- We are begging you to keep praying this week more steadfastly than ever. Pray for the judge specifically. We have felt a powerful urge to pray for her as a person, not just her decision about our adoption, and we believe that the Spirit is working on her in bigger ways than we ever imagined. We were so strengthened by your prayers last week. I literally felt the arms of God's love around me; especially when I would start to lose a little bit of my faith. I'm not a strong person naturally, so it was obviously God's strength carrying me. So please friends, continue to offer up those prayers. If you feel inclined to fast, I know there will be many fasting again this Tuesday for our adoption and the adoptions of the other three children from our region whose adoptions hang in the balance. I'm not trying to be sensational or dramatic when I say that; I just want you to understand the seriousness of what we are facing. We know that spiritual warfare is being battled over the lives of these children, as it is in all of our lives. Prayer is our weapon in this war.
- We have been told by our adoption agency that she will give our facilitator an answer about our court date on Wednesday (which is Tuesday night in the U.S. since we are anywhere from 7-10 hours behind EE time, depending on where in the U.S. you live). This means we probably won't find out any news about her decision until Wednesday afternoon or Thursday morning. I will do my best to update the blog and post on Facebook as soon as we hear something. If the answer is no, then it may take a little time for me to process this and I might not update immediately. But I promise I will do my best to let everyone know as soon as I'm able to post.
- We got our fingerprinting date to have our USCIS fingerprints re-done. It's going to be February 7th at 8 a.m. I'm very thankful it's so quick. We sent in our application on January 6. So it took about a month to get the date. I hope we get the results back as quickly after we get the fingerprints done. Ours expire on February 27th. We cannot adopt without the results so it's kind of a big deal. If you're not familiar with FBI fingerprinting and adoptions, these are one of the big things you do at the beginning of the process. They are good for 18 months. We had ours done for the first time in November of 2009. Never in my wildest dreams did I think we would have to have them redone...I just couldn't have imagined that we wouldn't have our child home after 18 months.
- We are already hearing stories of how Kirill's story has changed lives and glorified God. Praise God! We would love to hear any stories you have. We also love comments...like I said, the prayers are sustaining us...and we love to hear that you are praying!
- THIS SERMON (Unstoppable) has carried me through the last week. I'm urging you to listen to it. It will change your life, I promise, especially if you are wondering why God seems to be ignoring your prayers or wonder why suffering is a part of your life.
- I have a huge food baby from this past week. My initial reaction to bad news/stress/worry is not eating for a day or two. Then as I embrace the stress, I embrace carbohydrates and sugar. Gigi's cupcakes just opened in my town and I think I've single-handedly kept it in business for the past three days. I need an intervention or people are going to ask if I'm expecting.
- We lost another Reece's Rainbow child this week. Sandra died in an orphanage without ever knowing the love of parents, family, brothers or sisters. She has been a child that I've always looked at fondly. Something about her angelic face touched me. I'm not sure exactly how many children from Reece's Rainbow have died this winter, but it seems like more than in past years. Children in EE orphanages are especially susceptible to death during the harsh winter months because of illness and lack of medical care. Outbreaks of flu and pneumonia can take children quickly when there isn't medicine to treat the illness and the child is already fragile from lack of nutrition, love, and routine health care. Add in the medical fragility of heart conditions that many children with DS have, and it's a tenuous situation. Simple surgeries and medicines widely available in the U.S. could save these children. There is no reason they should die. None. What is your excuse? Is God calling you to adopt? Think about it and if your reasons are all selfish (e.g., it will change my lifestyle, it will require me to sacrifice financially, it will take up my time), then that, my friends, is just plain wrong. I'm sorry if I sound too assertive but I just don't feel like we have time to beat around the bush on why adoption is so important.
- And finally, In Christ Alone is probably my favorite worship song. I'm listening to it with new ears during this season of our adoption. I love the ethereal, wispy blend of the words and the music. The first and last stanzas are really powerful and have become my theme song for the week.
He is my light, my strength, my song
This Cornerstone, this solid ground
Firm through the fiercest drought and storm
What heights of love, what depths of peace
When fears are stilled, when strivings cease
My Comforter, my All in All
Here in the love of Christ I stand
This is the power of Christ in me
From life's first cry to final breath
Jesus commands my destiny
No power of hell, no scheme of man
Can ever pluck me from His hand
'til He returns or calls me home
Here in the power of Christ I'll stand