Tuesday, October 26

Riding Without Trainers

What a funny, exciting, exhausting, painful experience this is. Phillip is trying to teach Parker how to ride is bike without trainers. Parker was a little terrified but put on a brave face. He is apprehensive on wether or not he should really trust Daddy or not. He trusts but half way. While I was watching this moment with Phillip and Parker and I reflected on how this is a lot like when we pray for God to put us on his path and lead us on his journey for our lives. The way Parker was learning how to trust his daddy is a lot like how I am learning how to trust God. I have prayed for God to show me what my purpose is here and what he has planned for me. I have had moments where I thought that just being a stay at home mom and wife was all that God had planned for me and I would wallow in boredom with that. I know I am a whiner. It's not that I was bored I just thought I would do something great and different. What my life is like now is not how I pictured it when I was growing up. Over the last few years God has shown me that he has me exactly where He wants me. This is part of His plan. 

Any way back to what I was saying about how Parker learning to ride his bike without trainers and learning how to trust his Dad is a lot like my walk with the Lord in the journey he has put us on. 

I have been praying for years for God to reveal to me what He has in store for me. He never showed me, or so I thought, I just wasn't really willing to tune in and listen and commit. And God wasn't ready yet. It wasn't time. God has been setting the stage for His plan this whole time. His plan is not just for me but the plan includes Phillip, because we are one spirit and flesh. There are no longer plans for ME or plans for HIM but plans for US, we are a team in God's eyes. God just needed Phillip to be on board with him before He could do his work in US.  Since Phillip genuinly committed and dedicated his life to God this last Spring, God has been moving. He has been revealing stuff to us and He has birthed new desires within us. As you all know we have been called by God to adopt. This is what he has planned for us. To care for the least of these and take some into our home and call them ours. The plan for my life includes Phillip. I am so glad it does. He is the best support and best partner I couldn't have picked a better one myself. (Thank you Lord for blessing me with Phillip)

During this adoption process and I learning to trust in the Lord in a whole new way. This process is terrifying and frustrating. It may not be this way for some but it is for me. There are so many ways you can adopt and so many places you can adopt from. There is literally a need every where.

 So, as I was watching Parker's face while Phillip took off the trainers I giggled to my self. I thought "Lord, is this what my face looked like when I heard you say adopt?" I am pretty sure it did. It was a look of, WHAT? WHAT ARE YOU WANTING ME TO DO? It was kind of a scary thought since I knew Phillip would say No, but I knew I had heard God tell me this. 

Once the wheels were off and Parker sat on the seat Phillip started explaining to him what was gonna happen... "You are gonna fall, You are gonna bleed, It is scary, I will not let you fall and not get back up, You can trust me, I am going to protect you, I will kiss all of your booboo's and You Will Get This!!!, I believe in you!" He was black and white, honest about what was gonna happen. He didn't sugar coat the experience, he was REAL. That's what I have seen and experienced during our adoption journey. I have "fallen" by letting fears and flesh get in the way, I have "bled" and I am still "bleeding" once again flesh and selfish desires and not listening to God, it is really "scary" with all the unknown and what if's that are out there, God "will not let me fall and stay down". He will "pick me up and does pick me back up" and he gives me another boost. I can and I am learning to "trust" him with every ounce of my being and not just half way. He does "kiss all of my "Booboos"", God believes in me and I can do this!"

Phillip had Parker sit on the seat of his bike and he tilted it a little to the right and said "you will fall and when you fall this way, you stick your leg out to catch yourself. Put your foot down and go again." They did this over and over until Parker got it and figured out how to catch himself if he began to fall. I have friends who are going through this same process with us or have done it before who are teaching me that it is hard and at times I will fall this way or that way but when I do this is how I should correct it and I pick up and keep going. I lean on my friends a lot for encouragement and support. They are awesome.  

Finally, Phillip asked Parker if he was ready to ride. Apprehensive and eager at the same time Parker said yes. So off he peddled while Phillip guided him and caught him when he fell. 

I have prayed for the journey God had for me and this is it. We are adopting. We answered Gods calling with that same apprehensive and eager tone Parker had. We are so excited and ready for our new addition. I cannot deny that this is a scary journey and at times I wonder if I am making the right decision. But I know that God has his hand on the back of the seat he is guiding us and catching us when we fall and learn. 

his speech before they began...

teaching about how to catch yourself when you fall...

running alongside of him and guiding him...

prayer or politics?

This is the title on the devotional I am doing with our church. Our church is in the beginning of a trust journey. As a body we are doing a 35 day devotional. We are on day 9. They are quick little devotionals written by some of our members. Though they are quick and short they are thought provoking and challenging. I find it ironic that we are doing this trust journey with our church while we are in the biggest trust journey with the Lord in our personal lives. With our adoption we are having to learn how to solely rely on the Lord more than we have ever done before. We have always made it our priority to trust in the Lord in all things but as sinners we fall short. I am quickly realizing that in the journey of adoption there is no room to fall short. And it is hard to lay your plans and life down and trust the God knows the path you are supposed to take and he is guiding our every step. (This is a whole n'other blog post in its self.)

Today's devotional moved me. I didn't think it did at first but as I began to process it and think about it and pray over it, I began to feel a burden for our nation. I also began to relate this in my own life. I will retype the devotional below for you all to read. (I hope this is ok)

Isaiah 31:1
Woe to those who go down to Egypt for help, who rely on horses, who trust in the multitude of their chariots and in the great strength of their horsemen, but do not look to the Holy One of Israel, or seek help from the Lord. 

In Dueteronomy 17, the Lord told Israel that a time would come when their would enter the promised land and have a king rule over them. God told them that the king was not to accumulate horses, wives, or gold. Most of Israel's kings violated all three of God's directives. 

The problem accumulating those things was that the kings or the nation itself would begin to depend on horses (military might), wives (alliances with other nations through marriage), and gold (economic power) rather then God. The bible declares that every great person and every great nation must trust in God more than anything or anyone else if they are to stand. Asa a nation, we stood alone at one time honoring God as the creator and the king who ruled over nations. We even printed "In God we trust" on our money. God blessed us. We were given victory in war. Our economy was the envy of the world. God gave us leadership among the nations of the earth. 

But now we have removed prayer from our schools, the Ten Commandments from our courthouses, and at times we give more courtesy to false religions than to Christ himself. We have come to trust in military might, political correctness, the American dollar, and stranger alliances with those who hate the name of JESUS. our economy is crumbling. We fight in wars that have no victory. Our influence on earth is diminishing. Woe to those who do not look to the Holy One of Israel or seek his help. Pray for our nation that we might look to God again and remember that what is true for nations is true for individuals as well. If we trust in our power, our wealth, or our alliances with the world, then we too will crumble and our plans will fail. 

Father, will you exalt your name and the name of Jesus in the land again and draw us back to a place of trusting you as a nation. May you exalt your name and your Son in my heart as well. Amen. 
-Written by a member at MidCities Community Church

It is hard to not trust in your own power. With the journey Phillip and I are on, I struggle with control. I want to control how quickly paper work gets filled out and mailed off, I want to control how quickly things get translated and mailed back, I want to be in control of situations and referrals. It is so hard. It is so hard to let it all go and let God work and let him do the controlling. We I take this process in my own hands and try to do it the way I think it should look I loose sight of what he has called us to do. Then his voice gets foggy with my flesh desires and I completely jack things up. I feel like I have heard god speak to my heart on the things that I am supposed to do. I know it is God because I would have never come up with any of it on my own. They are things I never saw for me in my future. I know that God planted these things in me and in my husband. Now that I have these plans God has given me I am at a cross roads on what to do with them, where to begin, which avenue to take first. It is all very overwhelming.

Over the last couple of days I have learned that I must at all times be tuned into the Lord and his strive to hear his voice. I have to silence my "self" in order to hear him clearly. I cannot be lead by emotions, though, emotions spark awareness. I have made some spontaneous decisions that have confused those around me and even myself. I am learning and I am figuring this out. If God does not stay above me and my "power, wealth and alliances" then I am crumbling and my plans are failing. I do not want to fail at this I want to succeed. With out God this cannot work and cannot happen. I have tried for too long to control this adoption but now I am really laying it down at the Lords feet. The desire to adopt came from Him and it is His. He is the one who will guide my next steps. My prayer is that God will show us which path to take right now, He will give us peace about the decision we are making and he will give those who are working with us peace. This whole process is foreign and scary but Phillip and I are learning along the way.

Monday, October 11

Our Weekend in Snapshots

Learning to ride with out training wheels!

Trying on crazy hats at the Buckle while daddy shopped for jeans

Pony rides at a Birthday party!

Visit with Family and Family Friends

My Brother In Law flying, Phillip flying  & my crazy sister trying to throw herself into premature labor.

More Corn Poppers

Fiddlestick Farm Cont...
I laughed out loud when I reviewed the next 3 pictures... My husbands face is priceless.... 

Saturday, October 9


I was sitting in the office browsing the web when I heard the fridge alarm beeping at me. I snuck around the corner and this is what I found. 

He was growling at me in this picture. LOL

I think he might be telling me he is hungry? He is so independent these days. He definitely keeps me on my toes. Obviously we are in the "Terrific Two's. Your jealous I know! 

Friday, October 8

T4A-Empowered to Connect

I was completely taken away by Dr. Purvis. I was excited to hear her speak. I felt a little star stuck when I first saw her. She is gentle, soft spoken, emotional and brilliant. I hope to be as great as she is when I am older. I was amazed at some of the stories she told and of the video clips of her interacting with the kids from one of her camps. I thought to myself while watching her calm a little girl down (who was crying so hard she couldn't talk), "wow she's like the dog whisperer but with kids! She is a hurt child whisperer!" She has such a gentle and tender touch with these kids it is amazing! These kids she works worth come from really hard places and they just crumble at her touch and voice. She works at the Institute for Child Development at TCU. She studies psychology and brain development. She bases all of her theories on biblical truths and uses her PHD to glorify the kingdom of God. She specializes or works most with families who have adopted older children who have come from hard places.  I feel so blessed to have heard her speak before we get our sweet baby. I couldn't wait to get home and try some of her ways on my boys. It is so practical and makes total sense. Her book it called The Connected Child. I highly recommend it. Here are some quotes from her that I jotted down during my sessions. I felt really moved my them all. It was so powerful to me that it was hard to take it all in at once. 

- Give your children a voice - let them have the ability to cry out for their needs.
- We are designed for connection. 
- You could have 15 biological children but when you adopt 1 child from a hard place you have to start   over at ground zero.
- The most tender-hearted children if not cherished and loved in early childhood will become the most aggressive.
- Relationship is Primary. If we are fixed on a parenting strategy then we will fail the child. You have to be in tune to the relationship with each individual child. 
- Women naturally cradle their children on their left. those who cradle on the right are depressed. why? because love/bonding/connection are a right brain activity. 
- Dis-attached mothers and depressed mother touch their babies with their finer tips. Attached mothers will touch their babies with the palm of their hand. 
- Our past plays a key role in how we parent our children. We must over come our past to effectivly parent our kids. 

Those are just some of the moving and powerful things she shared. There are many many more. Read her book. It is amazing. We heard many many sad foster home stories from her. She has worked with the hardest kids. Kids who have committed murder. She said she has never met a kid that was so hurt and wounded that there was no hope for healing. No child is beyond healing. 

picture of Dr. Purvis with her book. 

There are alot of video sessions you can watch on Vimeo. I highly recommend them. Also there are many resources at  http://empoweredtoconnect.org/

5 Years

A quick rendition of how it began: 

In January of 2005 I began my spring semester of my freshman year in college. Once again in remedial Algebra. (Really, who fails the same tests twice? I mean, seriously?) I began the semester with normal expectations. I was gonna sit through this miserable class and endure all the pain that numbers bring me until May and then I would be done. (at least temporarily) The first night of class was normal. I walked in awkwardly not knowing but one person, Carlos, my sweet friend who had spent the fall semester with me in remedial reading. (Seriously? I can read I promise!) During class I had one of those uncomfortable "someone is staring me down" feelings. I ignored it and went on my way. This happened night after night. There was this one boy who sat right behind and diagonal from me whom I desperately and secretly wished was the one staring. He was oh so cute. This "oh so cute" boy, Carlos and I began to go to Math Lab together every night after class. (This "oh so cute" boy and Carlos were also friends from the previous semester.) I really began to like this cute boy. I wanted him to notice me but he never did. I was shy, quiet and never made eye contact. He made me so nervous. One night at math lab there was this girl  who was flirting with this cute boy. I was so annoyed that this loud, rowdy, flirty, beautiful girl was going in for the kill before I had a chance. I was ready to knock her outta her chair backwards. I calmly sat there working on my math problem while she flirted away. (all while wishing it was me he was flirting with) When lab was over I was scrambling to get outta there. As we were walking out I was chatting with Carlos trying to ignore this cute boy and pretend his little flirt session didn't bother me one bit. (I don't have a very good poker face) Carlos and I were walking to our car when I simply stated that I was starving. I had no intentions in this statement other then stating I was starving. Well....  "cute boy" heard and said "Hey, I'm hungry too, lets go to Rosas." Wait! Hold Up! Did cute boy just ask me to go eat with him??? Instantly I start sweating. I cannot go eat with him. I am so nervous. I try to squirm my way out of it but I just can't. I invite Carlos to go with us but he has plans. Great! Now I am going to be with the cute boy aloooone!! AHHHH!!! I agree to go and we part ways. I convince Carlos on the walk to our cars to go with me because I am nervous to go with cute boy alone. (Carlos had just gotten out of prison in California a few months earlier. He was in prison for assault with a deadly weapon.) If anyone could protect me in case of emergency it would be Carlos. ;) We go, we eat, Carlos leaves, "cute boy" and I have a great time. This cute boy turns out to be the one and only LOVE of my life... Phillip. Fast forward a few months...jump over some really embarrassing and shameful months... to August 2005. On August 23,20005, after moving in with Phillip and moving back in with my parents after 2 months, I wake up with what I think is the flu from HELL!! I literally thought I was dying. My life was over. I was gonna die from this flu at 18. Ok... so I was little dramatic. But it was bad. It turn out that I was pregnant. YIKES!!! PREGNANT??? How can this be?? Six and a half weeks later on October 8, 2005 I married my best friend. (5 months later we welcome Parker) We have come along ways in the last 5 years. We have overcome so much. We have seen prayers answered and miracles happen. If it weren't for the grace of God and my little peanut Parker I would not be married to the one I love today.  This story, our story, is only a story today because of our little man. I am oh so thankful for our little man. I am not good at public affection it makes me awkward, but, today is different. Here's a little mushy, ushy-ness (try hard not to gag) ;)  


The last 5 years have been the best five years of my entire life. The Fourth year was the best so far. I know they will continue to get better and more amazing. You are truly a blessing to my soul. You have shown me who I have always been but wasn't confident enough to be. You have challenged me, encouraged me, grown me and loved me like no one ever has. You have stood by my side through my most bratty and rough moments. You have loved me when I couldn't love myself and for that I am forever grateful. My soul is bound to yours and your to mine. You are the best part of me. You still melt my heart and put butterflies in my stomach. Your smile and laughter bring joy to my heart. You are so special to me and I love you more than I can find words to say. I am honored to share life with you and for you to call me your wife. You are my best friend, my buddy, my soul mate. I love you more and more each day. I love you more than I have ever found a way to say to you. I can't wait to grow old with you and enjoy our family we created together. I couldn't imagine life with out you here to share it with. I feel truly blessed that I have you. I love you!


our wedding day. October 8, 2005

us now with the little man who started it all. 

Wednesday, October 6

T4A - Theology of Adoption - Brief Overview

This past weekend I went with two friends to the Together for Adoption Conference in Austin. All I can say if WOW and I want to go again next year with Phillip. It was inspiring and full of challenges. There were many great speakers and the break out sessions I attended were amazing. It was taken me several days to sort out everything that I heard. There was so much so fast that it all began to run together. Now that I have had time to sit and process everything I can write about it. 

The first speaker was Dan Curver, he spoke on the theology of adoption. I had never really put much thought into the theology of adoption until we started the process of adopting our Emerson. The theology was first introduced to me in the book Adopted for Life. (Powerful book) Here at the conference it was largely talked about. Dan used two different terms for adoption, Horizontal Adoption and Vertical Adoption. Horizontal, referring to one human being establishing a familial relationship with another human being. Vertical adoption is God establishing a familial relationship with human beings, his image bearers. Naturally people refer to the Horizontal Adoption when they first hear the word adoption versus the Vertical Adoption. I know I always did growing up and did until this last year. I never really related God's relationship to me as adoption. For Christians our adoption in the central point of what defines us. Paul says in Ephesians 1:5 we are adopted as sons through Jesus Christ. Jesus is God only natural Son. He sent him hear to die for us so that we would be adopted into God's family as well. Through our spiritual adoption we are co-heirs with Jesus. Meaning we can enjoy all the rights and privileges of the relationship that God the Father enjoys with his eternal Son.  We were adopted by God. We were once orphans in this dark world until Christ came to save us. Adoption is Vertical before is it Horizontal. The Vertical adoption is what God does and the Horizontal adoption is what we do. Horizontal adoption is an amazing reflection to what God did through Christ for our adoption. Adoption is mentioned 5 times throughout scripture:

Ephesians 1:3-5

3Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us in the heavenly realms with every spiritual blessing in Christ. 4For he chose us in him before the creation of the world to be holy and blameless in his sight. In love 5he predestined us to be adopted as his sons through Jesus Christ, in accordance with his pleasure and will—

Romans 8:15
15For you have not received a spirit of slavery leading to fear again, but you have received a spirit of adoption as sons by which we cry out, "Abba! Father!"

Romans 8:23
 23And not only this, but also we ourselves, having the first fruits of the Spirit, even we ourselves groan within ourselves, waiting eagerly for our adoption as sonsthe redemption of our body.

Romans 9:4
4who are Israelites, to whom belongs the adoption as sons, and the glory and the covenants and the giving of the Law and the temple service and the promises,

Galatians 4:5
5so that He might redeem those who were under the Law, that we might receive the adoption as sons.

I dont know how I missed these scriptures growing up. Ha! How amazing is it that we were once orphans. But, our God, God who is full of love and mercy and grace, sent his only son to us so that we could all be equal in his kingdom. 

Part 2 tomorrow... T4A - Empowered to Connect - Dr. Karen Purvis

Tuesday, October 5

Feel Free to Dance Dance Dance

Have you ever had those days where you wake up feeling free and just plain silly. Where everything makes you giggle and you just want to dance around in your freedom. I had been in a funk for the last week or so until this weekend. I had some great moments with God while I was away at the T4A conference. Today during my quiet time I kept giggling to myself because I am so free in him! I love his presence and I love his grace. When I am in this mood it makes me do some pretty embarrasing things. I feel like dancing with my kids and just being silly. I will spare you my embarassing dance moves but share with you a video that touched me today. I did not practice these in my office. Or did I? You will never know ;) The lyrics to this song are great. They are posted below the video. This is how I feel today.

Having troubles telling how I feel 
But I can dance, dance and dance 
Couldn't possibly tell you how I mean 
But I can dance, dance, dance 
So when I trip on my feet 
Look at the beat 
The words are, written in the sand 
When I'm shaking my hips 
Look for the swing 
The words are, written in the air 
I was a dancer all along 
Dance, dance, dance 
Words can never make up for what you do 
Easy conversations, there's no such thing 
No I'm shy, shy, shy 
My hips they lie 'cause in reality I'm shy, shy, shy 
But when I trip on my feet 
Look at the ground 
The words are, written in the dust 
When I'm shaking my hips 
Look for the swing 
The words are written in the air 
I was a dancer all along 
Dance, dance, dance 
Words can never make up for what you do 
Dance, dance, dance 

let them praise his name with dancing
and make music to him with tambourine and harp." - psalm 149:3