I am not one of those worry-free, carefree, live life one day at a time, doesn't care about consequences kind of people.

But you have probably already figured that out, smartypants that you are!

I believe my personality type stems from a lot of things. Of course, one being that I am God-designed. Another being that I am the oldest of four siblings and have always felt the need to act like the oldest, if you know what I mean. I am bossier than most by nature, but also viciously loyal. I like to be in control, but I am a very good leader. For each set of negative characteristics of my personality, there is a whole host of positives as well.

My pastor's favorite word is balance, and I definitely think it applies to this area of my life.

One of the most positive things (so I have been told, I am not trying to pat myself on the back here) about my personality is that I care deeply about people. I don't do shallow, surface level relationships. I have been there and done that and all it did was bring me a whole lot of hurt and wasted time. Since then, God has molded me and taught me a lot about relationships and people in general.

I don't do artificial. I don't do superficial.

I do real.

And real means having to say and do hard things sometimes. Real means confrontation and I hate confrontation. But I do it. Because it's biblical. Because it's necessary. Because I love my friends/family/husband too much not too.

The negative aspect of this lovely personality trait that I have is that it brings me a lot of anxiety. I deal with anxiety a lot more than I let on to even my closest friends. My anxiety affects me the same way each time. If I feel it coming on, it's already to late to try to stop it. Once it hits me, there is no going back, there is no knowing how long it will last. What I do know is that my heart will pound out of it's chest. I will not be able to sit still for long periods of time. I *tmi* will use the bathroom several more times a day than necessary. My hands shake. I cold sweat. And the thoughts run rampant.

I have learned from my many bouts of anxiety (some may call them panic attacks but I truly don't believe mine are severe enough to warrant that definition.) that the best thing for me to do is to get in The Word. To sit down with my Bible and pour myself into it, and to let it empty me of all the uneasiness and fill me up with the promises God has for us.

I don't know that there was much point to this post except to let you in on a little of what I am feeling right now. I really can't share what is going on in my life right now, but let's just say it's big and it's scary and it's proving to come with a lot more anxiety than normal.

So what are you tactics for decreasing anxiety? What are some of your favorite scriptures or books of the Bible in general?

My favorite...

"Rejoice in the Lord always. I will say it again: Rejoice! Let your gentleness be evident to all. The Lord is near. Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus. Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things. Whatever you have learned or received or heard from me, or seen in me—put it into practice. And the God of peace will be with you." - Philippians 4:4-9

i will

"Teach me your way, O LORD, and I will walk in your truth; give me an undivided heart, that I may fear your name.  I will praise you, O Lord my God, with all my heart; I will glorify your name forever.  For great is your love toward me; you have delivered me from the depths of the grave." - Psalm 86:11-13

frustration at its finest

That would be me.

Do you realize, faithful readers, that I have not posted an actual update to our adoption in over 2 months? And that we haven't had any action on the adoption front in well over 6 months? Yes you read that right. It has been 6 months since we turned in our paperwork and not one.single.solitary. form of correspondence has been had between us and DSS, unless it was on my part first. And even then it would take them days and days to respond.


I have talked with friends who have done this before and the consensus is the same: this shouldn't be taking so long. 

I may have held my tongue long enough with my social worker in an effort to "keep the peace" and "stay on her good side" and "not burn bridges."

I think some day pretty soon she may be meeting a bridge-burning-nonpeace-keeping-doesn't-care-whose-bad-side-she-gets-on version of myself.

And then I remember our kids.

The ones that are out there somewhere in desperate need of someone to hug them and tell them they are safe and loved. Someone to teach them about Jesus so that they never have to be alone in this world again.

I think about those things and I can't bring myself to pick up that phone and assume the holier than thou attitude that I so can have during times like this.

Instead I lay my emotions aside and pray. I desperately petition God on behalf of my kids and all of the others in the system that haven't found their forever homes yet.

God's plan, not mine.
God's timing, not mine.
God's provision, not mine.

on stranger tides

Have I ever mentioned that I am a HUGEMONGOUS Pirates of the Caribbean fan? I have a serious addiction. They are some of the very few movies I can watch overandoverandover again! And numero cuatro is coming out MAY 20TH!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Yeah. Color me e.c.s.t.a.t.i.c.

You're welcome.

the faces...

...the ones that haunt me day and night. The ones I constantly see in my dreams or driving down the road. The faces that won't leave my mind or my heart. And I don't want them to. Ever. I NEVER want to forget what I saw, how I felt, how they looked.

I never want those pieces of my heart back. The ones that broke off in the orphanage and at the dump and at the river. I don't want to put them back on my heart and have the brokenness mended.

Leave my heart the way it is. Smashed into a million pieces and lying all over the city of San Pedro Sula.

Lord Jesus you know and love each and every one of these little faces. You have plans for their lives. You care about every fiber of their being. You knit them together in their mother's wombs and you continue to grow their little bodies. God we trust these children to you, you love them far more than I ever could. God, help me never to forget these faces, let them haunt me always, so that I may be broken enough to see the hurting world around me every single day.

"For you created my inmost being; you knit me together in my mother’s womb.  I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful, I know that full well. My frame was not hidden from you when I was made in the secret place, when I was woven together in the depths of the earth. Your eyes saw my unformed body; all the days ordained for me were written in your book before one of them came to be. How precious to me are your thoughts, God! How vast is the sum of them!  Were I to count them, they would outnumber the grains of sand— when I awake, I am still with you.  If only you, God, would slay the wicked! Away from me, you who are bloodthirsty!" - Psalm 139:13-19

your love

"Your love, LORD, reaches to the heavens, your faithfulness to the skies. Your righteousness is like the highest mountains, your justice like the great deep." - Psalm 36:5-6

so so good.

"Wherever the providence of God may dump us down, in a slum, in a shop, in the desert, we have to labour along the line of His direction. Never allow this thought- 'I am of no use where I am,' because you certainly can be of no use where you are not! Wherever He has engineered your circumstances, pray." - Oswald Chambers

the orphanage that ruined me

Our first full day in Honduras we went to the government orphanage in San Pedro Sula.

I knew this day would be hard. I knew it from the day my friend Anna told me we would be going. I started praying for strength that very day.

To not be able to grow our family is hard.
To be in the middle of what seems like a stagnant adoption process is trying.
To go to an orphanage and spend time with precious children that you can not take home is excruciating.

I am going to tell you all about my time in that orphanage and I am not going to sugar coat it for you. I will say (not to sound superior or all-knowing) that my words will not suffice to paint the picture of the conditions of this place.

Our van pulled up to a 20 foot tall concrete wall, topped with barbed wire. The guards opened the huge iron gate for us to pull in and then they promptly closed and locked them behind us. Clue number one. I stepped out of the van and caught my breath. The "orphanage" we were at most resembled a prison. Iron bars on all the windows and nothing but concrete and tile inside. Not a soft surface to be found. We were told that maximum capacity was 120 children...and that they were at about 160 at last count. The first thing I smelled was urine. The entire place was covered in it. The children came out in droves and lined up for their treat. We brought fruit for them since they don't get much to eat to begin with and they need some sort of nutrition.

You have never seen brighter smiles than the ones that graced the faces of those who had received their fruit. What innocence.

During the fruit I felt a tug on my shirt, and then a pulling on the back of my neck. A little boy, I can't be sure of his age but if I had to guess I would say 9 or 10, was pulling me down into him. He made sure my head was resting on his shoulder as he kissed my cheek over and over and over. He wouldn't let go. I felt the lice crawling all over my cheek and my neck and I didn't care. I wasn't letting go either. It was by the grace of God that I didn't break down right then and there.

I didn't want those kids to see any more sadness than they already had. We were there to bring hope and joy and smiles and love, not tears. This was not my day to be selfish, I was to be the light of Christ in  a dark dark place.

We then toured the orphanage where we saw rooms covered in dirt with not enough beds and mattresses whose springs had long worn through. We saw sick child after sick child laying in beds motionless. We saw special needs children whom could have had a completely normal life had it not been for the beatings and neglect they had seen in such a short little lifetime. We saw bare feet and nakedness. We felt the intense heat with no air conditioning. We smelled the urine and feces that covered the floors. We touched those who hadn't felt physical touch in days or weeks. We heard the laughter of little ones who found joy in just playing with two marbles.

Finally, we came to the baby room. This room contained about 30 children...and one worker. I would venture to say at least 60% of them were sick. There were two babies to a crib. Blankets were propped up under bottles so that they could feed themselves. Most were under the age of 2, except for the precious few in their teen years who had disabilities you can't even fathom. I was overcome with despair immediately upon entering that room. I stopped and prayed for strength and peace and wisdom and guidance and everything I could think of before I could run out of that room and pretend I never saw what I saw.

And God heard. He gave me a measure of grace unlike any I had ever had before. He directed my steps to a 9 month old baby boy who was smaller than most 3 month old American babies. I gently turned him over from his belly and immediately noticed his insanely high fever and the green, sickly snot running from his poor nose. I picked him up. I didn't care that we weren't really supposed to (we had been told it is more traumatizing to them to be held and put down than never held at all...) I held and cuddled and talked to and prayed over this little boy for what seemed like a lifetime and a millisecond all at the same time.

I should have run out the door with him.

He was so hungry, but the worker would not feed him because of the fever. My heart was breaking. He finally fell asleep and I laid him down. I repeated the process all over again with another precious little boy (I really have a soft spot for boys...) until we were told it was time to go. I know I was the last one to leave that room and I honestly don't remember doing it. I think God picked me up himself and placed me outside the door because I surely wouldn't have removed myself.

On the way out I was bombarded by little ones who were fascinated by my camera. They wanted pictures of themselves and I was only more than happy to oblige. I don't know how long the others waited in the vans for me, all I know is they were fully air-conditioned by the time I got in.

You love those children more than I ever could, and that's a love that I will never understand. You will take care of them, you will provide for them, and one day I will see them in Heaven. Lord, help me to be obedient to your Spirit and to never forget the sickness and deprivation of that place. Protect those little souls. It's in your son's holy name I pray, Amen.

"Jesus said, “Let the little children come to me and do not hinder them, for to such belongs the kingdom of heaven.” - Matthew 19:14

help keep me accountable

Here is the link to the blog containing all the gory details of how I am surviving this crazy diet!

The Maker's Diet: A Food Diary

i'm starting again

The Maker's Diet, that is.

It's time. The first time I did it was in June 2010, so my goal of every 6 months was shot, but that's ok. I have gotten out of control on portion sizes and sweets and carbs...all things bad for a girl with insulin resistance. I just realized today that my 40 days on Maker's Diet coincides perfectly with Lent! I don't know how you feel about Lent, we observed it at the church I grew up in and now we really don't. I think it is a good time to focus on what Christ did for us on the cross, and I always focus better when I give up things that tend to consume my life.

I'll link up the blog I will be using to track my eating so you can laugh make fun of encourage me through this process!

And yes, Honduras posts are coming.


I am home.

First, thank you to all that prayed for me and my team while we were in Honduras. The Lord answered so many prayers while we were there it was incredible.

I plan on posting a few stories from my trip as a way to document what God has done, and a way for me to never forget the sickness, hopelessness, and poverty that I saw.

Be patient as I try and get back into the swing of things. I realize I don't really like my real life very much. I would much rather live in Central day, Lord willing.

Right now I am processing. And I am overwhelmed. 

I'll leave you with one picture, but there will be many more to come.

Pre-school kids at the Government Orphanage waiting for their fruit cups.

day 9 - travel home

Pray for safe flight, continued good health, and for the team to be able to share what great things God has done to as many others as God opens doors for.

  “Now to Him alone who is able to do exceedingly, abundantly more than all we could ask or imagine according to His power that is at work within us.” Ephesians 3:20

day 8 - visit the waterfalls

Pray for safe travels to the waterfalls and a good last day of fellowship together.

  “By this all men will know that you are My disciples, if you have love for one another” John 13:35

day 7 - food at the river

Pray for safety and crowd control, and again to be able to share Jesus with many.

  "Truly, I say to you, as you did it to one of the least of these my brothers, you did it unto me.” Matthew 25:40

day 6 - food at the dump

Pray for God to multiply the food as there are many to feed and for opportunity to share the gospel with many.

 “Then Jesus took the loaves, gave thanks to God, and distributed them to the people. Afterward he did the same with the fish. And they all ate as much as they wanted” John 6:11

day 5 - food, shoes, dental on the mountain

Pray for God to bring those of divine appointment to get food, shoes and dental work ...and that the gospel would be clearly given.

 “Faithful is He who calls you, and He also will bring it to pass.” 1 Thessalonians 5:24