The moments between the miracles…

I feel like my posts the last few weeks haven’t made much sense–as I pray for what is ahead but wait upon Him for confirmation and His timing. So while I wait and pray–I do my best to share what I’m learning…partly to remember this part later–and the other part just because I feel like I’m supposed to…maybe for you. I was listening to the song today “Never Let Go” and tonight as I was reflecting on how He never lets go–I was thinking about how as we seek and follow Him…we begin to see BIG and some times challenging and even hard things ahead. Yet–in the “in between” life still happens.

You sense His next plan for your story is a bit more unknown or uncomfortable or uncertain than the last–and while you could be filled with fear or anxiety because it seems too crazy or too big for little ole you–instead you remember that you can REST because you know His perfect timing for the things He has already set aside for us to do (see Ephesians 2:10)…so no reason to worry about the timing OR if you will be able (He who calls you will equip you…you know that’s my favorite thing to say!) and because we know that nothing He plans for you can be thwarted (see Job 42:2). SO…in the wait…in the middle of the miracles—the result of your obedience to say YES and be available for the “a time such as this” moments–the day-to-day moments happen…and you see His glory shine through…reminding you that you CAN and WILL indeed trust Him for what is ahead (these moments…THEY are the ‘stones of remembrance’ of His faithfulness in the past…and a reminder of His faithfulness in your future!).

Watching my four littles play today–reminded me of His faithfulness in my life…His goodness…and how much HE loves my children even more than I do. And while I pray about the things I feel like He is asking me to pray over and surrender…I am reminded that THEY will learn more from a mommy who follows God’s call on her life rather than giving them the things the world might desire or what our culture competes to give…that isn’t the race this momma was called to run. And I sit back and watch with wonder.

MUCH of what the Lord calls us to will seem crazy. (As believers, we should really scratch our head and wonder are we REALLY listening and following if our lives don’t look different from the world…if they don’t look a little crazy…or God-sized…or full of miracles.) SO…as we seek and follow–for some it will seem crazy. Especially to the world. And that’s okay. Because really, I look back on where He has taken me thus far…and I am just thankful He didn’t let me stay comfortable. And how much better this is…it was His idea–and it’s perfect. I’ll admit–some days I tell my Creator that He is crazy–and I can’t believe even with sleepless nights…I wouldn’t change anything. ANYTHING. And I shake my head and laugh.

And I realize the fears and wonders from the last thing–are all faded away. Not only am I changed–but I see how others in our lives have changed with us. So I stand in awe of how God works and how He blesses not only us–but others too.

Isaac with his Gigi today

Gigi and Aunt Reid with the crew

I loved spending time with family today…I love that Aunt Reid now serves Wiphan with her teaching talent…and my sister and brother-in-law just got home from Zambia…and talking about when trips will be this summer…who will watch kids…should Rich and I travel at different times…this and that—this is just normal. Which makes it crazy to now feel like this is just life–and it’s really just so good for this to be part of what is normal for us. Yet ahead…in the midst of these moments–I sense His calling again…and this time just like the last I say to Him again, “You are crazy Lord…but I love your ideas more than mine–so I’ll wait on your timing and I’m just along for the ride. And last but not least–please make my really husband excited about this…because that’s really important…and help me follow in that excitement…instead of wondering, doubting, being anxious…”

And that is where you feel the rubber meet the road once again…the road of FAITH.

And this is where I feel like I may not be making sense any more–but maybe some of you are there so you understand perfectly. Let us pray that we will listen, hear and most importantly FOLLOW. Our lives really should look different–and they will be stories that we couldn’t write even if we wanted to. I know some of you reading might be saying, “Oh my–that sounds amazing”…and I’ll tell you that it is. But how to get there? It’s really quite simple. You just open your hands and say, “I’m willing–I’m willing to do anything for Your name’s sake–here I am–use me.” And then instead of just sitting there–you begin looking every where you go and asking, “Would You have me do something here? What could I do for You? Help me see You–and I will follow.”

Much love to all of you–and I’ll end on some pictures of my 18 month cutie…was about to fall short of 18 month pictures but snagged a few tonight…whether he wanted me to or not!

AND to make you smile…just in case you think I take too many pictures of ITY–HE is the ONLY one that doesn’t run from momma with a camera! I turned to try and take some of Frankie baby after Isaac and this is what he did squealing “No pi-cha momma! NO!”(Please take note–Frank is wearing a soccer jersey of Parker’s. He is going through a phase that he eats, sleeps…you name it–he MUST be wearing what he calls “socca team!” at ALL times. We wash these AROUND the clock!)

THEN…a neighbor and DEAR FRIEND who read my blog about no sleep came over and brought me chocolate (my favorite!) and a gift to help me through the no sleeping! SO PERFECT because EVERY morning Rico Suave does this silly accent sing-song voice saying with his first sip of coffee “This tastes like Hea-VOUGN!” Thank you LIZ!

And to top it off–these people made our sweet friend staying with us BANANA PUDDING…we are really trying to pour on the SOUTH here to our visiting friend from the north! Aren’t my little bakers the CUTEST?!

Just wanted to encourage some of you today–as some times I look at pictures like this one (above) and think, “Now…3 kids–that was crazy enough–and we could have just settled for that crazy and trips to Disney and ballet and baseball.” BUT…while there is nothing at all wrong with doing those things–I really believe following God into the big, wild, crazy, unknown–the sacrifices He will ask you to make to get there that will some times mean sacrificing what the rest of the world counts as standard or normal–I believe will truly change your heart and the hearts of your children more than any of those things ever could. Trust Him with your families as you follow Him in new adventures–and make this life one of living for the Kingdom…building your treasures in heaven rather than on Earth.

May you see the path clearly He has for each of you. Cheering you on as your rubber meets the road…and while you wait for the miracles He has called you to join Him in…I pray you see His faithfulness and glory in the sweet moments of your day-to-day life!

XOXO!

Andrea

February 20, 2011 - 5:47 am

Kim - Love. This. Post.
I too feel like I am in between the miracles.
Restless and weary from a long standing prayer request.
But ever mindful to not let that distract me from our “everyday adventures” in faith.
The Job 42:2 verse was a beautiful reminder. Thank you.
And I cannot wait to see what is around the corner for your beautiful family!
Love & Blessings from Hong Kong,
Kim

February 20, 2011 - 7:15 am

Joy Kinard - Oh sweet girl, this post was for me! We are in the midst of crazy over here. We are fostering a baby girl we’ve had since birth, she’s 3 months now. I am staying at home and really need to go back to work, but God just keeps saying no. My Mama-heart is glad, my checkbook is sad. We spent the day with our family yesterday who have quite different priorities. We toured my sister-in-laws new $400K house that only she and her 6 year old live in. We got to see the new bass boat my brother-in-law got for his 40th birthday. We heard all about the upcoming trip to Hawaii my husband’s sisters are taking in April, with a stop in California for a few days. Yesterday was the first day they had met our foster baby- who is black. They knew she was black, but knowing and seeing are two different things and that was evident. It was a long ride home last night. My heart just struggled with “things” we don’t have, and God’s plan, and acceptance. So, this post was very much for me. Thank you for sharing.

February 20, 2011 - 7:37 am

Christy - Thanks, Andrea. Needed this! Praying for you!

February 20, 2011 - 7:47 am

Kristin - I needed to read this. We have a meeting coming up on Friday with our social worker from the pregnancy center. Everything is updated so we’re not sure why she’s driving 2 1/2 hours to come and see us and the kids are to be here. She said she was not at liberty to tell us, so my mind has been wondering what in the world this is about. Not typical, I don’t think, if there is such a thing as typical. Anyways, trying to let go knowing that God will not.

February 20, 2011 - 8:17 am

Kelly - Thank you for this post! I’m praying through some of those exact same things right now! I’m not one to “sit around.” I’m a “do-er.” So, the fact that I feel God call me out of a ministry that’s been SUCH a HUGE part of my and my entire family’s life for the last 8 years is SCARY! BUT, He is calling us into the wide world of adoption! We’re expecting from Ethiopia (possibly siblings!)!!! STILL, I feel a restlessness that usually, in my case, means, HOLD ON, KELLY! I HAVE BIGGER THINGS YET! And, I think, “Seriously? Can I take a small break?” Then I think of Oswald Chambers in “My Utmost for His Highest,” when he says (paraphrased), “You will never be released from the Great Commission.” So, keep on keepin’ on, and I’ll try to do the same!!! (I’m trying to get a blog up and running…unsuccessfully right now, but it’ll be up soon!) :)

February 20, 2011 - 9:43 am

jenny - Needed this reminder!!! WIth our adoption taking longer than we planned it is so wonderful to be reminded that it is not longer than God has planned. His timing will be perfect for our family….and to rest in the beauty of seeing it all unfold is a blessing. Love you and praying for you too!

February 20, 2011 - 9:59 am

Lara - Love this, friend. I was just thinking the other night about how we are on kind of a “high” right now. God is moving BIG and fast and we are seeing Him minute by minute in exciting ways. I was wondering what it’s like to come down from that mountain and settle into the everyday. God is teaching me so much lately that the everyday is where the true miracles happen, I am just more likely to miss them. Isn’t He good?

February 20, 2011 - 10:12 am

Jennifer - Yes…yesterday I was reflecting on how our huge age gap, adoption heart, etc. were so normal 2 weeks ago in Georgia and as I sit with my oldest son’s basketball team the moms are all smiling at me chasing my 2 year old and saying, “So glad we are done with that stage.” Well, with the exception of one mom who started over with a little boy from China and is now 4 (CL/CP too)…she gets it! :) She is the light of our life…so glad we didn’t miss this opportunity to be parents again! Praying we take courage and don’t let fear stop us if the Lord calls us to adopt again!

February 20, 2011 - 10:42 am

Renae - I have loved “finding” and following your blog!!! You have been very encouraging to me lately as we begin the process of adopting from Ethiopia(our second adoption-first was Bulgaria-home July 2010)….we are already facing financial attack, emotional attack, and in the middle of it all..I have this CRAZY idea that we’re supposed to request TWINS!!! It is a crazy hard road into the unknown, and we have very little support…SOOOOOO, keep writing!:) It ministers to my heart and gives me the courage to continue on this WILD path of international adoption!!

God Bless,
Renae
http://intothefieldsofthefatherless.blogspot.com

February 20, 2011 - 11:40 am

Dawn - PRAYING for you as God continues to call you to what He has for you. I feel those moments ….many times. The moments inbetween. Love what God does…

February 20, 2011 - 3:09 pm

Chasity - Right there with ya Andrea!

February 20, 2011 - 3:49 pm

Jen - This post was for me too. Our family is about to enter the “crazy” life and leave our comfy American lifestyle behind. I know it’s the perfect path for us, but I wonder how many people will understand and encourage us along the way. I am blessed to have a husband who doesn’t question this path and is obedient to God’s perfect plan. Thank you for writing you thoughts and feelings, it makes me feel that I am not the only “crazy” one put there….

February 20, 2011 - 11:35 pm

Cristal - I am sitting here reading your post and amazed at how God speaks through people that I don’t even really know! God has been calling our family to a life that isn’t normal and goes against what society says a family should do or have. He is calling us instead to give Him all that we have so that He can make much of His name through us! Oh how that doesn’t make sense to alot of people! Thank you for allowing God to use your journey to encourage me.

February 21, 2011 - 7:29 pm

Sandi - You were speaking on EXACTLY what I have been praying about!!! Praying about God really breaking my hubby’s heart for those in need. He gave me a triple dose of mercy but hubby just doesn’t understand. God is bringing people into our lives who need lots of support on top of the call to adopt. I am just faithfully trying to follow his call even when it’s hard. Even when it costs or results in sacrifice for our family. Sun I had a discussion with my hubby about getting his heart ready for what God has in store for us & that adoption while scary for him is our next step. Afterwards he accidentally broke my super heavy indestructible mantle cross the 4th one since I felt in my heart to adopt. I told him God is letting him know that faith without deeds is meaningless & that we are called to act despite our fears. He is a factual guy & is having a hard time reconciling what “makes sense” with what God is doing in our lives. Oh & the other day God used your blog to lead me to ourunveiledfaces.blogspot because they are needing 100 families to donate just $20 to build a grain mill in Holeta!!! God has used you to bless my life and to speak to me in so many ways!!!! Thank you for your courage & faith!!!

February 22, 2011 - 12:22 pm

Rachel - Thank you friend. You are so encouraging at keep things in perspective!

February 22, 2011 - 10:02 pm

Audrey - Thank you Andrea. You let the Lord speak through you today and it clearly reached many of our hearts. Just today I received more paperwork from AGCI and our journey to Ethiopia is getting so overwhelming. But your words lifted me up and reminded me of all of God’s promises that I’ve been standing on since He first called us to this task. I look forward to holding my Zoe Ameris in my arms; giving God all the glory. Bless you.

February 23, 2011 - 12:03 am

Keeley - Andrea, you are wonderful! I’m so thankful for your thoughts and inspiring attitude and faith. I feel as though we’re being called to adopt. My husband doesn’t feel the same; saying we’re stretched enough with the four kids under 9 we have now (the youngest being just 7 months). My sister tells me how much we’ll miss out on and how crazy life would be with more. We even discussed how my kids just might not get the chance to go to Disney World. ;) I’m so relieved that someone else thinks as I do in that those things don’t really matter to me (and I don’t think they will really matter to my kids). I want them to be grateful. happy. giving. loving. faithful. I don’t think that will come with material things and experiences that society says they “should” have. Keep doing what you do – because it’s great. God Bless You!

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