Monday, September 30, 2013
A few years ago, our family was sitting at the dinner table, discussing what we could do to show love to our neighbors. I had made some brownies that we were planning to eat for dessert that night (and I have to tell you that I was really looking forward to eating them!). But our children decided that we should give them to one of our neighbors.
And that was the start of the Brownie Brigade.
We learned that people love brownies, but more importantly, that giving away dessert was a great way to get to know our neighbors.
So, from that point on, we always had a box or two of brownie mix on hand and the kids started making regular batches of brownies to take to our neighbors. It was such an incredibly simple way to share the love of Jesus and make new friends.
Now that we're living in a new neighborhood (and hoping to get to know our neighbors), we decided that a resurrection of the Brownie Brigade was in order.
We discussed, as a family, who the first brownie recipients would be and we'll be delivering them today.
Let the fun begin!!!
Friday, September 20, 2013
For her 13th birthday (today!), I gave Lily a writing assignment. My only direction to her was to write about birthdays. Here is what she had to say:
Birthdays and Adoption
Birthdays are always so fun. Whenever I think of birthdays, I imagine the balloons, the presents, the cake, streamers, and screaming party guests. Today is my birthday, and needless, to say, I’m excited.
So many kids here in the U.S. have huge birthday parties, scores of presents, lots of friends over, and the list goes on. But what about those kids who don’t even know when their birthday is? What about those kids who have never tasted birthday cake, or blown out candles? Kai Kai was very excited when his birthday came around, because he had never celebrated it before.
So many kids have to be their own parents, watching out for younger siblings. So much of their life has been lost, because of the ignorance and selfishness that we all possess. If we could go and celebrate every child’s birthday, imagine how loved they would feel. They would probably never forget that day when people actually took the time to celebrate them-celebrating them being alive, and telling them how awesome they are.
And then comes the miracle of adoption. I am soooooooo glad that I was adopted by some awesome parents. I have celebrated all of my birthdays (thirteen now!). But some kids aren’t so lucky. So don’t just say, “Oh, someone else will come along”, because maybe someone else won’t. Let’s work together to tell all of the kids without parents, Happy Birthday!
Oh how I love my precious teenage girl's heart! Happy 13th birthday, my beautiful daughter! May all of your birthday wishes, for all of the children, come true!!!
Friday, September 13, 2013
Well, we had our first real urban adventure today. I went to a grocery store in a slightly sketchy area of town (there was a full-time security guard at the door) and as I was checking out, I was informed that they only take debit cards. We usually use cash for everything, but because of our recent move, I only had a credit card with me. So, I apologized profusely and left my groceries in the store (they were super-nice about it, by the way).
Then, I went out to my car and guess what?! It wouldn't start. At that point, I decided that I had better call David. As long as he was coming anyway, David offered to stop at the bank and get cash.
He arrived about 15 minutes later. The line at the bank was quite long, so he decided that he would just use the new debit card that the bank had given him to buy the gorceries. Well, that was a great idea, but....it didn't work! He called the bank and they said that they were holding all of our deposited checks until the 17th.
Meanwhile, Grace and Kaikai were eating fruit snacks, given to them by a very nice grocery store worker. David decided to jump start the car so that we could go home, while he went back to the bank to get our finances sorted out.
So...about 3 1/2 hours after the start of our grocery store adventure, we finally had groceries in our refrigerator.
It made me think...what would it be like to not be able to afford groceries? What would it feel like to never have enough money and for your credit to be denied any time that you tried to buy something? What would it be like to have grocery shopping consume 3 1/2 hours every time that you went to the store?
Friends, that's the reality for so many people in this country (and far worse for others in this world).
I have led such an incredibly easy and pampered life.
What a gift it is to experience just a tiny smidgen of what so much of the world experiences every day. I pray that God would increase His compassion in me as a result of living in the inner city. I pray that He would give me more of His heart for the people whom He loves.
Precious Father, please, oh please...break my heart with the things that break Yours.