Using Ecclesiastes Math: 2 > 1

One of the biggest blessings of our adoption is how much our friends and family has rallied behind us. So a couple weeks ago, we started working on Baby Shows’ room. I was on Spring Break and had some “extra” time. I’ve done room projects by myself before, but I was feeling a little overwhelmed with this project. Evan was going to have to work more of the week, so it was going to be me. But I wasn’t flying solo. Two days, Evan had off and was able to help. Our neighbor, Brant, offered to help paint the ceiling and get the primer on the walls (and loaned us a ton of painting tools and equipment!). Then, our friend Stephanie gave up two afternoons to help me paint the walls (and one of those afternoons she painted in the room solo – now that’s love), while her incredibly patient almost four-year-old daughter hung out and watched Fresh Beat Band from my couch.

We are simply honored by our friends.

Whether through encouraging words, through donations our yard sale by friends/family/friends of friends, through helping us at the yard sales, through donations to our adoption fund, through prayer, through “likes” or comments on our Facebook statuses, you have blessed us. And more importantly, although he doesn’t necessarily know it, you have blessed Baby Shows.

Here’s our biggest testimony yet. Since March 1, we’ve had approximately $9,000 come in through donations and a grant from Show Hope. Yes, you read that right: $9,000. In 24 days. We are speechless at your faithfulness to God’s cause for the orphan. We are humbled by your generosity. We are overwhelmed by your love.

In Ecclesiastes, Solomon uses common sense math. He says two are better than one.

Two people are better off than one, for they can help each other succeed. If one person falls, the other can reach out and help. But someone who falls alone is in real trouble. Likewise, two people lying close together can keep each other warm. But how can one be warm alone? A person standing alone can be attacked and defeated, but two can stand back-to-back and conquer. Three are even better, for a triple-braided cord is not easily broken. (Ecclesiastes 4:9-12)

Thank you for being our family’s “two.” Thank you for reaching out and helping. Thank you for helping us on this adoption journey.

We look forward to the day when we can pay it forward and share our family’s story because of you.

Thank you.

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Exciting News!!!

We have been selected to do a Both Hands project to fundraise for our adoption! Through a collaboration between Lifesong for Orphans and the Both Hands Foundation, we will get the opportunity to live out James 1:27 (NLT)…

Pure and genuine religion in the sight of God the Father means caring for orphans and widows in their distress…

So what’s a Both Hands project? Here’s how it works – Evan and I find a widow in need and assemble of team of our friends to complete projects around her house (e.g. painting, cleaning, landscaping, etc.). Then we get sponsors for the day as we work on the widow’s house. All the funds raised will go toward our adoption. Just like getting sponsors for a 5k Run for the Cure. Awesome, right?

We are really excited for this opportunity to minister to a local widow and help bring Baby Shows home. We’re still getting details together (including how you can sponsor this project!), but we’ll post them here when we have them.

A big thanks to Lifesong for Orphans and the Both Hands Foundation for this opportunity!

 

 

 

 

Art, Africa, Adoption

We’re inviting our friends, family, and people who know our friends and family to check out the Art & Soul Studio in Palm Coast. The owner, Erin, who is also our awesome friend, has offered to help support us with our adoption. So for the month of November, you can paint a mug and 10% will benefit our adoption fund!

Wait – there’s more! On Saturday, November 19, 2011, you can go by the Art & Soul Studio and paint ANY piece of pottery and 10% will benefit our adoption! Crazy right?

Art for our adoption – AWESOME!

Be sure to bring our flyer  or mention us and she’ll make note of the donation. 🙂

And check out her studio for birthday parties, socials, and other events, or just a plain fun thing to do! Like them on Facebook and stay up to date on some of the cool stuff that’s going on.

Thanks for supporting our adoption!

HAVE FUN!

Our adoption “store”!

We are pleased to tell you about our adoption “store”! We will be posting information about items that have been donated to us

We are currently selling handmade jewelry. While I’m not all that crafty, our friend from our church, Cara, has so kindly donated a number of her handmade pieces to support our adoption. Thanks Cara! We so appreciate the support. You can check out her stuff on the Adoption Store page. Seriously, go now because the items she donated are beautiful. Here’s a quick preview of my favorite item:

Silver ring bracelet

I’m also selling some of my jewelry that I picked up while traveling through Ethiopia and Rwanda. I love these pieces! Here’s another preview:

Ethiopian bead and silver necklace

I also want to give a quick shout-out to my amazing sister-in-law, Lauren, who took the photos of the jewelry for me. I’ve had these items on my counter for a little over a month. I tried twice to get some good shots to post online on my own to no avail. Lauren, who is a very talented photographer and who takes our family photos for us, was so kind as to help a sister out! She’s AMAZING!

Happy shopping!

Haunted

I’m haunted by this quote:

“It is a poverty that a child must die so that you may live as you wish.” (Mother Theresa)

This quote haunts me because, honestly, there are a lot of comforts that I take for granted, while a child on the other side of the world suffers hunger and illness, and lacks education and access to clean water. I was shocked when I saw how many children – especially girls – were walking around Rwanda to get clean water. Many times they are walking for hours to fill jerrycans with water so that they can have water for a day. One day. I go over to any faucet in my house (often there’s at least one within ten feet of wherever I am) and get clean water. Like it’s no big deal.

I live in a house that air conditioning and when it broke this summer, we had a technician come out very quickly to fix it. I have a cabinet full ofkitchen gadgets that help me cook (My favorite is the chopper thing that means I don’t lose a fingertip). I use a laptop (rather than a desktop computer) because I can. Before we put ourselves on a strict budget for the adoption, I used to buy clothes very regularly. Just because I wanted something new. I drive a car rather than walking to the grocery store. I buy used to buy Starbucks grande soy chai lattes like some people buy packs of cigarettes. And at $4.50 a pop.

It’s not that we shouldn’t have these things. It’s not that they’re bad. But most people say they can’t help a child around the world because they can’t “afford” it. And I know that in this economy, with folks out of work for months or years, sometimes we can’t really afford it. And I’m not trying to make anyone feel guilty. You have to be a wise steward of your finances.

When I was reading Crazy Love two years ago, I came to this question: Is my having a weekly coffee treat worth a child not having access to education, clean water, improved nutrition, and a better life? Because, for me, that was the choice I was making. I was choosing my comfort over making a monthly donation to help the life of a child. Grande soy chai over a child? Really?

And so we looked at our budget and figured out how to squeeze money for child sponsorship through World Vision. Because all of a sudden my priorities were fixed. This passion to support vulnerable children has grown (obviously), but it started with a girl named “F” in Rwanda.

What small sacrifice can you make to help support the life of a child? You don’t have to adopt. For about $1.15 a day ($35 per month), you can bring life and hope to a child in need. Child sponsorship through World Vision provides a child with access to education, health care, improved nutrition, clean water, and supports the development of his or her community. Evan and I love World Vision because they fight the root causes of poverty and injustice in a sustainable manner. This is our mission as Christ followers.


We can fight poverty.
You can be part of that fight.