today i sent out our first leah email. during our lydia journey we had several hundred people who followed our email updates and prayed for us. beings that the majority of those folks are not of the blogging generation, i sent my last post out on the email chain. announcing the insanity.

as the news went 'public' (as if a blog and facebook are not enough) i could feel the tension. satan. God. battle. who was going to win today? i spent the majority of the afternoon with a pit in my stomach. what are we doing? how are we going to pay for this? are we digging ourselves into a hole we will never get out of? is this the stupidest thing on the planet? are we maxxed out with kids? am i going to look at leah and wonder if we have made the wrong decision? what does this decision look like long term? is this a selfish decision? or is it God? are we really doing what is right? how does the burden of paying for this thing affect our everyday life? could we just rewind a minute and go over what in the world brought us here? i am sick.

literally, a pit in my stomach. thankfully, eric wasn't here so i could be in my silent world, mulling it all over. tigger and spiderman were not privy to the whirling of emotions going on inside my brain - buzz lightyear had their rapt attention (don't let anyone ever tell you that a good movie isn't a great babysitter). it is so big. it seems so much bigger this time.

i indulged the kids in a ridiculous snack - two waffles with chocolate chips and whip cream in between (that would be the first sign that i am losing my mind) - and headed to karate. full of pit-ness. ugh. i hate this part of figuring out what God wants. could we have some writing on the wall please? and by the way, we just ANNOUNCED it. why the fog now?

"no writing," He spoke, "but how about some music."

and cutting through the fog (and raucous noise of 4 kids in one van) came these lyrics...

strength will rise as we wait upon the Lord

Our God, You reign forever
Our hope, our Strong Deliverer
You are the everlasting God
The everlasting God
You do not faint
You won't grow weary

You're the defender of the weak
You comfort those in need
You lift us up on wings like eagles
okay. message received. wait upon the Lord. am i going to know today, or this week, or anytime soon how we are going to pay for this thing? wait. am i going to know what special need we are going to be dealing with? wait. am i going to know how our other kids will handle a new sibling? wait. am i going to know how i will manage 5 children? wait. am i going to know what life is going to be like with 5 teenagers? wait.

He reigns forever.

He does not faint.

He does not grow weary.

Wait upon the Lord.

He will defend me.

He will comfort me.

He will lift me up.

Wait up on the Lord.

wait. got it.

it's so hard. the unknowns can consume me. and satan is fighting to have them victorious over me. i can feel it. there is a spiritual battle going on in my heart and mind.

the pit is still there. i wish a great reminder from the Lord could remove all of it but i would be lying if i said that it had. probably part of that is because we just heard bad news from our dear babysitter who is fighting cancer. a reminder that life is not always easy and doesn't always go as planned. a reminder that just because we are following God's leading does not mean it is going to be a road paved with flowers and mint chocolate chip ice cream (now that would have been a good addition to my insane snack idea). enter the pit zone. what is this all going to look like?




I have started and restarted this a dozen times. I’m not sure why it has been so difficult to figure out what I want to say. Maybe because I find myself in a place that is a bit uncomfortable and I’m not real sure what the reaction is going to be. Actually, I am sure. Seventy-five percent of you will think that we are crazy, with about half of you letting us know and the other half keeping it to yourself. I’m not sure which is worse – having to try and explain your seeming unwise choices or knowing that crazy is the silent assumption and having no opportunity to argue otherwise. Either way, it is an uncomfortable situation, one for which I am not altogether ready to embrace.

But here we are.

God never promises to make sense and certainly does not always call us to do what is wise in the eyes of the world. I know that, but it is a scary place. a place I really rather watch other people be in.

After a year of thought and prayer, and countless conversations, we have begun the adoption process to bring home another sweet princess from China. Deep in our souls we are filled with unspeakable joy that we get to love another child. And the miracle of adoption is one that we can’t wait to experience again. However…we are humbly terrified.

While there are several terrifying aspects of adopting our 5th child, primary in our focus right now is the financial aspect of adoption. Because of course, that's what comes first - like in a month! From start to finish, the cost to bring home Leah will be close to $30,000. The first time around that seemed like a whole lot of money, but it was softened by the fact that we had a savings account to draw on for a significant portion of the cost. This time, that savings account is gone – having been spent on Lydia’s adoption - and we are staring at a huge expenditure and we have no idea where the money is going to come from. Some would call it unwise. And before God broke our hearts for the orphans and called us into the world of adoption, I would probably have been one of those people (actually, I’m sure I would have been).

I understand that to many, it seems completely ridiculous – for the financial aspect as well as many other reasons (with five little kids we are almost ready for our own TV show!) Which is why this is such an uncomfortable place for me. I don’t enjoy being the freak that is doing something “God told me to” – how many times have we heard that phrase attached to the insane? But…well…you see, that’s pretty much what we’re saying. God’s calling, and we’re obeying. We’re excited, we’re scared, we’re super thrilled, we’re super terrified.

We know that we will need the prayers of our friends as well as your encouragement - we can’t walk this road alone. We also know that we are going to witness a God-sized miracle all wrapped up in a little bitty China girl named Leah and we don’t want to keep that miracle to ourselves! There is no doubt in our minds that He is going to prove Himself faithful. And in case we need a reminder (which I will, tomorrow, and the next day and pretty much for the next 18 years), there is an adorable little Chinese sweetheart who sleeps in my house, calls me Mommy, and is every bit a miracle straight from heaven.