Thursday, September 13, 2007

Inching along...

The appointment that I needed much prayer about has come and gone and went great! At least as far as I can tell. I still don't want to go into a ton of detail, but thank you to all of you who were praying. Another little hurdle has surfaced (this is very common in adoptions, there is no such thing as a "perfect" adoption) of the first steps of the adoption process is filing with the USCIS (US Citizenship and Immigration Services) to demonstrate that we are financially able to support our child. They ask for lots of paperwork as evidence, including a marriage certificate, which (to make a long story short) we filed for back in May. We have to submit the marriage certificate to USCIS within the next week, but probably won't receive it from the Office of Vital Statistics until sometime in October. This means the USCIS denies our application and we have to refile and pay the $680 filing fee again. Our homestudy agency suggested contacting our Congressman (Sam Farr) to see if he could intervene in any way. I called his office in Santa Cruz this morning and left a message. So, nothing to despair about, except that finances are bit tight, so another $680 is kind of a big deal for us. Again, please pray! We know that God works all things out for the good of those who are His. Sorry if this is detail-overload, but I know some of you appreciate knowing what is going on. If you have a chance, visit some of the blogs of families that are also adopting from Ethiopia. They are heartwarming, enlightening and encouraging!

Sunday, September 9, 2007

Rabbit trails & soap boxes...but not really

So I seem to wandering from the point...I have don't have any adoption news for you, but in the midst of filling out paperwork and dealing with red tape and jumping through hoops and the like, I read this post from a blog that Chris reads often. I thought it applied to my current mental/emotional state (just a little). It just reinforces in my mind that God's timing is perfect, His plan is perfect, and when I fail to realize and remember this, the complaining begins. When I cling to the truths that He is good AND He is in complete control AND He loves His children, peace and thankfulness take over...

What Happens When You Stop

Topic: Exhortation

The apostle Paul exhorts us to do all things "without murmuring or disputing." The result, he says, will be that we will be blameless and harmless, without rebuke, in the midst of a crooked and perverse nation, "among whom ye shine as lights in the world."

How do obedient Christians stand out? This is one of one of the central duties assigned to us. We are described as the light of the world. How should we then seek to have that light shine brightly? Well, not to put too fine a point on it—stop whining. Stop complaining. Stop murmuring. Stop muttering under your breath.

What is the backdrop of this? If we are to shine like stars, then what is the blackness against which we shine? What is the crooked and perverse blackness? It is the spirit of discontent, that of murmuring about everything. Whatever non-believers complain about without thinking, that is an opportunity for contrast.

All right, then, what do people complain about? They complain about their pay, their lack of recognition at work, their health, the weather, their kids, their parents, their husband, their wife, their lawn, the snow, their in-laws, their aches, their pains, the thermostat at the office, the president, the Congress, the Supreme Court, the city council, the potholes, the highway department, the rates at the swimming pool, the referees for Monday Night Football, their savings account, their sex life, their unmarried state and no sex life, their marriage overall, that they have a husband, that they don’t have a husband, that they have a wife, that they don’t have a wife, too hot, too cold, too tall, too short, too close to the window, not close enough to the window . . . you get the point.

This mentality is the air we breathe. It is difficult even to notice it. The one thing that makes it noticeable—starkly noticeable—is when somebody stops doing it. And so here is the exhortation from the apostle Paul—stop doing it.

Posted by Douglas Wilson - 9/9/2007 10:45:17 AM

" out your own salvation with fear and trembling; 13 for it is God who works in you both to will and to do for His good pleasure. 14 Do all things without complaining and disputing, 15 that you may become blameless and harmless, children of God without fault in the midst of a crooked and perverse generation, among whom you shine as lights in the world, 16 holding fast the word of life..." Philippians 2:12-16

Friday, September 7, 2007

Prayer and Fresh Air

We have an appointment next week which may determine how the rest of our adoption will proceed. Please pray for God's favor and our peace of mind (especially Anna's).

During our reading time together this morning, we read Psalm 31:

1 In You, O LORD, I have taken refuge;
Let me never be ashamed;
In Your righteousness deliver me.
2 Incline Your ear to me, rescue me quickly;
Be to me a rock of strength,
A stronghold to save me.
3 For You are my rock and my fortress;
For Your name's sake You will lead me and guide me...

How great is Your goodness,
Which You have stored up for those who fear You,
Which You have wrought for those who take refuge in You,
Before the sons of men!
20You hide them in the secret place of Your presence from the conspiracies of man;
You keep them secretly in a shelter from the strife of tongues.
21 Blessed be the LORD,
For He has made marvelous His lovingkindness to me in a besieged city.
22 As for me, I said in my alarm,
"I am cut off from before Your eyes";
Nevertheless You heard the voice of my supplications
When I cried to You.
23 O love the LORD, all you His godly ones!
The LORD preserves the faithful
And fully recompenses the proud doer.
24 Be strong and let your heart take courage,
All you who hope in the LORD. a breath of fresh air in a stale room...

Sunday, September 2, 2007


Well, reading about various adoption experiences, you usually come across the proverbial "hurdles" or "bumps in the road," basically little reminders to trust in God's perfect timing.

We have come across a couple of those during the past week. Our home study is not going as seamless as we would have liked. I don't want to go into too many details on the world wide web, except that prayer would be much appreciated.

One of those bumps (though not too serious) is our marriage certificate, which we are waiting for patiently (ha!). I am calling the Office of Vital Statistics tomorrow - oh wait - I just realized that tomorrow is Labor Day. I am calling on Tuesday!

We have to get MORE fingerprints done Wednesday for our state-level criminal background check. I am pretty sure there aren't going to be any surprises there.

Also, please continue to pray for finances!

Also, make sure and explore some of the adoptive family blogs...Chris and I have been SO encouraged reading about families who are steps ahead of us. Some have even brought their precious ones home! Most of you know that I am not super outwardly-emoting person, but reading through these blogs is making me one. Maybe it is part of becoming a mom...

So, this is month 4 of our paper pregnancy...let's see if we can finish in 9! (Pray for me to be patient!)