Friday, July 27, 2012

The Why

So many ideas, so many dreams.
Our brains are spinning with the possibilities.

It's difficult to dissect a dream into steps.  
We just want to be there.

While we work as fast as we can behind the scenes to get there, I pray that God in His great love and mercy watches over the children we love so much.  

If all of our ramblings haven't quite clicked with you yet;
if you don't yet understand why we are moving across the world,
please watch this documentary and see the need and the faces that have turned our world upside down. 

These children are real and they are beautiful.
Jesus has called us to be His hands and feet to them.

This is why.

Saturday, July 14, 2012

Love Blitz

UPDATE: 8/7/12
Maxim has a family coming for him!!!!
Last week was a great week in the Reece's Rainbow community!  Dear, sweet Porter was found; another super cute little boy with Down Syndrome, Ryan, was listed on Reece's Rainbow and his family found him in his first 24 hours of being listed!  Amazing.  Witnessing God moving hearts and changing minds is breathtaking.  Lives are being changed and saved on a daily basis.  Praise God!

When the Reece's Rainbow family saw sweet Ryan scooped up so fast we rejoiced, but at the same time our hearts ached for the children that have been listed on Reece's Rainbow for years and have been passed over time and time again,  Where are their Mommies?  Where are their Daddies?  I have faith they are out there, they just haven't seen their child's beautiful face yet.  

A group of us decided to do a Blog Blitz for these kiddos, the passed over ones.  We are working hard today to get their faces out there in faith that God will direct the right eyes and hearts to the right faces.  We see that miracle happen daily...why not for these babes?

As you look at the faces below, really look.  These are the ones who have waited for years and years.  See these children.  They should be running in the sprinkler, eating snow cones, going on their first camping trip.  Their lives are worth the effort and their lives are worth the financial cost of adoption.  Please truly see them, and then ask God how He would like you to respond.

Maxim. (FOUND!!!!)
Look at that grin!  Maxim is only a few months younger than my Addy.  He has waited so long.  There is a missionary who has spent a lot of time with Maxim and she is in love.  She can't understand why he hasn't been chosen yet because he's such a treasure.  Here's what she had to say about him after seeing him for the first time in several months:

"Maxim is doing wonderfully!   He gets physical therapy and swimming therapy!   He is finally walking short distances without support! His tummy is now only mildly distended (I would say its about 75% better than it was 6 months ago!) He is just as sweet, happy, and smiley as before, and now he’s much healthier! God must have a very special and loving family in mind for this boy who has waited so long, could that family be yours?  Maxim’s Mom and Dad? Where are you? I’ve seen him. I’ve held him and kissed his sweet face. He is waiting patiently for you to come for him. I KNOW, I just KNOW, that he will be the biggest blessing to his family. Please hear the call – for Maxim."

Another beautiful smile!  I know many people who are in love with little Brent.  I know many people who wish he could be their son, but God must have other plans, because none of them can pursue his adoption.  Whenever I see a little one that is loved by so many from afar I can't help but wonder what great things God has in store for them.  Out of all the faces on Reece's Rainbow, Brent is a favorite of many.  What does God have planned for this sweetie?  I can not and will not believe it's a lifetime in a mental institution.  Is Brent your son?  If not, would you share his face with others so his mommy can find him?

  I seriously love Yegor.  A few months ago a friend did a giant fundraiser for many different families and children.  Yegor was one of the ones she decided to fund raise for because he has been passed over for so long.  I don't know what it is about him, but that face gets me every time.  I pray for Yegor, that God would keep him safe and hold him tight until he is found.  Please help me find his family!

Ivan looks like a little cuddlebug doesn't he?  The overalls, the cheeks, the little fingers...he's killin' me!  Look into his eyes.  He is worth it.  He deserves life.  God created him for a purpose, with a destiny.  Let's help in his rescue!  Pray, share his picture, give to his grant can make a difference!

Abbot's description on Reece's Rainbow makes me want to cry!
"Abbott is a child with whom everyone falls in love immediately! He is a very kind and very cheerful child! He easily finds common language with adults and children. Abbott understands how to properly play with the different kind of toys and loves to play. He is not speaking yet but he is easily understood.  Abbott is an active child.  He likes to run, walk and see new places.
Recently he has been transferred to an institution and nobody knows how he is now."

Oh Abbott, you are not forgotten.  You are loved.  You are prayed for.  I pray your mommy and daddy find you soon. 

Each of these little boys has waited for so long.
What if 2012 is their year?
What if?

I have a lot of faith.  God is at work in people's hearts and He is hard at work for the orphan.
How can you join him in this wonderful work?


I can't wait to see which one of these boys is found first!

To read about other children who have been waiting for far too long hop on over to the blogs below.  Different kiddos are featured on each blog.  This is their day in the spotlight!
Come on Mamas and Papas!!!  Come find your babies!

Tuesday, July 10, 2012


Remember this face?

 Not too long ago I put out a plea for dear sweet Porter.  
Many, many people responded that they would pray.
Many, many people passed the word and passed on his face in hopes that his mommy would see.

Well, guess what?

SHE SAW!!!!!


Praise God, Porter is not lost, he is found.  His mommy and daddy are doing everything they can to get to him as quickly as possible.

Want to hear something else that makes this even more awesome (if that's even possible)?

Porter's Mommy and Daddy live approximately 8 minutes from our house.
They are practically our neighbors.
I got to visit with his mommy over coffee yesterday and hear her weep with joy about how she feels like she won the lottery, the goodness of God overwhelming her.

Porter's mommy and daddy love Jesus.

We get to see him come out of darkness into light.

We get to be a hands-on part of his rescue.

Will you join us?


 I can't handle it!!!!!!

I can't wait to introduce them to you, very very soon.

Thank you for sharing, thank you for praying.  It was not in vain.

Oh how He loves the orphan!

Monday, July 9, 2012

The Family Blind Date-Love at First Sight

Have you ever been on a blind date?

I never had- until this past weekend.

On Friday we met our friends Ben and Melanie for the first time and let's just say, it was love at first sight.  :)

Let me back up.

When our adoption plans did not turn out how we had hoped and we were praying and waiting for God's direction and leading, our hearts kept coming back to one place, one specific group of people:  "The Lost Boys".  We knew that we knew God had placed these boys deeply in our hearts for a reason.  We had no clue, and still aren't certain what His plans are for us and those boys, but honestly, the main reason that drew us to eventually visit Eastern Europe in April, and the main thing that is drawing us to move our family overseas is those boys.  So, we contacted the people had been there before.  That was quick, because there are only 2 families that have adopted from there: Rob and Julia, who adopted Aaron, and Ben and Melanie who adopted Judd.  We contacted those families and I don't even remember all what we said, but it was along the lines of "God has put your son's former home deeply in our hearts...can we be friends?"  (I'm sure it was more detailed than that, since I'm a talker, but you get the idea)

Out of that developed very special friendships (after they all  figured out we aren't weirdos).  We became co-laborers for the Kingdom; united for a group of boys that most people don't even know exist. 
 Go team go!!!

All along our journey so far Ben and Melanie have been our encouragers extraordinaire.  Although we only knew each other over emails and blogs, it was apparent that God was doing something.  He was knitting our hearts together in a very special way.  When we finally got to Eastern Europe in April Ben and Melanie's emails were like huge spots of sunshine.  They prayed, they encouraged.  When we thought we weren't going to be able to see The Boys Melanie actually gave us directions to just head to the institution ourselves.
 (HA!  You go girl!) That is how passionate they are about what God is doing in that place.

Ben and Melanie live only a few hours from us, so we had decided that when we got back to the US we would meet.  The long-awaited meeting happened this weekend and it was all we hoped it would be.
 Ben joked to Melanie on their way to our town that it was like a "Family Blind Date"- kind of like our own version of + 7 kids ages 8 and under.  Jed texted me Friday afternoon before they arrived and asked if I was excited.  My reply "Yep!  I hope they're not weird."  I was joking...sort of.  :)

It was amazing.
When God knits hearts together He goes all out.

They arrived at our house Friday evening and when they pulled up I may have cried a little bit.  Then when Judd got out of the car and I saw his sweet face in front of me I know I cried a little bit.  We hugged, we laughed, kids ran a muck.  It was fabulous.  Judd, Ruger and Abraham are as cute as can be.  In Addy's words "I love Abraham, his eyes are so shiny!" 

We had a great evening together, chatting, laughing, watching the kids jump on the trampoline.  Unfortunately the SD card to our camera was stuck in our Wii, so we don't have any pictures of that night. 

The next morning we met at a park for the fun to continue.  We also got to meet up with a very special family who has a very special connection to all of us.  It's a BIG FAT secret that I'll be able to tell you about soon enough.  For now let's just say that there are no accidents with God and He is too stinkin' good to us.  He loves His kids and He loves the orphan more than we realize.

Sweet Judd
The littles playing together, pre-drama  :)

A good time was had by all, minus the little spat between Ruger and Havalah.  Typical boy/girl drama that ended with Havalah wanting to talk it out, Ruger responding "I'm done with this nonsense", and Havalah running off to pout.  Oh the drama...  :)  They are so cute.

After the park we said good bye to the very special secret surprise family and headed off to lunch downtown (where my camera no pics of lunch) then home for little rests before resuming the fun.

Pool time!

Proof that Addy and Ez were there!
Oh my word, Judd is such a water baby!  I think he drank about a gallon of pool water.  He would just face plant into the water with his mouth wide open and laugh and laugh.  He and Havalah were our fearless ones.  I think both of them were convinced they could just jump in and swim on their own and were slightly annoyed at our attempts to keep them safe.  Ha!

Judd jumping to Mommy!!!

Next up was pizza at our house.  I think I loved this time the best.  The kids played happily and we got to just sit around the table and chat, encouraging each other, understanding each other.  It was sweet.  We told Ben and Melanie then, and I'll say it again, their encouragement to us on our journey has meant the world to us.  They have seen the children, they have touched them, they have loved on them.  Their hearts ache like ours.  To hear them say "What can we do?  How can we help you?" were the most precious words they could say.  Any and all encouragement along this journey has been meaningful and amazing (keep it coming dear friends!!)  :), but there is something extra special about it when it comes from ones who have seen and know the huge mountains we are facing.  But- more than once Ben and Melanie reminded us that NOTHING is impossible with God.  Amen and amen.

Abraham and his "shiny" eyes

This weekend brought so much hope to my heart.  Hope that God has His big plan in place and it is better than we could ever imagine.  He brought us friends who instantly felt like family.  I can not wait to see what He wants to do with our relationship in the years to come.  Woohooo!!   This weekend brought hope in what God is able to do.  He is a miracle-worker.  When I watched Judd jumping on the trampoline, swimming in the pool, giggling in the kitchen, kissing on his Mommy it made me want to laugh and cry at the same time.  What a miracle!  God has redeemed Judd's life.  When I think about where Judd was and where he would still be had he not been rescued it's almost too much.  God has taken a boy who was invisible to the world, lost in a village, abandoned by earthly parents and given him abundant life.  

Judd signing "happy".  Melt my heart!!
He is loved.
He is cherished.
He is learning.
He is happy.
He is thriving. 
He is Ben and Melanie's sweet baby boy and we got the privilege of celebrating with them.

To God be ALL the glory for the great things HE has done!!!!

Love you Ben and Melanie.  Thank you for coming all that way to love on us.  You rock!!!!

Judd loved Havalah!
Lucky Jed :)
Seth jumps high!!!

Judd lovin on Hazel

Wednesday, July 4, 2012

For Porter

My friend Melanie, who I get to meet face-to-face in 2 DAYS (WOOHOOOOO!!!), wrote a very important post.

You see, Melanie and her husband Ben adopted their son Judd from the institution that Porter was recently transferred to.  Remember the "Lost Boys" we talk about so much around here?  Yep, they adopted from that place.  That place that we love, that place that we pray for, that place that we cry for, that place we can't wait to return to.

Ben and Melanie love those boys like we do, and their hearts break for dear, sweet Porter.

Please take a moment and read Melanie's thoughts on Porter's new life.  

After you read it, please pray about how you can help.

Thank you friends!!!!

Sunday, July 1, 2012

Rumblings and Ramblings

God is on the move.

I feel the rumblings.

I have realized something about myself as we've traveled along on this journey over the past 2 years. Right before God does something big, or says something big to me I get restless.  I start to feel like everything in my life is wrong, I get irritable.  I cry a lot.  Poor Jed!  I don't have any explanation for why that happens.  Maybe God is trying to prepare my heart for what He's about to do or say and instead of reacting in quiet obedience, waiting before Him, I freak out because I love to be in control.  I'm a wee bit of a control freak, I'll admit.  :)  I've had to give up a lot of control over the past 2 years and while it's felt great, I'm aware that I still have a long way to go. 

For whatever reason, that's how my frail, far-from-perfect self reacts to the rumblings I feel when God's about to move.  About a week and a half ago the rumblings began.  For the first time ever I quickly recognized what was going on.  Then I got excited!  God's about to do or say something big!  I don't have a clue what He's up to, but I want to be ready.  As the rumblings have come it has pushed me to prayer and worship.  My times with the Lord have never been so sweet.  I love His ways. 


On Friday night we went to the Regional Vineyard Conference.  As we worshiped with other believers I was remembering the only other Vineyard Conference we've ever been to- in Ukraine! 
 "I want to be there so bad.  I just want to pack up and go.  Who cares about our house?  Who cares about finances?  I just want to be there."

Those were some of the things I was chatting about with the Lord during worship.  

"I feel such urgency to get there.  The need is URGENT.  Those children need help now!  Those Ukrainians doing the stuff need help now!  I just want to go!" 

As I was praying for the children I saw a clear picture in my mind that I know was a gift from Him.  I saw a picture of the Lost Boys orphanage, like I was looking in at the grounds from the front gate.  All of a sudden I saw Jesus round the corner, walking along the paths.  He had a gentle smile on His face as He walked along, past the eating sheds, past the spot in the garden where we spent time with the boys.  He walked along, touching the flowers, smiling to Himself.  It was approaching evening and I knew that the boys were inside asleep.  I saw Jesus approach their building where they slept and He almost winked at me as He entered the building where He walked among their beds and cribs, touching each one on the head.  As they slept He walked among them, loving them, seeing them, knowing each one by name.

It was beautiful.

He is there.  He sees.  He knows.  Yes, He wants us to act.  Yes, He wants us to be his hands and feet.  But we simply can't be there yet.  We are working as hard as we can, but we aren't there yet.  As He winked at me it was like He was saying, "It's okay, I've got this.  You work hard, you get here as quick as you can- but I've got this." 

He's got it!  

Jed and I know we aren't those children's salvation.  We are just willing bodies.  He's got it.  HE is their Savior and He is there RIGHT NOW.
Praise God for that.

So, we will keep plugging along, preparing our lives and our hearts for our move.  We aren't gone yet though, so while here we will do whatever we can from afar.  We will pray, we will give, we will share the children with those who haven't yet heard of their plight.

Will you join us?

Please remember Porter.  Please share about Porter so his Mommy and Daddy can see his face.  Please give money to his grant so when he's found he can be rescued as quickly as possible.

Please pray that as Jesus walks among the boys that they would feel His presence and that the love of the Father would surround them, invading their hearts and minds, holding them close.

Father of orphans, champion of widows, is God in his holy house. 
Psalm 68:5