Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Happy Family Day – 2nd Anniversary

It is hard to believe, but 2 years ago today we were in a hot and humid Civil Affairs office in Nanchang, China finalizing our adoption of The Princess.  It is hard to believe that it has been only 2 years, because it seems as though The Princess has always been a part of this family.

Here is the photo that started our journey to The Princess:

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Look at those cheeks!  I took one look at that precious little face and felt like she was staring straight into my soul.  I just wanted to kiss those sweet cheeks!

This was her arrival to our hotel room.  We had just flown into Nanchang (Sunday) and I thought we would meet her on Monday.  As we were leaving the airport, our guide (Mary) informed us we be meeting The Princess in a few hours.  Talk about panic mode!  I thought we would have time to get her things together, instead I had a few minutes to rifle through our luggage and find a few things for her.

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The Princess and her entourage.

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Meeting The Princess for the first time.

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Breakfast the next morning.

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She is officially ours!

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Happy Family Day, Princess!

Prayer for Orphan Care – Day 25

Today, pray for God’s provision for your church’s orphan care ministry.  Ask Him to provide people, prayers, money, food, and supplies to give orphans all the care they need.

Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Prayer for Orphan Care – Day 24

Today, pray for church staff members and leaders.  Ask for the Lord’s hand of blessing on their lives.  Lift up the health and safety of them and their families.  Ask also that the Lord would break their hearts for the orphans in your community.

Monday, June 28, 2010

Prayer for Orphan Care = Day 23

Today, ask the Lord to strengthen the faith and resolve of Christians working in orphan ministries.

Saturday, June 26, 2010

Prayer for Orphan Care – Day 22

Today, pray for the families who have members living with HIV and AIDS.  Pray for the children orphaned by this disease.  Ask God to provide treatment, care, and support through the church.

Friday, June 25, 2010

Prayer for Orphan Care – Day 21

Today, pray for government leaders in all countries.  Ask the Lord to burden their hearts for the orphans.  Ask that they would feel compelled to protect and provide for orphans.

Thursday, June 24, 2010

I Miss My Boy

My youngest son, Godzilla, left for his first ever Boy Scout Camp on Saturday.  I so miss my boy!

What you have to know about us is that we are a Boy Scouting family.  And the thing about Godzilla is since he can remember, he has always wanted to be a Boy Scout.  Big Tuna started his scouting career as a Tiger Cub in 1st grade.  Baby Godzilla made his first Scout camping trip when he was 10 months old, in November, in 40 degree temperatures.  When Big Tuna moved up into Boy Scouts from Cub Scouts, Godzilla quickly became the Troop’s mascot:).  In some cases, Godzilla outperformed a few scouts on outings, etc.  Cub Scouts all but bored Godzilla because, well, he had gone beyond the basics by the time he joined Cub Scouts. 

As you may recall, Godzilla finally crossed over into Boy Scouts this past spring.  One of the annual Boy Scout events is a week at Boy Scout camp.  Our Scout Council has a BSA camp located about 2 hours away from where we live.  Just think about it.  Boy Scout camp.  For one week.  Seven days.  Six nights.  In southeastern NC.  In the summer.  With daily temps 90-100 degrees.  With daily humidity at about 100%.  With yellow-flies that are so big they can carry you off.  Not to mention their bite feels like a needle sticking into you.  Just keep those thoughts in the back of your mind:).

On Sunday (Father’s Day), the Troop left for Camp.  Seeing how this would be Godzilla’s first official camp, we made plans so that Captain Daddy and Big Tuna (both Assistant Scoutmasters) would be up there pretty much the whole time to keep an eye on the boy.

 

DSCN4074The “Happy Campers” getting ready to depart. 

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The “Happy Campers” checking into camp.

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Reality check.

Now, Wednesday evening is the “Family Night.”  Basically, that is when the camp kitchen staff have the night off, so families come up to feed their troops.  This is a good-bad situation in a torture-like way.  It is good because you get to see your Scout doing scout stuff.  You get to witness how “grown up” your son has become in less than a few days.  It is good because your son for the first time in his life now really, really appreciates you, and home.  Which brings me to the torture part.  It is bad because your now grown-up Scout sees his Mama and no longer wants to be a Scout.  No longer wants to be a grown-up Scout, but wants to be your little (baby) boy.  All he wants to do is to climb into that air conditioned vehicle and go home.  And he will stop at nothing to accomplish his goal.  Unless, you are a veteran Scout Mama.

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I must admit I was rather “surprised” at Godzilla’s appearance on Wednesday.  You can’t tell it, but his legs are covered in nasty, horrible, oozing bug-bites and his feet are covered in blisters.  This veteran Scout Mama was ready to scoop her baby into her arms and whisk him home to doctor his pain and wait on him hand and foot.  Godzilla must have sensed my guard down because the first thing he said to me was “I want to go home.”  I spent most of the evening trying to sound very grown-up when we had that “we’ve had this conversation before you left” conversation.  I promised him the moon and stars for his return home on Saturday.  I loved on him as best I could without giving in.

For the record, I wasn’t the only parent doing this:).

DSCN4081 Godzilla does love that Big Tuna is at camp with him.  He also loves that Captain Daddy brought him his own ice, cold milk to drink.  He drank a quart. 

Before we left, Captain Daddy doctored him up and put him to bed.  Captain Daddy is to return back to camp on Friday.  I made him promise to bring Godzilla right home if his legs/bug bites aren’t better.

I miss my boy.  The girls miss their brother.  We are used to Big Tuna being away on trips for weeks at a time.  We aren’t used to Godzilla being gone so long.

Adam at BSA campWe can’t wait for the return of Godzilla.

Prayer for Orphan Care – Day 20

Today, pray that the Christians in your village, town, city, and country would believe and live the truth of Proverbs 14:31: 

“He who oppresses the poor shows contempt for their Maker, but whoever is kind to the needy honors God.”

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Prayer for Orphan Care – Day 18

Today, pray for your pastor.  Ask God to provide him with resources, encouragement, courage, and a strong prayer team to support him as he seeks to live out James 1:27: 

“Pure and lasting religion in the sight of God our Father means that we must care for orphans and widows in their troubles, and refuse to let the world corrupt us.”

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Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Prayer for Orphan Care – Day 18

Today, ask the Lord to raise up respite care providers to support and give relief to the caregivers for orphans who are waiting to have families.

Monday, June 21, 2010

Prayer for Orphan Care Day 17

Today, ask for forgiveness for Christians around the world who forget the orphans and forget to heed     

 1 John 3:17:  “If anyone has material possessions and sees his brother in need but has no pity on him. how can the love of God be in him?”

Sunday, June 20, 2010

Prayer for Orphan Care – Day 16

Today, pray that because of God’s mercy, He will provide caregivers and counselors for children who have been abused.

Saturday, June 19, 2010

Prayer for Orphan Care – Day 15

Today, pray for yourself as a church member.  Ask the Lord to lead you on, that you might walk in obedience.  Ask God to show you how to encourage your church family or youth to care for the needs of orphans.

Friday, June 18, 2010

Prayer for Orphan Care – Day 14

Today, pray that your whole congregation will believe and be convicted by Proverbs 22:9

“A generous man will himself be blessed for he shares his food with the poor.”

Ask for the Lord’s blessings on those who share their food with orphans.

Thursday, June 17, 2010

Somewhere Over the Rainbow

I realize I haven’t done a good job at posting family photos.  We have been slammed with wrapping up school, Big Tuna’s graduation, and the girls’ dance recital.  This was the girls’ first dance recital…on a big stage…in front of people.  I completely expected them not to participate, but they surprised me!  In fact, I think it awakened something in The Queen as she really liked it!

The girls danced to “Somewhere Over the Rainbow” by IZ (?).  Here are some photos from practices, etc.

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The Queen doing the best smile she can do.  My Yellow Power Ranger.

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What is this?  Are you actually posing?  And smiling at the same time?

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The Princess.  Knows how to smile and pose.  It is in her genes.  My Pink Power Ranger.

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I am not sure what kind of pose she was going for.

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The Rainbow Girls.

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Dance recital day!  Wish us luck!

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Ta Da!!!!!!  Th-that's all folks!

Prayer for Orphan Care – Day 13

Today, ask the Lord to lead the lawmakers in every nation to protect and provide for orphans.

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Prayer for Orphan Care – Day 12

Today, pray that God, the Defender of the Orphan, will rise up and secure justice for the oppressed.

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Prayer for Orphan Care – Day 11

Today, pray specifically for any orphans you may know by name.  Pray for their health and safety.  Pray for their shelter.  Pray that they will be brought into loving families who will provide for their education.

Monday, June 14, 2010

Prayer for Orphan Care – Days 9 & 10

Day 9

Today, pray that God would break the heart of your city’s pastors with the plight of orphans.  Ask that He would convict them to lead their churches to pray, go, and love in Jesus’ name.

Day 10

Today, ask the Father to set the lonely in families.  Pray specifically for families in your community who may be in the process of adopting an orphan.  Ask for God’s provision for all of their needs:  physical, emotional, financial, and spiritual.

Saturday, June 12, 2010

Congratulations Class of 2010!

Yesterday evening I watched as my first-born graduated from high school.

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Do you see Big Tuna?

We are very proud of him and his classmates.

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The event went by in a blur….at least that’s how most of our photos show it.

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At least the photos taken outside afterwards came out a little better.

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Big Tuna, Captain Daddy, and DC.  DC has been Big Tuna’s friend since 1st grade.  We consider him Big Tuna’s virtual twin:).

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The proud family.

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The brothers.

Congratulations Big Tuna and DC.

Congratulations Class of 2010!

Prayer For Orphan Care – Day 8

Today, pray for the Lord to raise up workers for the harvest from your church and community.  Ask Him to call Christians to go to the “fields of the fatherless” to experience the joy of caring for orphans as we are commanded in Isaiah 1:16-17:

“Give up your wicked ways.  Learn to do good.  Seek justice.  Help the oppressed.  Defend the orphan.  Fight for the rights of widows.”

Friday, June 11, 2010

Prayer For Orphan Care – Day 7

Today, thank the Lord in advance for all that He is going to do to bring glory to His name in your church and community.  Thank Him for the care He is going to provide for orphans through your church.

Thursday, June 10, 2010

Prayer for Orphan Care – Day 6

Today, ask the Lord to help your church family to live Proverbs 31:8:

“Speak up for those who cannot speak for themselves, for the rights of all who are destitute.”

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

Prayer for Orphan Care – Day 5

Today, pray for the fatherless in your community.  Ask the Lord to protect them and care for them, and to defend them and keep them safe.

Tuesday, June 8, 2010

Prayer for Orphan Care – Day 4

Wow!  We are on day 4 already!  Here we go:

Today, ask the LORD to help your church congregation to feel His heart for the orphans as seen in Psalm 68:5, “A Father to the fatherless, a defender of widows, is God in His holy dwelling.  God sets the lonely in families…”

Monday, June 7, 2010

Prayer For Orphan Care – Day 3

Today, ask God that of the 2 billion Christians in the world, 7% would show hope to a single orphan, looking after the child in distress.  Ask the LORD to convict the church around the world that if we did this, there would effectively be no more orphans.  Ask the LORD to show each of His followers that we can each do something.

Sunday, June 6, 2010

Prayer For Orphan Care – Day 2

Today, pray for your Pastor to have guidance and provision as he seeks to follow the LORD’s commands to care for the orphans.

Saturday, June 5, 2010

40 Prayer Guide for Orphan Care - Day 1

I first want to thank everyone that prayed and fasted along with me on June 1 for God’s will for the orphans.  It has sparked some here in my community, so to keep things going we are participating in 40 days of prayer for orphan care.  I found this guide along with an orphan Bible study at Saddleback Church.  If possible, meet daily with other prayer warriors, pray alone, just pray. Remember Matthew 18:20, “For where two or three are gathered in my name, there I am in the midst of them.”

Let’s just see what prayer can do, shall we?

Day 1

Today, pray that the LORD would give you a personal sense of responsibility for the next 40 days (and beyond) for praying for orphans, your pastor, your church, and your community.  Ask Him to break your heart for the orphans.  Ask that He would help to you to see orphans with His eyes and His heart.  Ask Him to use this 40 days of prayer to change you and your church.

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Prayer For Orphans

Dear Lord, Heavenly Father,

I come to you today on behalf of orphans all over the world.  I ask that you forgive me my sins Lord, that I may come to you with a clean heart.  As Joshua told the Israelites “Sanctify yourselves, for tomorrow the LORD will do amazing things among you (Joshua 3:5).

You are the God who performs miracles; you display your power among the people (Psalm 77:44).  Ah, Sovereign Lord, you have made the heavens and the earth by your great power and outstretched arm  Nothing is too hard for you (Jeremiah 32:17).

Nothing is too hard for you, Lord! 

Lord, you know the passion you have set in my heart for children, particularly those without families.  Lord it pains my heart to know there is so much sadness and pain in a child’s heart because they do not have a family; a family that will love them and take care of them.

So, I ask this simple prayer:  that Your Will be done for the orphans. Though simple, it opens a floodgate of hope and possibilities for orphans and families.  Your Will.

Your Will to:

~Intervene on behalf of the orphan.

~Demonstrate Your love to these children through the care they are given by care-givers.

~Provide each of these children a “forever family,” especially the older children and those with special needs.

~Set the lonely in families.

~Heal the deep hurts of these children that have experienced so much pain in their lives.

~Protect them from future harm.

~Provide for the health of orphans, through medications, nutrition, and clean water.

~Prepare the hearts for children to be ready for the families You provide for them.

~Transform the lives and hearts of the children.

~Raise up godly foster families and care-givers to care for the children until they are united with their “forever family.”

~Encourage potential adoptive families to not lose heart or be discouraged while waiting to adopt.

~Remove financial obstacles and provide ways for families to afford the costs associated with adoption.

~Raise up churches to minister to the orphan and become actively involved with the child welfare system.

~Provide food and shelter for children that may be living on the street.  Open our eyes to see see all of the orphans.

~Protect children affected by war and violent conflicts.  Keep them safe and protect their hearts.

~Find help and support for families that are having trouble caring for their children.

~Prick the hearts of the nearly 2 billion Christians in the world to show hope to an orphan.

~Guide each of us as to Your Will for the orphan.

Lord, I pray that each of us will be obedient to whatever You call us to do for the orphan.  I lift up the orphans to you Lord. Lord, I thank you in advance for the amazing things you will do for the orphan.

In Jesus’ name I pray.

Amen