Adoption

Hope in the Middle Releases Today!

Back in 2013 I sat in our bedroom hopeless. The adoption process had started with no end in sight. Our three boys were young and demanding most of my attention. Jeremy and I were struggling through a hard, unexpected season in our marriage.

Life kept moving. I kept smiling. But inside, there were parts of me dead. My soul was numb.

The everyday tasks felt mundane. I’d curl up on our bed and cry.

Hopeless.

That’s when I started to write…and write…and write. Because writing lets me get things out that words don’t.

I allowed myself to ask hard questions. Why do I feel so hopeless? How can I call myself a Christian and not feel hope? Didn’t Christ die to offer a different life, a hopeful one?

Somehow, like it did back in 2007, a book was formed. There were chapters and headings. And God spoke clearly in places like McDonalds. And I wrote things down on napkins.

Hope became a book. Hope became a life-changing word.

God has led me on a journey to find hope. He’s taught me that He offers hope to us in the middle of everything. He Himself is life-changing hope.

I’m not sure where you are. I’m not sure where you’ll end up in your journey of life. I don’t even know where I’ll be. But I believe we could all use a reminder of real hope. I believe God intends for us to live lives full of hope.

And I’d be super humbled and honored if you read this little book I’ve put together…Hope in the Middle.

“But I will hope continually and will praise you yet more and more.” (Psalm 71:14)

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“Hope isn’t revealed through an adoption referral. Hope isn’t found in living a smooth, safe life. Hope has already been fulfilled through Jesus’ death, life, and sweet grace. In Him alone I find hope for my yesterdays, today, and tomorrows. In Him I find hope in the middle of all uncertainty. ‘For such a time as this.’ He is hope.”

 

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A new book is coming!

I’ve been silent on here lately for 1 pretty huge reason.

It’s taking all my spare time and extra thoughts.

…A new book is in the works!…

If you’ve followed this blog for long, you probably remember the depths of spiritual warfare and low moments we faced from 2012-2014 while waiting for Esther’s adoption.

There were times during that journey when things looked hopeless as the waiting dragged on and on.

But God was faithful (always). He refreshed me continually with one word. 

Hope.

I studied and studied hope during those years. I wrote what I learned. 

And now I’m putting it out there for you to read.

Not because it’s amazing. Not because I want you reading my journal. 

But because God has changed me through hope. He’s refreshed and encouraged. He’s stretched me. He’s comforted.

Here’s a small excerpt from the intro…

“I have written this book as a reflection of my  own life. Yes, I talk about our adoption journey, but this is ultimately not an adoption book. I also write as a homeschooling mom, but this is not a homeschooling book. If you’ve ever questioned God’s sovereignty in the middle of your suffering or ever found yourself feeling hopeless in the middle of life’s hardships, I believe this  book is for you!”

So I’d covet your prayers…Hope in the Middle releases on Tuesday, October 10.

You’ll be able to buy it through Amazon or my blog…in print ($10) or on Kindle ($7).

(And I may even have a pre-release coming up for you tomorrow!)

Trusting God will graciously use this book to weave hope into the broken parts of all of us! Thank you for praying!

“And now, O Lord, for what do I wait? My hope is in you.” (Psalm 39:7)

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Writing…I love it. Editing…not so much!

 

 

3 Years Ago Today…

These are the words from my journal 3 years ago today…

In the waiting room. A hospital we’ve never been before. Me not in pain. Not pushing through contractions.

But facing fear that’s fighting faith. And battling something like labor but different enough to deserve another name.

Thankful. Excited. Humbled. The right word won’t come to mind.

Like the ignorant way I feel when thinking about Christ’s love. There will never be words.

Never.

This is all unexplainable. All grace. He is so faithful.

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“In love he predestined us for adoption to himself as sons through Jesus Christ, according to the purpose of his will, to the praise of his glorious grace, with which he has blessed us in the Beloved.” (Ephesians 1:4b-6)

And now…on her 3rd birthday…it all still seems like grace.

Thanks M…You are still the bravest person I know. We love you!

Happy birthday Esther Grace!

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 “For from his fullness we have all received, grace upon grace.” (John 1:16)

 

 

 

 

Open Adoption & Love

Esther and I were reading a book before bed. Then this thought…I love you enough to have had you. To have gotten big. And uncomfortable. And to have went through all the pain of bringing a baby into this world.

Then another thought…But I don’t love you enough to do what  your birthmom did.

I’m not sure that makes sense.

To the end of my days…as I watch Esther grow…no matter how our special open adoption plays out…I will always believe that Esther’s birthmom has a love for her that I will never understand.

It’s a love different that mine. Braver maybe. Willing to give up more maybe. A love I am struggling to describe.

And she handed her to us. Trusted us. Believed we would love her. Cuddle her. Read to her.

And we do…more than my heart can handle.

In the story of Esther’s already amazing life, I can’t forget her birthmom’s role. Won’t forget. What she did. How she carried her. Chose life. Then loved her enough to let me be her Mom.

It was God’s plan. And she was brave enough to follow love down the hard path.

If I thought adoption meant we were doing something speical…boy was I wrong.

If I thought the Gospel was about me doing something special…wrong again.

It’s all because of Him. All because of the cross. All because of His love.

And sometimes love does hard things. And sometimes love reads books.

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For M’s privacy I cropped this but see those hands holding tightly? Love…

“Be strong and brave”…Today

The microwave clock blinks blue-4:41. It’s too early. I’m fighting the sleep and exhaustion from 2 unexpected visits to babies’ rooms. But I must write this to you. Now. For some reason.

“Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be frightened, and do not be dismayed, for the Lord your God is with you wherever you go.” (Joshua 1:9)

Ya’ll, He’s so close. Always there. Wherever we go. Even when we don’t want to.

I’ve been here and here. It’s been ugly. He’s been faithful.

Yesterday I held her as we rocked. And I whispered outloud, “Let’s stay  here, Esther. Let’s let the world move on by us.” Holding her is grace. It reminds me of His constant presence.

I don’t have many answers. Usually, I’m the first to say, “This just sucks.” But I know one thing, God keeps His promises.

He never leaves us.

He’s only loving us.

There is a world of perfection waiting for us.

Serving Him only makes sense.

How could I doubt the love of a Father Who gave His Son for us?

How could I doubt Cross love?

“Be strong and brave.” Today. Just this moment. He is close.

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