Our Family

Our Family

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

The Shadow Within

I have been reading a series of fiction books by Karen Hancock called "The Guardian King". They are Christian allegory and fantasy, on the order of  "Narnia" or "Lord of the Rings". In this series the second book is called "The Shadow Within". It is a very interesting thought. One that I want to connect to our lives as Chrisitans and to Adoption.

When we accept Christ, His light lives with in us. No longer are we viewed by God as sinful, rather He sees Christ's light in our heart. In the book those that accept God receive a golden shield above their hearts. As the story unfolds you quickly realize that those who wear the shield must still fight the shadow within. This is not some overt demonic attack from the outside, but rather an inner struggle that we have with ourselves. We all deal with it.

It's like this, one day you're working in your office and  receive a phone call that makes your heart drop. You have been interviewing for a better job. This call says that once again you have been passed over. The shadow within in us rises to say, "You did'nt get the job because you aren't good enough. There will always be someone better than you. You think because you serve God, He will really bless you. He knows how sinful you are and how often you fail Him. Why would He ever honor you for that?"

In that moment we have a choice. Either the shadow overwhelmes us and we begin our pitty party, or as in the book, we allow the light to rise and burn out the shadow. We realize once again that we are not worthy in and of ourselves and there may always be someone more qualified. But our worth, our value, and our success is not solely rooted in what we know of ourselves. Instead it is rooted in our knowledged of who our God is and what He is capable of.

This puts our lives in perspective. It is never me, it is always Him. It is not my ability or my talent. It is God working through my life. It is God taking my weakness and showing His strength. It is God looking at me and not seeing my failure and sinful desires, but seeing the very reflection of His Son.

Adoption is a process where the shadow rises within us often. There are days that we awake knowing that all will come out fine. There are other days when you know it will all fall a part. Most likely because of your own unworthyness to adopt. In those moments we look to the light of God in our hearts an our lives. We put away the thoughts that the shadow of our own doubt brings against us. We rest in the knowledge that He, the one that lives within us, is stronger than any shadow!

So whatever shadow you are dealing with. Know that God's light is more powerful. Focus on Him and rest in the knowledge that He does all things well in His perfect will and timing.

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

May My Life

A few years ago I went through a time where God gave me several worship songs. We sing them here in our local church. One of these songs is titled, "May My Life".

 "May my life bring glory to your name, may my life bring you praise. May my life bring glory to your name, may my life bring you praise. With all I have within me I bless your holy name. With every word that I can sing to you. For you alone are worthy, Lord. Worthy to be praised and my heart I freely give to you. Oh Lord you are wonderful to me. Make my heart and life an offering. Lord, how I love to sing your praise. Oh Lord you are wonderful to me."

This simple chorus that the Lord gave me almost 10 years ago, expresses my deepest desire for my own life. I desire to bring God praise through time of happiness and peace and through the storms as well. In the midst of an adoption that seems to be going no where fast, I am reminded of my own song.

"God in all that has happened, all the delays, all the stress, all the waiting. In the end I ask that my life will bring you praise. When the adoption is completed, I pray it will be for your glory and yours alone. As the child you place into our family grows, I pray her life will also bring you praise. May our testimony and our lives bring others to a decision point of salvation and others to choose adoption. May those who watch our lives see your glory, your peace, and your divine provision. May my life bring you praise." Amen!

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Maybe Today

Dear Daughter,

This morning I awoke to your picture in my head. With it was a since of urgency and desperation. As we move through the adoption process there are swells of emotion that move in and out like the tide. One day you feel completely at peace, the next you feel helpless to change the slow progress. Each day brings new hope, each evening brings new disappointment. Since our paperwork reached the Philippines in November, every morning the first thought I have when I wake is, "maybe today will be the day". So far each night I go to bed with the hope, "maybe tomorrow". Then you hit Fridays (Saturday there) and realize that it will be at least Monday before any word could come.

Up and down the tide of emotion comes. One moment you feel that you are in a large ship easily moving through smooth water. The next it feels as if you are in a dingy with 50 ft swells. None of it stems from hopelessness, but rather a sense that you are our daughter and we hate waiting to get to you. Governments seek to protect you, to make sure we are a right match, but all of that means more time to wait. You don't even know we are out here waiting yet. Rightly so. They would not want to get your hopes up until they know we are coming to get you.

Today as I sit at my desk trying desperately to grasp any thought that will help me work. My mind is filled with excitement, hope, and frustration. In the end we place our confidence where it has always been, in the God who orchestrates all things well and in His time. Sometimes it would be nice if God would allow our timing to also be His :) But we don't know the future and He does. So once again for now I have to sit back at my desk, seeking the illusive thoughts of upcoming events to be planned. Sitting here thinking, "maybe today will be the day and if not, maybe tomorrow."


Wednesday, January 4, 2012

Praying for a Quick Approval

As many of you may have read from my an earlier post, the Filipino Government came to us around Thanksgiving needing more paperwork. As of yesterday that paperwork is now in their hands. We are praying that the rest of the process moves quickly. A friend of ours that applied at the same time we did were approved last week. We are hoping and believing that with the clarifications in hand our approval will be very fast.
In the mean time we are thinking of all there is to do. First and foremost we have a LOT of money to raise in a short amount of time to do it. Second, Natalie wants to redecorate her room in preparation for her new sister arriving. We of course will not do this until we have approval. Third, there is more US paperwork to file before we can travel.
Please continue to pray for us. Our God has provided all that we have needed. I know He will continue to do so. We are appreciative of all your prayers and support.