Hebrews 10:23- "Let us hold unswervingly to the hope we profess, for he who promised is faithful."

Tuesday, February 18, 2014

From the heart.......

I have had this on my mind so much lately and of course I keep reading other blog posts about the exact same thing I have been feeling.  
Funny how God does that, huh.......
Anyway, I wanted to express my heart, 
where it is and has been, 
and will forever be.......

The orphan crisis (yes again...), 

is exactly that a crisis. 
 And it breaks my heart.  
I am constantly, and I mean CONSTANTLY,
 thinking about it.  
I wish I didn't because it consumes me and leaves me some what depressed.  
I have prayed many prayers..... 
"take this pain in my heart away", 
"don't take it away".  
I have many groups that I'm a part of and some days I think "I'm just going to hide all these groups and stop looking at these pictures of these adorable....but sad....faces."  
Then I think to myself,
 No!  If I stop seeing these faces, I'll forget.  
I'll forget that these kids exist, all alone in this terrible world.  I must advocate and continue to annoy everyone with my 'orphan crisis' and 'every child deserves love' soap boxes.  That's the problem,
we forget, 
or we tuck it back in the back of our mind and continue on in our daily lavish, wonderful, lives.  
While they are stuck.  
Stuck in an orphanage or a foster home, 
or living on the street.

When  I was young, 
I would get this split second feeling of complete loneliness.  I could be at school, in a classroom with 20 other students, at a busy mall, in the car, or at home with my mom or dad.  But it was real, a real feeling of compete loneliness, like no on else was on this earth except me.  
It would come and go quickly, not lasting long (thank God) but it was not a nice feeling and would leave me a little uneasy for many minutes later.  
I have my own personal theories as to why I felt these feelings. I think it was when I met Mike that they finally went away.  
Anyway, the reason I'm telling y'all something so personal, is because I feel that this is why I can't give up on these children.  And why I'm constantly asking you to not give up on them either.  
I look back and think maybe God was trying to help me understand something.  
Understand that these kids feel this loneliness 
What I felt for seconds, they never stop feeling......
until(if) their forever families find them and bring them home.  

Lately Olivia has been doing a daily role call........
EVERY day she claims us......
She'll say 
"My Mommy", "My Daddy" 
and then sometimes she'll call her brothers and sister as hers, or sometimes she'll say 
"Chase's mommy", "Chase's Daddy",
 "Ella's mommy", "Ella's Daddy",
 "Taylor's Mommy", "Taylor's Daddy".  
Sometimes I wonder if she's verbally proclaiming it because she's never had it before, 
or if it's because she's still unsure that she actually has it.......
a family. 

I read a friend's post the other day about a movie she had watched....."Schindler's List"
If you haven't seen it or haven't seen it recently, it's about a man who saves thousands of Jews from the Holocaust.
Here's a scene from the movie......
  1. Oskar Schindler: I could have got more. I could have got more, I don't know. If I just...I could have got more.
  2. Itzhak Stern: Oskar, there are 1,100 people who are alive because of you. Look at them.
  3. Oskar Schindler: If I had made more money. I threw away so much money. [laughs, then gets teary-eyed] You have no idea. If I just...
  4. Itzhak Stern: There will be generations because of you.
  5. Oskar Schindler: I didn't do enough.
  6. Itzhak Stern: You did so much.
  7. Oskar Schindler: This car. Goeth would have bought this car. Why did I keep the car? Ten people right there. Ten people. Ten more people. This pin...two people. This is gold. Two people. He would have given me two more, at least one. One more person. A person, Stern, for this. [starts crying] I could have got one more person, and I didn't! I -- I -- I -- I didn't!
  9.  Now, of course he couldn't save them all,
  10.  just as I can't adopt all 147 million orphans.  
  11. But I will always feel we CAN do more and we MUST do more.  
  12. ALL OF US.  
  13. We are a selfish generation and society.  
  14. Always worried about what we have, 
  15. the house we live in, 
  16. the car we drive,
  17.  the clothes we wear,
  18.  the shoes we wear, 
  19. the bags we carry....
  20. But yet we make excuses not to help others.
  21. Well I will say in the last 2 years, I have met more people who have adopted that DON'T have $30K in their bank account, than those that do.  
  22.  God doesn't lay something on our hearts and then say, "you're right, you can't do this".  
  23. "You can't afford it".  
  24. "You can't handle another child".  
  26. NO, 
  27. God says
  28.  "TRUST ME!!!!! 
  29. You can do this!!!! 
  30. I will make sure that you have the money and the means!!!!" 
  32. Have you ever read the book "Radcal" By David Platt?
    An AMAZING book that I suggest anyone and everyone read.  There are SO many great points in it but this is one of my favorites.....
  33. '......We take Jesus' command in Matthew 28 to make desciples of all nations, and we say, "That means other people."  But we look at Jesus' command in Matthew 11:28, "Come to me, all who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest," and we say "Now that means me."  We take Jesus' promise in Acts 1:8 that the spirit will lead us to the ends of the earth, and we say, "That means some people."  But we take Jesus' promise in John 10:10 that we will have abundant life, and we say, "That means me." ' (Page 73)
  34.  So then think about James 1:27
  35. Religion that God our Father accepts as pure and faultless is this: to look after orphans and widows in their distress and to keep oneself from being polluted by the world.
  37. It doesn't say, only certain people, 
  38. it is speaking to us all.
  40. Psalm 82:3 say....
  41. Defend the cause of the weak and fatherless; maintain the rights of the poor and oppressed.
  43. Now I know not everyone can adopt, but everyone can advocate, support, and help those of us that can.  
  44. Everyone can support an orphan in prayer.  
  45. And everyone can pray that those of us called to adoption will listen to God's words and do as He asks us to do.  

Monday, February 10, 2014

Olivia turns 4......

On Saturday Olivia turned 4! 
We had an awesome birthday party at KidsUp with lots of friends.  
This was her first birthday party she has ever had. 
Last year, we had just gotten home (with her from China) and were limiting her to crowds and loud places so we had a quiet dinner at home.  
She exhausted herself playing, it was a great day, by cake time she was asleep with her eyes open, and fell asleep in the car, soon after we left to go home.

I must admit that I have thought a lot about Olivia's past and her birth mom over the past few days.  Seeing her so happy and talking non stop about her birthday is sobering.  
She has come so far and done so well and we are all so in love, but she does have a hard past that will most likely haunt her for years to come.  
I know most people don't have many memories before the age of three, but I truly believe that our subconscious does have memories and they can creep up on us when we're least expecting it. 
I have heard many stories of kids not having any problems with their past until years later.  I was talking to one adoptive mama about her last trip to China to adopt their daughter.  They took they're first adoptive daughter (from China) with them, she was about 5 (I think) when they went and had been adopted when she was about 2.  Since the trip the older daughter has been struggling with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder.  The counselor said it could have been just a smell that triggered a memory or a feeling to cause her stress.  I say this because it's easy to forget that she has only been with us 1 year, but for three years she was an orphan without anyone to truly love her and meet all her emotional needs.  I pray that God will continue to comfort her through out her life as she deals with all that's yet to come, and that He can work through us to be the parents that she needs us to be.
I said earlier that I have thought a lot about her Birth mom these past few days.  Many of you know that we don't know her actual birthdate it was an educated guess when they found her.  As we will never know the truth about her abandonment I do hope that it was because her birth parents felt they couldn't help her and thought someone else could.  The one thing I know is that no woman can ever forget giving birth, so there must be some thought around this time of February that she thinks about that day (or night) when she gave birth to a beautiful little girl.  
Those first few days of looking at your child and comparing her nose to your own, or her eyes to her father's, or her beautiful lips and ears to her siblings or grandparents. 
 I wish I could tell her how wonderful her baby girl is, how loved and adored she is.  
To thank HER for giving Olivia life and giving us the chance to love her and call her our own.