Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Looking Back . . . Wednesday

Okay, WOW, so it's been way too long since I've been back on this blog!! I do want to get some more pictures on here of our trip, and since I stopped at Tuesday of our week in Ethiopia, I'm now onto Wednesday. I don't actually have many pictures from Wednesday because the main event for that day was our appointment with the US Embassy to get visa approval for Isaiah to be able to come back to the U.S. This was the appointment that was holding up our travel plans for a few weeks because they waited until the week before to confirm with our agency that we could have the appointment.

When we showed up for our appointment Wednesday morning we went through security (no electronics allowed). After all five of our AWAA families had passed through security, we all sat down to find out that they had decided to close the day before, so our appointment got moved to the afternoon (par for the course for the "bumps" in our trip!). So, we all loaded back into the vans and headed back to the guest house. There we decided just to flip-flop our day. We did more shopping in the morning, had lunch out and then went to our embassy appointment. The appointment basically consists of waiting for a few hours in a crowded, stuffy room (glad it was "winter"!!) until they call your name. Then we go up to the window where they ask you a few questions (literally 5-10 min. total) before they give you approval. Fortunately for us, Isaiah fell asleep on me shortly after we got there and was sleepy the rest of the time . . . some of the other families with us weren't so lucky and had to chase kids around for hours!

Besides knowing that we had Isaiah's visa approval, the most exciting thing of the day was FINALLY GETTING OUR LUGGAGE!!!!!!!!!!!!! I was so excited to finally be able to get our donations sorted for the transition home and orphanages. As I mentioned in my post while we were in ET, the only things missing from our luggage were a box of latex gloves and a large bag of candy (meant for a gift for some of the people who helped us while we were there). I wish I had had more time to get stuff more organized for pictures, but below is what I got in the chaos of sorting and separating. I wanted to take these pictures and share them with you because they were donations from you - so many of you prayed and sacrificed financially so we were not only able to complete Isaiah's adoption, but also be able to bring around 150-175 lbs. of donations for the orphans!

Tuesday, April 6, 2010

Who's Your King??

Sunday, April 4, 2010

A New Easter

Easter is not really new, but I feel like I'm seeing Easter in a new way this year. I'm not who I was last year at this time. God has changed me, the way I think, the way I see the world, and I pray that I never lose the vision He's given me. I pray that, by His grace alone, I will remain open and yielded to Him so that He can continue to make that vision clearer - to see how He sees!

Earlier this week on facebook, I shared a video of another adoptive family and included the caption "Easter IS adoption" . . . and I've been continually brought back to that thought throughout the week. God gave the ultimate price - the life of His only and perfect Son - for His glory and our good. If you're like me and you've grown up with the "story", it's easy to gloss over that statement. God has taught me SOOO much this past year, but if nothing else, He has given me a deeper understanding of my adoption in Him. He paid this price and now I'm adopted into His family - not as a servant or even a good friend (both of which positions I am unworthy to occupy) - He chose to watch His Son die an excruciating death. He was beaten, abused, beyond recognition. And as if the physical wasn't enough, He was mocked. He chose to take our sin on Himself. And by doing that, in the time of His greatest misery and agony, He was also separated from His Heavenly Father. All of the hatred and disgust due my putrid sin . . . He CHOSE to bear that, from His Father . . . in my place. Because of my sin. Now, I am a child of God - in His family, permanently, with all of the unfathomable rights and privileges that that includes!

So, as I sat this morning with our church family, singing all of the beautiful songs about what God has done for us through His victory over death, I literally felt my breath taken away as God took me back a few weeks. This thought has struck me this week, but even more so this morning. Remember my posts earlier of how Isaiah was really not liking me for the last few days in Ethiopia and the entire plane ride home? That was so painful. My heart still hurts to think about it, it's still so "fresh". To be there, ready, willing, and able to be his mom . . . I knew what we had done these last several months to get there. I knew I had what he needed, if only he would let me. But anytime I got near him . . . well I can't even describe the look of disgust with the accompanying scream he gave me if I got anywhere near him. I knew it could happen, but it still broke my heart when it did. I wish I could describe to you the depth of the pain I was feeling in my heart . . . and I felt this week like God was saying to me, "Sarah, how do you think I feel everyday when the children I love, the children I DIED for, think they don't need me? They reject me, they mock me, they run screaming the other way. Or they say I'm just a figment of someone's imagination." My heart is broken. He has allowed me to feel His pain in a small, but very real way.

Okay, so I know you came here for pictures of the family, and not for a sermon ;o) We are doing well, as far as we know, Isaiah still seems to be doing well and finding his place in our family. We are so thankful for God's continued grace and mercy to us. He truly gives us the strength for each new day! So today was Easter, and, as far as we know, the first Easter that Isaiah has ever celebrated. Here's a short video of Isaiah with the legos he got for Easter, and using a few of his English words - jellybean, doggie, and bye-bye ;o)

Josh was SOOO excited about our Easter egg hunt, and that he found the egg hidden in the trickiest spot ;o)