Oct 30, 2011

Exciting News!!

After much prayer....We are excited to announce that we have extended our parameters!!
We will now be waiting for a referral of a boy, girl, or set of siblings (2) up to the age of 24 months!

We would have liked to increase the age even more but our agency requires us to continue our current birth order.  So that means the child or children we adopt must be at least 10 months younger then our youngest. This isn't an E*thiopia requirement, just one a few agencies have.
We are also open to a child or children with special needs. Which could mean lots of different needs. It is really hard to explain exactly what that may be. We are just continuing to pray for whatever child(ren) the Lord has for us.

I look at the picture above of our sweet stair steps (really...they are 3', 4', and 5'!!) and I am overwhelmed with joy just thinking of what this picture will look like in the future. We have been so blessed in our role as parents. The ups and downs, highs and lows, it has all been worth it.

This year our hearts have already been pulled and stretched in a thousand ways just dealing with the new phases these three have entered. Each success and struggle have brought great growth to our children, to us as parents, and to the family as a whole. I can't even imagine what the journey ahead is going to look like or what it has in store.

A bit of scripture that I think every parent needs tucked away in their heart.
I need to be reminded of it now and I am sure I will in the years to come.

Because of the LORD's great love we are not consumed, for his compassions never fail. They are new every morning; great is your faithfulness.   Lamentations 3:22-23

Oct 29, 2011

Scripture Saturday

Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, as working for the Lord, not for men,  since you know that you will receive an inheritance from the Lord as a reward. It is the Lord Christ you are serving.   Colossians 3:23-24

Oct 22, 2011

Saturday Scripture

I have decided to try something new on the blog. Every Saturday, instead of a post about us or anything else, I am going to try to simply share a piece of scripture.
 One of the greatest gifts in this life for me has been God's word.
In our house, one of the first things we strive to teach the girls is the value of the Bible. Miss D is now in the process of learning that the Bible is God's word and the truth!  Here is this week's:

New Harmony, IN

Enter through the narrow gate. For wide is the gate and broad is the road that leads to destruction, and many enter through it. But small is the gate and narrow the road that leads to life, and only a few find it.      
Matthew 7:13-14

I hope your day is blessed!  ~Andrea

Oct 19, 2011

Giveaway Winner!

is the winner of our GIVEAWAY!!! 
Kristen please email me at jabigg_98 at hotmail.com with your address and sizes.

Thanks to all of you for your comments, emails, and fb messages.  
We have been so blessed by those who have walked this journey with us!

Oct 18, 2011

A Timeline of our Journey

I sat this morning and reviewed our time line and  prayed. I was blessed to see God's hand each step of the way. We are continuing to be grateful for the opportunity to experience adoption and to add to our family in this way.

May 2010 - We feel that God is moving us to adopt at this time
                       Watch the Webinar for AGCI
                       Submit our pre-application to AGCI
June 16 -     Approved for AGCI Ethiopia Program
June 21-     Sent Fingerprints in for FBI Record
June 22 -    First Homestudy Visit with LSSI
June 23 -     Orientation Call
July 2 -        Second Homestudy Visit/Training
July 9 -        Third Homestudy Visit/Training
July 14 -      Fourth Homestudy Visit/Training
July 28 -      Sent in Our Contracts
Aug 04 -      Dossier Call
Aug 12 -     Last Homestudy Visit/Training/Walk-Through
Aug 18 -      Received our Online Adoption Learning Classes Certificates
Aug 30 -     Received notification that there was more info needed for FBI Record
Sept 2 -       Received notice of completion of our Eyes Wide Open Workbook
Oct 12-       Received call that our homestudy had been endorsed by the State of Illinois
Oct 13-      Picked up our homestudy and reviewed Dossier
Oct 14-     Overnighted Dossier to AGCI
Oct 15-     Received call from AGCI that we had a revision to make to our application letter.
Oct 16-     Completed revision and resubmitted application letter. It was again overnighted to AGCI
Oct 18-     Received phone call from AGCI, our Dossier is completed and we are official number 89 on the girls list. Our parameters are girl 0-14 months
Nov-         Number 80 on the wait list.
Dec-         Number 74 on the list.
Dec 23-   Fingerprint appointment at United States Citizen and Immigration Services in STL.
Jan 2011-        Our first number of 2011 was number 68.
Feb-         Number 66 on the list. 
March-    Number 55....moving along!
April-       6 months waiting and we are number 49. 
May-        Number 44
June-        No movement still 44 ...we are still believing!
July-        Number 37 on the list.
August-  Down 3 to number 34.
Aug 31st- Home study visit for 1 yr update & approval to change parameters.  
Sept-       Number 28 on the wait list.

****TODAY   Oct 18th - 1 Year Waiting****
 Unofficially Number 26

Wait for the Lord; be strong and take heart and wait for the Lord.  Psalm 27:14

Some Pics and a Reminder

Big girl carrying her pumpkin!
Daddy helping her find one.

Our girls riding to the patch

 Just wanted to share a few pictures of our trip to the pumpkin patch 
and to remind you all to enter our GIVEAWAY!!

The deadline is tonight!!

Oct 14, 2011

1 year Giveaway!!!

On October 18th, we will have been on the waitlist for 1year.
So to celebrate the end of a full year of waiting we are having ice cream and ...doing a giveaway!!!   We will giveaway 2 of our adoption t-shirts and a copy of the Russell Moore book Adopted for Life.

There are two ways to enter:

1. Post a comment here
2. Fb about the giveaway (let me know you have in your comment here)

The deadline is Tuesday, Oct. 18th at 8pm (CT)
 Winner will be posted soon after!

Thank you for being a part of our wait!!

Oct 13, 2011

A Reminder

This was written in June but never posted.

Last night I got into bed tossing and turning. I found myself very restless with thoughts of our adoption and another situation heavy on my mind. In both I have felt tired and a bit unsettled waiting on the Lord. Not giving up hope but pleading with the Lord for reassurance. The Lord called me from my bed and to open my Bible.
Habakkuk 2:1 I felt pressed upon my mind. Habakkuk.... I groaned, really? What is going to be there. I had read through there long ago, through planned reading. It wasn't anything life changing, so I thought, really. ???   I opened it and read I will stand at my watch and station myself on the ramparts; I will look to see what he will say to me, and what answer I am to give to this complaint. I read on a little more. You see Habakkuk has been crying out to the Lord asking when He will come and rescue them. There has been great violence among their people and they are under the attack. He tells the Lord he will sit in the watchtower and wait upon the Lord to receive the word of the Lord. In verse 2&3, the Lord tells him to write down the vision he has been given. And though it is not for this appointed time, it will come and be the truth. Then the LORD replied: "Write down the revelation and make it plain on tablets so that a herald may run with it. For the revelation awaits an appointed time; it speaks of the end and will not prove false. Though it linger, wait for it; it will certainly come and will not delay.

So I will wait. I will continue to journal and to pray. I know the vision the Lord has laid upon our heart is still His vision and will come at his appointed time. I already knew His time was perfect, but having the Lord call me to His word and point me to this is a great ENCOURAGEMENT!

The Lord never ceases to amaze me. In my time of wavering: He is still sufficient, He still cares, and His plan is the truth. So thankful that He chooses to call me His child and to lead me. I hope this speaks to you all like it did me.

Tonight in our adoption fb group another waiting momma posted the verse and it reminded me of this moment so I reread myself and wanted to share. God is soooo good!

Oct 11, 2011

Feeling like a fool for not trusting

Waiting can be hard. The days can seem unending.  At times it seems as though we will be waiting forever. God placed a desire in my heart to adopt many, many years ago. I thought when we finally moved forward and started the process that the weight of that calling would be lifted. I was so wrong. It has only gotten heavier as I spend time learning more about God's heart for the orphan, viewing the pictures of children in need of families, and listening to countless stories of great need throughout the world.  

Earlier this spring, I felt a strong call to go and do work in another country this summer. I began praying for the details and then I dismissed the calling, hanging on to the thought that this July would bring a referral. That we would need the time and money to travel to our child instead of using it to travel for missions. I continued to lay out my reasons to God. What if? A referral comes and we have no time, what if it comes and we don't have enough money? What if my other children have to be left for several weeks this year?  I doubted. I tried to reason my time line with God, you know the one in control of my time line. Now sitting here in October I am feeling the fool. He didn't need for me to have enough time, money, or even well laid out plans for my children. He just needed me to say yes. 

That's where I am at right now in this wait: repenting and asking for forgiveness for questioning His sovereign plan and timing, clinging to Him as we continue to walk this journey, asking Him to continue to use us for His glory, and thanking Him for providing grace and mercy.

I took the above picture yesterday.
These 3 could not be anymore eager then they are right now to meet their new sibling. They are already in great anticipation of the arrival. They have grown so much in the past year. Their sweet little eyes have been opened. They are eager to follow where God leads. 
Their faith is strong and they are willingly.  
Oh, to TRULY have faith like a child. This is were I want to be and remain. 

Today I am reminded of the faith of generations past.
 Hebrews 11
Now faith is being sure of what we hope for and certain of what we do not see. This is what the ancients were commended for. By faith we understand that the universe was formed at God's command, so that what is seen was not made out of what was visible. By faith Abel offered God a better sacrifice than Cain did. By faith he was commended as a righteous man, when God spoke well of his offerings. And by faith he still speaks, even though he is dead.
By faith Enoch was taken from this life, so that he did not experience death; he could not be found, because God had taken him away. For before he was taken, he was commended as one who pleased God. And without faith it is impossible to please God, because anyone who comes to him must believe that he exists and that he rewards those who earnestly seek him.
By faith Noah, when warned about things not yet seen, in holy fear built an ark to save his family. By his faith he condemned the world and became heir of the righteousness that comes by faith. By faith Abraham, when called to go to a place he would later receive as his inheritance, obeyed and went, even though he did not know where he was going. By faith he made his home in the promised land like a stranger in a foreign country; he lived in tents, as did Isaac and Jacob, who were heirs with him of the same promise. For he was looking forward to the city with foundations, whose architect and builder is God.
By faith Abraham, even though he was past age--and Sarah herself was barren--was enabled to become a father because he considered him faithful who had made the promise. And so from this one man, and he as good as dead, came descendants as numerous as the stars in the sky and as countless as the sand on the seashore.
All these people were still living by faith when they died. They did not receive the things promised; they only saw them and welcomed them from a distance. And they admitted that they were aliens and strangers on earth. People who say such things show that they are looking for a country of their own.
If they had been thinking of the country they had left, they would have had opportunity to return. Instead, they were longing for a better country--a heavenly one. Therefore God is not ashamed to be called their God, for he has prepared a city for them.
By faith Abraham, when God tested him, offered Isaac as a sacrifice. He who had received the promises was about to sacrifice his one and only son, even though God had said to him, "It is through Isaac that your offspring will be reckoned."Abraham reasoned that God could raise the dead, and figuratively speaking, he did receive Isaac back from death.
By faith Isaac blessed Jacob and Esau in regard to their future.
By faith Jacob, when he was dying, blessed each of Joseph's sons, and worshiped as he leaned on the top of his staff.
By faith Joseph, when his end was near, spoke about the exodus of the Israelites from Egypt and gave instructions about his bones.

By faith Moses' parents hid him for three months after he was born, because they saw he was no ordinary child, and they were not afraid of the king's edict.
By faith Moses, when he had grown up, refused to be known as the son of Pharaoh's daughter. He chose to be mistreated along with the people of God rather than to enjoy the pleasures of sin for a short time. He regarded disgrace for the sake of Christ as of greater value than the treasures of Egypt, because he was looking ahead to his reward. By faith he left Egypt, not fearing the king's anger; he persevered because he saw him who is invisible. By faith he kept the Passover and the sprinkling of blood, so that the destroyer of the firstborn would not touch the firstborn of Israel.
By faith the people passed through the Red Sea
as on dry land; but when the Egyptians tried to do so, they were drowned.
By faith the walls of Jericho fell, after the people had marched around them for seven days.

By faith the prostitute Rahab, because she welcomed the spies, was not killed with those who were disobedient.