Wednesday, December 29, 2010
Tonight our son prayed a simple prayer from the purity of his 6 year old heart. "Lord, help us to adopt a kid soon." He has no concept of time or space, money or process. He simply knows that His God can the power to answer his precious prayer.
As Jesus taught his disciples, we must become like little children. What if we prayed and believed as Micah Pat does. What if we simply said what we desired and expected our God to do it. No worry about the details Lord, they are in Your hands.
So in the inspiring words of your brother, "Lord, help us to adopt a kid soon.
Wednesday, December 8, 2010
Please enjoy reading!
For so many Christmas is a time of stress. Having to find the right gift for every person on your list, trying to get the house decorated, cleaned for company, meals made, and all the other details we feel have to be done. Tonight I want us to take a step back and focus on the simplicity of Christmas. God did not intend for us to get so stressed out that we lose sight of His greatest and most simple message. That message rang out as shepherds ran to a stable and kings bowed at a manger. The message still rings true today. God loves you. The simple act of a baby’s birth told of us God’s great love.
Luke 2:6-7 “And while they were there, the time came for her baby to be born. 7 She gave birth to her first child, a son. She wrapped him snugly in strips of cloth and laid him in a manger, because there was no lodging available for them.”
It was a simple star that led simple people to a simple stable in a simple town to find the simplicity of God’s love in the form of a simple child. Think of all the things God has ever done for you, all the things He has given you. Of all of this the simplest thing that He has given is Himself. We try to make everything that God does some complex act with multiple meanings. Let us not lose focus this Christmas that love is the crux of all the complexity in the scripture and in our spiritual lives. Love is a simple emotion. We easily feel it toward a hundred things every day. Love is not complex, relationships and learning to deal with this most powerful emotion confuses us into thinking that love is somehow a high reality that we can never attain. Why did God send His son in the form of a baby? Because He loves you.
Why did that baby teach us all that we needed to know? Because He loves you. Why did Jesus go to the cross? Because He loves you.
John 3:16 “For God loved the world so much that he gave his one and only Son, so that everyone who believes in him will not perish but have eternal life.”
Christmas emphasizes God’s love toward us and it should also emphasize our love toward others. You want to know how to love? Jesus tells us in Luke 22:25-26 ‘Jesus told them, “In this world the kings and great men lord it over their people, yet they are called ‘friends of the people.’ 26 But among you it will be different. Those who are the greatest among you should take the lowest rank, and the leader should be like a servant”. Serve someone as an act of love. Go out of your way to do something for someone you would not normally so. As you come to a new realization of God’s love for you this season, show that love to others as well. Have you accepted God’s love? There is no better time than today!
Wednesday, December 1, 2010
Have you ever felt that God was calling you to do something, but you did not feel up to the task? Most of us go through this. It is a common response to God. When God calls us we are very quick to remind Him how we are unable to do what He wants us to do. It’s kind of odd how often we feel the need to remind the creator of the universe about our weakness. Mary stands as our example in surrendering to God’s will. Can you imagine how she must have felt when the angel proclaimed to her that she would be the mother of the Savior? No pressure there on a teenage girl about to be married.
• Luke 1:26-38 “In the sixth month of Elizabeth’s pregnancy, God sent the angel Gabriel to Nazareth, a village in Galilee, 27 to a virgin named Mary. She was engaged to be married to a man named Joseph, a descendant of King David. 28 Gabriel appeared to her and said, “Greetings, favored woman! The Lord is with you![a]” 29 Confused and disturbed, Mary tried to think what the angel could mean. 30 “Don’t be afraid, Mary,” the angel told her, “for you have found favor with God! 31 You will conceive and give birth to a son, and you will name him Jesus. 32 He will be very great and will be called the Son of the Most High. The Lord God will give him the throne of his ancestor David. 33 And he will reign over Israel[b] forever; his Kingdom will never end!” 34 Mary asked the angel, “But how can this happen? I am a virgin.” 35 The angel replied, “The Holy Spirit will come upon you, and the power of the Most High will overshadow you. So the baby to be born will be holy, and he will be called the Son of God. 36 What’s more, your relative Elizabeth has become pregnant in her old age! People used to say she was barren, but she’s now in her sixth month. 37 For nothing is impossible with God.[c]” 38 Mary responded, “I am the Lord’s servant. May everything you have said about me come true.” And then the angel left her.
There are three things that we can learn from Mary. First, we must trust God that He knows what is best for you. We say we trust God, but most often we only trust Him on our terms. He calls us to speak to someone in a store, or encourage someone we do not know. We say, “Oh there must be someone better at this than me”. Too often we do not have an appropriate understanding of our worth and potential in Christ. I know full well that God has given me the ability to sing, I also know full well that if it were not for the grace of God I could not play piano. I understand my ability and my inability, in the end I have to trust God every service to accomplish through me what He wants.
Second, we must have faith that what God has said will happen, will be accomplished through us. It would have done the world no good if Mary had trusted that God knows best but not believed it would really happen. You may be sitting here tonight knowing that God has called you, but you really don’t believe it can happen. Our adoption is sort of like this. I know and I trust God that He has called us to adopt, but do I really have faith to believe He will provide all that we need to accomplish it. In all honesty I can stand before you tonight and say that I do. Mary had to trust in what God was calling her to do and have faith that it would come about.
Last, we must surrender to God’s will. This is what Mary did. Look at verse 38 again, “Mary responded, “I am the Lord’s servant. May everything you have said about me come true.” In these simple words Mary surrenders to God’s will. Why is it so hard for us to do the same? All we need to do is tell God, here I am do with me as you please and may your will be accomplished through my life. What does God want from you? He wants you to surrender to Him. All that you are and all that you have are His. He simply wants to know that you will do as He has asked you. Are you willing to surrender to Him?
Tuesday, November 30, 2010
Our human nature would say forget this girl she is not faithful or worth the trouble. Matthew 1:19 tells us that Joseph did not want to make a scene or a public example of her (i.e. have her stoned). So he set out to break the engagement quietly.
What character this man had. The angel of the Lord does not appear to him until the next verse. Joseph in his humanity, in his anger, and in his hurt loved her enough to break with her in a way that was honorable.
Once the angel did appear to him, he was more than willing to take her and marry her. What love and devotion Joseph had for Mary. What a perfect picture of how God loves us. In spite of all he thought and felt he was willing to become the earthly father of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.
Joseph became His adoptive father. What an honorable man. Some put to much emphasis on Christ's parents. Others do not put enough. As you celebrate the birth of Christ this season, thank God that there was a willing and honorable man to marry the pregnant Mary and become the father of our Lord.
Thursday, November 25, 2010
As we set around the dinner table today, let us reflect on His goodness. In so doing may we also reflect on those around the world that do not have. Today, somewhere in the Philippine Islands a little child is eating a meager meal of rice longing to be a part of a family. Though we do not know this child yet, I am thankful to God for providing for your needs until we reach you. I am thankful that God is providing for us as we move through the adoption process. I am thankful for a church family that will love you. I am thankful for a heritage of Christian faith that will be passed on to you. I am thankful that very soon you will be our son or daughter.
Tuesday, November 16, 2010
As I was thinking about you today, I was thinking about the fact that Jesus came to earth in the form of a baby. An innocent, helpless, and vulnerable child. It never ceases to amaze me that God chose this form. He could have come in the form of a majestic King on His white steed. He could have come as God Himself, with all His power and glory. He could have come as a mighty warrior with sword drawn. He came as none of those, but came in the form of a percious gift. The most perfect gift, a child.
All children are a gift from God. You will be one of the greatest gifts that we ever receive. I know it is not likely, but I wish God would send you, our perfect gift, to us by next Christmas.
Tuesday, November 9, 2010
Imagine being two years old. Your mother takes you for a walk through the local market. Once in the crowds you turn and your mother is gone. She has left you forever. You do not know where you will go. You are not old enough to take care of your own basic needs. Imagine the fear that would grip your tiny heart. This is the story of a real child living in an island nation in the south pacific. Mission 1:27 exists because of him and 143,000,000 like him all over our world. Mission 1:27 is an orphan care and adoption ministry. Our purpose is to live James 1:27, “Pure and genuine religion in the sight of God the Father means caring for orphans and widows in their distress” NLT. Why do we do it? Because God so loved the world. Here in America we have so much to be thankful for, things that we often take for granted. These things that seem so basic to us are the very things that orphans around the world long for. We have been richly blessed. What would happen if we shared that blessing with these hurting children? During this Thanksgiving season, let me encourage you to be thankful for all that you have and be mindful of a child that does not.
II. We have a family.
In many areas of the world, orphanages are filled to capacity with infants that need changed and older kids that share a room with 30 others. There is no privacy. Though they desire a home to call their own, what they really need and want is a forever family. 15 million children in the world have lost both parents. 143 million have no permanent family. Here in the US there are 500,000 children in foster care. Do not take your family for granted; rather be as Paul in 1 Thess. 3:9, “How we thank God for you! Because of you we have great joy as we enter God’s presence.” Be thankful for those loved ones in your life. What if you could share that love with a hurting child?
III. We have plenty of food.
Very soon we will sit down at a table with friends and family and eat all of the wonderful Thanksgiving food. The smell and wonder of the season will fill our hearts with thanks to God for His provision and blessing. Across the world a child will have less to eat on that same day than we throw away from our plates. Food and clean water is a basic necessity, but one that millions do not have. Many children adopted from around the world will come to the US severely malnourished. Malnourishment leads to many developmental problems. Why? Because they lack basic nutrition. 1Timothy 4:3-4 tells us, “They will say it is wrong to be married and wrong to eat certain foods. But God created those foods to be eaten with thanks by faithful people who know the truth. 4 Since everything God created is good, we should not reject any of it but receive it with thanks.” The point Paul is making is simply this, be thankful for what God has given you. What if you could share your food with a hungry child?
IV. We have possessions.
When we finally make the trip to the Philippines, it is likely that our new son or daughter will own the close that they are wearing and that is it. We have shoes for everyday of the week and more toys than our kids can keep up with. So many children around the world will go this Christmas without a single toy or present. Phil. 4:6 “Don’t worry about anything; instead, pray about everything. Tell God what you need, and thank him for all he has done.” This is a very hard verse for us to live up to. We all tend to worry about our needs. What if we strove to be thankful for what we have and were willing to share with a child that has nothing?
V. We have faith in Christ.
By far the most important thing in our lives is our relationship with Christ. It is something that we should continually be thankful for. Hebrews 12:28 “Since we are receiving a Kingdom that is unshakable, let us be thankful and please God by worshiping him with holy fear and awe.” Millions of orphans around the world have never heard the name of Jesus. They have never heard that Jesus loves them. If we do not tell them, who will? If we do not tell them now, when? What if we loved these children enough to rearrange our lives so that they have the opportunity to hear?
Those who have the most are often the least thankful. We lose sight of the fact that all that we posses is God’s and really has little to do with us. 2 Thess. tells us to be thankful in everything. What if we allowed that thankfulness to lead to action? You may be sitting here today asking, what can I do? Some can go, other can give, others can pray, still others can bring a child into their home. In the end if all of us do what we can, God’s work will be accomplished. I know not all can take the step to adopt, but you can love and support those who do. This Thanksgiving be truly thankful for what God has done in you and blessed you with and think of the little one on the other side of the world that has nothing. Remember that God loved the world enough that He gave His Son, with God’s help we can love the world enough to share His love.
I ended with the video below.
Thursday, November 4, 2010
We pray for you daily and are thankful for all our friends and family that do too.
Friday, October 29, 2010
Adoption can also seem painful. It is a painfully long process. You wait nine months for a biological baby and three years for an adopted one. Both are financially taxing. The whole adoption process can be looked at as painful. You have prenatal doctor visits, you have pre-adoption doctor visits.
Many wonder how you can love a child that does not share your DNA as much as one that does. I believe the processes are so similar so that God can knit the adopted child into your heart, just as He knits the biological one in its mothers womb.
Child birth is painful. So is adoption. The pain of delivery will soon be forgotten when you hold your new child for the first time. Sure other trials will come. Adjustments to our food, our language, our sleeping schedule, etc, but in the end they are always worth it. You will always be worth it.
Tuesday, October 26, 2010
"I laughed, I cried, it moved me Bob" Larry the Cucumber.
My kids loved the movie. As we set in the darkness of the movie theater, I began to wonder if it would prove to be yet another movie putting adoption into a negative light. Gru, the main character, strives to be the most evil scientist there is. In order to accomplish his plan, he decides to adopt three beautiful little girls. They just happen to be the best sales girls for their girl scout like club. In the end, the girls hearts are changed as love begins to grow. Gru also changes, moving from hard hearted evil doer, to a loving and caring father. His focus changes from himself to his beautiful little girls. His priorities are turned right side up.
You may not be an evil scientist, but your life can be changed. Our lives will soon be changed like Gru's. Yes, trials will come, but we will face them as a loving family. We have one advantage that Gru and his girls did not have. We have the love of Jesus Christ guiding us and leading us every step of the way.
I can't wait to show you our adopted child "Despicable Me" and more importantly the love of Jesus. I bet your life will be changed too.
Friday, October 22, 2010
I am excited to report that we have raised more money, we are now $550 from our goal. Thanks so much to all who have given. It really means a lot. We are truly blessed with family and friends that believe in what we are doing.
We pray for you daily.
Tuesday, October 19, 2010
Think about it. In one day our salvation was paid for on the cross. On one day our lives are transformed by His mercy as we accept the gift of salvation. In one day we that believe on Christ will be taken to heaven to be with Him forever. In one day a promotion can come to us. In one day an opportunity that we never expected can come. In one day we can receive a phone call saying our child is ready for adoption.
So much can change in one day. Today I am meeting with an official from the Assemblies of God. We are trying to move our ministry, Mission 1:27, toward national approval. I do not know what this day will bring, but I do know that God can change my life today. Through this He can also change the lives of children all over our world.
All it takes is one day.
check out our ministry site at http://www.mission127.com/ the site is under development.
Friday, October 15, 2010
In the next few weeks Jenna and I will begin our Homestudy process. We are very excited to have this begin. At the end of this process we will have a large sum of our money due. To date we have raised all but $1,000 of it. We sincerely appreciate all who have given to help. After we have an approved Homestudy we will be eligible for grants to help with a good portion of the remaining expenses. If God would so direct you, please consider making a donation to help us reach the Homestudy amount and filing fees. You may donate at the side to our Paypal account or you may send a check to:
PO Box 99086
Louisville, KY 40269
All donations to Mission 127 are tax deductible.
Please write 101 on the memo line.
We are so richly blessed with loving family and friends who have and are supporting us in prayer. This we value greatly!
Wednesday, October 13, 2010
I believe that fall is the most beautiful time of year. The vivid colors that all come from the same color...green. Purples, reds, oranges, yellows, and browns spread their beauty like a carpet. The crisp breeze that comes as the weather begins to change makes me want pumpkin spice and peppermint coffees. I look forward to spending time with friends and family around one table.
I don't know what the fall season is like in the Philippines or if you even have one. You will love this time of year. I can't wait for your first fall, your first Thanksgiving, and your first Christmas as our newest little one. As the leaves change and fall from the trees a renewed awareness comes; if God is in control of the seasons then He must be in complete control of our lives. I can't wait to share the beauty of our fall with you!
Tuesday, October 5, 2010
The first refrain says, "The love of God is greater far than tongue or pen could ever tell." There are times in this life when we are completely overcome by the love of our God. There are others when we long so much to feel God's love but we feel nothing. Whether we feel God or not, He is always there and His love never changes. One of the first Bible verses we will teach you is John 3:16 "For God so loved the world, that He gave His one and only Son." This Son, Jesus Christ, loves you with an unending love. As I prayed for you last night, I felt such peace and love that can only come from God. It is truly a God thing to love someone you have never met, never seen, and don't know anything about...including if you are a boy or a girl. We continue to work and wait, praying for your needs to be met until mommy and I have the opportunity to introduce you to this love.
Wednesday, September 29, 2010
In our world today hatred is rampant. One group dislikes another because of the color of their skin, or because of some action. Life can be very complicated and emotions can get in the way of rational Christ-like thought. It may be portrayed that this hatred is new or is growing, but the culture which Jesus lived in had many issues as well. The Romans hated the Jews and the Jews hated the Samaritans. Jews were not suppose to walk through Samaria much less speak to one. John goes out of his way to recount the story of Jesus and the Samaritan woman.
John 4:4-9 “He had to go through Samaria on the way. 5 Eventually he came to the Samaritan village of Sychar, near the field that Jacob gave to his son Joseph. 6 Jacob’s well was there; and Jesus, tired from the long walk, sat wearily beside the well about noontime. 7 Soon a Samaritan woman came to draw water, and Jesus said to her, “Please give me a drink.” 8 He was alone at the time because his disciples had gone into the village to buy some food. 9 The woman was surprised, for Jews refuse to have anything to do with Samaritans.[b] She said to Jesus, “You are a Jew, and I am a Samaritan woman. Why are you asking me for a drink? Jesus replied, “If you only knew the gift God has for you and who you are speaking to, you would ask me, and I would give you living water.” 11 “But sir, you don’t have a rope or a bucket,” she said, “and this well is very deep. Where would you get this living water? 12 And besides, do you think you’re greater than our ancestor Jacob, who gave us this well? How can you offer better water than he and his sons and his animals enjoyed?” 13 Jesus replied, “Anyone who drinks this water will soon become thirsty again. 14 But those who drink the water I give will never be thirsty again. It becomes a fresh, bubbling spring within them, giving them eternal life.”
There are two important lessons that Jesus teaches us here in this short story. First, Jesus is our example in race relations. God does not care the color of a person’s skin, the language or culture of a person, He cares about the heart. Those who spout that they are Christians and racists do not understand our loving and compassionate God. The second lesson we learn is that Jesus is the source of salvation. When you put the two lessons together, Jesus loves all peoples and wants all to come to Him for forgiveness. Our God is a loving God. Our treatment of those who are different from us shows how well we understand the character of Christ. How do you treat people? What if they look different, eat different, speak different, dress different, act different, or have different interests? Do you treat them all with the love of Christ? Christ loved you enough to save you. If He loves you this much, he loves the person sitting across the lunch room or the class room the same. Christ will not show up in your school, but you do every day. You are the Christ that they will see. How are you representing the one who saved you?
Tuesday, September 28, 2010
Tuesday, September 21, 2010
Today I am praying for one of those here in our church. It has been wonderful to see how God has placed such a great burden for orphans on her heart. Her willingness to accept children that may not otherwise be adoptable is an inspiration. She will make a wonderful mother.
Last week she received a call asking if she would be willing to accept a child with a heart defect or one that's mother has used drugs. After prayer and consideration she is willing to take either. It is our desire to have this beautiful child here in its forever home before Christmas. a referral could come very soon. We will continue to pray to that end.
Mom and I have been working through our training. We are so excited to see how God brings you to us, in His time.
We love you very much and pray for you everyday.
Monday, September 20, 2010
Friday, September 17, 2010
The father's heart is to make sure none are fatherless. In a spiritual sense, it is God's will and desire for all to know and accept Christ as their personal Saviour.
1 Timothy 2:3-4 "This is good and pleases God our Saviour, who wants everyone to be saved and to understand the truth." NLT
In a physical sense, it is also God's desire to protect and care for the fatherless. In the Old Testament guidelines were put in place by God to protect the widow and the orphan. James tells us that true righteousness before God is their care. It is my joy, hope, and privilege to proclaim you my child...whoever you turn out to be. God the Father knows your needs and cares for you. Since the beginning of time He has had in mind the day that mommy and I will claim you as our own. It is His divine will, it is His divine plan.
May the Father's heart comfort you. You do not even know yet that there is a mom and dad thousands of miles of way signing papers, raising money, and praying so that you will become our child. One day very soon I will be your father.
Thursday, September 16, 2010
Our purpose is twofold. One, we want to be adoption advocates within the Assemblies of God (AG). It is our desire to answer questions, give support, and connect willing parents with Christian agencies. Two, we want to help our AG missionaries around the world provide for these children. We will partner willing churches and individuals with special projects within our orphanages, children’s homes, and ministries to street kids through our Adopt a Project program.
We are Kentucky District approved and are working toward national approval with the AG. Please contact us at email@example.com, 502-297-0056, or Mission 127, PO Box 99086, Louisville, KY 40269. For more information visit us at http://www.mission127.com/ (under development). Together we can touch the lives of children around the world.
For His Children,
Rev. Darren M. Lewis - Director
Tuesday, September 14, 2010
As I was reading in my Bible the other night, I was drawn to the 43rd chapter of Isaiah. This portion of scripture relates God's answer to "The Prayer".
Isaiah 43:1-4 But now, O Jacob, listen to the Lord who created you. O Israel, the one who formed you says, “Do not be afraid, for I have ransomed you. I have called you by name; you are mine. When you go through deep waters, I will be with you. When you go through rivers of difficulty, you will not drown. When you walk through the fire of oppression, you will not be burned up; the flames will not consume you. For I am the Lord, your God, the Holy One of Israel, your Savior. I gave Egypt as a ransom for your freedom; I gave Ethiopia[a] and Seba in your place. Others were given in exchange for you. I traded their lives for yours because you are precious to me. You are honored, and I love you.
God has given us the assurance that no matter what our situation He is with us. He will bring us through the trials of this life. What if we also read this scripture as a command from God? That we should seek to help those in need, to help bring them through the fire. These verses are my prayer for you! God is sufficient but He also uses human hands to perform great miracles. I with God will hold you in times of trial. With God I will go with you through the fire. With God I will ransom you from your situation and bring you freedom through Jesus Christ. Both in teaching you about Jesus' love for you and bringing you into our forever family. This is my prayer for you.
Thursday, September 9, 2010
This week we have sent out a letter detailing our adoption experience. We did not have addresses for everyone we wanted to send to. As a part of that letter we are also asking for your help in bringing our child home. The total cost of our adoption will be around $20,000. Some funds are available in the form of grants and low interest loans once the homestudy is approved. In order to do that we must expend all other financial options including asking friends and family. If you feel that God would lead you to help in this way. Please send your donation to:
Mission 127 Adoption Fund
PO Box 99086
Louisville, KY 40269
Write 101 on the memo line.
Or donate securely by using the Paypal button at the side.
We greatly appreciate your willingness to help. You will have a part in our miracle.
For His Children,
This week we have completed our paperwork for the homestudy. We will soon begin our training classes. During this time we will also be raising money to help bring you home quicker and be working on the dossier process.
The greatest satisfaction we have in this life is finding the will of God and doing it. Adoption is His will for us at this time in our life. You are God's will for us. With passion for God's call we will move forward.
Thursday, September 2, 2010
Last night I read through several stories from adoptive families. They were very inspiring, heartwarming, and served as a reminder to expect the unexpected when you are living out God's plan. Several of these families thought they had years to wait and one day the phone rang and within a few weeks their child was home. One family had even planned on adopting internationally until their agency asked if they would be willing to take a child that was an hour away from them. The child was the age, sex, and race they had been seeking to adopt. God is awesome.
The testimonies and stories of others serve to inspire and encourage us in our journey. I hope that our story will one day be an encouragement to others as they see the hand of God moving in your adoption. God is a big God and He is in control.
I don't know what is ahead, but I know that it is going to be good.
Tuesday, August 31, 2010
Tuesday, August 17, 2010
In our case, you our Filipino child, will be thrown into a world of WHITE. Mom and I want you to know that we will do everything we can to protect you and train in you in God's view of race. God did not create one race to be better and another to be worse. He created us all. We all came from the same fathers, both God the father and Adam the first man. We are all set apart for God's glory. I take joy in diversity. It is wonderful to come into a church each week where we are surrounded by families from the Philippines, Liberia, Ghana, Japan, India, and others. Our church is a celebration of God's love for diverse people. I like to think of it as a snap shot of heaven here in earth.
The writer of Hebrews refers to the great cloud of witnesses. In that cloud men and women from every race, tribe, language, and nation will be present. With the help of our Filipino family we will give you the opportunity to connect to your native culture. Everything we do for you, as with our other kids, will be done out of God's love and our for you.
Tuesday, August 10, 2010
God is incredibly moving in I and your mom's hearts, as well as our church. He is doing great things. There is so much expectation right now in seeing what God will accomplish in and through us. You are a part of that. Mom and I are so excited to see you for the first time and to love you. We are excited to see what God will do in your life. God is calling you to us and to our church family. You will be loved, cared for, nurtured, and trained in the ways of God.
God has adopted me into his family, just as mom and I will adopt you. We have received his Spirit. Have no fear God is in control of all of our lives.
Thursday, August 5, 2010
In the midst of all of this your adoption continues to move forward. It is so time consuming. Waiting for this appointment or that paper work to come in. Today mom and I will be going for our Psych exams. Mom has her doctors appointment by the end of the month, then all the homestudy paperwork will be completed. From there we move on to the Dossier and fundraising...oh the fundraising. I have started an online store on Amazon.com to help raise some money. Several people have donated items to help.
We pray for you everyday, that you are being cared for and loved. We pray you have enough to eat and clothes to wear. We also pray for your caregivers.
It will be a joy when we have our gotcha day.
Tuesday, July 20, 2010
Now that I am feeling better, mom and I are moving forward on paperwork and interviews, etc. God is really speaking to us about Adoption/Orphan ministry and the need to establish something within the Assemblies of God. I do not know how or when all of this will play out, but I am very excited to see what God does through us as we move forward in His timing.
We love you very much and pray for your soon arrival.
Wednesday, July 7, 2010
God's Word speaks often of the plight of Orphans. You have been separated from your parents for one reason or another. This has been a traumatic experience for you. When you come to us there will be a period of adjustment and a time for us to prove that we are here for you. God loves you so much. Jesus, our Saviour, says in John 14:18 "No, I will not abandon you as orphans-I will come to you." Here Jesus is speaking of His return, but it also emphasizes His love for you as an orphan. Mom and I make the same promise to you. We will not abandon you. When you come into our home you will be our child, just as Natalie and Micah are our children. You will be loved and prayed over. We also promise that we will come to you. I don't know when, but soon we will come. We can't wait to hold you for the first time.
God loves you and so do we!
Tuesday, July 6, 2010
God may not be calling you to adopt, but He is calling all of us to do something. Our hearts desire is to not only adopt but be able to establish an adoption fund for others that need help. What is God calling you to do?
To you who is waiting for us to be your parents,
I am asking our family and friends to pray with us for you and our adoption journey. There are many hills for us to clime over. We are seriously praying about who you will be and if God is leading us to pick you as a waiting child or if God is calling us to let the Philippine government "pick you". Either way you are God's selection for us. Soon we will begin our homestudy and fundraising. If we select you as a waiting child we will have to have all of the money raised within a year rather than 2-3 years. As with all things in mommy and daddy's lives you are in God's hands. What He wills, will come to pass.
We love you more each day.
Tuesday, June 29, 2010
"Great is thy faithfulness, oh God my Father. There is no shadow of turning with thee. Thou changest not they compassions they fail not. As thou hast been, thou forever wily be. Great is they faithfulness, great is thy faithfulness. Morning by morning new mercies I see. All I have needed thy hand hath provided. Great is thy faithfulness, dear Lord unto me."
If the words of this song are true, which they are, then God never changes. What he cared for 2,000 years ago he still cares for today. Every orphan, every widow, every neglected child, or every human that does not know Him, He cares for and loves with a never ending love. Yes, there will be challenges when you come into our home, there will be times of frustration as there are with biological children. If God's grace is sufficient to forgive us, it is also sufficient to help us bring you to a place of loving Jesus as much as mom and I do.
We pray for you everyday. My prayer is whatever issues you have will begin to be healed as we move through this process. God can heal your little heart before mom and I ever see you for the first time. God has a plan for your life and in that infinite plan Go has chosen mom and I to play a part.
Wednesday, June 23, 2010
We are praying about so many things. If God was not in charge it would be overwhelming. The good news is God is in charge so therefore I am not overwhelmed. Last night I read one of my favorite verses"
2 Corinthians 6:3 "We live in such a way that no one will stumble because of us, and no one will find fault with our ministry." This is my prayer for my ministry. I also pray that as people look at our lives, they too will be touched by God and have a heart for adoption. They might be able to save another child just like you.
Wednesday, June 16, 2010
He quotes Peter Kreefts words,
"If one Egyptian tailor hadn't cheated on the threads of Joseph's mantle, Potiphar's wife would not have been able to tear it, present it as evidence to Potiphar that Joseph attacked her, gotten him thrown in prison, and let him be in a position to interpret Pharaoh's dream, win his confidence, advise him to store seven years of grain, and save his family, the seventy original Jews from whom Jesus came. We owe our salvation to a cheap Egyptian tailor."
What a great way to look at God's involvement in the littlest aspects of our lives. God loves you so much that He is standing with the grand baton in His hand orchestrating the live of your soon to be mom and dad. Why? Because He loves you enough to do it. He loves you enough to work behind the scenes putting all the right details together to get you to us at just the right moment in our lives and in yours.
Mom and I have been filling out paper work, writing checks, and spending a lot of time in prayer. I am forming the idea of some fundraiser we may be able to do. We need to raise $4,000 by the end of October. That seems daunting, but I know if God is in control of an Egyptian tailor's thread, He is also in control of all that we need to move forward.
We love you.
Saturday, June 12, 2010
Friday, June 4, 2010
I have been reading a new book, "Adopted for Life" by Russell Moore. It is one of the best resources I have found to date. The chapter I just finished during my devotion time this morning dealt with the relationship Joseph had with Christ. What an awesome picture of adoption. As I was reading through this chapter I realized again how much I love being a dad. It is one of the most fun things I do and also one of the most scary. No one knows as they raise their children how they will turn out. In this world their are no guarantees. As a Christian father I put my trust in God that each of my kids will turn out great. Each night, while they are asleep, I lay my hands on their little heads and pray over them. I pray for God to keep them safe, help them to grow in the knowledge of Christ, and to never let them turn their backs on God. I pray for their spouses, their children, and I pray that they will grow to be a Godly man and a Godly woman. I have begun to pray the same for you.
My grandfather, your great-grandfather, prayed over his children and their children and their children. God has honored his prayer. All of Grandpa Lewis' descendants are serving the Lord. Though I never knew him, his prayers cover my life and they cover yours. My Grandfather may not have known that the only grandchild he never saw would grow to follow in his footsteps. He never knew that I would one day adopt a child from the Philippines, but his prayers were for all future generations. That includes you. Grandpa had a great knowledge of his adoption in to the family of God. If you turn out to be a little boy, maybe we'll have to name you after him? Though you might not like being named Harry Clifford. :)
Wednesday, June 2, 2010
Yesterday, mom and I received our homestudy paperwork. All I can say is wow that’s a lot of paperwork. It ranges from background checks to payment calendars, custody questionnaires to doctors recommendations. All must be signed and returned. It kind of reminds me of the stack of paper when we bought our house. All of this can be overwhelming if you are not prepared for it. Mom and I are slowly working through it, filling out what we can. Setting aside what we can't. It is amazing to me that God is in paperwork :) A mountain of paperwork is not an obstacle but an opportunity for us to reach you.
We have our first conference call tomorrow. Mommy and I will be able to ask questions and gain information for our adoption journey. After this call we will be ready to process our formal application. We have decided to go ahead and pay for this. Then we will wait and see how God brings about yet another miracle.
As I was praying yesterday morning and today, I can't help but wonder if you have even been born yet. I want you to know that God says before He formed you in your mother’s womb He knew you. He knew you would one day need a forever mommy and daddy. As you may still be in the womb mommy and daddy are praying for you and we are already beginning to love you.
Tuesday, June 1, 2010
God grant Charlie a loving family who loves you with all their heart. Provide for his every need. May little Charlie experience the love of his forever family very very soon.
Sunday, May 30, 2010
I have begun to pray that God will begin to soften your heart toward Him and us. I know that you may come with a lot of baggage. Some of these things will not be easy. We know that Philippians is correct when it says, "I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me". Our prayer is that each day God puts another piece of our puzzle in its place.
Friday, May 28, 2010
All of this can be overwhelming, if you let it. So much money is due at the beginning of the process. Not sure how all of it is going to come together. I do know that if God is in it, it will come together. Mom and I will trust and work in God's timing, not ours. It the money is not there and we lose out with this agency, then He wanted us to work with another. If God provides for us, we will move forward.
Some of our Filipino friends are going to the Philippines for a two week visit. They are so excited about you, they are telling all of their friends, many in Tagalog. Which I can't understand. :) When you arrive in the US you will become and American, but you will be surrounded with a Filipino family that loves mom and dad and will love you too. I watched a Filipino baby playing tonight at a graduation, I just kept wondering what you might look like, how old will you be, will you be a boy or a girl? God knows. Before He formed you in the womb of your biological mother He knew you. He created you for us. To be a part of our forever family.
Thursday, May 27, 2010
This morning God gave me this verse. Whenever we are in the Lord's will and plan for our lives, we can expect to be attacked by our enemy. I have been there since saying yes to the Lord last Friday. Saturday morning I woke up sick and have been sick off and on since. As I was praying this morning I began to question God, I felt clearly that this is an attack because the devil does not want us to save your life. He does not want us to raise you in a Christian home.
Spiritual warfare is a part of the Christian life. The unfortunate thing is, most of us do not know how to properly battle the enemy. I was very anxious last night and that feeling remained this morning. As I walked into the sanctuary to pray and seek the Lord, I felt Him say lay down in my presence. I did and began to find peace in His presence. Fifteen minutes later I woke up :) I had fallen asleep anxious and woke up in peace. I had fallen asleep with questions and woke up knowing God is the answer....I knew that before, but sometimes we have to be reminded.
Jan Beazley, founder of All God's Children Adoptions and author of "The Strength of Mercy", has a whole chapter devoted to their spiritual battle experiences. In this she reminds of God's protection by highlighting two verses.
Ephesians 6:11-12 "Put on the full armor of God, that you may be able to stand firm against the schemes of the devil. For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the powers, against the world forces of this darkness, against the spiritual forces of wickedness in the heavenly places."
Luke 10:19 "Behold, I have given you authority over all the power of the enemy....nothing will injure you."
Our God is faithful and just, wise and powerful, loving and merciful. He loves you more than your mom and I will ever be able to. You are worth fighting for; God's words and dads. When you are placed in our arms 2 or 3 or even 4 years from now, all the battles will be worth it. Mom fought the physical battle for our first two children, perhaps God is allowing me to fight this one for you.
Wednesday, May 26, 2010
Philippians 4:6 says, "Do not worry about anything, but pray and ask God for everything you need, always giving thanks."
There are as many as 143 million orphans in the world. We are not called to reach all of them just the one, you, who God has for us. Our prayer is that whatever your issues, as there may be many, God will place you the one who He wants into our family. In turn God will also give us the strength and wisdom to raise you to love God with all your heart, soul, and strength.
Mother Theresa was asked how she coped with the overwhelming need. She said I focus on the one in front of me.
God help us to trust you as you put all the pieces of the puzzle together. Help us know that you are in control of the process and will place the child in our family that you have intended from the foundation of the world.
I am beginning your story May 25, 2010. About two years ago your mom and I began to feel God calling us to adopt. We prayed a lot and thought about it a lot, but did not feel like the time was right. Over the past year it seems that everything in our lives has been pointing us toward you. I was taking a summer class for my Masters Degree May of 2009. There were only two students in the class myself and another guy named Darren (spelled the same way). Darren and I became good friends. I soon found out that Darren and his wife had adopted a little girl, I don’t remember where she was from. At the time of the class they were in the process of adopting another little girl, this one was from Ethiopia. One day I told Darren what your mom and I had felt the year before, he encouraged me to continue to pray and wait on God’s timing.
In the fall of 2009 Chrystal and Sue came to me with a desire of starting an orphan/adoption ministry in our church. This became Mission 127. As I prayed about this ministry God brought back to my heart that we were to adopt. We continued to pray and felt that we should start the process. Then on February 1, 2010 Grandma (Lewis) found out that she had cancer. This put our plans on hold as we waited to see how all of this would play out. During the time that Grandma was sick, Pawpaw stepped away from the church to care for her. I became the Senior Pastor while he was out. With this new found responsibility I found myself drawn more and more to fasting and prayer. My prayers began to center on adoption.
In April we went to District Council where the speakers were Beth and David Grant, directors of Project Rescue in India. This is a ministry to hurting girls. Our hearts were broken and we began to pray even more. I read Beth’s book, “Behind the Soiled Curtain”. The stories broke my heart. Mom and I decided to give to this ministry and continue to wait and see what God would do. During this time we felt that God was drawing us to the Philippines. We have a lot of Filipino friends and are very familiar with the culture.
A few weeks latter I shared the book with Chrystal and she gave me a copy of the book written by the founders of All God’s Children Adoption Agency. I started reading it during my devotion time Friday May 14, 2010 around 8:30. As I read and prayed I found I could not put it down. I stayed in the sanctuary almost the entire day reading and praying. My heart again was breaking for kids that had no mommy or daddy. When I put down the book I simply asked God what He wanted me to do. I felt that I was to begin praying for the Philippines.
When I left church that day I drove to Borders book store and purchased a book about the Filipino people and culture. I went home that night and talked to mom. She was feeling the same thing. Overt that weekend we searched for adoption agencies that work with the Philippines. I finished the book a few days later knowing that the Philippines was the right match.
Thursday May 20 I filled out my application to obtain a copy of my birth certificate from the state of MO. We knew this could be time consuming and wanted to start that process. During this time I was continuing to pray for the Philippines and God’s timing and 5 specific prayer needs.
1. Money to pay for the adoption.
2. A larger car.
3. A larger home or money to expand where we were.
4. That our family would be on board with us.
5. That mom would be able to stay home with you once you were in the US.
I sent this list to Chrystal and Sue May 21 at 11:00am. At 11:05 am Pawpaw called and said he would be coming to church for a while because Grandma was doing ok. We went to lunch then returned to church. While at the church the subject presented itself. I told Pawpaw of our plans. He said he was fine with it and that he would talk to Grandma about it.
Pawpaw left for home around 2 and called me a half hour latter. He had spoken with Grandma; she too was fine with it. Over that weekend mom and I continued to contact and pray about the next steps including selecting an agency. Saturday night I filled out a pre-application with Bethany. By Monday morning, May 24, we had narrowed it to two. I spoke with both agencies. After speaking to Lisa at Bethany I felt that this was the right direction. On Tuesday our pre-application was approved and they put us in contact with another family that had adopted through them from the Philippines.
May 25, 2010
I emailed back and forth throughout the day with the family. They brought up many details that mom and I had not considered. Tonight I have been praying for God’s direction in all of this. We want to do God’s will but have to know He is in it before we move any further. We realized that many of the older kids have been abused, some of these cases are not known to the orphanage staff. Mom and I both felt like it was again time to turn to God and seek what He would have us do. Our prayer is this; that He would continue to open doors for us if this is truly His will. We also need $550 for the formal application. We are not sure if we should pay it or wait to see if God provides as a confirmation and are praying for God to continue directing our path toward you. Daddy knows that God is in it, this is not the question, we just need God to show us the right path to take at the right time and provide for us as we move forward.