Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Financial Woes and Sweet Blessings!

This week has been a mix of emotions for me. We had applied for 3 grants at the beginning of our adoption. One came back...NO. This week we received a letter from the second grant...NO again. It is so frustrating and I don't understand why. We need the money for our adoption. I wanted to just sit down and cry. We had so much hope that at least one would be accepted and it would help so much.

Then, the Lord reminded me that this adoption was His idea for our family and He would be the one to provide. In the beginning, I had told the Lord that I didn't want to ask for money or go into debt for the adoption, when I knew that He was ready and willing to provide. He has whispered to me..."There is nothing you can do. Sit back, wait patiently, and see what I will do to bring my child home to you." And He is...little by little through His unexpected sweet blessings like...

This week after my husband had finished teaching a summer seminar, a woman whom he has taught with off and on over the last couple of years (a woman whom I have never met) put something in his pocket and told him it was for our adoption. He protested, but she said this was something she wanted to do. After he left that afternoon, he looked and it was a check for the whole amount of money she had made that day teaching the seminar with him. And so, I am reminded...my Heavenly Father will make a way!

Sunday, July 20, 2008

Another referral closer...now #7!

Another family has accepted a referral, so we have moved up to #7 on the list! Yeah! Yeah! Yeah! :) It gives me butterflies in my stomach knowing that we are getting closer. I realize we will probably still have a while...but God's timing is not our own. :) I would love to have a referral before Thanksgiving since everything in India shuts down in November and December for their holidays. We were initially told it could be 5-6 months for a referral and then it changed to 8-10 months. December will mark the 8th month for us on the list, so...we will just continue praying that everything will continue to move forward. In the meantime, I will just sit back and relish #7 for a while and watch with anticipation those families who have finally received their referrals and have begun their wait on the paperwork trail in India.

Thursday, July 17, 2008

Moving up to #8!

Yeah! We just got the news today that several referrals have gone through now that ISRC in India has received their renewal liscense and we have jumped from #13 to #8 on the referral list!

We were told to not get too excited. It will still take a while. We are learning that there is nothing quick about the adoption process. There are still a couple of NRI families (families of Indian heritage) who get first choice when referrals come in, and then of course there are still some families in front of us on the non-NRI list.

If I haven't explained it before...when a child is relinquished to ISRC (usually by a single mother), they have to receive paperwork from the government stating that they are available for adoption. Then, the children first have to be made available for domestic adoption to families in India. After that, then they become available for international adoption. That is when they are presented to first the NRI families and then the non-NRI families on the referral lists at our agency here in the US. I guess you can see why the process can take such a long time.

Oh well. Today I don't care so much about that. I am just enjoying for this moment that we have moved up the list! :) Tomorrow I will settle back into the waiting game we have been playing.

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Christmas in July!

This year, since I am at the point in the adoption process that all I can do it WAIT...I am determined to have all my Christmas shopping done by Thanksgiving! Last year, for the first time, I started buying some of my Christmas gifts online from Christian organizations. I fell in love with the idea of spending my money with an organization that uses the funds to help others instead of just throwing it away at Wal-mart. We bought magazines and books from Focus on the Family and Family Life. This year, I'd like to buy some T-shirts from Steven Curtis Chapman's "Show Hope" site as well as "A HOPE for Children's" site. (both have links here on my site)

I wanted to share though about a new organization I have come across that is part of the larger WMU organization. It is a non-profit organization that goes into other countries and teaches families job skills, business skills, etc. so that they can become independant and be able to support their families. They export the products to the USA and the profits go back to help the families. I have not ordered from the site yet, but I plan to order some stuff for Christmas and birthday gifts this year. You can pick and choose from about 20 different countries, and there is a lot to choose from that is affordable...$5 and up! I love the idea of giving my family something from India, the country where we are adopting! The site is Worldcraftsvillage.com. Check it out!

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

"Wrecked...Part II"

I read some awesome verses this morning that I thought were a great description of a life being "wrecked for the ordinary," so I had to share them.

I Peter 4:1-2 "Since Christ suffered in the flesh, arm yourselves with the same way of thinking, for whoever has suffered in the flesh has ceased from sin, so to live the rest of our time in the flesh no longer for human passions but for the will of God."

These verses were very convicting for me, but very motivational as well. I have been talking with some moms who share some of the same burdens on their heart...and there are so many burdens...orphans, AIDS orphans in Africa, the extreme hunger in Haiti, sex trafficing of young girls all over the world, etc. You want to help them all in some way, but it is not possible. I was encouraged by verses 10 and 11 as well. We are responsible for doing, but we do not have to do it all, and we don't have to do it alone or in our own power.

I Peter 4:10-11 "As each has received a gift, use it to serve one another, as good stewards of God's varied grace: ...whoever serves, as one who serves by the strength that God supplies--in order that in everything God may be glorified in Jesus Christ. To Him belong glory and dominion forever and ever. Amen."

Sunday, July 13, 2008

"Wrecked for the Ordinary"

The questions have been asked, "When were you wrecked for the ordinary?" and "How are you now?" Wow...I love that phrase. I have never really thought about it before in those terms, but I do know that my wreck took place last year...March 2007. My husband and I took a trip overseas together with some high school students. I didn't really have any expectations, I just expected everything to be the same as here in the USA. After all, we were going to be in very modern, civilized cities. I was shocked, however, at how much things are not the same. I was ashamed at how much comfort I am accustomed to and how much I just expect to have it that way. I'm not there yet, but my eyes were opened to how much I take for granted that others in this world will never experience.

When we arrived back in the states, my husband and I finished a conversation that has been going on half-heartedly for years and we filed our application for international adoption in May. Through His Word, this adoption process, and our involvement with Compassion International, God has begun to open my eyes to the fact that I have spent my entire life clinging to the ordinary here on earth as if it is a treasure...and it does not satisfy. Matthew 6:21 says, "Where your treasure is, there will your heart be also." I struggle with being comfortable in this world, wanting more, and seeking success in the world's eyes...but, I can truly say I want my heart to be where God's heart is.

In I Corinthians 4:2 it says, "Those who have been given a trust must prove faithful." I know that the Lord has given all His children a trust...to be faithful and obedient to His Word in caring for the stranger, the widow, the orphan, the fatherless, the poor. I love what I read this week in a devotional...
In the end, human judgement of our life's endeavors has no value; only God's opinion matters(vv. 3-4). Paul didn't worry about human verdicts on his leadership skills or ministry success, and he didn't make his own opinion primary either. His conscience was clean--but conscience is fallible. Only God is wise and perfect, so only His evaluation matters.

I would definitely say a life lived with this in mind would surely be a life "wrecked for the ordinary!"

Wednesday, July 2, 2008

Beginning to Boil!

How funny. This morning I write about waiting and waiting for news and this afternoon good news arrives!

ISRC in India has received their certification papers from CARA, the central adoption agency in India! My pot is beginning to boil! :) It will still be a while for everything to trickle down the line to those of us waiting, but at least the ball is rolling again! Yeah! Hopefully over the next couple of months we will begin moving up the waiting list. I am so excited for those who already have their referrals and are so close to being able to bring home their children. I pray the Lord allows them to be united with their forever families quickly!

A Watched Pot!

"A watched pot never boils." I used to hear this a lot growing up. It is exactly how I feel right now waiting for news on the certification renewal paperwork from ISRC in India. It is so close because we know that the requirements for recertification have been completed and we are just waiting on the official paperwork to arrive so that things can get moving again...the water is on, but it's just not coming to a boil! It is so nervewracking...and to quit watching the pot (or the computer) for any news is much easier said than done. :)

I am in Colorado for the next week and a half visiting my family. All of my sisters are here (7 of us) and all of our children. I am loving watching all the kids play together and it is helping to keep me distracted for a while, but every now and then I think, "Wow! I can't wait until next year when my little one from India will be here with all of our other kids to join in all the love and chaos!"