knowing who you are (the spirit of adoption)

Monday, April 29, 2013

It was a warm, beautiful day in Guangzhou. David and Kaikai were walking a little ways behind Grace, Lily and myself, so the girls and I stopped to look out over the lake. A (non-Chinese) man walked up next to us. "You have beautiful daughters," he exclaimed.

I thanked him and continued to talk to my girls.

"Is their father Chinese?" he asked.

"They are adopted," I explained.

"I see. Why didn't you want to have children of your own?" he then asked.

I had an instant flash of anger that this man would ask such a question in front of my girls. "They are my own," I answered curtly.

"Oh, you know what I mean," he continued, oblivious to my irritation. "And what about their real mother?"

That was when I decided that it was time to leave. I turned to him and explained quite clearly that I was their real mother, since I was the one who loved them and took care of them and lived with them.

"Yeah," Lily added in her characteristic, firm way, and then we walked away.

Later on, I asked my precious Lily if she felt hurt by what that man had said. Her response surprised me at first. "No," she said, "That sort of thing doesn't bother me. I know that you're my real mom," and then she gave me a hug.

But when I thought about her response later, I wasn't so surprised, because my sweet Lily
knows who she is.

Lily is a beloved daughter.
She is absolutely treasured.
She is accepted, cherished and greatly loved.
She knows that she takes my breath away.
She knows that there is nothing that she can do to lose David's and my love for her.
She is ours and we are hers.

Lily is so secure in who she is, that it caused me to ask myself,
"Do I know who I am, like that?"

When the world tells me I am not good enough, or that I am unwanted and unloved, does my heart respond with the truth?

Do I say, I am a beloved daughter!?
I am treasured, cherished, accepted and greatly loved.
Do I know that I take my Father's breath away?!
Am I aware that there is nothing that I can do to lose my Father's love?
I am His and He is mine.

Oh Father, it's true!
I am Your beloved daughter and there is nothing that anyone can do or say to change that. Let this fact grow deeper and deeper into my heart. Let it be my identity.

And dear friends, may it be your identity, as well!
May you know who you are in Christ...
a daughter/son of the King!
Absolutely beloved.

Thank you, Father, that is who we really and truly are


Monday, April 22, 2013

Mother Theresa
Isobel Kuhn
William Wilburforce
Hudson Taylor
Gladys Aylward
George Muller
Jacob Deshazer
Brother Andrew

True heroes,
because the thing that defines their lives is...


This past weekend I actually got to see and listen to one of my heroes.

Heidi Baker 

My friends, there are some people in this world who are so filled with the love of Jesus that it is a pleasure simply to be in their presence. Heidi Baker is one of those people. She oozes love. Seriously. And the thing that makes her so unique is that she doesn't even want the attention that is given to her. She wants all of the attention and glory to go to our precious Jesus. She considers it an honor to love Him and to love His children.

At the end of her talk on Friday (not really a talk so much as a prayer), she was very tired. But, in a room full of people, she took the time to bless our precious Kaikai. She got down on her knees, told him her Chinese name (she and her husband were missionaries in Hong Kong before moving to Mozambique), hugged him, kissed him and shared the love of Jesus with him. This was no half-hearted love. It was love that gave abundantly.

Oh, my precious Jesus, I want to love like that. I want to learn to love and love and love some more. I want to gladly give my heart away to those who need love. I want to share Your overwhelming, affectionate love with a world who needs heroes who love.

And I know that this is only possible because of Your great love. This is only possible because You loved us first. Thank you, Jesus, for the example of this beautiful hero. Thank you that her love points me to the only One who can fill me with that same love, and who can even transform my little heart into a heart of love.

snow day...

Monday, April 15, 2013

We finally got our long-awaited, spring snowstorm.

The new buckstove, that David traded for the price of caulking a shower, has been running all day.

The littles are building a snowman.

The bigs are playing games.

And I'm enjoying a few moments to blog.

But, it looks like Grace and Kaikai are ready to come in, so I'm off to get the promised hot chocolate heated up!

Delighting in one another (a post by David)

Saturday, April 6, 2013

One of my favorite things is when my children take delight in one another.  I love it when they"discover" their brother or sister: when doing something with one another becomes a delight and their highest priority.  Jadon and Lily have had so many of these kinds of moments. 

Just now, I asked Kai Kai and Jadon to go play in their room and Kai Kai was so excited.  Kai Kai loves all of his siblings. He told me today that we need to adopt more boys because he only gets to go to sleep with Jadon and at the orphanage he went to sleep with lots of boys!  He also gets very excited when he gets to go to sleep in Adam's room.  He throws his hands up, yells "Yes!" very excitedly, and does a little dance. 

Thank God for these days of love.

Big Dad


Tuesday, April 2, 2013

There are so many wonderful firsts that we've been able to experience in the three months since we adopted Kaikai. There are the little firsts, like a first coin for a lost tooth, a first hockey game in the cul-de-sac and a first Valentine's Day celebration. And then there are the bigger firsts like a first talk about Jesus and a nine-year-olds very first birthday celebration.

This past weekend we were able to experience some big firsts with Kaikai, and many little ones, as well. The biggest first was a clear beginning understanding of what Jesus is like: that even though Jesus was harmed by men, he didn't retaliate (Kaikai was amazed by this and kept talking about it), and that Jesus died for our sins and rose again!

And then there were some small, but also beautiful, firsts...

like a first Easter basket,

and a first egg hunt.


Our other sweethearts enjoyed the weekend too!


And here's a final first of the weekend: A family photo with all 8 of us!

Thank you, Jesus, for the blessing of experiencing all of these wonderful firsts with our precious new son!

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