Deuteronomy 4:35

You have been shown these things that you might know the Lord is God besides him there is no other.

Monday, November 29, 2010


Nothing makes me happier than this..

Because it means this...

So excited to begin our holiday weekend on Wednesday night with our youth ministry kids at the house. Nothing makes me happier than shovin' as many of 'em in my house as I can. We were sitting in every corner of every room. DH challenged us with a message about thankfulness from the Word and I fed 'em hundreds of pancakes. Love this life God has given me to live. Love havin' my house filled to the brim with our sheep! Oh that the Lord should bless me so abundantly. So very thankful to know Him as Savior and to be livin' this life in service to Him!!

Sunday, November 28, 2010

Happy Birthday DH

That was then...

(Celebrating his 17th birthday together! We just started dating.)

This is now..

(Celebrating his 37th birthday together!)

Some things never change..Notice both cakes are chocolate. Still others do...Also notice one picture has my dear man smiling with a head of hair and one with a head of glare. :)

So very blessed to have spent more years of my life with this man than I have without him! What an incredible father and husband you are.. I am blessed beyond words to be able to call you mine! Happy Birthday-you are my best friend and one of the most selfless people I know! You are constantly sacrificing for us. I never have to carry in my own groceries, rarely have to get my own gas, don't touch the laundry, or ever have to take out the trash. You are always serving me! Love ya Baby!

Friday, November 26, 2010

Grandpa Said It

So while she is never-ever far from my mind..yesterday Grandpa said it. We were sitting around the table after gorging ourselves with food and he said..I wonder what our little girl is doing now. Wonder..The very activity that drives me to my knees in prayer for my Jillian. While I sit here warm, loved, and fully fed..Where is she? What is she doing? Has she been fed today? Does she know love? Does she feel joy today? It is so very painful waiting to bring her home most days. It is almost like a peice of my heart is missing..leaving an exposed place so raw that nothing seems to distract me from it. Nothing seems as it should be without her sitting around our table. How is it that this love for a little one I didn't even know or couldn't have even imagined has formed so deeply? God is the author of love and because I have chosen to give Him my heart and am Him following in His will on this road, He is allowing me to experience more love for this little one than I could have ever dreamed. Despite the pain and trials..Oh, I wouldn't have missed this journey for the world. So very blessed and thankful that God is allowing me to become a mother again and that I am being given the chance to bring this little one home. Can't wait to get to you my dear, beautiful girl. I love you so.

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Choruses of Thanksgiving

Thanks to the Lord for the miraculous way that He is providing funds to bring our Jillian home through you. I got our first update today from Lifesong and it has had me weeping all day. I am so humbled by all of the beautiful people who are giving to our account, buying t-shirts, praying us on, and walking this life with us! I am blessed beyond measure by your love and friendship! We have sold 52 shirts and received $1,255.00 in donations. PRAISE BE TO GOD!! We are forever grateful for the sacrifices of many who are helping bring this precious girl home to us!

We love you so Jillian. I think of you everyday and I can't wait to share this story-the story of our journey to you-with you someday. I imagine praying with you before bed each night, hearing you giggle, and reading the Bible together. I am desperate to hold you baby girl. Your sister and I pray for you every night. Praying my sweet baby that God is opening your heart to receive our love. Oh how we love you, Jill! Oh How So Many Love You!

Sunday, November 21, 2010

The Man At The Door

We are cleaning out the basement. Living in a parsonage, there are many treasures in the basement that have been deposited there over the years. Left by others who have stayed here for a time and then moved on. So it is with the old table we inherited in the laundry room. It has been chewed on by a dog who undoubtedly called this house home before we did. It has seen better days. It is wobbly, chewed, missing a handle-definitely trash. Until now, we have kept it in the laundry room as a reminder of the history of this place. A reminder of the many God has used for His name here before us.

Well, it was time to part with the old table. We set it out on the curb tonight knowing that someone would come along to claim it.

And claim it they did...

About 7:00 there was a man at the door. A man who obviously lives a life different from mine. His clothes were ragged. He was walking. He spoke with a slow drawl. He was inquiring about the table. "Did we want it?" he asked. "No, we no longer need it," we replied. He then shared how very much he needed it. I noticed he was walking and didn't have a car so I asked how he intended to get it home. He said he planned on carrying it home by himself and that it was just about five blocks. This table was work for dh and I to carry to the curb so I knew there was no way! I offered dh's truck and services to drive this man home with his treasure. He was reluctant to accept our help insisting he could get it on his own not wanting to bother us. After trying to lift it, he accepted help and dh drove this man and his new treasure to his home right here in our neighborhood.

This interaction reminds me that there are so many living right here under my nose, beside my house, across the streets who need. Their needs are physical, emotional, and spiritual. Needs that I ignore so many times. Needs that I see and do nothing about! Praying tonight that God continues to bring people to my door and that He continues to open my eyes to all the needs around me. AND that I will respond to those needs in a way worthy of one who claims to follow the Lord.

Saturday, November 20, 2010


It is that time of year again. Thanksgiving feast day at my darling kiddo's school complete with a very long musical program, delicious homemade meal,and chapel service.:) So thankful for this wonderful little place that is our school. A wonderful, God filled ministry so boldly representing the Lord in this culture that has tried to squeeze God out. Nothing like a kindergarten class of five year old smiling faces reciting the entire chapter of Psalm 100 from memory to bring this momma to tears. God is beginning to be written all over these precious children's heart because of the faithful, beautiful people who serve the Lord so sacrificially by teaching at this small school. So very blessed to be a part of it!

Especially when....

We win!! Each year there is a costume contest at the feast. All the classes dress up in Thanksgiving related garb and go up against each other for the Most Original or Most Life Like award! We love us some winnin' at our house, so we devise a plan each year. We usually try to go for the most original and this year WE WON!! We put a spin on the traditional pilgrim costume by adding a cardboard Mayflower around her middle for her to "arrive" in. See the first place ribbon?

Just for laughs Daddy's idea (which we did not pursue) was to tape a rock to her back side and say she is a pilgrim landing on Plymouth Rock. LOL!! Gotta love that man! He slept through most of our costume photo session in the livingroom. Darling kiddo loves to capture his naps on film so I just had to include one.

Hope your holidays are blessed!

Wednesday, November 17, 2010


I wish you could have been there. My words won't do it justice.

Tonight walking out of the youth room heading to serve dinner to my teens..there he is in the hallway. The quiet boy who is experiencing trials of his own so numerous now that my heart has broken for him and I have cried out in prayer on his behalf. The young man who has slowly shown me his heart and shared himself little by little. The young man I have come to love oh so much. There he is standing alone looking as if he is on a mission of some kind. It isn't too uncommon for him to be alone so as I do I smile my big smile and greet him by name. He slowly hands me a five dollar bill. I ask-What is this for? He says..It's for Jillian. I want you to have it. He wants me to have it. His five dollars to bring my baby home. Instantly tears well up in my eyes and I hug this boy who has touched my heart so deeply by this incredible, selfless act of kindness and generosity. He will probably never know what it means to this momma that he was willing to share his $5.00. Such a special boy and such a sweet memory that I will forever treasure. I truly experienced the touch of the Father tonight my friends through this young man who willingly gave of himself for someone he doesn't even know, an orphan half way across the world who because of his $5.00 will be able to join a family, my family.

Tonight I am treasuring this thing in my heart. God is so good to bring so many in my life who continue to bless me beyond measure!

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Garage Feast

So lucky to live in this community where Christ is alive and so many are working to reach youth for His name right here in this city. We were blessed to be able to be a part of our local Youth For Christ's garage feast last night. Is there anything better than having your home filled with 100+ (yes that's 100+!!!) teenagers eating turkey and hanging out in every nook and cranny? I don't think so and this wonderful lady agrees with me...

I think that she has been hosting this get together for 6 years now and it just keeps growing. Kids everywhere.....

You know I just love to feed kids. There is just something so special to this momma about providing food for somebody that just says you love and care about 'em. Strange I know, but I love sharing a meal in the name of the Lord. It's a beautiful thing, but even more beautiful are all the adults who came out to reach out in love to these kids by serving 'em up some turkey! BEAUTIFUL!! DELICIOUS!

So blessed to be able to support this ministry in prayer and to be able to watch all that they are doing in the name of the Lord in our community. Praise God!

Sunday, November 14, 2010

So Many...

Jill I just want you to know that there is not a shortage of people here who are dyin' to love on you. THERE ARE SO MANY!! One of my favorite things about being in the body of Christ is that there are many people who are complete strangers to you in one moment who you then turn around and love like family in the next. I can't wait for you to experience this for yourself my baby girl! God has blessed us beyond measure with so many of these dear people and they love you already sweet, precious one. What a huge, gigantic blessing they are to me and such an encouragement while I wait to hold you myself!!!

I got a beautiful text from one of my youth this week that said she has been dreaming of you at night and you are beautiful! Dreaming of you, loving you, praying for you from across the world. So many people Jill. So many youth spending their own money to buy a shirt to help get you to us.

So many people who you are affecting and you don't even know them yet. Can you imagine what God can do with your life my dear one? I am praying that God is working in your little heart even now to prepare it to accept His Love from us. Your creator loved and cared about you so much that He planned for you to be placed here with us and all these many, precious believers in the body of Christ who love you enough to be a part of your story. A story that God had planned out from the beginning of time. I feel so overwhelmed to think that God has allowed me to be a part of your story and to raise you to know Him. Praying for you my little one..Knowing God's timing and hand are all over this journey..Longing to hold you though, but getting my strength to run this race from Him who set me on this path.

Saturday, November 13, 2010


Fundraising.. That has pretty much been our focus this entire week.

We have gotten the t-shirt sales up and going. It took me many hours to create and alter html codes, call the printer, and get things worked out. (I AM NOT TECHNICAL AND IF YOU WOULD HAVE TOLD ME I WOULD BE DOING ANY OF THIS I WOULD HAVE CALLED YOU CRAZY!!) Well, we've sold only ten this week and I'm down right discouraged.

The rest of the week, I spent time writing, copying, addressing, and mailing out 200+ letters to our friends and family explaining the opportunity Lifesong for orphans has given us to raise funds through them.

I have to tell you that we are oh so lucky because so many of our bloggy friends have to fundraise from the very beginning. They have to experience what we are just beginning to experience as soon as they begin to take this journey. Oh how I pray for these families. We really can't even begin to understand that as we were given a much easier road to travel on when we received an unbelievable donation to our account just a week into this journey. (Remember that? Read about it here.)

I tell you though I know that this money issue is probably the number one thing keeping most people from saying yes to adoption and I just can't help but think how tragic that is. Tragic-but I understand. The uncertainty at times is just overwhelming. Overwhelming, but an incredible opportunity for God to work and oh God is working here friends. I can't forget what He has done to bring our daughter home already...a $15,000 dollar donation from strangers, a $10 donation from a former student, a $100 dollar donation from dear friends, youth spending their own money on t-shirts to help support us, an opportunity to earn extra income here and there, scrimping/saving and having the money you need even when it seems impossible. God is so good and He is providing in His time every-single-step-of-the-way. Without a doubt His hand is all over this journey and I can't believe that we are even walking this road.

We are so blessed to be able to add this little face to our family. It is incredible to me that you can love someone so much that you don't even know. How I love you my beautiful girl and oh how I can't wait to see you, know you, and put hair bows in your hair. LOL! God will get us all we need to get to you baby girl! Momma will not doubt. I will hold tight to the promise of 1 Thessalonians 5:24 The one who calls you is faithful and He will do it!

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Too Much in My Heart Today

So many posts and thoughts swirling in my head. I had a tough day without my Jillian to hold yesterday. Some days are just like that for me. I want her here so desperately. Some days I am lost in the grief of waiting and the uncertainty of it all. Then just like God does, He provides just what I need at just the right time. I sat down to type a post and came across the post here called They Didn't Ask For Reassignment. (It is an incredible post. I hope you check it out for yourself!) Now I am faithfully digging deep in God's word for comfort and reassurance just like the post reminded me. Praise the Lord for the encouragement and reminders He provides me through others.

Monday, November 8, 2010

T-Shirts Are READY!!

The T-Shirt design is hot off the presses and ready to order. We have three colors-military green, ice grey, and aqua sky. They are all $20.00 each. YOUTH SIZES ARE NOW AVAILABLE FOR $15.00. If you need shipping,it will be $3.00 more. The design includes over fifty names of children who have been adopted from China and brought into their forever families for good. In the middle is the verse John 14:18, I will not leave you as orphans; I will come to you. I am so super excited to start sporting this shirt! Thank you! Thank you! Thank you, in advance for all of your support! We could not be bringing our girl home without you. You are a huge part of our story and I am blessed by you!

PS I have never set up a store before, nor would I ever have dreamed I would. Hope it works. If you have any suggestions or difficulties, let me know by email!

Saturday, November 6, 2010

Reflections from this Side of the Flat Iron

So I resisted as long as I could, but I finally gave in and bought one of these things.

Here's my story..

The tween years have brought about many changes in our house in recent months. It's like riding a roller coaster in the dark that never stops and never gives you a glimpse of where you are going. One of the recent twists of this coaster has been curly hair. Darling kiddo's hair was straight as a board, then bam it slowly started to get curly. The curls are beautiful! If she just wouldn't fight them, her hair would be so easy. Scrunch and go. Easy and oh so cute. One problem-She hates her hair curly. She tries to brush the curls out leaving it a poofy mess. Then she is unhappy and never leaves the house without a pony tail. Sigh..Daddy says with much wisdom, "Is there any teenage girl who likes her hair?" To which I reply, "Well, no."

Then it happened. We went to get a hair cut and the precious hair dresser who has been trimming darling kiddos lovely locks since she was a toddler says.."Do you want me to straighten it?" A look of exuberance comes over darling kiddo and her whole demeanor changes. She was ecstatic and loved it!!

And so into our lives enters the flat iron. I have resisted it as long as I could because I don't want to make her appearance a big deal. I don't want her to base her feelings of worth on whether or not her hair is straight, but it made her so happy that I broke down and bought the thing requiring her to pay only half. So not aloud, but definitely in my mind there is this part of me complaining about the amount of prep time this is going to add to our routine which is already too tight as it is. I begin to get a bad attitude about having to do this and I begin to have second thoughts about the purchase. Then it happened..Day two of flat ironing I realized it. A half an hour of one on one time in the bathroom flat ironing equals thirty more minutes a day I have to connect with and build into my girl. Day three and beyond of this flat iron saga have brought precious conversation about life, faith, marriage, purity, and so much more. I am only sorry that I wasted day one and two with such a lousy attitude. Sometimes you just need a flat iron to encourage a little bit of intentional bonding.

It gives me an idea. Maybe I should write a book of devos for moms and daughters to do while they are flat ironing. Hey take the opportunity whenever you have it. Embrace every moment that you get to spend together as divine time set aside by God to pass your faith along to your children. Will I ever learn this lesson this side of eternity? Doing my best to embrace it and be the best mom I can be..Take sometime to enjoy being a mom this weekend! Hope it's a good one for you.

Thursday, November 4, 2010

Making this House Jill's Home

We recently spent an entire weekend moving and painting. You see, we are working to make this house Jill's home. We have made room for her in our hearts and now we are making physical space in our home that she can call her own. We are having so much fun-painting, buying used furniture to revamp, and choosing decor.

It is a family affair around here.

What a double blessing to be preparing for this precious new daughter with my dear husband and darling kiddo by my side.

Jill we are all so excited to be adding you to our family. Know that we are praying over every detail-even paint color. We love you so precious, sweet girl. You are so loved and so wanted. One day when you read this, I hope that you can see God's hand over your entire journey and feel as blessed as we do to have you as a part of this family. What a divine plan God has for your life my dear child! I feel so lucky to be your momma. I pray that you sense that and that someone there is lovin on you until I can get there. Mommy's coming dear one. Counting the Days.

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

The Long Awaited Has Arrived

Our last piece-yes last piece-of paper for our dossier has arrived. I can't believe it is finally here!! My dh will be headed with the 50+ pieces of paper tomorrow to be notarized by the Sec. of State. Please pray for my dear man as he gets a bit stressed out in new situations and he is having to go it all alone tomorrow because I have meetings at work. Hopefully he will drop off the papers in the morning and pick them up after lunch! Then, this chapter will be over..The before dossier portion of this journey will come to an end. The paperwork load should lighten significantly after this. (I hope so anyway!) China is officially shut down for several weeks in November due to a holiday and some sort of games. Please pray that doesn't slow us down too much. We are one step closer to holding that sweet girl in our arms. Praying so desperately God will expedite the wait and get her to us ASAP!

P.S. I am going to be needing a new use for the filing system that has been storing these papers for the last five months. Anybody out there want to start their own dossier? Did you know China has 2000+ waiting children a month who need a forever family. Could it be yours? My filing system is available.

Monday, November 1, 2010

Still Waiting

Sometimes things just don't go as you have planned. I had planned to have everything sent to China long before now. When I started this process, I thought there was no way it would take 6 months to get our dossier ready..Well, it's been five and I am still waiting on one piece of paper. So much is out of my control and all the while that beautiful face remains alone without a momma to rock her at night half way across the world! I can't help asking God why the waiting. Inside I know that he is in control, but more than anything I want our daughter here. Needing some prayers for that last piece of paper which was resent on Friday, Oct. 29 because it never showed up the first time it was sent. If it's not here by Thursday, I am driving the six hours to the office to get it myself. What is twelve hours in a car if it means I am closer to bringing my girl home? Please pray!!