Tuesday, August 29, 2017

Hold Me Jesus

(Rob writing)

We've all seen public service announcements about risky behaviors, from opening suspicious emails to texting while driving. As a responsible citizen, I feel I must warn the world against a new danger I've discovered: thinking in airports. Based on our experience of the last 48 hours, Julia and I estimate that simply walking into an airport lowers one's IQ by at least 30 points. Factor in the jet lag from an international flight, and the number doubles. The mere act of boarding an airplane can turn geniuses into dullards, and dullards like us into imbeciles. We have no doubt that pending scientific experiments will confirm these numbers. Until they do, be advised: Friends don't let friends make life-changing decisions in airports!

Dull as my brain was in those airports, it was still sharp enough to notice another danger. I've read enough history to know that experiments in communism usually come to a bad end. But I've also seen the dangers of excessive capitalism; and the airlines are a good example. Their strain to promote first-class travel goes a bit far, to say the least.

In the airport: "Travelers from our gold class, silver class, platinum class, and sapphire class may board to my right at their earliest convenience. All others, line up at the stock gate to my left on your way to the cattle pen. The fact that you paid $1500 for your ticket doesn't matter, only that you paid less than these fine folks."

On the airplane: "Travelers who hold emerald cards may use their quick menu (TM) to order service the instant they board. All others, wait for our flight attendants to fork some hay into your trough. By the by, emerald card holders, we're sorry you have to endure the rabble passing through your mansion on the way to their slum. Just know that it will make them envy you all the more, which you probably want; and that it will encourage them to spend more in the future, which we definitely want."

I suppose I shouldn't complain, though. As Julia never ceases to remind me, it's my fault we're going through all this again. It's the pictures that do it. They show you pictures of all these beautiful kids, and tell you the kind of lives they're doomed to lead if no one helps them. The thought of being someone's last chance to escape that kind of life... That's what moves me to tears. It's well worth a few rough days at the airport.

Hopefully, it's also worth the anxiety we're going through today. We ran into some possible problems yesterday, and we're waiting to see if they can be resolved. Nothing we can share right now. You can prepare all you want, but you can never prepare for everything that might happen when you walk into one of these government offices.

Please pray that something good will happen today.

Well, sometimes my life just don't make sense at all
When the mountains look so big, and my faith just seems so small
So hold me Jesus, 'cause I'm shaking like a leaf
You have been King of my glory
Won't You be my Prince of Peace?

--from Hold Me Jesus by Rich Mullins

Monday, August 28, 2017

What is Good

He has shown us what is good... to seek justice. to love mercy. to walk humbly with Him.

We are here.

A bit brain-fried from 24 hours of traveling.

But we are here.

All our stuff in four carry-on bags...

...So that we could meet this sweet lady at the airport. She brought us 2 suitcases loaded with baby bundles and comforters. All of it made by the loving hands of some amazing ladies who know what it means to do good.

We are here. In a world that has become familiar to us. 

How can it be that over the past 7 years we have come to love this place?

It is the birthplace of two sons and in a village not too far from here... a little girl... whom we hope to call our daughter.

We are here. Jet lagged. Bleary-eyed.

But at peace.

In an apartment that made us smile.  Greeted by a doll that bears the names of so many who have come before us. Adoptive families. Their names a testimony of those who also crossed the water to do what is right. To love mercy. To walk humbly.

He has shown us what is good.

He has gone before us.

We are so not alone.

Friday, August 25, 2017

The Suitcases are Out

We took a family trip yesterday.

I have no words.

Change is hard.

It is really hard.

Praying for my son as he find his place.


I'm not packed yet although the suitcases are out.

I think that is a step in the right direction considering we are leaving at noon tomorrow!!

This week we had to stop and take a moment to recognize all the people who have given so freely to this adoption.

Mary's songbird puzzle is covered with names on the back.

Each one precious.

It will hang as a beautiful testimony to her of all the people who have helped love her home.

We are in awe of God's provision for this adoption. 

We are truly in awe.

Tuesday, August 22, 2017

Confessions from a Muddled Brain

 I am supposed to be blogging. We are leaving in 4 days and I should be over the moon excited and going crazy on here and sharing all about our preparations etc. etc. etc.

I AM over the moon excited. I AM going crazy.  I just cannot begin to put into words the thoughts in my head and heart right now.

Elijah is leaving for college on Thursday. We are driving him to JMU and leaving him. 

That alone is sending me into a tailspin. I should be perfectly capable of being rational about this because I've done this before but still.... It's hard to let go.  I want to stop time from spinning so quickly.

Which is nuts!!

 Because I want time to speed up so we can cross the ocean.

And I want it to stop because I hate letting go.

I can't think straight.  Nothing inside my muddled up brain makes any sense at all. 

Our entire family life is changing in one big huge breath.... but I quit breathing months ago.

So there you have it.

Confessions from my muddled brain.

I'm going to try to do better.

I really am.

I just need to get through the next 2 days with my Kleenex box by my side.

Because I'm going to need it.

A lot.

Wednesday, August 16, 2017

Let it Begin With Me

My brain is a jumbled mess right now.  We are 10 days from travel yet it feels like a thousand. It's like the world went into slow motion. Brown eyes keep staring at me but I can't bear to change my background picture.

This past weekend was a nightmare. Our little house in the woods is not very many miles from Charlottesville, Virginia and what took place there makes me want to vomit.

The city we love was filled this past weekend with a whole lot of people filled with passion and hate.  That passion and hate killed three people and harmed many others. 

I am grieving this morning over the wrongness of what happened.  Neo-Nazis, White Nationalists. I truly want to be sick.

This week I've been clinging to Micah 6:8 as I think and pray. 

He has told you, O man, what is good; and what does the LORD require of you but to do justice, and to love kindness, and to walk humbly with your God?

Do justice. Love kindness. Walk with God.

Let it begin with me.


I am struggling to blog. I can't find words. There is so much in my head and heart. We have so much to do and decisions to make.

I would be ever so grateful for prayers right now.  Just pray for us. Pray that the Lord goes ahead of us and makes a way.  Pray for peace to reign in our hearts. Pray for wisdom as we make decisions.  Pray for clarity as we make plans. Pray for our sons. Elijah heads for college next week, two days before we leave. The little boys are upended right now and struggling with our leaving. Ben will be carrying the burden of caring for them while we are gone. Pray that God provides all we need. 

It is the LORD who goes before you. He will be with you; he will not leave you or forsake you. Do not fear or be dismayed.”

Thank you.

Friday, August 11, 2017

Another Thirteen

Seven years ago this sweet boy completely upended our lives in a village across the ocean.

Today he turns 13.

He's grown so much on so many levels.

And we are blessed to call him our son.


We have two thirteen year olds in our house!!

Saturday, August 5, 2017

How Can I?

Breathing is difficult these days.  I don't suffer from asthma so I can't blame my shortness of breath on that.

I blame the computer.

Well - not really my computer but my computer screen.

Each day... each time I sit down... I am compelled to look at the most beautiful brown eyes. And I stop breathing. And I pray.  And I pray some more. 

My prayers are pitiful.  Just Dear Lords.  And Please.  And then I choke back tears. And gasp a bit.

It's a problem.

Putting the picture of the child who is calling you across the ocean as your background picture on your computer is a definite problem.

It makes breathing difficult and keeps me from focusing on the tasks at hand. 

How can I look in those most beautiful eyes and not want to head for the airport immediately? How do I focus?  How can I keep from counting the weeks (3), the days (21), the hours (I'm not THAT math-smart)?

I'm the one in this household not holding it together very well. The male population around here goes about like nothing at all is about to upend our little house in the disappearing woods. Their emotions are in lockdown until we actually see and hear and know for certain.  They are being realistic. Wise. Careful. Discerning. I can't lockdown my feelings.  I'm lousy at the wait and see attitude that has them serenely passing through the current set of days.  I'm crashing through the house cleaning and gleaning and dragging loads to the thrift shop (if isn't being used then we must not need it).  I'm standing in the little girl aisles in total panic. I'm organizing and counting money and writing to-do lists and planning meals and staring at those beautiful brown eyes and pleading my Dear Lords and Please.

Three weeks.

21 days.

A lot of hours.

A whole lot of time not breathing very well.

I'm not sure I'm going to make it...

Maybe I should change the background picture on my computer!