Friday, January 28, 2011

Thank you for your prayers- Keep them coming!

My husband and I left the house around 7:35 am this morning (this is really early for me!) to drive down to Oxnard to get our Immigration fingerprints taken. We wanted to be there when it opened at 8 am, but we got there around 8:15 am.

I told the lady that we wanted to see if they could fit us in and explained that our appointment wasn't for two weeks, but we are adopting a child with special needs and we also won't be in town for the date they had given us. She groaned and said today was one of their busiest days with 100 appointments. etc. But she stamped our letter and let us sign in. We waited for about ten minutes and then were called. They took our prints and we left. Ok, what was the big deal? Yeaaaaa!

I had a very emotional day yesterday (thank you hormones!) and was praying a lot and crying and pretty exhausted. I am so thankful for my sister. I don't know why, but she has really been wanting to help us out a lot lately. It has been such a blessing, because I've been able to go to appointments and get so many things done that I couldn't do dragging my kids around. My sister drove up last night to watch my kids because we weren't sure how long we would be gone and most of my friends can't watch my kids all day. Thank you Brie!

Tonight we drive down to my parents house in L.A. and then Saturday morning we drive down to Temecula for a big birthday party for Grandpa Tierney who will be turning 90 next week! It will be like a big family reunion. They were asking us to send pictures of us with him, and we all realized we didn't have many pictures with Grandpa, even though we visit him several times a year. So we are going to be sure to take photos with him, individual and group, at the party. Most of his life he has spent serving the Lord. He is still a pastor and teaches Sunday school and Bible studies and preaches too. Everyone loves him! They asked us to write down a memory of him and this is what I wrote: "Grandpa Tierney taught me about living a life of devotion to the Lord and faith in action. I was always impressed by his Faith Promise project. I loved hearing the stories of people committing to an amount of money to support missionaries and trusting with faith in the Lord to provide the money. And then hearing the amazing ways that God provided the money that they never expected.  And you couldn't go on a walk with Grandpa and Grandma, without them spying a coin on the ground and picking it up to put in their Faith Promise account!"

We love you Grandpa- Happy 90th Birthday!

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

That was fast!

We sent our homestudy to Immigration a week ago and we already received our fingerprint appointments!  We are going to try to walk in this Friday to get it completed sooner. There is no guarantee that they will take us, so that's where you come in! Will you please pray that we can get these done on Friday? We actually can't go on the day of the appointment, either, so we would have to ask for a new appointment if they don't take us which would push everything back by about 4 weeks.

Tomorrow I will be sending in four adoption grant applications. Praying that we can get some funds!

Tomorrow night we will be having our first prayer night for the Orphan Care and Adoption Ministry at our church. Excited to see how God moves His people for His children!

Wednesday, January 19, 2011


That's the word for the big stack of papers we send to Maria's country in order to adopt her.

Last week our completed home study arrived and I whisked the kids off the same day to overnight it to Immigration (After wrestling with the baby's carseat belt that wouldn't click because a Trader Joe's peanut butter pretzel (yum!) crumb had gotten wedged in the buckle). We barely made the cutoff and the Fedex guy even waited as I frantically filled out the paper. It arrived promptly even though I had written in the wrong date!  Next they will send us a fingerprinting appointment and after that we will wait for their approval. Please pray there are no unnecessary delays!

This week we are finishing getting all of our documents notarized and will be sending them to the Secretary of State's office in Sacramento. My sweet friend has saved us about $600 by notarizing it all for free! I really hope nothing gets lost. We've been working since September to get all of these gathered. And do you want to take a guess at how many there are? Go ahead, take a stab. Ok, I'll tell you: 59. That's right 5-9. And when we get our Immigration approval it will be 60. And do you know what Sacramento charges to get these docs apostilled (certified)? $20 each! Yes, the grand total will be $1200 for 60 docs to be certified. The good news is that the Lord has provided this money. But it still is staggering, isn't it?

Please pray that we can get the house we've put an offer in for. It is a short sale and there are some extra fees that they want us to pay and we're just waiting and trusting God to see if this is the house He wants for us. Of course we would like this to happen soon so we can move and get settled before we travel and before we bring home Maria.

Your kingdom come your will be done.

Oh and I just have to link this post here. What an amazing testimony about God's heart for the orphan from the perspective of a father who will be bringing his new daughter home tomorrow! Look at her!

Monday, January 17, 2011

but God...

(I had to share what Adeye posted on her blog this week. This is my favorite blog and am so encouraged by her heart.)
But's too darn hard.

"Follow me."  Matthew 9:9

But God...what if I fail miserably?

"Follow me."  Matthew 8:22

But God...what if what I'm feeling you call me to do is too painful--too challenging?

"Follow me."  Matthew 4:19

But God...I have everything I need right here and things are good in my life. 

"Follow me."  Matthew 10:38

But can I possibly step out of my comfort zone?  What if........"

"Follow me."  Matthew 16:24

But will cost money and so many sacrifices will have to be made."

"Follow me."  Matthew 19:21

But God...I am weak, tired, weary, lacking faith, and discouraged."

"Follow me."  Mark 1:17

But God...There is so much at risk.  What if my friends and family don't support me?  Goodness, what it they disown me?

"Follow me."  Mark 2:14

But God...what about my own family and their comforts?

"Follow me."  Mark 8:34

But faith is smaller than a mustard seed.

"Follow me."  Mark 10:21

But God...I just don't know if I can do this.  I don't have what it takes.

"Follow me."  Luke 5:27

But God...can I trust you in this?  Really?  Can I?

"Follow me."  Luke 9:23

But God...I don't want to walk on the water right now--I like it here where things are calm.

"Follow me."  Luke 9:59

But God...can you see that my family is happy with the way things are right now?

"Follow me."  Luke 9:61

But can I know for sure that I have heard your still small voice?

"Follow me."  Luke 14:27

But listening?  How will this ever come together?

"Follow me."  Luke 18:22

But you think you could give this little assignment to somebody else?  Please?

"Follow me."  John 1:43

But God...what if things fall apart and my world comes crashing down?

"Follow me."  John 8:12

But God...I'm afraid of failure.

"Follow me."  John 10:27

But God...give it all up?  Seriously?

"Follow me."  John 12:26

But God...{insert a great reason not to do something}

"Follow me."  John 21:19

But God...{insert just one more great excuse}

"Follow me."  John 21:22

Sound familiar?

Excuses.  Excuses.  Excuses.  All very valid, of course.


Okay. Okay.  Okay.  I think I get it, Lord. 

I'm out of excuses.  Completely.  There are none. 

I will follow you with reckless abandon...come what may. 

God, you are trustworthy, dependable, good, kind, loving, patient, abounding in grace and mercy.  Faithful and True is your name--how can I possibly not trust you with everything I have?

"Then he said to them all: “Whoever wants to be my disciple must deny themselves and take up their cross daily and follow me." 
Luke 9:23

Even when the road is hard, and things make absolutely no sense...I WILL FOLLOW YOU!

Simply because you said so.

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

A life created for purpose

I have been meeting lots of families at our local Down Syndrome Association playgroup. Last Friday, my new friend showed me a brochure she and her friend designed and how they have been putting them in waiting rooms to help educate people about Down Syndrome. She didn't know her daughter had Down Syndrome until she was born. She told me that her OB/GYN actually encouraged women to abort their child with Down Syndrome (this same Dr. actually delivered my son in the hospital). Well, after this sweet baby was born and my friend kept visiting her Dr., the Dr. totally changed her mind! She pointed to another woman at the play group and told me that the Dr. had this woman call her, because her baby was diagnosed with Down Syndrome. And here she was with  her beautful 17 month old son! A life was saved!  I looked at my friend and said "Wow, God has given you an amazing ministry!" She looked at her daughter who ran by us and said, "No, God has given her an amazing ministry!"

I cannot wait to see how God is going to use Maria!

But God has chosen the foolish things of the world to put to shame the wise, and God has chosen the weak things of the world to put to shame the things which are mighty.  1 Corinthians 1:27

Friday, January 7, 2011

Where we are: the waiting game

It's amazing how much more patient and peaceful I have become over the last months. I think I normally would be pulling my hair out over the paperwork chaos mixed with trying to buy a house in a short sale chaos. But God has really given me a peace that passes all understanding. I don't understand it. But I'm good. 

Our homestudy should be notarized by Monday and then sent to us. As soon as we get it, we need to send a copy to US Immigration. They will send us an appointment to get fingerprints. When that's done we will wait for their approval. That document needs to be notarized, certified and included in our adoption packet sent to Eastern Europe.

Also, once we get our homestudy, we can apply for some other adoption grants. We also need to get more documents notarized and sent to Sacramento to be certified by the Secretary of State's office.

I had hoped that everything would be ready to send to EE by the end of January, but I totally forgot about Immigration. I should know by now since my husband is an immigrant and we had to go through temporary resident, permanent resident and then citizenship statuses. Thank God he is a US Citizen now! 

I was a little disappointed when I came to this realization, but I know God has the perfect timing for all things and I trust Him.   So maybe we won't be travelling in March for our first trip. Maybe April? It just kills me to know she is there waiting.because.of.paperwork!  She doesn't know yet she has a Mommy and Daddy and sisters and brother who love her so much and can't wait to love on her. My husband also reminded me that it gives us more time to raise the funds. 

Speaking of which, I need to add some type of ticker on the side of my blog because I want it to show all of the donations we've recieved, not just the Chip-in/Pay pal donations.   We put $5000 of our savings and we've raised about $6000 so far. Very exciting and humbling. In the beginning, we were getting a little nervous because there was only one donation of $50 (which we truly are thankful for) for a long time. But now, we've seen God move in ways that have already surprised and blessed us. In fact, it's interesting that more has come from others than we had contributed.

Thank you everyone for participating in our mission to save one of God's precious orphans from a life without hope!

We love you Maria and can't wait for you to be here with us!

Sunday, January 2, 2011

Praying in 2011

We had a great message at church today about supporting missionaries and the need for prayer. Two verses that were very enouraging to me were:

Ephesians 6:18-19 "Praying always with all prayer and supplication in the Spirit, being watchful to this end with all perseverance and supplication for all the saints and for me, that utterance may be given to me, that I may open my mouth boldly to make known the mystery of the gospel."

and 2 Timothy 2:3-4 "You therefore must endure hardship as a good soldier of Jesus Christ. No one engaged in warfare entangles himself with the afairs of this life, that he may please him who enlisted him as a soldier."

Wow! That is powerful and encouraging!

We also found out our church supports a missionary family in Eastern Europe, so we'd like to contact them.

My husband and I finished listening to our audio book Radical and have been inspired to pray for unreached people in all of the world with our kids for 2011.  We picked up a bunch of bookmarks with missionaries photos on them and are excited to start praying for them too.

Our friend, JJ, also spoke about praying not only that God would provide for missionaries but that they would be content with what God has provided for them. His family of 9 spent the last year visiting all of the 50 states in the U.S. in an RV sharing the Gospel of Jesus Christ. They sold everything and went!  That's pretty Radical!  We are praying that God would give us discernment about spending what He's given us wisely and that we can be content with less and give more!

Also, last week I was driving and the Lord brought to me the verse: "The effective fervent prayer of a righteous man avails much".  (James 5:16- I couldn't recall this at the time) This doesn't happen out of the blue very often so I was reflecting on it and felt God speaking to me about how beneficial praying is for the person doing the praying- in this case, me! My prayers don't help God decide what to do, but boy do they bring me to dependence on Him! They humble me, they give me peace, they release my burdens, they bring me into God's will, they encourage me, they strengthen me, they empower me.  When I'm praying, I am reminded of who is in charge and He is able to work through me and I don't get in His way (well, at least not as much!).

Well I hope you've been enouraged as much as I have been today. Thank you for remembering us in your prayers and for joining with us in the battle!