overwhelmed

so grateful

Well, I have been in tears multiple times today.

God is SO good y’all!!! (p.s. you should know that I only ever say ‘y’all’ when writing, never in person…but sometimes, it just seems necessary when I write!) Let me tell you what has happened in just the past 24(ish) hours:

  • I have been getting emails and FB messages from friends (and friends-of-friends) with incredible, thought out, generous advice. Messages that took some serious time and effort to send to me.
  • A lady that I have never officially met from my neighborhood gave me some hand-me-downs.
  • The daughter of a great friend of mine gave me some of her hand-me-downs
  • My bff bought us the double stroller we registered for.
  • A friend gave me a hand-me-down crib just in case I needed one
  • and then a friend, who I haven’t seen in years, got us the 2 (yes, you read that right!…2!) cribs that we registered for.
  • another dear friend offered adorable boy sheets
  • and “our angel” (as I have referred to her before as) has continued donating to our adoption fund faithfully through all of the highs and lows for the last 2 years (and I still have never met her!)
  • all of this after last week when my sister-in-law filled our living room with boy hand-me-downs and we received gifts from two of our favorite couples!                                                                                                                          (note that I don’t mean “hand-me-downs” with any negative connotation because I’m ALL about them!)

WOW!!! Can you see why I am in tears?! The only word I can think of to describe the way I’m feeling is overwhelmed. God is so good and he is working through all of these people to take care of our family. We are so undeserving and so incredibly grateful.

I have said this before but this is teaching me to be a better giver. I want to live with hands wide open ready to give whenever Jesus whispers, go! I have a desire like never before to live generously without worry of holding onto what is “mine” because it’s ALL God’s! I have nothing without Him!

Our twins are His. I’m not sure why He chose us to raise them but I am humbled and honored at the weight of that responsibility.

So thank you friends! Thank you for your love, support, prayers and generosity! God is taking care of our every need!

 

Matthew 6:25-33

25 “Therefore I tell you, do not be anxious about your life, what you will eat or what you will drink, nor about your body, what you will put on. Is not life more than food, and the body more than clothing? 26 Look at the birds of the air: they neither sow nor reap nor gather into barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not of more value than they? 27 And which of you by being anxious can add a single hour to his span of life?[a 28 And why are you anxious about clothing? Consider the lilies of the field, how they grow: they neither toil nor spin, 29 yet I tell you, even Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of these. 30 But if God so clothes the grass of the field, which today is alive and tomorrow is thrown into the oven, will he not much more clothe you, O you of little faith? 31 Therefore do not be anxious, saying, ‘What shall we eat?’ or ‘What shall we drink?’ or ‘What shall we wear?’ 32 For the Gentiles seek after all these things, and your heavenly Father knows that you need them all. 33 But seek first the kingdom of God and his righteousness, and all these things will be added to you.

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defining “simple living”

For the past 2 years, the Lord has been whispering the word “simplify” in my ear, so much that I can’t ignore it. We de-cluttered, sold things, gave other things away, and then we went to Uganda. For 5 months, we lived off of the 14 items of clothing that we took with us, ate the same thing every week, and had few electronics, and we found it to be so freeing. Before we came home, we talked a lot about how we would want life to look back in the U.S. We knew that we wanted to live our day to day lives even more simply than before and talked about specific ways that we would do that.

I dreamed of an Anthropologie inspired home with white walls and neutral tones. Baskets, reclaimed wood, and live plants would take care of the décor in our little home and we would have space and room to breathe because there would be no clutter. Anything that would need to be added to our home would be either homemade or purchased second-hand.

To me, this picture that I had sketched in my head was a breath of fresh air.

But then, we moved into our little red house and started unpacking. It was like Christmas in June seeing all of our belongings that had been waiting for us for 6 months in storage while we were out of the country. Here is the thing that I quickly realized as I looked through everything we own… I like color! I love lime green, teal and mustard yellow. I’m drawn to the color mint and a deep magenta makes my heart smile. I love color.

So I had a choice. Get rid of all of our current, colorful textiles and décor in order to fit this natural motif that I had been dreaming of, or, just roll with what I’ve got! And friends, we are rolling! Now don’t get me wrong, I still am so inspired by people’s homes that are raw and muted but ours is just not turning out that way.

photo

My new path to simplicity is filled with much more grace and isn’t as rigid as where I was before. I’m learning. I’m learning that the simplicity that the Lord is calling me to isn’t defined by lack of color; in fact, He is the one who created me to love these bright colors! The simple life that He is leading me toward is more of a compilation of small, seemingly insignificant, daily decisions.

  • It is the decision to be content with what I have instead of buying new.
  • It is the laying the to-do list aside when there is an opportunity to connect with a friend.
  • It is the choice to get rid of things that are taking up space but aren’t being used.
  • It is trusting that He is going to take care of me, even if I don’t have 3 jobs!
  • It is taking a moment to breathe and process before responding.
  • It is letting things go.
  • It is living in gratitude.
  • It is living below my means.
  • It is taking a day of rest.
  • It is not grabbing everything that I love from a store.
  • It is inviting people into my home, no matter if it’s cleaned up or a mess.
  • It is taking the time to stop what I’m doing and giving Caleb long, drawn out hugs.
  • It is cleaning out my closet (someday!).
  • It is making time with Jesus my first priority every morning.
  • It is eating real, unprocessed food.
  • It is being ok with just enough, and not an abundance.
  • It is (much) less time on social media.
  • It is living on less to have more time.
  • It is relaxing at home instead of always needing to be entertained.
  • It is eating to live, not living to eat.
  • It is dropping perfection and accepting the real me.
  • It is forgiving.
  • It is knowing my limits and not trying to be superwoman.
  • It is choosing joy.

This is my list that has unfolded in front of me. It may be different for everyone, I’m not sure, but I’m learning more each day as the Lord reveals it to me. I fail….a lot, but there is grace…..grace and COLOR!

The post I’ve been waiting for over 2 years to write…

(written Sunday, August 2, 2015)

We’re having twins!!!!!! November 7th. (Yes, as in, 3 very short months from now!)

Announcement

I will start from the beginning….

About a month ago, I got a Facebook message from a good friend from my past. It said “Sarah, a friend of mine is having twins in November and is looking for a couple to adopt them. Are you interested?” TWINS!!! We were immediately so excited but also a little guarded at first; trying not to get too excited before anything actually happened. I wrote back and we set up a time to meet the birth mom.

Today was the day.

You should have seen me trying to pick out what I would wear for our meeting! (‘Is this mom-ish? Does this look like I’m ready for babies? Will this show her part of my personality? I can’t wear that, it has spaghetti straps!’) And then, I took a deep breath and realized that it’s not about my outfit or the fact that my house is still under construction and in need of some serious TLC. It’s about showing her Jesus. This isn’t actually about me. It can’t be about me because I will fail every time! It’s about Him and his plan for our family, this mama, and these babies that she is carrying.

We sat in church this morning before we had our meeting and our church sang the song “Beautiful Things” and then we watched people get baptized and I couldn’t help but think of and cry over these babies. Right then I knew that whether we got to raise these babies or not, that God would take all of the pain from their past and make beautiful things out of them and their lives. He is going to do something so special with these two.

The birth mom (I’m going to protect her name for now) and our mutual friend, Jill came over at 11am and it was like meeting with friends over coffee! We got to know each other. We talked about our lives, her three other kids, parenting, our stories, the story of how Caleb and I started dating, pregnancy, motherhood, real life. After about three hours of tears, laughs and conversation in-between, the birth mom said something like “I have been looking for a couple that I am comfortable with and that I connect with as a family to raise these babies. I like you guys and your personalities and I would love for you to be their parents.”

I needed immediate confirmation that what I thought I was hearing was actually what I was hearing so I jumped in and said “Are you saying yes to us right now?!” and she smiled and said “Yes!”!

I immediately jumped up, and held onto this sweet mama who CHOSE US! We cried together and just sat in that moment for a while.

Caleb cried, I cried (and screamed….because that’s what I do when I am excited!) and I think she got to know us even more in that moment.

Through our excitement, I thought about her and her heart that is struggling and in pain and over and over again I kept telling her how sorry I was that this is so tough for her. I can’t imagine.

I can’t imagine what she is going through.

She is a mom to three boys. She loves being a mom. She doesn’t want to do this but out of love for these babies, she IS doing this, not out of irresponsibility, but out of REsponsibilty to do what is best for them because the situation that she is currently in, isn’t best. She is so brave.

So, we are having twins, a boy and a girl, scheduled for a C-section on November 7th.

WOW!…..Here we go!!

Announcement 3