Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Yes – Our Homestudy is Complete!

I can’t believe it!  Our homestudy was okay’d and we are on to the next step!  This last month has dragged for so long, I think a part of me thought every step would feel like that. 

So glad it doesn’t!

Now, we are moving on…

Homestudy Complete???

I haven’t posted an update on the adoption in a while because it has been at a standstill while we waited for our letter from Panama. 

We waited one month! 

The letter finally came in and our social worker said she has everything ready.  Now we wait to see if our agency is happy with it.  I’m a little nervous because our “letter” from Panama was more like an incomplete form – they filled in his name only and stamped and signed the bottom that his criminal record was clear.  I would feel much better if it looked more like our letter from Texas – written on state letterhead and stamped with the state seal.  It was very pretty.  I think I covered all of our bases though because while we were waiting for the “letter”, I also requested a letter from the Freedom of Information Act and the National Archives – both stating they have searched the records from Panama and Tony is not a criminal.  I had some time on my hands. 

Now we just wait.


Fortunately, I have lots of catching up to do after the Christmas festivities and lots of New Year’s resolutions to make – and break.  That should keep my mind off the waiting. 

It really hasn’t been that bad.  On one hand, it seems like we started this process a long time ago; but, on the other, I haven’t been thinking about it too much.  I think it’s been good.  So far.  I’m sure it will be much harder once we see our little boy’s face and we want to bring him home.  Okay – thinking about bringing him home makes me want to squeal!  That’s a pretty good sign it’s going to be much harder to be patient!

On those same lines – Tate was asking us questions the other night about what else we need to do before we can bring our little man home.  When he started talking about getting to meet him for the first time, he got teary eyed!  As his mom, I was very touched to see him so moved at just the thought of meeting his little brother.  Sweet!

Hopefully, it will not be long before I have another update about more progress.

Monday, December 22, 2008

Celebrating Victory

I am not a public speaker.  When I even think about saying something outloud to a group, my heart beats so hard you can feel it on my chest.  Then, I start to feel sick.  I can’t form a rational thought and I start sweating.  Good times.

This is exactly what I imagine myself doing -



No amount of imagining the audience in their underwear is going to save a person from that!  I’m  not making fun of this girl – it’s just the perfect example of why I get nervous in front of an audience.

That being said – my husband sent me an email last week.  He apparently forgot to tell me that the church had asked us to share our testimony about Moses in both services.  I’m still wondering if he just waited so I would have less time to chicken out.  He didn’t have to worry about the time though because I quickly responded to his email with a “No.”

Then, immediately the entire testimony flooded my mind and I wrote it all out.  I couldn’t keep it in and knew God wanted it to be told.  I can’t say I love God with all my heart, my soul, and my mind and I will do anything He wants me to - as long as I don’t have to step out of my comfort zone. 

The pastor was speaking on celebrating what our church had accomplished over the past year and giving God the glory for leading us and enabling us to do these things.  We can see growth with each step of faith and we can see God taking us places we never imagined ourselves being last year.  One of the stories was our church walking through a leukemia diagnosis and treatment for a young mom.  This time last year, she didn’t know she was sick – and now she is in remission!  Our church family pulled together in prayer, with meals, and loving on this family.  Then, we were able to celebrate with them.

We saw the impact small groups and church family can have on people when they are going through some hard times and need some support.  One family shared how much their small group helped them out while their baby was in the NICU for a time. 

The pastor wanted Tony and me to speak about what kind of impact Moses had on our family.  This time last year we had no idea we would be in the process of adopting a child from Ethiopia.  If you would have told us that was our future, we would not have believed you.  If anything, I would have thought I might be pregnant, but not adopting.

There is no telling where and how God is going to work in our lives from one day to the next.  And, it really is amazing to see where God has taken our church family in one year.

As we were celebrating as a church, I was also able to celebrate individually.  God gave me a peace about speaking in front of the church.  He kept reminding me that I am only a vessel and I am not there to impress anyone.  As I focused on letting him work in me, I was not concerned with how I was going to look.  What a relief!  I was able to share what God has laid on my heart without stammering, fainting, or throwing up.  Success!

This time last year, I don’t think I would have been able to stand up and speak in front of the church.  I wouldn’t even have thought I had anything of value to share.  God had different plans that I couldn’t even imagine.

Now we get to see where God wants to take us next year.  There really is no telling where we will be.  We don’t know if it will be sad times or happy times.  We only know one thing for certain –

With God, it will be a victory and we will be able to celebrate where He has taken us!

Monday, December 15, 2008

Open Mouth, Insert Foot

It's official!

We had our first "Brad and Angelina" comment this past weekend.

I did not get offended or give a sarcastic response. I was really pretty shocked that someone would even think of that. It's just funny that anyone would look at a family that is adopting from Africa and think of it as following a trend. And then actually say it!

When I think of following a trend, I think more along the lines of Chuck Taylor shoes, Twilight books, and... I can't even think of anything else because I really don't pay that much attention.

One thing I don't think of is adopting a child. Following a trend is something that takes no commitment. Even the fashion experts advise us not to spend too much money on trendy accessories because they are not going to last.

Adopting a child is permanent. Our hearts are committed to a child we have not met. This decision was covered in prayer. It affects every member of our family - plus this little guy. We would all be crushed if something happened and it did not work out.

I don't need to defend myself against this comment. I was just surprised anyone would say that. Hopefully, it was just a bad joke. This person does not know us very well, but I would not like to be thought of as someone who would adopt a child so our family can look cool.

Remember - I'm already Hipp