Season of Seasons

Season of Seasons

Some of you may have seen my post recently on FaceBook about how productive my week was last week….

Last week Ollin was out of school. So, he stayed with my parents while I worked 12 hour days M-W and then we had a 4 day weekend together. It was so much fun and productive! We had 2 play dates, 2 birthday parties, one school picnic, I had 1 girls night, did 8 loads of laundry, wrote 2 blog posts, cleaned the house, grocery shopped, made dinner for this week, helped a friend clean her house, slept until 7:30 all 4 days & wrote over 20 thank you cards and addressed them. So much to be thankful for!!

One more thing, I have a GREAT husband who helped me get some of these things done or took my son on errands so that I could write, clean, etc. When it comes to getting things done, he puts me to shame!

Me. Most Days.

Me. Most Days.

Yet, Will did work the majority of the weekend. So to report that Ollin and I had a great time together while getting many things done around here was a HUGE accomplishment. I even organized his closet! Typically I have over 50 things to do and to get to cross off only a few daily. The biggest thing I got done (and didn’t even include in the list) was write a care plan for our daughter so that China will “soft” match us to her – basically hold her file for us. For months now I have felt as if I have been drowning with all the things on my plate and I can FINALLY say that I feel like I’m now treading water.

However, what I really want to talk about is busyness, “to do” lists, accomplishments verses “Seeking first the kingdom of God”.

Yeah, productivity is great. And it makes me feel good. But at the end of the day why is the person who should be first on my priority list somehow left off completely? John warns us against such pleasures.

“Remain in me, and I will remain in you. For a branch cannot produce fruit if it is severed from the vine, and you cannot be fruitful unless you remain in me.”  -John 15:4

It seems I have forgotten what is really important. John instructs us to remain in His presence and in the Word. I need to be at His feet daily gaining what cannot be taken away from me instead of working on things that will eventually fade away. Oh, how I need Him more than I know. He waits patiently for me to finish my lists.

Even as we walk through one of the craziest seasons we’ve experienced, I can’t help but see God’s faithful hand in it all. These past 2 months were by far the toughest months we’ve been through so far on this journey. Some days I wanted to give up. I was at my whits end. Most days I didn’t know what I was feeling or how to react. I tried to spend some time “abiding in the Word” and in prayer, but got distracted more often than not.

I have been pondering this story over this past week. It’s the story of Mary and Martha from Luke.

“…Jesus entered a village. And a woman named Martha welcomed him into her house. And she had a sister called Mary, who sat at the Lord’s feet and listened to his teaching. But Martha was distracted with much serving. And she went up to him and said, “Lord, do you not care that my sister has left me to serve alone? Tell her then to help me.” But the Lord answered her, “Martha, Martha, you are anxious and troubled about many things, but one thing is necessary. Mary has chosen the good portion, which will not be taken away from her.”  -Luke 10:38-42

Daily I need to be reminded of this truth. I need Jesus. And not just to read my bible and check it off the list for the day. But in every high and every low I need praise Him. In this time of beauty, difficulty, and chaos I need to run to Him. This is what my heart truly needs – not the other 25 distractions I think will make me feel better if I get them done first. Although we’re walking through this season of seasons, I want to be one who’s not so distracted with anxiety, “to do” lists, or the pleasures of this world. I pray that I would make time to sit at his feet and choose the “good portion” which will not be taken away from me.

photo-12

Be encouraged as you read this today. You are not alone. God is orchestrating the story of our lives if we only let Him. Reflect on your own life and ask yourself, despite circumstances, have you chosen the “good portion” which will not be taken away from you? I pray for you and I both today that we would choose the “good portion” and seek first His kingdom to yield fruit as we remain in Him.

Advertisements

IT’s A GIRL !!

After many hard months of wondering who God had for us, SHE has stolen our hearts! We are thrilled to announce, IT’s A GIRL!! 
anli shoes
For those of you who did not know, we have been considering this particular little girl for a while now. We had two pictures of her from the Super Kids Charity Trip our agency took last year- as they do annually to advocate for the orphan. As far as we know, after that summer 2013 trip the orphanage began working on her profile to ready her for adoption. Our agency expected to have her file sometime around the beginning of the year this year. The orphanage where she is located has a partnership with our agency. So, typically when the orphanage finishes a child’s profile, they send it to the CCCWA to finalize the paperwork to be available to adopt and they also send it to their partnership agency (our agency- in this case). This way our agency can begin finding a family that best fits with that child. Based on the past, it usually takes the CCCWA about two months to finalize the paperwork.
A few weeks ago our agency did not even have her file. Meaning it was going to be 2 months (at minimum) until her paperwork was ready to go. We were prepared, without any knowledge of her true medical condition, to place our dossier paperwork on hold until her profile became available and she was completely ready to be adopted. Much prayer was going into this decision and many sleepless nights. Yet, we both agreed we had a peace that we should wait for her even if it meant we may not see our child face-to-face for another year, even if that meant some of our paperwork expiring and having to do it all over again.
Almost to the day we decided this was the child God had for us and we were willing to wait for her however long it takes, we got a call from our case worker. Her file came in from the CCCWA – not the orphanage! This means she is completely ready to be adopted and there is no extra wait time!! We can send our dossier to China! God answered so many prayers! And we are grateful beyond words for His goodness in this situation.  This means we should be traveling around the beginning of the year – about five or six months from now if everything continues to go smoothly.

Our Dossier was delivered in Beijing on August 13, 2014 (about 1 1/2 weeks ago)! We are still waiting for the dossier to be translated and logged into the system (any day now). Once we received our LID (log in date) it will be about 2-3 months until we receive official approval from China. Even though there will still be paperwork to be filled out with immigration for our child and appointments to be made with the US consulate, it is basically the final approval for us to adopt our little one. Then we will be be able to share photos with you all, send her care packages and maybe even get more photos and a video of her.

She needs all the prayer she can get because within the next 6 months her little world will be turned up side down! And while we can see the big picture, this will be a time of grieving for her. Please pray that God would knit our hearts together and prepare both of our children for the BIG transition. Also, we’d love to go get her today. So, as parents, we need prayer for patience, grace and endurance in the waiting. It is only by His grace we and she has gotten this far!

“Therefore, since we have been justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ. Through him we have also obtained access by faith into this grace in which we stand, and we rejoice in hope of the glory of God. Not only that, but we rejoice in our sufferings, knowing that suffering produces endurance, and endurance produces character, and character produces hope..”  -Romans 5:1-4