Saturday, October 31, 2009

Update on Addison

We just received our monthly update on Addison and I'm delighted to report she is doing great! She currently weighs 18lbs. which places her in the 79th percentile for weight. As for her length she is now 25 inches long which places her in the 25% for height. So basically she is a round little chunk! She is now able to get up on all fours, but is not yet crawling. She can stand up while holding onto her Foster mom's hands. She is also laughing, cooing, and can say "ma-ma" and "um-um." (…Which is probably "umma," the Korean word for mother.) Developmentally she is right on target and we are really happy for such a great report! We don't have any new photos but were really hoping we get some soon.

Thursday, October 22, 2009

Christ = Life

“It’s imperative we see that God is not interested in making our lives better. He’ll have nothing to do with being a supplemental enhancement to support our personal goals and ambitions. He’s not a sidekick, co-pilot, or self-help guru, and we should stay as far away from so-called Christianity that presents God as a way to improve our lives. God is life itself. Christ is life itself. We cannot live apart from God.”

*quote from the book, Your Jesus Is Too Safe, -p. 225

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Monday, October 19, 2009

Awesome Photos!

I love this Website.
The photos are incredible!!!!
Check it out!

Friday, October 16, 2009

Addison's Care Package

Adoptive parents are able send “care packages” to their children in Korea. They way this works is you fill a box with items you want given to your child, mail it to the agency and then they will give the package to the foster mom. We wanted to send a care package to Addison, so the boys and I went shopping to find her some things. I gave each boy a small amount of money and then we went to Target so they could choose items they wanted to send to their baby sister. We were there a long time as each boy labored to choose the perfect items to put in the care package. Here are some photos of the fun we had
Jacker decided the blanket was a far better gift than a teether!

Drew couldn't decide what outfit to choose..too many choices!

Nick & Drew were discussing who would get this outfit as they both liked it.

Oh no!!! Did you catch us shopping!!!

Who knew he'd be so cute in pink!!!

Look mom!!!! baby Ugs!!!

Here's what they all ended up with! We had so much fun!

Enjoy your gifts baby girl! We love you!

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

The Financial Side of Adoption

I think it’s common knowledge that adoption is not a cheap endeavor. I’ve had people ask me how we can pay for this adoption and I’m sure there are plenty of other people who don’t ask for fear of overstepping personal boundaries. Well, I’m a pretty open person and I believe that questions about our adoption just give me more opportunities to share God’s hand in our lives. I’ll be frank, when we started this journey we were doing well financially. At that point it seemed quite affordable and more importantly we both knew God was leading us to this.

As God would have it, as soon as we were accepted as adoptive parents (in April 2008) by our agency our financial status began to slowly change. Over the past year and a half our finances have slowly dwindled, and we are financially nowhere close to where we were at the beginning of this journey. I don’t say this to solicit sympathy or money…God has been faithful to provide (of course!) and in this path we are learning to really, really lean on Him, trust Him, and be faithful even when life doesn’t appear to be “panning out” nicely. I am learning so much by being in this place…and I know I have much more to learn.

I say all of this because I found a post written by an adoptive father whose reflections on faith, money and adoption also reflect my heart. I could rewrite it, but his words are perfect, so I’ll just borrow them and tell you, that his beliefs and heart are also mine. Please read his post and really think about what he says. It is applicable reagrdless of where you are in life.

Read his post by clicking here.

Monday, October 12, 2009

Why You Need to Start Talking to Yourself More

I found this post over at The Gospel Coalition. (which is a great blog/website too)

"Have you realized that most of your unhappiness in life is due to the fact that you are listening to yourself instead of talking to yourself? Take those thoughts that come to you the moment you wake up in the morning. You have not originated them but they are talking to you, they bring back the problems of yesterday, etc. Somebody is talking. Who is talking to you? Your self is talking to you. Now this man’s treatment [in Psalm 42] was this: instead of allowing this self to talk to him, he starts talking to himself. “Why art thou cast down, O my soul?” he asks. His soul had been depressing him, crushing him. So he stands up and says, “Self, listen for moment, I will speak to you.”

-D. Martin Lloyd-Jones, Spiritual Depression pp. 20-21

Thursday, October 8, 2009

The Sobering Truth

I came across this video over at 1517 (my very favorite blog) and was saddened at the truth that was so clearly stated by John MacArthur. (Who is one of my favorite preachers.)

Beautifully Stated

When I read the following *post, I was impressed with the simplicity with which God’s sovereignty and salvation was addressed:

"However contrary it is our our Western cultural commitment to egalitarianism, to insist on a universal application of grace is to violate the character of grace. God’s redemptive grace is a gift, a completely unearned divine favor given out of love. The giver is always sovereign in the giving of a gift. That is to say, the giver is free to give and free not to give, and he gives the gift to whomever he chooses. The words obligation and gift mutually exclude one another. The common rejection of the doctrine of election in favor of a universally dispensed grace not only denies God the divine prerogative to chose whom he will redemptively love but also makes God’s grace a necessary structure of the world. If grace is an obligation, a structure or an entitlement, it is no longer a gift, and no longer grace. Redemptive grace is always unexpected, beyond the norm, and out of the ordinary. Grace can never be taken for granted, assumed, or presumed upon. God is never obligated to redeem.”

—Michael D. Williams, Far as the Curse is Found, 105

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Here's Some Autumn Reading for ya!

I’m reading a new book entitled Why We Love the Church by Kevin DeYoung and Ted Cluck. It is such a great book! I cannot recommend it highly enough. If you’ve given up on church, or are disillusioned with it, if you’re tired or thrilled with church this book will be worth your time.

Here’s just one excerpt:

“…The church has often been despised. It would be wrong to wear unpopularity as a sure marker of faithfulness. But by the same token, we should not assume we have failed just because outsiders dislike us. It is well known that the Romans despised the early Christians. They were considered odd, unlearned, ungodly, culturally lowbrow, and socially unprofitable. The Romans thought the Christians practiced cannibalism because they ate the body and drank the blood of Jesus. Some thought they were incestuous because they called each other 'brother' and 'sister' and took part in love feasts. Others thought they were atheists because they had no icons for their God….Their early press was uniformly bad. It can be helpful to know how others perceive us, but not always. In our self-esteem-oriented, easily offended, suffering-adverse world, I fear that the church is too eager to be liked….Of course Christianity has an ‘image problem.’ At times, this is our own fault. But at other times, our lack of an image has been just as damning. We’ve been indistinct from the world with nothing to set us apart, nothing to suggest a transformed life or renewed thinking bound by the Word of God.”

Get a cup of coffee, crack open this book, and enjoy the fall weather!

Monday, October 5, 2009

From Anxiety to Peace

I ran across the following post on a blog entitled The Gospel Coalition. It gave a quick summary of how Christians can go from being anxious and worried to having peace. The points were worth noting...and applying, if you tend to worry. (Like I tend to right now.)

Remind Yourself That God Is In Control: When you convince yourself that your world is out of control, you are on the verge of paralysis. Watch your self-talk. Are you saying to yourself: “God is in control of this circumstance, He is my Father, and He is ruling this for my benefit”?

Accept Confusion: Believing in God’s sovereignty doesn’t mean life will make sense. Believing in God’s sovereignty is needed because life doesn’t make sense. Your rest is not in figuring out your circumstances–your rest is in the God behind the circumstances.

Don’t Allow Emotions To Rule: As much as the emotions you experience will be right, good, and appropriate, don’t let them set the agenda. There is a temptation to do that, but allowing yourself to be pulled away by the emotions of the moment could cause you to regret your decisions later.

Distinguish Needs From Wants: Be very careful what you put in your catalog of “need.” The minute you tell yourself something is a need, you’re saying it is essential for life. Then you are going to determine that you can’t live without it. It’s easy to attach yourself and your sense of security to the gift rather than to the Giver.

Know Your Job Description: God promises to provide. Your job is to live the way God has called you to live. Instead of giving way to discouragement, look for ways you can contribute to God’s people at the moment.

Run To God, Not Away From Him: God’s promise to us is not first the relief of the suffering–His promise is to give us Himself. He will never turn a deaf ear to the natural cries of a person of faith when life doesn’t make sense. God hears and answers and works and comforts.

-Summarized by Tullian Tchividjian (via Susan Fiske) Taken from Paul Tripp’s six actions steps for combating anxiety.

Friday, October 2, 2009

Introducing Addison Hope

So Monday we received a phone call from our adoption agency saying they had matched us with another baby. We were stunned. They had said it would take 6-8 weeks, but it took 6 days! We were thinking November, and it was September. It was very surprising. The social worker said that on the rare occasion something like this happens they are always quick to match asap.

Our baby girl was born May 1, 2009. She is fussy according to her file. It stated she cried when bathed, (especially when her hair was washed) “showed her temper” when she was wet or hungry, and “fretted” when she was tired, but would stop when rocked to sleep. Humm… so she cries when shes hungry, tired, wet, or bathed…I think that’s all the time. She sounds like a spit-fire already.

Although we don’t feel ready to “move on,” we have found this to be a source of encouragement. I would be lying if I said I wasn’t still sad about Brooke; I still cry at times, and there is a big part of me that feels guilty being excited about another baby. …and then a part of me that feels guilty about not being “excited enough” about the new baby. I’m quite a mix of emotions right now and we thank you for your continued prayers. It means so much to us. Please continue to pray for Brooke. We love her still. Please pray for this baby who we’ve name Addison Hope; “Addison” after the baby we lost. (her name was Brooke Addison), and “Hope” because God has given us great, unshakable Hope. To Him be the glory.

Psalm 116:12: “How can I repay the Lord for all the good he has done for me?”