Isaiah 43:5

Do not be afraid, for I am with you; I will bring your children from the east and gather you from the west. Isaiah 43:5

Sunday, January 20, 2013

Sanctity of Life!

Each year in January, there is a day dedicated to the "Sanctity of Human Life." In honor of this very special day, I write this blog.  Believing that ALL life is created in the image of God.
Genesis 1:27
 So God created mankind in his own image, in the image of God he created them; male and female he created them.

".....Precious in His sight, Jesus loves the children of the world!"

Remember singing the familiar children's song?  I've thought of that song often over the last several months.  One reason would probably be because of the great privilege we're getting in adding another culture into our multi-racial family.   Another could be because our newest little girl will be considered on paperwork and to some as "special needs." 

Like many other countries, China's "waiting children" list is HUGE!  These orphaned children are often abandon because of having various special needs.  And before you gasp and think that's awful, please think about the  fact that not so very many decades ago, the United States  had institutions filled with special need babies and children that were deemed "not worthy" to live in a family setting. Physicians even encouraging parents of these children to consider putting them into an institutional environment.

When asked what kind of special needs, our daughter will have, the answer at the moment of this post  is "we're not sure?!"  We've been praying since we started this journey that God will make it abundantly clear who He wants us to adopt!  In faith, we're excited about who this little one will be and what particular "special need" we will be blessed with learning more about.

Recently, our family has been amazed by the testimony of one particular man, made in the image of God without arms or legs.  I urge you to take just a few minutes (link below)and hear what he has to say!!  How could we not think that ALL LIFE IS SACRED and made in GOD's image??

If, like our family, you are compelled to hear more from this amazing man of God you can "google him. "Nick Vujicic"

Psalm 139:13-14
For you created my inmost being;you knit me together in my mother’s womb.

I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made;
    your works are wonderful,
    I know that full well.

Ephesians 2:10
For we are God’s handiwork, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do.

Thursday, January 17, 2013

Relinquishing Control into HIS Hands.....

I have this wonderful little devotional that I'm borrowing from my son entitled "Jesus Calling" by Sarah Young.  So often I read the devotional and it speaks to me on such a personal level.  Here is a January entry that I felt must have been written especially for me at this point in my life.  It spoke to me in such a profound way that I had to share it!  
** Please note that the "Me" and "I" referred to is Jesus speaking and the "you" is "you/us"
Sarah Young writes:
Trust ME by relinquishing control into My hands.  Let go, and recognize that I am God.  This is My world:  I made it and I control it.  Yours is a responsive part in the litany of Love.  I search among my children for receptivity to Me.  Guard well this gift that I have planted in your heart.  Nurture it with the Light of My Presence.
When you bring Me prayer requests, lay out your concerns before Me.  Speak to Me candidly; pour out your heart.  Then thank Me for the answers that I have set into motion long before you can discern results.  When your requests come to mind again, continue to thank Me for the answers that are on the way.  If you keep on stating your concerns to Me, you will live in a state of tension.  When you thank Me for how I am answering your prayers, your mind-set becomes much more positive.  Thankful prayers keep your focus on My Presence and My promises.

Psalms 46:10
 “Be still, and know that I am God;I will be exalted among the nations, I will be exalted in the earth.”
Colossians 4:2
Devote yourselves to prayer, being watchful and thankful.
 2 Peter 1: 3-4
His divine power has given us everything we need for a godly life through our knowledge of him who called us by his own glory and goodness. Through these he has given us his very great and precious promises, so that through them you may participate in the divine nature, having escaped the corruption in the world caused by evil desires.

I changed some of the font color above to red because that particular portion was written for me!  Me, Kim, the "worrier", the "fixer", the "problem solver", the "planner."  And so many times I do find myself  getting tense with the constant re-praying of a request.  I find that I'm all but begging God, getting uptight and even worrying if I prayed "enough" about it all!    Remember in an earlier post I wrote how I realize that as my faith is growing, I'm also realizing how small my faith is?  Thanking Him for the answers  that are on the way just gives me so much more peace and truly does keep my focus on His Presence and Promises and continues to grow my faith!!   Our adoption is obviously at the forefront of my mind almost continually.  I've changed my prayer from asking God over and over to show us the child He has for our family to thanking Him for the child He has chosen for us and will show us!  This has helped me to truly keep my focus more on Him and His promises!

Monday, January 14, 2013

Attachment and Bonding

Bonding and attachment. Not words I thought about a lot until I entered the world of adoption.   I was very fortunate that I had an immediate bond with all of my birth children.  But there are various reasons why a family could have trouble or a delay in bonding.  It is not a "given" that a parent and child will attach and bond immediately.  Pre-mature births with long NICU stays,  an adoption of an infant or child, or an unplanned pregnancy, could all be potential  reasons why the bonding is delayed.  Not having an immediate bond doesn't mean anything is wrong with you, or your child!!  It might just be a "process in the works".  There are wonderful ways to help facilitate attachment with various methods and therapies to guide you in the right direction.  
 Our family "fostered" our two youngest and then eventually was able to adopt them.  This is extremely hard to admit but what unfortunately happened with me is I found that I  unintentionally "guarded" myself  during the early stages of fostering my two little guys, which didn't allow me to fully bond.  I was "afraid" to give myself completely to my sons because they may not stay with our family and then I'd be left with a broken heart.  Selfish but also the hard and honest truth.   Really wish this was a time that I could have a "do over."  I'm very happy to say that with God's grace and mercy,  we are all fully bonded and attached!
 With experience, better understanding and knowledge I hope I'd do things a bit differently but then again when emotions are involved, we don't always "do what we want".  We have this self protective part of us that is innate.   But what I'm learning is that true love doesn't look like we humans think.   God tells us in I Corinthians 13:4 -8
4Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. 5It is not rude, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. 6Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. 7It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres.8Love never fails.
Loving as God describes takes work, energy and help from our Heavenly Father!
If you read my January prayer and praise post, you saw that I requested prayer in bonding with our newest Zimmerman.   It is such a deep and  personal desire of mine that I bond with my new daughter and she with me.  However, it's a two sided thing and she's already been through a lot of emotional stress in her life.  She's got broken pieces to her heart.  She was abandoned and rejected.   She very possibly has never ever experienced love?  She may do what this Mommy did  years ago when her brothers came to this family.  She may try to "guard herself" in an attempt to self protect?  She may be so use to being independent in an effort to get her needs met that her independence will pro-long the process of attaching?
Those are only possibilities of what could be.  The flip side is we could have an "instant bond."  I don't know the future.  But I sure do know WHO holds the future and who promises to be both before us and behind us!!!!  Hallelujah, I do not have to be strong enough or brave enough on my own -- my Father promises to "hem me in."  Just what I absolutely need and so does our daughter!!!!  HE'S  so got this bonding thing!
"You hem me in--behind and before; you have laid your hand upon me."  Psalm 139:5

Saturday, January 12, 2013

January's Praises and Prayer Requests

As friends and family learn about our adoption, we've been asked how other's can help in bringing our little girl home from China.  PRAYER is the very best way you can help at present.  There will be financial ways to help coming up but honestly PRAYER is the most essential way you can help both our little girl and our family!  Thanks for your intercession to our Heavenly Father on our behalf!  Listed below are some of the praises and requests....


God's guidance and direction from the very start of this adoption process
God' faithfulness
For the great love that we have been already given for this little girl who is yet to be officially adopted into our family!!
Our adoption social worker is a gem - kind, understanding and available
Our children and their own initiatives in helping to think of creative ways to bring home their sister
Notes of encouragement from friends and family
Kim's birth certificate has been received (China requires an original birth certificate issued within last 9 mos.)


That God will be glorified first and foremost
Our daughter waiting for us in China!  Her heart will be prepared to accept the love of her new family, for her physical  and emotional health, for the "bonding" to be happening even now as she awaits
Our family - the adoption process has so many emotional "ups" and "downs" - that God will bring our family closer through this process and be preparing our hearts for the wonderful addition of our newest family member
Our social worker as she completes the written portion of our home study within the next week and then helps to get the important dossier fully prepped and ready to send to China
For the  USCIS officer (person who will give us permission to bring a child into the United States) that will be assigned to our case - that he/she will be most interested in seeing orphans come into a family and not be  interested in "nit picking" a file and requesting a lot of "extra things" which ultimately slows the process down
Merle's birth certificate will be received soon (it was ordered the same day as Kim's?!)

Thursday, January 10, 2013

Religion and Ransom Notes......

 Like a zillion other people, I don't like asking for help, presenting a need of my own or talking about money!  However,  I decided not telling our friends and family about this need doesn't make it any less there or less of  a part of the adoption journey.
In the process of mulling over creative ways to raise funds, I find that I often feel like it's a burden or loathsome part of adoption that I'd rather not deal with.  You know, if I could just snap my fingers and the money would magically appear, I'd chose to do it that way.  A.K.A. the "easy way."    But,  as I was thinking  about this whole thing one evening a thought came to my mind.  If I'm willing to humbly tell others of this need, it gives them an opportunity to practice  "true religion" and to be blessed for "taking care of an orphan in their distress."  (James 1:27 - "Pure and faultless religion is this, to take care of orphans and widows in their distress and keep oneself from being polluted by the world."  )  
  We have a daughter living on the other side of the world who is depending on her parents for help.  Help to get home to her family and medical access.  She owns nothing of her own.  She is penniless and has no support system.  But she does have a debt.  
You see every orphan has this invisible "ransom" attached to her.  It's not her fault, and she most likely is unaware of it.  But, none the less, it's part of the price in bringing her to her forever family.   Paying the ransom is  another portion of the adoption process.    If the process is being done in a legal, moral and ethical way, it will be a very costly process.
We are working on creative ways to raise the ransom money for our sweet red thread!  (And I hope to let you know about some of those events SOON).  We are also currently working on completing the necessary paperwork so that any financial donation given can be tax deductible receipt.   (details coming )
Will you pray with us that our daughter's ransom will be paid in full when we're ready to board a plane to pick her up?
James 5:16b tells us that " the effectual fervent prayers of a righteous man, availeth much."  

Wednesday, January 2, 2013

They're ALL "Our Own"

After we adopted our boys, every now and then I'd be in conversation with someone and I'd hear something like "what about your own" children or referring to another adoptive family, they'd ask "are they their own?"
I know what is meant when the question/comment  is made but I always feel this little stab in my heart.  I also get an immediate ache for my adopted children (who thankfully have never been present when the comment has been made).  The comment/question is usually made when trying to differentiate between a biological child and an adopted child.  However, as Mama to ALL of my children, there is no distinction between biological and adopted children.  They're grafted in.  We're family.  They are all truly 100% "our own" children.  Period.

I recognize that those comments are made with absolutely zero intention of causing any kind of hurt.  But this post is being written just to throw out some "food for thought."   As I mentioned in an earlier post, sometimes it's best to put ourselves in another's shoes and think of how the comment may resonate with us if we were on the other side.  Hearing "are they your own" could be interpreted to a child as "I'm not truly theirs!"  or "I'm less of a son/daughter to my parents then my sisters and brothers who were biologically grafted into the family?"