Saturday, January 30, 2010
Wednesday, January 27, 2010
This is a great, short article about the surge of interest in international adoption since the Haiti earthquake. So worth your time! I'm copying and pasting it below just in case you don't click on this link.
I DID NOT WRITE THIS: THIS IS A COPY AND PASTE ARTICLE!
Adoption agencies all over the country have been inundated with people calling in to inquire about adopting Haitian orphans. As I’ve noted before, the complexities of Haiti’s orphan crisis are enormous, especially when we add the question of adoption to the mix. In light of these complexities, I think it’s safe to say that it will be quite some time before Haiti is even able to open its doors to adoption again. Even before Haiti’s earthquake, the adoption process was anywhere from 2-3 years, and a difficult one at that.
Given the current situation in Haiti, here is my question to those who are interested in adopting a child from Haiti: “How long are you willing to wait to give a Haitian orphan a home?” My concern is that our compassion for Haiti’s orphans, our desire to give them a home, won’t have the necessary patience (endurance) to see it through. What Haiti’s orphans need once adoption opens back up is Christians who have gospel-endurance.
When God predestined us to adoption, there was no such thing as a watch or a second hand. As a matter of fact, God hadn’t even created the world yet! Once God did create the world, though, his work of adoption didn’t actually break into human history until after he sent his Son. When it came to adopting us into his family, God was extremely patient.
The day will come when the adoption process will open back up in Haiti; and when it does, what Haiti’s orphans will need is Christians who imitate the patience of their Father in heaven. How many of us who are now interested in adopting a child from Haiti will still be interested when the adoption process finally opens back up? I don’t know.
What I do know, though, is that if our desire to adopt a child from Haiti is fueled by the gospel, there will be more of us who are willing to wait than there would be if it’s not. How do I know this? Because the gospel produces gospel-patience.
So, here’s my encouragement to everyone who is interested in adopting a child from Haiti. First, continue giving to organizations that are providing immediate relief to Haiti’s orphans. Food, water, safety, and protection are still Haiti’s orphans’ most pressing needs.
Second, keep feeding your compassion for Haiti’s orphans with the gospel. If we are to imitate the adoptive-patience of God, it will be because of the gospel.
Wednesday, January 20, 2010
You may or may not know, we are in the process of planning Run For Compassion 2010! Save the date, April 10, 2010. This run means so much to me. It gives me an outlet to pour into something I'm passionate about. Compassion International is doing so much in so many countries around the world, it's hard to sum up. You may be most familiar with their child sponsorship program. I'd like to also introduce to you the Child Survival program.
My brother Brian works for Compassion and is in Uganda right now. He just posted on Facebook that he held today a little one who has had malaria three times in the last year. The Child Survival Program saved that baby. He posted the link to the CSP- www.rescuebabiesnow.org
Here is a brief excerpt from that site.
I still cannot believe I am going to have a baby. I am 17 years old. I am not ready for this. I’ve never been so scared. I hope it’s a boy. In my community, boys are praised, but girls are looked down on. At least if it is a boy, he could have a better life than me.
I don’t know if my baby will even survive birth. I’ve known many women who bought baby coffins before their baby was born because so many babies die in their first month. What will I name it? In Haiti, we do not even name babies until they are 5. We just call them all Ti Chape (little survivor). It hurts less that way. Will my little Ti Chape make it? I do not know what to do. That is all I can say for tonight.
Tomorrow will come.
For all of us here, having healthy babies, naming them before they're even born, it's hard to imagine this life. How could this not move us to action? You can read the rest of this woman's journey on the site for yourself.
The CSP partners with local churches to meet the physical, emotional, and spiritual needs of women and children. It's named quite appropriately. It's about survival. I hope you'll read more about it and get excited about what we can do alongside Compassion!
Thursday, January 14, 2010
Our hearts are heavy in this house, as in yours, for what is happening in Haiti. My brother Brian sent our family an e-mail today asking for prayer for his co-worker Dan, who was there as a photographer for Compassion. He has a wife and a two and four-year-old at home, still awaiting word about his survival. We spent time in earnest prayer for them as a family tonight, and for all of the people who are experiencing the unimaginable in Haiti right now.
Here are some ways we can help. You can go to Aaron Ivey's blog (a Christian music artist) and buy a t-shirt that goes 100% to the organizations already there on the ground in Haiti doing relief work.
Also, you can go to the Compassion site or the Living Water site and donate directly to these two trustworthy and already present organizations.
Tuesday, January 12, 2010
I'm recommending another book, that I just started and love!!! I need to give a big thanks and hug to my friend Ashley for recommending this to me.
I know, I know, you shouldn't recommend books you haven't finished yet. In fact, I've seriously JUST started this book. But I already know I love it! It's called A Gospel Primer by Milton Vincent.
The last book I recommended on here was Gospel Powered Parenting. The Lord has really shown me that what I need more of, in parenting, and in EVERY area of my life, is the Gospel. I need to know the Gospel, the message of how Christ came to save us, and know it, and preach it to myself everyday. The more I know and love the Gospel, the more my joy and peace increases!
Just so I'm clear on what I mean by the Gospel, here is a passage of scripture where Paul clearly outlines the Gospel, in Ephesians 2. (Jeanna and I are memorizing this right now.) Here Paul is preaching the Gospel again, to believers, as he so often does in the epistles.
As for you, you were dead in your transgressions and sins, 2 in which you used to live when you followed the ways of this world and of the ruler of the kingdom of the air, the spirit who is now at work in those who are disobedient. 3 All of us also lived among them at one time, gratifying the cravings of our sinful nature and following its desires and thoughts. Like the rest, we were by nature objects of wrath. 4 But because of his great love for us, God, who is rich in mercy, 5 made us alive with Christ even when we were dead in transgressions — it is by grace you have been saved. 6 And God raised us up with Christ and seated us with him in the heavenly realms in Christ Jesus, 7 in order that in the coming ages he might show the incomparable riches of his grace, expressed in his kindness to us in Christ Jesus. 8 For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith — and this not from yourselves, it is the gift of God— 9 not by works, so that no one can boast. 10 For we are God's workmanship, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do.
In the introduction of this book, the author says that we have mistaken the Gospel for the message we accept at our conversion, and then move on to "bigger and better" spiritual things. However, what we really need is a deeper knowledge of, affection for, and understanding of the Gospel, day by day! I read recently that if you think you fully grasp the Gospel, you probably don't. The Gospel message is so deep and rich that there is more to dig into everyday.
This book breaks the Gospel message into pieces and gives you scriptures referenced below each section to go over. I am so looking forward to taking in the Gospel message, piece by piece, and knowing it more deeply. This morning I got a LOT out of what I read and the passages that it sent me to read in the scripture. Isn't this what we all need more of?
Yes! I realize when my children sin, they need to hear the Gospel from us. There is redemption, forgiveness, freedom from trying to be good on our own...there is so much there for us to share with them.
When I am in sin, I need- the Gospel.
When I am condemning myself for my sin- I need more of the Gospel.
When I am relying on myself to do something- I need a dose of the Gospel.
When I might fall into legalistic thinking- yep, the Gospel.
When I am prideful, the Gospel.
When I resist forgiving, even for a millisecond, Gospel.
Are you catching me? It makes me excited just writing about it. God is so good, rich in mercy, full of grace, the Gospel message is truly GOOD NEWS.