update on our approval from USCIS is we're still waiting. I contacted the Memphis office and our caseworker was on vacation for several days, so our file is FINALLY on her desk. We should have it soon! Keep praying!

Other than that, we are enjoying the time we have with 3 children. Very soon, we will be a family of 7!

Saturday, April 3, 2010

Food for Thought

I read this on someone else's blog and it is so true! Enjoy!

In a greenhouse, a seed is planted.It is nurtured under the right temperature.It's given the correct amount of light, until a seed cover pops off and a tiny plant emerges....Healthy, strong and growing under the influence of the house it is in.The only problem is the greenhouse has not prepared the plant for adversity.In our community I see so many kids, my own included, that are raised in the greenhouse conditions.Perfect amount of schooling. Perfect amount of socializing. Perfect amount of church. Perfect amount of friends and only "like minded friends".We pay for our kids to go to the best violin teachers, voice teachers, piano teachers.Then they will, Lord willing, get married to someone who has been raised in a greenhouse right down the road under the same perfect conditions.They start their own greenhouse and are happy.Of course, they're happy. Their whole life has been about being comfortable in their greenhouse.My heart breaks when I think about all the trouble we go through raising our kids in the right conditions, teaching them Bible verses, making sure they know all the right truths. BUT...They never feel inclined to make a difference in the world.Sometimes it is lack of passion.Sometimes it is lack of knowledge that there is a lost and dying world right outside their greenhouse. But more often, it is our fault as parents. We are passing down our laziness. We struggle to LIVE out our faith so our kids will struggle. Yes, they will thrive in our greenhouse and most of them will pass on a great greenhouse life to their children, but we have to pass on a love for ALL of God's people. We have to be willing to stand with our children and help a lost world. We have to pass down a passion for the orphans of this world, the homeless and the widows.Yes, we have to grow strong plants for the next generation but we cannot forget the passion of Christ. Teaching our children to love and be keepers of the home is what I am about, but I also want them to be about the orphans and the needy that are NOT growing in a greenhouse. I can only teach that when I come out of the greenhouse and go with my children into the battlefield. It is all in vain if we raise up an army and our army is never sent to the battlefield but only to the greenhouse next door.