Tuesday, December 9, 2008

So Many Good Things

Things are cranking right along here as we approach Christmas and the new year. We've been so busy I haven't had as much time as I'd like to really reflect on the meaning of the season. But that's okay because so many wonderful things are happening.

We've been to a couple of charitable events in the past few weeks. We've attended two events for brain tumor support on behalf of a client. And we've been to two events (on behalf of another client) to promote yoga for at-risk children. In addition to these events, Greg and I have been furiously shopping for children we've sponsored. The first child was a young boy who resides at the Casa Shalom Orphanage in Guatemala. We also purchased supplies for the New Life Nicaragua Orphanage in Nicaragua. Plus we sponsored two local children through our church's Joseph's Storehouse program and four local children through a client's charity participation. Most of the gift requests were for gift cards but one little girl asked for a bike. Let me tell you, Greg came home last night with the greatest bike and helmet for this little girl. This little gal isn't going to want to stop riding this bicycle. Greg did a fabulous job picking it out. It's a purple BMX-type bike replete with trick foot pegs on the front and back. It's awesome! But oven more awesome is our God-provided ability to support these children. It is through God's blessing that we're able to do this. The things we have are merely on loan to us from God. So it's important that we share his resources wisely and abundantly with the world around us.

Something else that's been amazing are people's attitudes this holiday season. People have been polite and considerate and happy. Yes -- happy! With the state of the economy being so dismal you would think people would be bitter and mean-spirited. But we haven't found this to be the case. People have actually been cheerful. It's a beautiful thing. It has rejuvenated my hope in mankind. It's almost as if people are realizing "by the grace of God, go I." And it's true. A turn of events (be it bad health or job loss) could put any one of us at risk for losing our homes and our possessions. And I think people finally see that possessions aren't the be all end all. They can be taken away at a moment's notice. If there is one good thing to come out of this recession, it just might be that people have finally realized that we truly do need each other.

And the last but certainly not least of all things I want to mention in this post is my husband. You will never believe (well, since most of you know Greg you would believe it) what Greg did for me this weekend. First, he gave me the most splendid foot massage EVER Friday evening. Good golly, I was in heaven! But it didn't stop there. We had a lot of shopping to do Saturday in preparation for a BBQ we hosted Sunday. After returning home I had some landscaping to tackle in the backyard. It involved some pretty heavy lifting and maneuvering. I toiled away for about four hours. By the time I was done I was covered from head to toe in potting soil and dirt and could barely stand up because I had stooped over for so long. To boot I accidentally doused myself while watering the new plants and was freezing as the temperature was dropping. I quickly tip-toed through the living room en route to the bedroom to change when Greg stopped me. Acting as a decoy he commented on how dirty I was and then lead me into the bedroom to change. He had candles lit, soft music playing and had drawn a delicious hot bubble bath. I couldn't jump in fast enough! But -- it didn't stop there. He brought me water, a glass of wine and cooked dinner! Don't ask me what I did to deserve a man like Greg. But boy-oh-boy do I thank the Lord above every-single-day for him. He is my rock and I love him!

Thursday, December 4, 2008


Psalm 31:14-15
But I trust in you, O Lord; I say; "You are my God." My times are in your hands...
God pointed me to this verse this morning. He not only placed this verse before me, but he also told me to commit it to not only my memory, but also to my heart.

You see, God has been doing some pretty amazing things to my heart as of late. As you all know, I have been struggling and searching for answers as we progress toward the latter part of this adoption journey. The closer we get, the wait is almost unbearable (for me) at times, especially since joining the AWAA Yahoo chat group a couple of months ago. I see so much pain and heartache flowing through the postings as families do not pass court, referrals are not made, court dates are met and then postponed for sometimes months at a time and even the deaths of two infants in the transition home. I clearly perceive (and feel) the anguish of these families as they post these stories.

But God has been speaking to me over the past couple of months. He has been telling me to wait and be patient. And when I refused to be patient (the waiting part I have no control over) He sent His Holy Spirit to break me down. But as He did this, He told me exactly what He was doing. He told me that in order for Him to bless me, I needed to break. I needed to give up my will. I needed to turn it over to God so He could prove faithful and be glorified in this process. That happened on a Sunday in church a couple of weeks ago. I felt as if I were being crushed but crushed in love. God's mercy and love were right there with me. At that point I turned it all over to Him. The wait. The anger. The frustration. I was broken.

Fast forward a couple of weeks to this morning's devotionals and prayer time. He placed Psalm 31:14-15 before me. But he spoke to me in doing so. He said, "I ordain your trials and tribulations. I do this so that you can see that I am utterly trustworthy and devoted to you."

I have never felt more loved in my life...

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

Waiting is hard!

It's been quite awhile since I've posted anything. There are a couple of reasons for this. I guess first and foremost it's because we've been busy. Thanksgiving was last week. We spend the holiday with our friend Wendy's family. Her mom cooked the most wonderful traditional Thanksgiving fare. Yum! The four day weekend was delightful. Well, for me at least. Poor Greg woke up Saturday morning with a bad sore throat. This turned into a full-blown, raging cold by late Saturday afternoon. He's been a real trouper though. He's still battling it but it hasn't kept him down.

It was nice to get caught up on sleep and get a jump start on putting up Christmas decorations. I splurged this year and did something I've wanted to do since moving to South Florida seven years ago. I ordered our Christmas tree from a tree farm in North Carolina. It was cut last Wednesday (by the owner himself) and FedEx'd to us. We received the tree Friday morning. Wow! Was it ever worth it. The only way the tree could've been fresher is if we would've cut it down ourselves. It is perfectly shaped and wonderfully fragrant. Greg jokes that he is going to put all the furniture in the garage so we can just have the tree in the room because it's so big. I love it!

To go back to my opening paragraph, the second reason I've not written is that I kind of have my head buried in the sand as of late. I've been so down (for lack of a better word) over the adoption. The wait time is like the Energizer Bunny! It just keeps going and going and going. I swear there is no end in sight! Without any referrals in October and only five given in the last week of November, it seems as if America World is NEVER going to get caught up! There are 14 families ahead of us on the Yahoo chat database. Eight of these famlies are waiting for infant boys just as we are. At this rate, it doesn't look like we're going to get a referral until January. I had high hopes that we'd at least receive a telephone call around Christmas. But alas I don't believe that to be the case now. It's hard. I try to be patient. I try to wait on the Lord. But I feel as if my (actually our) life has been on hold for the past 15 months. I know God has a plan. But sometimes it's hard as a mere human to wait for His plan to unfold. IYesterday I received my travel immunizations. Yikes! I received six shots--three in each arm. I received the shots at 3:30 PM and by 6:00 PM my triceps began to feel as if I had a strenuous workout. When 9:00 PM rolled around and I crawled into bed, I couldn't lay on either side. And forget trying to wrestle with the covers! I felt like my arms went 10 rounds with Mike Tyson! Don't be alarmed. This is a typical reaction caused by two of the vaccinations. They are feeling somewhat better today. Greg has no idea what's in store for him. Sssssshhhhh.... don't tell him... The secret is ours.

Isaiah 41:9-10

..."You are my servant'; I have chosen you and have not rejected you. 10 So do not fear, for I am with you; do not be dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you; I will uphold you with my righteous right hand."