Words of a child…

Then people brought little children to Jesus for him to place his hands on them and pray for them.  But the disciples rebuked them.  Jesus said, “Let the little children come to me, and do not hinder them, for the kingdom of heaven belongs to such as these.”  When he had placed his hands on them , he went on from there.     Matthew 19:13-15

Today I wanted to introduce you to two of our biggest prayer warriors during our adoption process.

Last summer, after another great day at Hawaiian Falls I was having lunch with my friend Melissa and her son.  While enjoying some pizza he asks me, “So when are you & Tyler going to have kids?  I think that it’s time you get some.”

Now usually when adults make this comment it would knock the air out of me, hurt my feelings, and put me on the defense; but when this sweet kid very innocently spoke the truth it caused me pause and I answered him honestly.  I replied, “God hasn’t blessed us with children yet but we would like some. We pray every night that God will allow us to be parents, would you please pray for us too?”  His reply, “Of course!”

So Melissa called me the next day and said that he prayed for us, “Dear God, please give Tyler & Beth kids, they need to be a mom & dad; please bring them a boy who is 6 so he can be my friend.”

And he prayed this for us until we heard in February about the 5 waiting to come home to be our family, including a 6yr old boy.  A friend.  Now he prays for our children to be safe & come home quickly.  When his mom picked him up on the last day of school he immediately asked her, “When are Tyler & Beth’s kids coming over to play?”  Mom explained that we are still waiting but will hopefully go get them at the end of the summer.  His response, “I am ready for them to be home!!”  Gotta love that we aren’t the only ones who are excited about them coming home!

Ready for his new friends to be home!

Our friends, Matt and Megan have been a big support during our adoption process.  So when we found out about the group of 5 in Colombia, we called them immediately and asked them to lift up our family in prayer.  When they told their son about the siblings, his one question was, “Is there one for me?”  Meaning is there a boy, who is 4, & will be my friend?  Yes there is!!  He now prays for his friend every night, he keeps a picture of him by his bed so he won’t forget, and it’s no longer the question of, “Are we going to Tyler & Beth’s house?” now he asks, “Are we going to my friend’s house?”  We are no longer just Tyler & Beth to him, we are now referred to as my friend’s parents!

Ready for his buddy to be home!

I love that so many of our friends & their families are lifting our kids up in prayer & are already preparing a place for them in their family’s lives!!  I’m thankful that I have friends who not only tell their children about their faith but also display it for them daily.  I am also thankful that God answers prayers of a child, a six year old boy 🙂

At the dinnermesa,

Beth

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Joy into words…

Plans for this week…

Adoption paperwork arrived in Colombia

Orphanage Board meeting about us on Monday June 25 to approve/disapprove us for the 5 kiddos

Tyler working normal hours

Beth teaching Kindergarten at VBS

On Friday afternoon I opened my email and found this:

You guys were approved in the committee meeting and the referral is on the way!!!!  The psychologist at La Casa is going on vacation and wants to talk to you guys before she leaves….Like today  🙂  Do you have Skype? If not please download it real quick and send me your username.  Also let me know what time you’ll be available to talk!  Sorry for the last minute request, but CONGrATS and being officially selected as the parents!!!!

They are our kids!!!  We are not sure how/when the committee decided to meet on a Friday instead of their usual Monday but they did and we are approved!!!  Our caseworker said that the orphanage director called her once during the meeting to ask about our finances; if we can support five kids.  Miraculously,  Tyler just got an adjunct professor position at DBU.  A job that he applied for nearly a year ago.  God’s perfect timing!!

I called a tech-savy friend & thankfully Julie was able to walk me through setting up Skype (one of the greatest inventions of all time!).  I then waited patiently for Tyler to come home & for the orphanage to call.  At 4:05 we had a phone call that forever changed our life…

The orphanage’s director, psychologist & the kid’s teacher were all gathered in a room to give us some information about the children.  We learned that the boys are boys, they fight, they argue, they love each other.  The oldest girl mother’s the younger ones & is the boss.  They like to learn & do well with structure, & get mischievous when there is too much free time.  They asked if we had any questions, and we honestly responded, ” we are a little overwhelmed & just found out about this meeting a short while ago but we will definitely have questions for you next time.”  Then the director said, “alright, we’ll try bringing in the kids one by one…”

WE GOT TO MEET THE KIDS!!!

So they walk in and we awkwardly and nervously stared at each other.  They are so beautiful!  We are so incredibly blessed!  We have to learn so much more Spanish because all I want to do is talk to my kids!  They were eating strawberries (big brother sweetly crammed one into baby girl’s face), some of them told us their favorite colors (brown & red), they all said “hola” and the orphanage staff said, “this is your papi y mami”.  Then they asked if they can see the dogs. 🙂 Loved that!  As Tyler held up Lucy, our oldest son exclaimed, “that one is my dog”.  Tyler then help up Saydie and we fluffed her ears and our oldest daughter squealed with delight!  Then very softly my oldest daughter reached out to the screen and pointed to us and told to the orphanage director, “they look like us, we have the same hair & big brown eyes; we are the same.”

Earlier today my kids were told that they are getting adopted.  The first question they asked, “They want all of us, we get to stay together?”  “Yes, they want all of you, they love all of you and want you to be their family!”  Thoughtfully the orphanage got this whole exchange on video & are going to post it for us to see!

Today was supposed to be an ordinary day.  The first time I met my kids I had planned on wearing a dress, having my hair down, make-up perfect, house spot-less, husband perfectly pressed, and be stressed-out over the anticipation of it all but trying to keep my emotions in check.  Instead I was in a plain blue tshirt, hair frazzled from teaching at church, house is a disaster zone, husband got to the house 5min before the phone call, and our emotions were everywhere but controlled!  It was beautiful, honest and a family.  I felt like a mom, it didn’t matter that it wasn’t “perfect”, it mattered that we got to be there with our kids.

At the dinnermesa,

Beth

It’s all in a name…

I was named after my grandmothers.  Sometimes I forget how lucky I am that I was named after two people who love their families & are beautiful examples of motherhood:

Elizabeth (God’s promise) Ruth (friend).  I go by Beth (House).

I used to get a little jealous of my sister whose name translates as “Beautiful Princess”.

We are getting so very close to being able to legally accept the children.  We are working on paperwork, preparing rooms, cleaning out everything in the house that we don’t absolutely need (aka: another garage sale this past weekend) and pinching pennies to make it through this last stretch and be able to travel to Colombia.  This past week we sent another batch of paperwork for our dossier and so far we have gotten four emails about corrections or questions about the information.  Sometimes it feels like it will never end or like something is going to happen that will stop us from getting the kids.  I feel like we are riding an emotional roller-coaster and ate a funnel cake & some nachos before the ride…that never ends well.

When we first heard about the children we heard their story & their names. No pictures, no video, no sonogram.  They have a history that I am not apart of .  They are in a culture that I do not fully understand.  They speak a language that I do not know.  After we said “yes” we do want these children” I struggled of how to pray for them.  We know so little about them but we do know their names…

To my oldest son…when I read the meaning of your name I laughed out loud in happiness: “God’s gracious gift”.  Grace: getting something that we don’t deserve.  You were named perfectly; every morning I pray for you first, because I am an engineer’s wife & we like things in numerical order.  When I pray for you I am constantly reminded of our gift of salvation and that no matter what the day may bring I have that truth to stand on and that God is faithful and that in praying for you I am trusting Him with my life and your life.  And that even the opportunity to be your parents is an undeserved blessing!

To  my oldest daughter…your name delights my soul: “A song of joy or praise”.  ‘Shout for joy to the Lord, all the earth. Worship the Lord with gladness; come before him with joyful songs.  Know that the Lord is God.  It is he who made us, and we are his; we are his people, the sheep of his pasture.  Enter his gates with thanksgiving and his courts with praise; give thanks to him and praise his name.  For the Lord is good and his love endures forever; his faithfulness continues through all generations.’ Psalm 100.

To my middle son…I find confidence in your name: “Will, desire, protection”.  I find myself feeling helpless all of the time.  All I can do is sign documents & pray that the orphanage board approves us for your adoption.  Protection, I think that this is a part of every parent’s prayer life.  He is our rock, fortress, deliverer & stronghold…whom shall I fear!

To my youngest son…I am reminded to put on the full armor of God: “Divine spear”.  ‘…the sword of the spirit, which is the word of God.   And pray in the Spirit on all occasions with all kinds of prayers and requests. With this in mind, be alert and always keep on praying for all the Lord’s people.’ Ephesians 6:17-18.  I am sad to say that scripture memorization has never been a priority in my life but now I fear not knowing biblical truths to tell you & teach you how to stand up against the evil in this world. You are a prayer for my priorities to change & for guidance in becoming a parent.

To my youngest daughter…your name brings a promise of family: “Noble one”.  “Look at how great a love the Father has given us that we should be called God’s children. And we are! The reason the world does not know us is that it didn’t know Him.” 1 John 3:1.  The King of kings calls us His children & if we accept Him as our Lord & Savior and the gift of salvation He offers we will join in His family as His sons & daughters. We are adopted!

We wait, we pray, we prepare for rain.  We pray.

At the dinnermesa,

Beth

The rooms…

For our dossier we had to include pictures of the kid’s rooms.  After a few weeks of hard work & help from friends:

Schraml family came over for dinner & helped set up the bunk beds they gave us

this is what we have so far…

The boy’s room:

The girl’s room:

And the to-do-list…

So many things, so little checked off…

I’ll keep you posted as projects come off of the to-do list; thankful we have enough to do to keep us busy while we wait “patiently” for the kids!  During this season of waiting this song keeps me company, hope it gives you a smile too:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oBTWF1bDPn0

At the dinnermesa,

Beth