Tuesday, April 21, 2015

Our Kids' Adoption Nicknames (Tuesday Talk #16)


When we were first expecting through adoption, we decided to come up with a nickname for our baby while we waited, just like what most pregnant women do.  Little did we know the impact each of our children's nicknames would have on us and their adoption stories.   Our God is an amazing God!

But, first, here are each of their nicknames and why we chose them:


Baby Moses is the nickname we chose for our first adoption.  Moses was adopted, and it was a transracial adoption too, just like what we were doing.  In this Bible story, you could see the heartache, joy, and love in adoption (for all the parties involved), which we knew we would encounter in our journey.  It was the perfect nickname for our little one, who turned out to be our daughter J.


Our World Adoption Day picture...with Baby Moses  :)



Baby John was our nickname for our baby the second time around.  This comes from an exchange Jesus has with His Mother Mary and His disciple John during the Crucifixion:  "When Jesus saw his mother and the disciple there whom he loved, he said to his mother, 'Woman, behold, your son.'  Then he said the disciple, "Behold, your mother.'" John 19:26-27   Another beautiful story of  "adoption" in the Bible, and another perfect nickname for our little one who became our son B.



"For this child I prayed." 1 Samuel 1:27


Baby Samuel was the nickname we chose during our third adoption.  "For this child I prayed." 1 Samuel 1:27  Although it's not a story about adoption, it is about a child long waited and prayed for, just like this little one was to us.  Our Baby Samuel became our son L (only 1 short month ago!).


All of these nicknames are so dear to our hearts because they are the names that remind us of each individual adoption journey to bring J, B, and L into our family.  And also because with every single one of their adoptions, we received special "miracles" with each name.

Each of these "miracles" gave us strength during the rocky times surrounding their adoptions because they helped us to see God's Hand in each of our journeys to bring them home.  The miracles gave us peace in knowing that He was in control.  

Each child's miracle story is truly amazing, and they blow me away every time I think about them.  I'm looking forward to sharing all 3 of our adoption miracle stories with you soon! 

But in the meantime, I'd love to know - what did you nickname your little one while you were waiting for them to arrive in your family?  Do you have a special meaning behind the name?  Please share!


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Tuesday, April 7, 2015

Yellowstone: God's Beauty in Nature

The Lower Falls in the Grand Canyon of Yellowstone National Park

My husband and I love vacations focused on nature and hiking, so our favorite places to visit are State and National Parks.  Every Park is so unique and beautiful!

I especially love this type of trip because nature really speaks to me of the beauty of God's creation and how His Hand is in every minute detail.

Every little petal on a flower, stone on the mountainside, blade of grass on the plain, or ripple in the water was thought out by Him and put in a specific place for a specific purpose.  Each little thing is it's own masterpiece, and then, when you put them all together, it's breathtaking.


Sunrise on Yellowstone Lake

It really makes me see how each person as an individual is called by God for a specific purpose.  I am His masterpiece.  Me!  And so are my friends, my husband, my kids, the cashier at Target, my patients at the office...every single person!

We all have a unique calling from God, and when all of us come together striving to live out our individual callings (even with our faults and failings!), what an amazing sight that is!

I pray that I/you may live out God's Plan for me/you!


A herd of bison grazing at Yellowstone National Park


And it might sound crazy (so please don't snicker!), but I really do think about all of this when we're out in nature, whether it's hiking in the mountains of a National Park or just playing under the trees in our backyard.   

There is just something about being in nature that really makes God's awesomeness stand out to me! 


Jim and I waiting for Old Faithful to erupt (2009)


So of all of the places we have been able to visit, the vacation spots that struck us the most of God's beauty in nature were the Grand Tetons and Yellowstone National Parks:


Grand Tetons

Sunrise on Yellowstone Lake with geysers erupting at the water's edge

Geyser erupting in the Biscuit Basin


Morning Glory Pool


One of the numerous colorful hot springs

Another colorful hot spring
 
Mammoth Hot Springs

Emerald Pool

The Lower Falls of the Grand Canyon of Yellowstone National Park

Old Faithful Geyser


After seeing these pictures, you totally want to go to Yellowstone now, right?  I know we sure want to go again!  It is the most incredible and beautiful place we've ever been.

So what is your fave vacation spot?  What do you love most about it?  I'm looking forward to hearing about your fave places!  (I'll have to add them to our must-visit list!)


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Friday, April 3, 2015

Good Friday Reflections


“So they took Jesus, and he went out, bearing his own cross, to the place called the place of a skull, which is called in Hebrew Golgotha. There they crucified him, and with him two others, one on either side, and Jesus between them.” John 19: 16-18 




Today as you reflect on the Passion of our Lord, I wanted to share with you two reflections on Good Friday - mine from last year and Blessed Is She's from this year.  Here are some excerpts:


Jesus Has Ouchies:

"It really struck me the first time J [kissed what she calls Jesus's "ouchies" on the Crucifix]…and it still does every time.  She expresses both sadness and happiness when she sees the Cross.  What all does she understand?  I don’t know.  She’s too young to truly know what we're talking about, but what shines forth from her is that child-like faith and love.  

So today on this Good Friday, we can take a lesson from this innocent faith:  Sorrow and love.

We should be sorrowful that our sins are what put Jesus on the Cross.  Every sin we have and ever will commit helped nail Him to the Cross.  But at the same time, we should be joyful that God gave us His Son out of love for us.Continue reading...
 



The Passion of the Lord by Blessed Is She:

"Jesus, as You hung there, bleeding out and breathing Your last, You had us in mind. And not some amorphous mass of humanity, but each one of us, individually sufficient to merit the sacrifice. How?

This love is wild. Beyond all reason. And yet it is the very essence of reason, that You alone would be capable of righting it, of righting us."  Continue reading...




Today is a sorrowful day.  The day Jesus died on the Cross for me, you, all of us.  But it is also Good.  Out of a pure, sacrificial love, He suffered and died on the Cross to redeem us from our sins.  Praise be to God.

May you and your family have a very blessed Easter weekend!



               


*All images from Blessed Is She

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