Thursday, October 30, 2008


Matthew 11:28
Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest.

When creating this blog it was not my intention to make it a spiritual blog. But that's the unconscious turn it's taken. So I'm going to let the Holy Spirit lead me when/where it chooses.

The above verse really spoke to me during my morning devotions. It gave me pause because I don't know anyone walking this earth that wouldn't benefit from that scripture. Who isn't weary from work, chasing/chauffeuring children and running a household? And who isn't burdened by the current state of the economy, the war(s) we're fighting and presidential campaign rhetoric? I know I'm weary and burdened. (So sorry, Greg! You're always the vent on my pressure cooker. Know that I love you for putting up with my steam. :-* )

So to all of you who are also weary and burdened--take a moment to reflect on the above verse (and the continuation below) and drink it in. I think you'll find it to be refreshing. It might even renew your spirit. That's what it did for me.

Matthew 11:29-30
29 Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. 30 For my yoke is easy and my burden is light.

Clearly, Bella has read this scripture before. She has no problem finding rest.

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Love It!

We had record low temperatures here in South Florida this morning. It was actually in the 40's. That's the coldest October weather I've experienced in the seven years I've lived here. Gosh, I am loving life! I always get a little homesick this time of the year. Friends and family in Pennsylvania and Ohio always talk about the brisk temperatures and changing leaves. (It actually snowed in Pittsburgh today!)

Don't get me wrong--I love Florida. But change is good! It was nice to break out a sweater vest and blazer this morning. It's the little things that mean so much.

Monday, October 27, 2008

Life is Amazing

The purpose of today's post is simply to say how appreciative I am of the beautiful world around me. When I look at God's creation I am speechless in its vast beauty and diversity. I took the photos below in a span of approximately three minutes in my backyard this morning. How amazing! Each specimen is beautiful in its own right and serves a purpose, working in concert with its surroundings.

Matthew 6:28-29
28 And why do you worry about clothes? See how the lilies of the field grow. They do not labor or spin. 29Yet I tell you that not even Solomon in all his splendor was dressed like one of these.

Sunday, October 26, 2008


Definition of gratitude: noun - a feeling of being grateful for gifts or favours

Have you ever noticed that sometimes in the thick of things it's difficult to see the details of a situation as they unfold? I think this is something everyone has experienced at one time or another, for better or worse. It happens to me all the time. I get so swept up in the day-to-day workings of life, that I don't fully appreciate things for what they are or for what they represent. I experienced this scenario in a big way this past Thursday.

I was mindful and appreciative of the little things that happened throughout my day, but when I really stepped back that evening (while laying in bed, waiting for sleep to take over) I really saw -- in my mind's eye -- what had happened.

I received several telephone calls and emails Thursday from people who just called to check in. They were mostly from people who hadn't heard from me in a couple of weeks and were reaching out to find out what was going on with Greg and I and with the adoption. As I stated in my initial post, last week wasn't necessarily a good week for me. I learned that we are at a temporary standstill in our adoption. And not only that, we were hit with a $4,000 (+/-) increase in our adoption fee. I was feeling a little self-pity last week and these telephone calls and emails gave me an opportunity to vent. (Sorry to those of you who reached out to me. :-* ) I was moved with each of these individual "contacts", but it wasn't until late that evening that I truly realized what transpired throughout the day. The people who called and emailed did so because they truly CARE ABOUT US. What a lovely thing! And what a lovely, moving gesture. And not only did these people reach out to us, but they offered their support in various ways. And I didn't get it at the moment of contact, but boy did it hit me over the head when I looked at the entire picture. These beautiful people offered themselves to us. I mean, really offered themselves -- in very meaningful and substantial ways. These offers ranged from "just thinking about you" to "we'll be praying for you" to "we'll stage a letter writing campaign for you" to "we'll help you with the money if you need it" to "you're going to spend Christmas with us this year because we know it's going to be difficult for you and you need to be with people who love you". Talk about blessed!!!! And I mean blessed, over and over and over again. And let me tell you -- I was really down last week. I was feeling tested in my faith. And I was praying for God to strengthen and increase my faith. And he sent people (angels on earth, if you will) to bolster my faith. What an awesome God! He is faithful! And he is great -- ALL THE TIME! (Phillipians 4:6-7 6 Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. 7 And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.)

So thank you my beautiful "family of friends", for that is what you all are. You are our family. And we do NOT take you for granted. In fact, we are full of gratitude that you have been placed (albeit strategically) in our lives.

In closing, the following verse came to mind as I reflected on Thursday's experience. It is a scripture from one of my devotionals a couple of weeks ago. And low and behold, our pastor (Rick Whitter) referenced this scripture in this morning's service. It beautifully states the importance of relationships in our lives. And I am grateful for each and every one of you.

Ecclesiastes 4:9-12
9 Two are better than one, because they have a good return for their work: 10 If one falls down, his friend can help him up. But pity the man who falls and has no one to help him up! 11 Also, if two lie down together, they will keep warm. But how can one keep warm alone? 12 Though one may be overpowered, two can defend themselves. A cord of three strands is not quickly broken.

Thursday, October 23, 2008

Okay -- here we go

I've wanted to start this blog for months now, but just haven't had an opportunity. I've been so busy with a myriad of activities and responsibilities. To illustrate the types of tasks I've been undertaking let me tell you what my husband just said. He asked me if I could stay "old-fashioned" "so I could churn up some ice cream." But in all fairness, my prince redeemed himself immediately by throwing me a reduced fat, sugar-free fudgecicle while saying, "Even bloggers need energy." I love this man!

To bring everyone up to speed, Greg and I are in the latter stage(s) of an international adoption. We're adopting an infant boy (birth to 12 months) from Ethiopia. As of today it has been six months and five days since we sent our Dossier off to Ethiopia. (Not than I'm counting, of course.) According to our agency's initial estimate, we should have received a referral in five to seven months. But due to Ethiopia's recent two-month (August/September) court closure, the court is inundated with adoptions. Subsequently this has caused an overflow in our agency's orphanages and transition home. We learned last week that the agency will not provide any referrals to waiting parents until they get children out of the orphanages and transition home and to the States with their families. They're hoping this will change in November, but as we learned early in this process, all bets are off. Anything can happen. The one thing we've learned during this ordeal is that we are in control of nothing and everything is subject to change at a moment's notice.

BUT, we are resilient and of strong faith. So I will continue to sit on my hands (as I used to tell daughter Brittany so she wouldn't get into trouble) and wait. After all, patience is a virtue.

Habakkuk 2:3
For the revelation awaits an appointed time; it speaks of the end and will not prove false. Though it linger, wait for it; it will certainly come and will not delay.