Tuesday, June 28, 2011


I don't journal very often at all, I have tried to be more consistent with that on this blog, but sometimes it is just hard to be honest. Yesterday and today I wrote some things down during my quiet time in one of many little notebooks I have. I wanted to write them down here too because this is really where I am trying to keep an accurate account of our lives right now and this adoption process.

Monday June 27
Today is the day. Our new court date is today. The Lord did some amazing things to bring us to this day, and I am so thankful to Him. We have been told we probably will not pass today, MOWA is behind schedule. But God is not on any schedule. His plans and purposes and timeline is not held up by the logistics and inadequacies of man. He will accomplish whatever He needs to in spite of our progress or lack thereof. I know He could allow us to pass today. I believe it with all of my heart. But I also know that is not the most important thing. A resolution, or good news, or positive opinion letter is not where my hope is. My hope is in Him. He is hope. And as long as my eyes and heart are on Him, I will be okay. He will comfort and provide if things don't happen the way I would choose. This process has been incredibly hard, and there have been many times I have both thought and said out loud- I can't do this anymore! But. But God has been there and met me every time. And even now, not quite at the finish line, I would do it again. It has been hard, but good. And I am thankful.

Tuesday June 28
We did not pass yesterday. It was and is hard. Hard to understand. There are so many things I know, but they aren't changing my feelings. Yet. I am trying so hard to hold on to Him and His Word, but I am disappointed. I can't bear to think about being in this same spot for months longer, so I am praying for grace for today. We have until August 5 before the courts close for the rainy season. I am struggling with feeling like my prayers matter which makes it hard to pray with fervor, and diligence, and motivation. I feel like I want to give up. Throw in the towel, surrender. But there is no one to surrender to. Giving up really isn't an option. So I feel stuck again in this unknown, with a seemingly endless road in front of us. I know my feelings are not truth, but I wish they weren't so strong. I need Him. To rescue and remind me. To save me from myself and the slippery pit of discouragement, bitterness, and unbelief. He has not changed. His plan is still going strong. We really aren't stuck, but right where we are supposed to be. I need to let go again. Let go of my expectations, dreams, and hopes, and exchange them for Him. His Plan, His Word, His Presence. CONFESS, SURRENDER, REST.

Monday, June 27, 2011

not today

Today was not the big day I was hoping it would be for us. Friday we heard from our caseworker that there was a good chance we would not pass court due to MOWA being a couple of weeks behind schedule. We don't have a new court date at this point, my understanding is we are just in a holding pattern once again. We could get the call saying we have passed court anytime, but no one really knows when that will be.
I had a moment by myself where I broke down, just feeling so disappointed. But looking back on today, I can see God's goodness and love towards me. I was gone all afternoon, visiting a good friend and her littlest in the hospital, and then swimming with my boys with my aunt and cousins. I was not home to feel sad, I was having fun! Not our normal afternoon, and I am so thankful for that.
So, the waiting continues (I guess it really never stopped!), and I will continue to pray and hold on to Jesus and His promises and truths.

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

this week

This Friday and next Monday are pretty big days for us. Part of me doesn't want to make too big of a deal out of them in case things don't go as I hope they will, but part of me wants to tell everyone I know to please be praying for us and our case this week! Friday MOWA (an agency in Ethiopia that we need an approval letter from), is scheduled to review our case and give their opinion, so the judge will have everything she needs to finalize our adoption on Monday the 27th. If we do pass court, then we will have a few more weeks before we travel again to Ethiopia for our embassy appointment and to bring our girl home. We will also finally be able to share her picture! :)

Some specific things to pray for would be:
1) MOWA would have time to review our case on Friday
2) all our paperwork would be done correctly and nothing would be missing
3) MOWA would give us a favorable opinion letter
4) the judge would have time on Monday to review our case and finalize our adoption!

I absolutely believe in God's sovereignty and timing, and if we do not pass, I trust His plan. But, the desire of my heart (obviously!) is that we would, and unless He leads me to pray otherwise, that is what I am praying for!

*Ethiopia is 8 hours ahead of us time wise, just an fyi. :)

Friday, June 10, 2011


Not that it is feeling all that summer-like today, but my calendar and our activities lately would point to the fact that it is indeed summertime. Eli and Micah are currently in swimming lessons, and as an added bonus, are the only ones in their class! It's like having private lessons at YMCA prices. :) They love to swim, and this year definitely seem stronger and more coordinated.

We also enjoyed our first camp-out as a family Memorial Day weekend. We just spent one night there, and aside from some EXTREMELY loud neighbors, who mysteriously showed up and multiplied and partied all night long, we had a great time. We went with Aaron's older sister and her husband and 2 girls, and one of his younger sisters too. There was fishing, boating, ladder ball, hot dogs, smores, and relaxing by the campfire. I am not exactly a "camper", but I would do it again. Although I think I would make sure our air mattress was free of holes. And maybe try to be a bit farther away from other campsites. At one point, probably around 2:00am, the music from our neighbors camp was blaring, the headlights from their cars were pointed straight at our tent, and Eli pops up from his sleeping bag and says, "What's all this?!" My thoughts exactly.

Next week all three boys have Vacation Bible School, and I am so excited Isaac gets to go too. He has been sad he is not in swimming lessons, and has been trying to convince me he is four so he can be. :)

We also made our "summer lists" for this year, and our summer notebooks. I saw both of those ideas last year, and they were both a big hit. The notebooks the boys used all year long for drawing, and making lists. I'm hoping to practice writing in them this summer and have them draw different summer pictures when we have our school time. I also would love us to memorize some verses together, maybe draw something that goes along with the verse? Assuming I guess we will have our school time, which so far has happened twice. :)

I do feel very aware of the fact that this is my last summer with the boys before they start school, and I don't want to take that lightly. We have decided to send them to school next year, which I feel peaceful about, but also sad that I won't be with them for so much of their day. With our adoption timeline so up in the air, I was just uneasy about starting school with them with little to no time in between Hope joining our family. Originally I thought we would have months to all adjust and figure things out, but life has just not played out that way. We had applied to a school out of our district and didn't really feel like our chances of getting in were very good, but we did, and are so thankful to have that option.

So far the summer has been great, relaxed and fun, just as it should be. :)

Thursday, June 9, 2011


God is answering our prayers in a big way!! We got word that the last relative of Hope's that they needed to talk to agreed to relinquish, AND they had the hearing and gave the orphanage where she was brought custody! And then today, we got word that we already have a new court date for June 27!!!
I know that all of these details and steps may not make sense to someone outside of the process, and I wish there was an easier way to explain, but basically we needed 3 steps to happen for our case to continue moving forward, and they have all happened in 2 days!!! I was expecting things to be much more drawn out, like weeks longer, but God has again exceeded my expectations, and done far greater things than I even dared to hope for.
There is truly nothing beyond His power and ability, and I will continue to ask Him for the desires of my heart until He leads me otherwise. I am praying, and have been for months, that He would allow Hope to be home by her 1st birthday, July 30. It will be a miracle if this happens, and only because of His power.
So, June 27 will be a big day for our family, and one we will cover with prayer!

Ephesians 3:20
"Now to Him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine according to his power that is at work within us, to him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, for ever and ever! Amen."

Psalm 126:2-3
"Our mouths were filled with laughter, our tongues with songs of joy. Then it was said among the nations, 'The Lord has done great things for them.'" The Lord has done great things for us, and we are filled with joy."

Tuesday, June 7, 2011


I have been thinking for a few weeks now how to write an update post about our adoption. Let's start with the good news. There have been 19 cases that have been finalized of our group of 30 families waiting with our agency! These families all had court dates, but did not pass due to an investigation. We all needed an approval letter from an agency called MOWYCA before our adoptions would be finalized. We are so thrilled and excited for these families, several of them we traveled with and spent a week with in Ethiopia. Seeing their children's faces, and knowing they are one big step closer to bringing their kids home is awesome.

So, now for the interesting news. It's not bad news, but it is unexpected and interesting. For the last 9 1/2 months we thought Hope had no connection to any family. We had no information about her family at all, and believed we really never would. Well, that has changed. Steps are being taken now to make sure adoption is truly the best and only option for her. If it is, there will be an additional hearing and paperwork that is necessary for her file.

About two months ago I went through a pretty rough time, feeling dread and fear, and just this thought that I could not bear to lose her. And now here we are, at a sort of crossroads. The Lord met me then, and I can honestly say that right now I have more peace about this than I ever have before. I have been praying for miracles, and taking comfort in His plan and purpose. He is truly close, and His presence is powerful and readily available.

I don't know what the outcome will be, we will hopefully know more soon, but I know and trust the One who does know that outcome. I am believing and holding onto His word and goodness. And praying, praying, praying. For wisdom, clarity, and that Hope's best interest would be the most important factor for those making decisions.

Psalm 112:7
"He will have no fear of bad news; his heart is steadfast, trusting in the Lord."

Psalm 130:7
"O, Israel, put your hope in the Lord, for with the Lord is unfailing love and with Him is full redemption."