Wednesday, June 9, 2010

Finding Joy in Suffering

I've been doing Beth Moore's Bible Study - Living Beyond Yourself Exploring the Fruit of the Spirit.
I've got to admit now that Daniel is pretty much recovered from his surgery I am getting very antsy about Sweet Baby #2. I am just so ready to get matched with a birthmom and be able to minister to her, plus know that we have a baby coming.
Today's lesson really spoke to me. It has also been ironic that the Greek word for joy is chara and Daniel and I always wanted a little girl named Grace. The birthmom picked the first name in our failed adoption, but we had given her the middle name Grace. Our new girl name is Karis - the greek word for grace is charis. So you can see that in the Greek joy and grace are based from the same word - chara and charis. Anyway, that was kind of off the point.
Daniel and I always talk about hardships in our life. We joke that it is the "Sweet Curse". It's just a joke - we don't believe in curses. Life is hard and we realize that. We also realize that there are those out there that have it a WHOLE lot rougher than we do.
Tonight in my Bible Study Beth Moore says, "One reason God allows us to experience troubles is because He desires to reveal His joy to us through restoration." I realize that God allows us to experience troubles to grow us spiritually and to help us minister to others. After walking through these life situations I can honestly say that I'm thankful for them on the other side because they make me who I am today. I'm able to grow spiritually from the situation and it does help me to relate to others/minister to them when they are in a similar situation.
It seems there have been lots of trials in our almost 8 year marriage (Graves Disease for me when we had been married for 3 weeks, infertility, adoption, failed adoption, major surgery to name a few), but I'm thankful.
I am very ready though to see God bless us with another child, but I am also thankful for this time that I have to depend on Him to know what is best. (Although since it's been almost 20 months I hope that His best is soon) :)

"Though you have made me see troubles, many and bitter, you will restore my life again... My lips will shout for joy when I sing praise to you." Psalm 71:20,23

Monday, May 24, 2010

How long has it been?

Probably too long...
It took me a while to be able to post after our failed adoption, but I'll attempt to do a little update.
Daniel had surgery at the beginning of the month. Most people know that Daniel was shot in between the eyes at point blank range when he was 15. He had developed a mucuocele (sp) that needed to be taken care of. The surgery lasted 11 1/2 hours. I compared the time to the plane trip to Vietnam - except I could move around a little bit more. We spent 4 nights in the hospital, came home for a night and had to go back for 3 more nights. He has gotten a whole lot better over the last 4 days or so.
Luke's end of the year preschool party was today. It is always fun to go and watch him play with his friends. They went to the park and I got to go too!
This is Luke and his friend, Presley. They have a great time playing at school and church. Also the occasional trip to McDonald's. :)
Luke is all enrolled for PreK next year. I'm hoping and praying that he gets a half day class. Our school is going to all day PreK next year. I think 4 is too young to go to school all day.
Our summer is approaching and you all know that with a youth pastor for a husband our summer is never boring.
Daniel has an outpatient surgery scheduled for Thursday and is preaching a church camp in Kansas next week. Please be praying for those things.
On the adoption front - We were interviewed the week of Daniel's surgery by a birthmom. Please be praying for peace and wisdom for her. That's all for now!

Friday, February 26, 2010

I Love This Boy!!!

And if you are ever in our town you need to stop by and have Luke do one of his concerts! I promise it will brighten you day. He has three songs - Here I am to Worship, Mighty to Save and You Never Let Go. I love listening to my little boy praise the Lord!
Luke got a toy microphone for Valentine's Day and he told me I needed to buy him a microphone stand. :) He's my little rockstar!

Tuesday, January 5, 2010


I wasn't given the ability to conceive a child in my womb, but God blessed me with love for children and that love grows in my heart just like a child grows in his/her mothers womb.
On Christmas Day as we were returning to Catoosa from my grandparents house we got the call we had been waiting ten months to receive. A birth mom had chosen us to parent her daughter that she had given birth to that morning. The roads were terrible from all the snow and ice, but we sped up anyway to get to the hospital to see our precious new daughter. After spending an hour at a standstill on the turnpike because of wrecks we finally made it. We spent two days with birthmom and the sweetest baby girl. On Sunday the 27th we were discharged and spent the next two nights at my parents. On Monday we took birthmom out to lunch to spend some time with her and so she could see the baby. Tuesday we headed home. Mom, Dad and Jen came with us since we had all of our Christmas things plus a new baby. Once we got home we continued to love and spoil that baby rotten. We painted her room, put up the crib and all kinds of nesting things you do when you add a new baby to the family.
Yesterday afternoon I got the phone call that every adoptive mother hopes and prays will never come. Birthmom wanted her baby back after she had been in our home for ten days. I had known it was coming - even before we left the hospital with sweet baby girl. You know when you know something in your gut and all you can do is just pray it doesn't and chalk it up to worrying. I hadn't had my quiet time in a few days since we were in the hospital and such. When I started reading my Bible again the next weeks lessons were on forgiveness. I know that God was preparing me to let go. I knew in my gut what was going to happen. Every time my phone would ring my heart would sink into my stomach.
Birthmoms have always been my hero. I know that has to be the hardest decision to deny themselves the ability to raise that child and see them daily. All of my children will know that their birthmom loved them so much - that they chose to give them life and that they chose to give them the best life possible, even if that means allowing someone else to raise them.
All of our family loves sweet baby girl so very much. My arms are just aching this morning missing cuddling with her. She was a very cuddly baby - and I am definitely a cuddler. Even after all the heart ache I would do it again in a heartbeat. I was able to be mommy to sweet baby girl for ten days. I know that she won't remember it, but I'm thankful that we were able to love and provide for her for those ten days. I was finally able to be a girl mommy for those ten days! :)
I know that God has another baby out there for our family. Please pray for us, for our future birthmom and child, and most of all for sweet baby girl.
Here's one of the scriptures that was in my Bible study this week - "And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose" Romans 8:28
Stay tuned - God has big things planned for our family.
Next post won't be so depressing... I promise :)

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Thanksgiving, Christmas Parade and School Christmas Program

It's been a long time. Kori has been after me for a Thanksgiving update - so here you go Kori and I'll throw in Christmas Parade and Luke's school Christmas Program.

We spent 10 days out of town around Thanksgiving. We had a 3 day adoption workshop to attend in Tulsa and decided it wasn't worth the gas money to come home and turn around to go back for Thanksgiving. Luke and I made turkey cupcakes while we were hanging out at Nana and Papa's.They turned out pretty cute!Luke had a blast playing with this pink Barbie guitar at Granny's house. Don't tell anyone, but I think he's getting his own for Christmas! :)Here is Luke and Ryan playing Ryan's bass guitar.The cousins playing tag! We got home late on the Saturday after Thanksgiving, but we HAD to get the tree up that night too! We had fun even though it was rushed.We went to the Christmas Parade at the beginning of the month with Luke's friend Silas. The low was 7 that night! It was very cold. We had debated taking Luke since he was on antibiotic for double ear infections. We took him and he had a good time. Luke's friend Presley came over last week. They had a great time playing and wanted to pose for a picture.Last weekend we took some of our girls to The Revolve conference. This was the first time we had to take Luke with us. Our babysitters - Nana, Papa and Jen - were busy that weekend. He did great and had a great time dancing to the music.

I am so proud of him. During the Stellar Kart concert he told me - as he was dancing - that he was going to be a rockstar and sing and play the guitar when he grew up. This mommy thinks he can do just that!

On our way home from Revolve. Luke wore his "Ladies Man" shirt to the all girls conference on Saturday. :)Last night was Luke's preschool program. I didn't get a good pic of him on the stage, but he did a great job. Another proud mommy moment - The kids answered questions about Christmas at school. On the question about why we celebrated Christmas Luke answered Jesus! Mommy and Daddy were both very proud.Santa came to visit since the kids did so good. The 2nd question on the questionnaire was who did they want to visit at Christmas. Luke's answer was Santa because he brings him presents. Papa came to Luke's program last night! Luke was really excited that he got to come.

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Heavens Gates and Halloween

We've had a busy couple of weeks. Our church did the drama "Heaven's Gates Hell's Flames" October 25-27. A couple came in on Friday October 23. We spent that evening transforming our sanctuary into heaven and hell. On Saturday we finished decorating and got our parts. I played a young old woman if that makes sense. An older woman died of a heart attack and we switched spots in the dark and I woke up in heaven as her (signifying the new body that we will get when we get to heaven and not have aches and pains anymore). Daniel played a construction worker and Lukas played a little boy that had died and gone to heaven. His fictitious family died and he came out of heaven with Jesus. It was a VERY LONG five days, but over 800 people saw the drama and at least 80 people made decisions for Christ so it was very worth the sleep deprivation and having to drag my child out of bed for school. (I was having to drag myself out of bed to get him ready for school! :)
This was the first time that I got to go to heaven in this drama. It really opened up a lot of conversations with Luke. It is amazing how much he understands. This is what happens when you get your child completely off of his schedule! :)We took Luke's pic on the stairs to heaven. He did so good. On the last night he waved so big to the audience. We had been trying to get him to do that all week. I think the real reason that he did that is because since he was elevated in "heaven" he could see in the audience and saw a friend. His bribery was going to see the movie Astro Boy so we did that Friday night. He got to wear his Halloween costume to school on Friday and they went to a nursing home. He was Bumblebee this year. He is in love with Transformers right now.

On Halloween night our church had a Harvest Party. He won a huge water gun and got some candy so he was one happy Bumblebee.
That's about it for now!

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Luke's 4th Birthday Party

Luke turned 4 on Friday! He was so excited. It was so neat. His preschool makes a big deal out of all the kids birthdays. He wanted to take OU cookies so we did just that. He got to wear a birthday crown and got a present. His teacher took his picture with me and Daniel for the book they make of the years events. He had a really good time.On Friday night Nana, Papa, Aunt Jen and Granny came to our house. Luke "read" Granny his Transformers book. His memory amazes me. I can read him a book a few times and he has the thing memorized. The Transformers book isn't a short book either.Friday night he opened up a present from Aunt Jen's boyfriend. He had been wanting that Chick Hicks Hauler.We had a Thomas Party on Saturday! I didn't get too many pictures since things were kind of crazy and the pics I did get had other kids in them. I didn't want to post them without their parents permission - but here are a few! :)
We were supposed to have the party at the park but it was rainy and in the 30s on Saturday so we stayed nice and warm in the house!Getting ready for our friends to come! Luke is really into big scary pumpkin heads this year. He loves the book called The Little Old Lady Who Was Not Afraid Of Anything. If you haven't read it you should check it out!
He had a great day and ended up with lots of fun stuff! He has really enjoyed playing with all his new things.