Tuesday, August 31, 2010
Sunday, August 29, 2010
Avery and Amelle worked all day on putting together a 1 minute film called "The Apprentice". My favorite part of the film is the elaborate hand-painted background. The cloud with the lightening bolt coming from it is pure perfection, in my opinion.
Diego's evil brother finds an apprentice to help him destroy the city of Norid. Will they succeed in their evil plan?
Rated G for everyone.
Saturday, August 28, 2010
and then we exercised our creativity
and our bodies
Tuesday, August 24, 2010
The pastor at our former church had a saying he'd pull out from time to time, and it sort of stuck with me. He said that when we're in the midst of the fire, we cry out to the Lord and ask Him for help, but sometimes He whispers back that He's the one who started it.
God uses the fire to refine us, Isaiah 48 reminds us, "See, I have refined you, though not as silver; I have tested you in the furnace of affliction. For my own sake, for my own sake, I do this. How can I let myself be defamed? I will not yield my glory to another."
I don't know where I'm going with this. I am sleep-deprived, sad, and weak. I feel like the last few weeks have been one attack after another and I am ready for a reprieve. I removed the latest series of adoption posts because I can't stand being reminded of the hope I once had. I am confused about how God could use something so beautiful to cause so much pain. I have no words, I am trying to cling to the promise in Romans 8:28, "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.", but clinging to anything right now seems to take energy that I don't have.
With apologies for the "woe is me sentiment" in this post; I just wanted to be real about life and being me right now.
Sunday, August 22, 2010
I could use the encouragement right about now. Thanks!
Lord- You are amazing and true and awesome. We are asking that you bless this family with the adoption journey. We know that you are powerful enough to have your will be done even if we don't understand it and aren't on board. We know that you can rescue orphans without our "help." We also realize that you allow us on YOUR journey to bless us, stretch us, grow us and mold us....God if you are calling Erin and Dirt to roll up their sleeves and jump-in, please put them on the same page. Be loud and thunderous and let them know exactly what they should do...if you are tugging at their hearts to adopt B-please tug louder and shove if necessary. I would hate for them to miss out on this life changing, heart inspiring process because of fear. I am not going to ask you to remove fear-because YOU are bigger than that, I am asking they focus on YOU and nothing of this world where fear resides...I am asking you remind them of the times you have held them so strongly they couldn't deny it...I ask you to remind them of your powers and how yours ways are not our ways...I ask that you remind them that you have had a plan for B before they were ever in their own mom's womb....I ask that you speak loud and clear...I pray that Erin and Dirt have the courage to step out on faith...and not miss the adoption blessing-whether or not it is B.
Saturday, August 21, 2010
God helps guide us. He does. But He’s not always real overt about it. Sometimes He is but mostly He just sort of whispers things into our hearts. Then He sends people as signposts. They’re usually unsuspecting and have no idea that God is using them. It’s the coolest thing ever to find out that you were an instrument of the true and living God and you didn’t even know it.
I think about when we first moved to Maine and were searching for a church. We visited our current church, but it wasn’t exactly love at first sight. We continued to search, but then God would put these people in our lives, signposts, and each one of them pointed us back to EBC, where we ended up. Now I couldn’t imagine being anywhere else. It’s so so so clear to me that we are exactly where God wants us. Amazing. God used a chance meeting with a parent at the baseball field, a realtor, a contractor, people we bumped into at the convenience store as sign-posts ever so gently pointing us to EBC.
When we got the adoption email a few weeks ago, I freaked. I was excited, nervous, scared. I thought “This is it! This is the one God selected for us!” The child was perfect for us, so perfect – even his fee was waived…we could adopt him basically for free! This was really happening..oh snap! But then I kept hearing something from a bunch of different people. Something I didn’t particularly like, but it was kind of bold and it came from so many different people that I had to pay attention. “This might not be the child God has for you, but God may be using him to prepare you for the right child”. I hated this truth, but deep down I knew it was from him. At least 5 Christians said this to me within that first week…one person even wrote it as an afterthought in an email, “I’m not sure why I just thought of this, but..”. I stopped looking at the boy’s picture; I even called some friends to see if they would be interested in him. Even though I really didn’t want to let go, I knew deep down he wasn’t ours.
During the week of praying and thinking something really unusual happened. Signposts, if you will. At least I’d like to think so. It was B. My sweet, sweet B cropped into the picture all week. As we were praying and thinking about adoption, B contacted me several times. I usually hear from B once every 2-3 weeks, but this particular week, I heard from him at least 6 times, including e-mails, 2 hand-written letters (one that he sent with a family 2 months ago, the other that he sent with a women 3 weeks ago), FB messages from his friends at Kolfe saying that B wanted to say Hi, and perhaps the most surprising – a skype conversation where he got on the computer himself and contacted me directly, alone without a translator. This has NEVER happened before. EVER. And what was even more amazing was that Dirt sat down and had a conversation with him! Um…yeah.
B has no way of knowing that we were considering adoption. Blogger is blocked from Ethiopia. He can’t read any of this. No one in Ethiopia can. Plus, he would never have been able to plan that I would receive those two hand-written letters in the same week, and that they would be received during the most critical week of our adoption journey. Everywhere I looked, B was there. Everywhere I turn, I see God confirming that now is the time…I went to the furniture store the other day and there was a wall of adopted kids, I turned on the radio (something I NEVER do) and I heard a story about adoption.
If you ask me. Now’s the time and B’s the one.
Dirt is sort of waiting for his own sign, but God might be sending it to me for both of us, like when God sent a prophet to tell Abraham that they were going to have a son. Sarah wasn't invited to that conversation, yet that's clearly what they were called to. When God was pointing us to EBC, He sent people to Dirt, not me...yet we were clearly directed there. In God's sight, we're one...we cannot be divided on this.
Friday, August 20, 2010
I took this with my phone at her instructor's studio, we were trying to capture the "perfect violin hold" so we'd have something to compare to at home when she practices :)
Monday, August 16, 2010
Thursday, August 12, 2010
...and then there's B. [PHOTO REMOVED]
The one and only hesitation I have about adopting the child that He placed on our lap is B....the child he placed in my heart.
Yesterday's email reminds me of my dream to adopt him:Hello lovely and sweet mom! [this is exactly how my other kids greet me] Haw was to day? Mom I miss my sister and brother. I miss you soooooooooo much. Mom you know you come common day? Mom I love you so much mom haw was dad. I think our family. Mom I see your photo in my bed mom I want to you com digital camera. Mom we will celebrate our new year after 1 month. It is known as Enkutatash. Mom I miss Solomon. Now finished school. Mom I want to skip [skype] with you.mom I am sad because my friend getaneh go soon America. Mom you gat my later? Now my email is work. Now I have puppy god [dog] she name is jerry she is the boy. To day see you in facebook. Mom God is love and God bless you! You son B Moore
Getaneh is the boy pictured above. I've been in contact with his mom - he'll be leaving Kolfe in the next month or so. Solomon left about a month ago. B's friends are leaving and he's still there...which breaks my heart.
I don't know how this story will end. In many ways I feel like I'm in a love triangle - torn between two precious children. But reality is that's not the case, to imply that I have a choice to make would deny the sovereignty of God. God alone weaves families together. HE is penning this story and HE already knows what our family is going to look like a year from now and ten years from now. I love that. I rest in that. So while this story is filled with suspense for me, God has already written it. We just need to turn the page to find out what happens. I am just so thankful that he's allowing us to play a role in this chapter. I can't wait to see what happens!
Wednesday, August 11, 2010
Tuesday, August 10, 2010
Wondering what his future will be. Wondering what he's doing right now. Wondering if our lives will intertwine in a very intimate way.
Who will hold those hands as he crosses the street? Who will show those hands how to hold a crayon? Will those hands one day reach up to Dirt and I to pick him up?
I don't have any answers...but my God knows. And I trust Him.
Note: I can't show pictures, it's not allowed. Sorry!
Monday, August 09, 2010
On Friday I was driving to work listening to Francis’ Chan – he was talking about leaving his church and heading off to a new chapter in his life. “Am I sure?”, he said…”no…I’m about 70-80% sure – but when are you ever 100% sure of anything? …and how many times have you been 100% sure of something and then been 100% wrong?”
That was how my day began.
The next thing that happened was crazy.
An e-mail came through with the subject line,”I know this is a really weird question”. When I opened the email, I read: “but do you think that you and Dirt might be called to be the parents of a 3-4 year old Ethiopian boy? …I won’t torture you with pictures unless you ask”
This is literally something I have prayed about for years. Actually, I don’t know if it’s been a full-blown prayer or just mini exasperated requests to God (is there a difference?), but on numerous occasions, I’ve said, “Lord, can’t you just put a child before us, so we’d know”? I have begged Him to do that so, so many times.
This was crazy. A 3-4 year old boy is exactly what we set out to adopt 2+ years ago. A 3-4 year old boy is the perfect compromise between my desire to adopt an older child and Dirt’s desire to adopt an infant. A 3-4 year old boy is our sweet spot….and the opportunity to say yes was just a click away.
I called Dirt and he said, “get all the information you can”.
Within minutes of my reply, I was flooded with photos of a precious wide-eyed child. I forwarded to Dirt who agreed: “He’s a cutie”.
This child has a biological half sister who was adopted last year and we arranged a call with her mother to talk about everything we could think of on Friday night. She was awesome and provided us with lots of information. We told her that we’d be taking the weekend to pray about it. She'd be praying too (as would another couple who is considering adoption).
It’s Monday and we’re still praying. We don’t have any peace in this situation. We’re scared about everything. We’re scared about saying yes and we’re scared about saying no. Adoption is definitely not for wimps....and I'm feeling extremely wimpy. Thoughts from only having three barstools at the kitchen counter to a 4th college tuition have fed our fears. But then there is love. There is the WWJD factor – and I tend to think that Jesus would want us to love this child, even if it means sacrificing. I’m not real good at sacrificing things, but God is, and if I trust that He is transforming me in His image, then….maybe....
Saturday, August 07, 2010
Friday, August 06, 2010
Tuesday, August 03, 2010
But understand this, that in the last days there will come times of difficulty. For people will be lovers of self, lovers of money, proud, arrogant, abusive, disobedient to their parents, ungrateful, unholy, heartless, unappeasable, slanderous, without self-control, brutal, not loving good, treacherous, reckless, swollen with conceit, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God, having the appearance of godliness, but denying its power. Avoid such people. 2 Timothy 3
Wow. Yeah, God pretty much has me pegged. As I read down the list, it’s a like I’m reading a description of myself. Not the kind that graces my Facebook profile, because I’m far too vain to portray myself in that light. It’s the kind of description that could only be written by the One who sees straight through to my heart.
Seriously, let’s look at the list more closely:
1. Lover of self – Heck yeah. I am my own biggest fan.
2. Lover of money – Ya think? If I didn’t love it so much, I wouldn’t work. Period.
3. Proud – Check.
4. Arrogant – Check. (you don’t know my heart)
5. Abusive – Okay, it’s true that I don’t beat my kids or abuse drugs; but that’s not the issue here. The dictionary definition is: characterized by wrong or improper use or action; using harsh insulting language. Now it fits. Check.
6. Disobedient to parents – Check. Ask my mother.
7. Ungrateful – Double-check.
8. Unholy – Definitely unholy.
9. Heartless – Not always, but sometimes. It counts.
10. Unappeasable – Sho Nuf. Ask Dirt.
11. Without self-control – See what happens when you leave me in a room with a cookie.
12. Brutal – Check. Cut me off and then play a video of the scene rolling in my mind.
13. Not loving good – I think I do, but I don’t. I love what I think is good, like ice cream, not what God thinks is good, like selfless love.
14. Treacherous – I had to look this one up, Guilty of or involving betrayal or deception. Teaching my kids about Santa Clause qualifies me for this one.
15. Reckless – Only when it comes to my sin.
16. Swollen with conceit – Yes, we’ve already established that I love myself. My natural inclination is to try to steal God’s glory every chance I get. I’m a big fan of me.
17. Lover of pleasure rather than lover of God – Does this one really have to be an “rather” statement? I really do love God, but I also really love my own pleasure. I love my house, my car, my comforts, my things. If my priorities were God’s priorities, I’d be more concerned about feeding His children or rescuing His little girls from the bondage of sex slavery - rather than getting a new back deck. Just sayin’.
18. Having the appearance of godliness, but denying it’s power – I’m sure I look “godly” sitting in the pew on Sunday, singing Jesus songs. But where is His power evident in my life? Far too often I rely on me, when I need to rely on Him.
Before you think I’m being too hard on myself, know that 1) I’m not, and 2) I think you’re just as bad as I am. So yeah, this describes me, but I’m pretty sure it describes you too. What freaks me out the most about this passage is that this is a description of Christians in the last days…and this is a description of many Christians today… “lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God, having the appearance of godliness, but denying its power”. Ouch. Double-ouch, actually.
Verse 6 goes on to say that those of us who fit this description will be burdened with sins, led astray by our passions, and get this, be always learning and never able to arrive at a knowledge of the truth. I hate that part the most.
The good news is that I can’t fix all of this on my own, it’s only through Christ’s amazing power that these characteristics will change. I love that I can lean on Him. When I am weak, He is strong!
Lord, please transform me, help me to be more like you…help me to think less of myself and more of you. Use my life for your honor and your glory, I ask these things in your mighty and powerful name. Amen.