Thanks for your support of our adoption journey. We would love for you to join us in praying that God would give us wisdom, patience and perseverance as we go through the process to adopt our children! We appreciate the many people walking this adoption journey with us in prayer! ~Jon & Bethany

March 31, 2011

Quick Update- Pray!

We just found out that our director, Sue, is in the DRC RIGHT NOW!! She has been there since Monday night! My heart almost skipped a beat when Jon told me! For some reason I was thinking it was still a week away... so this is very exciting!!

Please PRAY for her & her husband's safety, that God would work out the details so that many orphans may be rescued from the DRC through our agency, and that they would get home safely on April 5th!

Jon & I have been checking our email like crazy! We know she has internet, but its not a great connection, so even if she tries to send us an email about our referrals we may not get it until she is on her way home, or in some place with a better internet connection. Pray for us to have patience as we wait for God's plan for our family to unfold!!

March 27, 2011

So where are you?

I have been getting this question a lot lately, so I guess I haven't done a very good job of explaining where we are in the process! So, for my sake, so I can remember what happened when as I look back on this adoption journey years from now, and for your sake so you can better pray for us, here is where we are:

We are praying for the 4.7 million orphans in Ethiopia. {And would still LOVE to adopt from there one day!}


Right now, our DOSSIER for the Democratic Republic of Congo is in our Director's hands! And she is in AFRICA right now! She is currently in Ethiopia, but is heading to Congo in a week or so, and she told us that she MIGHT be able to get us referrals while she is there!!!!!
(For those of you who aren't down with adoption lingo, a "referral" is basically a picture & information about a CHILD that meets your qualifications for age,etc.)

So we COULD possibly see our children's faces in the next week or two!! It's incredible. I am obviously still somewhat in denial or I would be bouncing off the walls with excitement!!!!! I think I am trying not to get my hopes up in case it doesn't work out... because we technically don't meet their marriage requirement of 5 years (but have been told by multiple other agencies that shouldn't be a problem) and there's lots of unknowns because we're a "pilot family". But at the same time it all seems to be happening so quickly that my "prepare way ahead of time" self doesn't know what to do. I was the girl who studied for an exam starting a week or 2 before and didn't even look at the material the day of. So I was all preparing myself to get on the "waiting list" for Ethiopia two weeks ago, with a 3 month wait for a referral, and then 6-9 months to bring him home.

Then the Lord threw open this door to the DRC and it was like "Get your dossier to us by the end of next week" and "I may get you a referral while I'm in DRC in 3 weeks" and "It should probably take about 6 months to have them home after you get the referral."  I guess I'm a little shell-shocked (in a good way). This isn't how my little plan was supposed to unfold. But hasn't God already reminded me SEVERAL times during this adoption process that I AM NOT IN CONTROL? For some reason that's a hard one for me to remember! I guess He knows that, and saw that I needed to be reminded AGAIN to rely on Him alone. So honestly, that's what I've been doing. I feel completely out of control of all of our adoption details (which I AM, so probably a good reality check) and I have just given up trying to control it and have been turning to the Lord in prayer daily- for our children, that He would work out all the details of our adoption, and that everything would happen in His perfect timing. (Not the "average adoption timelines" that I have been relying on and planning our life according to!)

Of course He would open the door for us to rescue orphans from a fairly "new" country, where we don't have hundreds of people to compare our experience to or know what to expect at all. But that's ok, because my God created the universe and everything and everyone in it! He REIGNS over ALL.

We sang this song this morning at church, its an awesome Sovereign Grace song that I used to have playing on my blog, and it was a great reminder that I just want to glorify God with my life- however HE wants to do that! So let His will be done in me!

So, if God is calling us to adopt from the DRC - then that is exactly what we want to do, anything, as long as His name is glorified! It may not be the "adoption experience" we were envisioning {we may not even be able to go to the country to bring our children home, more on that later}, but at the end of the day (or hopefully the end of this year!) two children will no longer be orphans, but loved and cherished children in a home that loves the Lord.

We are still going to the Lord in prayer on behalf of the many families we know that are adopting from Ethiopia and the millions of orphans who still need loving familes! But the Lord has also opened our eyes to the extreme plight of the orphans in the Congo as well... if you want to see some of the pictures that have been on our minds as we pray for our children, you can look at this adoptive momma's photos from her trip to bring her son, Miles, home from the DRC. But be warned, they are NOT for the faint at heart. The Lord may just open your eyes to the need for these children to be RESCUED.

"But you, God, see the trouble of the afflicted; you consider their grief and take it in hand.
The victims commit themselves to you; you are the helper of the fatherless." -Psalm 10:14

"Father of the fatherless and protector of widows is God in his holy habitation." -Psalm 68:5

Please pray for our babies! I look at the pictures from this orphanage every few days and it causes me to PRAY for our children! PRAY that the Lord would protect them from harm and disease! PRAY that they are LOVED ON and would form loving attachments with a caregiver until we can bring them home to love on them forever! PRAY that they will receive food and nourishment!

I have no idea if the orphanage they are in right now is like that one, or if by some miracle it is nicer (and similar to the ones we've seen pics of in Ethiopia) but the sad fact is that orphans in the DRC don't appear to be cared for nearly as well as the orphans in Ethiopia {which makes me love & respect the great work Ethiopia is doing even more}.  Hopefully we will learn something soon, as soon as our Director gets back from the Congo (or possibly while she's there, if she can get a decent internet connection!). We covet your prayers for our child(ren) where ever they are! And for us that the Lord would be preparing us to love and parent them well! (Yes, we realize that it could be a little crazy over here with our son being only 18 months old in six months, but we know that if the Lord calls us to it, He will sustain us through it!)

Wow, that was long! If you're still reading, well hopefully that answered most of your questions! =) Good night! All this blogging has worn me out. ha

March 24, 2011

Airport Party

I LOVE Airport Parties! I think they are such a great time to come together to CELEBRATE with families newly joined together by adoption! I know they have got to be EXHAUSTED after like 18 hours of flying with in infant or toddler, but I hope that it is encouraging and energizing to see so many friends & family waiting for them.  This past Saturday was the 3rd Adoption airport arrival that we've been able to go to, and we wouldn't have missed it for the world. What made it even better was getting to share the day with some dear friends from college, who would all also like to bring children into their families through adoption! Brooke & Brandon are in the process of adopting right now and God has opened doors for Bryan & Danielle to adopt hopefully in the next year or so!

Our sweet friend, Brooke, (on the far right) took these pictures of Ryan & Lesli's arrival. LOVE THEM! She did such a great job capturing the excitement in the air and the sweet little boy who is now HOME with his forever family! You can see even more of her fantastic pics on her blog.
Jon & Brandon waiting in excitement, and sharing some laughs, as per usual when Brandon is around. Sorry, I just had to share this handsome picture of my husband! =)

Here I am hugging on Lesli, new mommy to Greer!
{I love the way Jonah and Greer are looking at eachother in this picture. Little do they know that they are going to be best buds one day, just like their daddies!}

Danielle and her daughter, Mady, meeting Greer

How sweet is that little face??? Oh my goodness, he is too cute.

Sweet shot of Ryan being a good daddy, trying to comfort Greer.

If you didn't get enough of this exciting day, you can see even more great pictures that their good friend at Red Tree photography took!

PRAISING THE LORD for His care for orphans and widows through believers, like our friends Ryan & Lesli!
REJOICING that "God puts the lonely in families." Psalm 68:6 
More details on our adoption to come soon! =)

March 19, 2011


So, for my birthday today I got a pretty awesome gift! I got to welcome our friends Ryan and Lesli and their SON home from Ethiopia at the airport!!! I got to the airport so excited to help capture their day in pictures only to realize that I left my MEMORY CARD at home!! So frustrating, but I will try to post some pictures that some of our friends took! Until then, I want to celebrate Greer's homecoming with this video:

There's ONE LESS broken heart in the world tonight!

Welcome Home Greer!!!!!!!

March 15, 2011

Test Pilots

Well, friends, it seems that the Lord has opened the door for Jon and I to possibly be pilots.
Ok, not that kind of pilot.

We may have the opportunity to be a pilot family for a new African adoption program through our adoption agency in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC).

Our director is going to the country this month to find out more information and figure out logistics. Please join us in PRAYING for the 4.2 million orphans in Congo and for our director's trip!

Here's a little bit of what we've learned about the DRC so far:
- formerly known as Zaire, DRC is one of the poorest countries in the world, per capita annual income of $171
- Life expectancy is about 46 years (2009)
- Less than 1/2 the population have access to clean water
- DRC is slightly less than 1/4 the size of the US
- half the population is Roman Catholic, only 20% Protestant
- there are an estimated 4.2 million orphans in DRC, 39 million in Africa
- 15% of the population under age 18 are orphans
- In some areas, 2 of 3 women have been victims of sexual violence, mainly by armed men; in the rest of the country, it is 1 in 2 people (men & women)

 (Stats taken from,,

So, our hearts are breaking for this country and especially the orphans in this country! We are praying for them and praying that the Lord would guide our footsteps as we may be able to ADOPT one or two of these children who are DESPERATE for a family to love them, for food in their bellies, and a warm bed to sleep in.

We are willing to be a "pilot family" for the Democratic Republic of Congo if God keeps that door open for us, especially if it means that more children will be able to be rescued by loving, Godly families!

March 10, 2011

We are the sons and daughters

Just heard this song and saw this awesome video by Third Day for the first time & had to share it! It is so good and had me in tears. I hope you love it too!

To all who are trusting in Christ's atoning death on the cross ALONE for their salvation,
"We are the saints. We are the children.
We've been redeemed. We've been forgiven.
We are the son and daughters of our God!"

In awe of God's grace in my life!!!! I was ADOPTED by God when I was 20 years old, how about you??

March 9, 2011

Christmas morning

We received a Special Delivery in the mail today from our Adoption Agency!

Opening that box was like being a kid on Christmas morning!!! It was so exciting as I pulled out each book and looked at the titles, just imagining all that we are about to learn to better equip us to parent our children, and saw the sweet soft monkeys and adorable shirts. I am so excited as I sit here looking through it all! CCI calls it our "Adoption Education Toolbox," but it looks way more FUN than any tools my husband has!

Those 2 little monkeys caused a lump in my throat... as I look at them I think about the 2 children that we had planned to adopt, to rescue, to bring into our family, to teach what the unconditional love of a mother and father is. They are in the Lord's hands. Our Adoption details are in His sovereign control. We just want to be obedient and follow down the path of His plans for our family.

I'm so excited to start reading these books with my husband, preparing ourselves for what lies ahead.
Even now as we are uncertain about where God is leading, we are trying to be obedient to follow Him in faith, even if we can only see our next step and not the miles of road ahead. We know that the Lord cares for the orphan, the fatherless, and we know He is calling us to adopt. So we will continue to pray for wisdom and clarity, and we will GET TO WORK on our adoption reading! =)

So encouraged by God's heart for orphans throughout scripture! Here are just a few that I'm meditating on:

 “Do not take advantage of the widow or the fatherless.  If you do and they cry out to me, I will certainly hear their cry. My anger will be aroused, and I will kill you with the sword." -Exodus 22:22-24

"He defends the cause of the fatherless and the widow, and loves the foreigner residing among you, giving them food and clothing." -Deut. 10:18

"Do not deprive the foreigner or the fatherless of justice, or take the cloak of the widow as a pledge." - Deut. 24:17

"When you are harvesting in your field and you overlook a sheaf, do not go back to get it. Leave it for the foreigner, the fatherless and the widow, so that the LORD your God may bless you in all the work of your hands." - Deut. 24:19

"But you, God, see the trouble of the afflicted; you consider their grief and take it in hand.
The victims commit themselves to you; you are the helper of the fatherless." -Psalm 10:14

"Father of the fatherless and protector of widows is God in his holy habitation." -Psalm 68:5

"Defend the weak and the fatherless; uphold the cause of the poor and the oppressed." -Psalm 82:3


March 7, 2011

Ethiopia Cutting Adoptions by 90%

Well in the midst of our season of REJOICING with several friends who get to finally bring their children home from Ethiopia, we received some very sad news this weekend via this news article.

God's word instructs us to"Rejoice with those who rejoice, weep with those who weep." Romans 12:15

So now, we are rejoicing with Ryan and Lesli and Dave and Stacey and so many other families who passed the US Embassy and got their travel dates! We cannot wait to welcome their children home! (I'm super excited to meet them at the airport and rejoice with them and probably  get a little teary-eyed at seeing God's goodness in working out the details of their adoptions and seeing their precious faces for the first time!)
But we are also weeping.

We are weeping over the 90% cut in Ethiopian adoptions.
We are weeping for the 4.7 million orphans in Ethiopia right now just waiting and hoping for a family.We are weeping with our friends further along in the adoption process. The result of MOWA processing just 5 cases a day instead of the 50 cases per day they have been doing is that our friends, like Justin and Bonnie from our church, will be waiting much longer than anticipated to bring their children home. Basically, it will take MOWA 9 months to process the same number of cases they used to do in 1 month. So our friends are looking at major delays. I know their hearts are breaking as they look at the pictures of their children and yearn to have them HOME. So our hearts are broken for them and the approximately 1,000 families like them, who are caught in the middle of this.

This cut-back also causes us to weep for the orphans. They are saying that only about 500 children will be able to be adopted in a year, as opposed to the 2,500 that were rescued from Ethiopia last year by U.S. families. It saddens us that millions of legitimate orphans will be kept from loving families because of a couple of dishonest cases! We are all for a system of checks and balances, but like we've heard other adoptive families saying, let's PRAY that instead of cutting back to only 5 cases per day, they add adequate staff to be able to still process 50 cases per day thoroughly!!!!!

Obviously, this has major implications for our adoption plans as well. We had just approved our t-shirt design to be printed last Friday, but I called first thing this morning to tell them to put our order on hold while we pray! So here's where we need your help:

"Open your mouth for the mute, for the rights of all who are destitute.
Defend the rights of the poor and needy." -Proverbs 31: 8-9

Please join us in PRAYER!
1. PRAY that Ethiopia would remain open for Adoption for generations to come, so that millions of the 4.7 million orphans there would come to know the love of Christ through being adopted by loving, Christ-centered families!
2. PRAY for Bonnie & Justin and the thousands of other families like them, who have a referral and have seen the precious faces of their children, but have no idea when they will be able to bring them home! Pray for them to have patience, perserverance, and PEACE that transcends all understanding! Pray for them to TRUST in the Lord's plans for their family and WAIT on His timing.
3. PRAY with us that Bonnie & Justin would be able to bring their son and daughter home SOON, like nothing-short-of-a-miracle soon!!
4. PRAY for us, and all the other families like us, who are in the adoption process, gathering documents for our dossier, but don't even have a referral yet and have been hit with this news.  Our agency has informed us of the possibility of being able to adopt from a different African country. Please pray for Jon and I, that the Lord would give us wisdom to make a decision quickly about which direction He wants us to go with our adoption.

Thanks friends for walking this journey with us that the Lord has called us to. We really appreciate the encouragement and support that we've received from so many of you. We are so thankful that even as we WEEP, we are believers, and therefore do not weep as those who have no hope. For our hope is in Christ in every circumstance. We know that He is sovereign over all things.

"Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication, present your requests to God. And the peace of Christ, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds in Christ Jesus." -Phillipians 4: 6-7

March 1, 2011


We are REJOICING today!

 As we celebrate our first-born son turning ONE! What a wonderful year it has been! He is such a JOY!

We are REJOICING because we got news this morning that our friends, Ryan and Lesli, have PASSED the U.S. Embassy and will be traveling to pick up their son and bring him home this weekend or next!! Lesli's blog is one of the many adoption blogs I follow {}, but more than that they are good friends from our college days at UK and Campus Crusade for Christ! And the Lord surprised them with blessing #2, who is due sometime in May, so these next couple weeks were the LAST weeks that Lesli's doctors were going to let her travel because of her pregnancy!
So, when I got the news from Jon this morning I PRAISED THE LORD and cried tears of JOY for Ryan and Lesli! I mean, talk about God's MERCY and His perfect timing!! I am so relieved for her that she doesn't have to send her husband on a plane all by himself to bring their son home on an 18 hour plane ride! And I'm so thrilled for her to get to go back to her son's birth country one last time! And be part of the whole "Bringing Him Home" experience!!!!
Ahh... God is soo good to His children! He really does "work all things together to for good for those who love Him, for those He has called according to His purpose" (Romans 8:28)!!

Oh yes, there's more- we are also REJOICING with our friends Dave & Stacey from our church!! They also passed the U.S. Embassy and are going to Ethiopia to bring their son and daughter home!!!!!!!!!!!

Hearing all this good news from Ethiopia is so encouraging to me, especially in the midst of all the uncertainty over there right now. Thank you Lord, for sending me love & encouragement through the Godly people around me!!

And I was touched by the story and the photos of this adorable little guy. And I love this quote on one of the pictures, I've never seen it before, but will definitely be adding it to my prayer journal!

"I didn't give you the gift of life,
But in my heart I know,
The love I feel is deep and real,
As if it had been so.
For us to have each other
Is like a dream come true.
No, I didn't give you the gift of life,
Life gave me the gift of you."

Love it! Happy 1st Birthday Jonah bug!
 ~Bethany (Mommy)