Thursday, February 19, 2009

Maybe you can Help...

Without going into detail, we have been learning a little more about the situation in Liberia, and some specifics as to why adoptions have been halted. While I am so sad not that our hands are tied as to moving forward to bring Kelvin and Hawa home, I am SO GLAD that things are being restructured. This truly is the best thing for agencies operating there, birth families, adoptive families, and for the children. Agencies have been accused of things they were innocent of, adoptive families have made poor choices to take things into their own hands regarding their adoptions, and governmental officials have tried to benefit monetarily. These things need to stop if adoptions are to continue at all. And they must continue! We desire to see our countries working together to find healthy, committed parents to adopt and love the children who are in desperate need of families. If the system tries to continue on in the state it's in, it sounds like it will cease to function at all.

Obviously, we desire that this happen QUICKLY! We are asking that adoptions that are already in progress be allowed to continue, as we work with the new requirements that may be asked of us.

It is time, we have been told, to seek the help of our Congressmen and women, in trying to implore quick action, and a measure of accountability on the matter of adoptions in Liberia. We have written our Congresswoman, and would ask that if you are willing to do the same, on our behalf, that you contact us via e-mail, and we will give you some help in knowing what to ask for by sending you a sample letter and addresses to write. Gratefully, our district is represented by Michelle Bachmann, a godly woman who loves the Lord and boldly stands for the things that we hold dear. You can e-mail her office, as well as your own Representative.

There will be some families specifically seeking the Lord each week on behalf of the children who have been matched with familes, but can't come home. If you desire to pray for them by name, please e-mail me, and I can get you a list of the ones I know of. We desire to see God move to release these kids into their families' arms. God can move hearts and change minds, so we trust that he can and will do that within the government officials that are in position to make these changes.

Sunday, February 15, 2009

Beware; These resources may open your eyes... and your Heart!

If you have a moment, please watch these...

Some excellent resources for learning about God's heart for the fatherless, the orphan, and the widow;

Fields of the Fatherless - Tom C. Davis

Red Letters - Tom C. Davis

Adoption as a Ministry; Adoption as a Blessing - Gardner

The Strength of Mercy - Beazely

The Treasure Principle - Alcorn

I have the top 3 if anyone wants to borrow them... library may have them... ALL are worth owning!


Ways to learn about & help Kelvin and Hawa's orphanage directly:

Paperwork and Thank You's...

Yesterday we were thankful to receive our US Citizenship & Immigration approval document. ( Yeah! )

While I am very glad to have this final US portion of the adoption process finished, I don't feel like I thought I would. I thought we would get this in the mail, freak out a little... jump up and down, act giddy, and be ecstatic. Since the adoption suspension occurred, this all-important piece of paper became less of a "WOW" moment. (It is still very important, and and we are thankful for the processing to have gone smoothly and quickly.) It's just that if the country were still open, it's at this point that we would have sent our dossier to Liberia, the kids would have been told about us & would have begun anticipating their new family, and the Liberia paperwork would have been underway. There would have been a countdown!

Now, of course, this paper will just sit until the policies are re-written in Liberia, or until it expires. OR- MAYBE GOD WILL DO CRAZY-COOL THINGS AND MAKE A WAY WHERE THERE IS NO WAY... and this paper will be used to bring our children home SOON. And by "SOON", I'm asking for SOOOOOOOOOOOOOON! :) Please pray that God moves and acts on the behalf of these many children; those who will be adopted, and those who will be raised in orphanages by the support of people who care for their cause.

We are also incredibly thankful for the body of Christ. And when I say that, I mean our godly families, our faithful accountability groups, our dear friends, and our local church body as well! Since hearing the country suspended adoptions, SO many people have expressed that they are praying for us, and for Kelvin and Hawa... for ALL the children that are struggling to hang on to life and hope in Liberia. We are so grateful!!! We have been lifted in prayer by so many of you. Even if I didn't KNOW it as a fact, I would suspect it, because we have peace beyond understanding right now. We have real joy and are not defeated or dismayed! That is only because God is merciful and good, and because you have interceded on our behalf.


It could be a long wait. It could. But I sense that God is gonna do something amazing. I place my hope in him, and that hope does not disappoint, even if I don't "get my way".

Rom 5:3-5
Therefore, having been justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ, through whom also we have access by faith into this grace in which we stand, and rejoice in hope of the glory of God.
And not only that, but we also glory in tribulations, knowing that tribulation produces perseverance; and perseverance, character; and character, hope.

Now hope does not disappoint, because the love of God has been poured out in our hearts by the Holy Spirit who was given to us.

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Quick update

No real changes in Liberia's announcement to suspend adoptions. Our agency coordinator for Liberia, along with another agency coordinator, will be petitioning the government to allow "in-process" adoptions to continue while they revise the adoption practices. They will be offering their help to assist the commitee who will be dealing with all of this. Both ladies will be in Liberia shortly and meeting personally with the decision-makers. We do not have any reason to think that we will be allowed to move forward any time soon, but we are praying for that anyway!!

We have been asked to send in all of our remaining dossier documents... so our side of things is pretty much done at this point. None of the rest is up to us...(as if ANY of this process has been in our hands! :) But it feels good to know that we've done all we can. Angel will personally deliver these things to Liberia into the correct hands for the time when adoptions resume.

We have also sent in the photo albums and letters to the kids, so that when the time is right, the staff of the orphanage can give those to them, and read them their letters from us. I really can't say when this might happen, most likely not for a long while... but to know that things are ready for when the timing is appropriate, is fun.

I must say that I CANNOT wait to get the pictures of the kids that Angel will take for us! We have stared at the 2 little faces in our only photos of them for so long, it will be strange and WONDERFUL to see them in a new picture... especially if they happen to be smiling!

Thank you to so many of you who have been an encouragement to us as we found out that Liberia had halted things. We are incredibly peaceful right now. We have no idea what the future holds, but we trust that the Lord does... and that he will bring this to completion. Obviously, we are praying that he moves in the hearts of those individuals who will be making decisions in Liberia. We hope they will be softened and allow our kids, and many others, to come home. Ultimately we are thankful that Liberia is seeking to protect their children by revising their policies, and we are asking God's wisdom and discernment for the policy-makers.

Friday, February 6, 2009

My Sunshine

So, yesterday was Anika's birthday. (We were so busy with birthday fun that I did not have time to post this until today!) She turned 9 years old. Wow. Can't believe it.

I cannot tell you how proud I am of her! Her character, her compassion, her love, her "sunshine-quality"... they blow me away. What a privilege to be her Mama.

My prayer for her is that she follow Jesus all the days of her life; unswervingly, unabashedly, un-apologetically... that others would be drawn to God because of the joy and hope and smile that she possesses... that she would have abundant adventures as she trusts in the faithfulness of her God.

I also hope for her all sorts of silly and fun things like the experience of an enormous jello fight between friends, up-side-down belly-laughing, reading a book that's so good she cries, having a horse for a best friend, traveling to open her eyes to the world out there, annual spaghetti-flinging events, volunteering at the Special Olympics, eating something strange (like pickled pigs' feet) just so she can say she did, and many, many more.

She always has been, and always will be, my sunshine. :)