"I prayed for this child and the LORD has granted me what I asked of Him" 1Samuel 1:27

Wednesday, July 16, 2014

TRAVEL APPROVAL!!


 HEY LOOK GUYS! THIS IS MY NEW FAMILY!

And when I get home, I'm gonna tell everybody how much you guys want a family too.
I promise.  I will never forget you.


Thank you Jesus.   
The time has finally come, 
and I'm going home! My mama and her good friend will
pick me up on August 18th. Please pray that they don't get lost
and end up somewhere else!! Hurry mama, I've been waiting for my family a long time!
Josiah Zhensi Decker


As I type these words, and look at this precious boy and his friends, I have to admit......
it's somewhat bittersweet for me. Ok, it's ALOT bittersweet for me.  I can hardly wait to touch this little guys face and tell him he is loved and how his big crazy family is waiting for him and what fun we are going to have.  But........


I also know that the ones sitting beside him, and the ones in the next room and down the hall, on the floors above him and below him........thousands, millions, all over the world.......have no one.

Can we rescue them all??? 

No.   But then WE didn't rescue this one.

WE are the rescued people!

We love because WE were FIRST LOVED!

It's so simple.  It really is.  Yet we always make it so difficult.



My God says this IS our problem.  It's not a "by choice" thing.

Adopting these special kiddos is where God led us.

Where is He leading you?? 

What are YOU doing for THE LEAST, THE LAST, AND THE LOST??

"Then the righteous will answer him, saying, Lord, when did we see you hungry and feed you, or thirsty and give you drink? And when did we see you a stranger and welcome you, or naked and clothe you?  And when did we see you sick or in prison and visit you?  And the King will answer them, "Truly, I say to you, as you did to one of the least of these my brothers, you did it to me."  Matthew 25:37-40

Thanks so much to those of you who have covered us in prayer during these last months. Our "Journey to Josiah" has once again proven to be ALL and ONLY GOD!!  Wow.
Please continue to pray for us and our boys at home, and also Josiah, as his little world is fixing to be turned upside down, for the better yes, but still, upside down.  May you all be blessed with love that can only come from the One above. Thanks again!

OK JOSIAH.....LUCY(mama) and ETHEL(jayne) ARE COMING!!!!
BATTEN DOWN THE HATCH!!!












Thursday, May 15, 2014

Live or ALIVE!



Alot has been going on in our lives these past few weeks. And this momma has not handled it all gracefully either!  As a matter of fact, I have been totally knocked off my feet!  But God is faithful and He sends angels to encamp around those who love and honor Him.  For the past few weeks these angels have carried me and interceded for me when I couldn't even seem to muster a word.  Thank you so much to those of you who have prayed and carried me through these past weeks.  And for those that don't know, well that story is in the making!  Just know that God is still God and He is writing my story and I am forever grateful for the path He has set me on.  Now on to the reason for this post!

Yesterday was Mother's Day(well it was when I wrote this!), and my intentions were for Rylie and I to go to a mom's breakfast at church before church started but, my morning had alittle turn of "emotions" and I decided to just stay home and worship from here while the rest of the family went on to our church service, knowing that I could catch it live online.

Now, let me back up for just a minute.  Because of the storm we have found ourselves in, I have been so concerned about our adoption of Josiah. How was this going to effect it?? What if they say no??? What if ??????????? You get the picture, right??  Well, the Lord and I have been havin some real serious conversations about this and just like always, He continues to show me that only through faith in Him are we going to make it through ANY trials that come our way.  Nothing is too big for God.  Nothing surprises God.  I am to handle this situation just like I handle ALL situations that come our way. And that's through Him and with Him.  And I know this.  "BUT GOD..........I REALLY need a "visual" sign. Maybe You could do that one more time for me??  I trust you Lord, I do, but I'm really scared. More than anything, I want YOUR will to be done here.  I never wanted or want any of this to be about my will."   During this conversation with Him I was holding a picture of Josiah that was taken at his orphanage probably about a year and a half ago and then I randomly stuck his picture back in my bible.

Now back to yesterday, Sunday, Mother's Day.  Just like it was suppose to our church service came on live at 11:00 with praise and worship music having already started and soon to be followed with Shannon's sermon.  At some point right before the music team finished I got up to go do something and when I came back Shannon had already started his sermon.  Now I thought it was kinda funny that he wasn't preaching a "Mother's Message" but what do I know!! Besides, I had missed the first part of the sermon so maybe he already said what he was gonna say about mothers day and had just gone on with the series that we have been on for a few weeks.(oh, and I also missed last week)  Never thought another thing about.  Got my bible and began following along. Like alot of times, it was as if he (our pastor) was talking directly to me or at me.  As he began to wrap things up, he had one more passage to discuss and that's when it happened...........the very last scripture he referred to was in 1 John Chapter 4.  I began to flip over to it and when I got there............there he was, my picture of Josiah.  But more than that.......There.HE.was.  And at the top of the page at some time or another I had written "GOD IS LOVE." And verses were underlined, one of them saying, "We love because he first loved us." Remember I said God and I had been having alot of conversations about our little guy??    I asked specifically for a visual sign and the Lord provided me with what I needed to keep us moving forward with His plan for us.  And the underlined verse went right with it! We love BECAUSE HE FIRST LOVED US!  THAT is the reason we go. That's the reason for Cole being here.  That is the reason we went to Russia for Gabe. That is the reason we are going to China for Josiah. I can give you more, yes, but they all go back to God's love for us.  Thank you Lord Jesus for continuing to show me. Use me Lord to bring love to others, especially the unloved and unwanted in this fallen world we live.

NOW THE BEST PART OF THE STORY!!!!!!

I had just dried up my "thankful tears" when Rick and the kids got home from church. Rylie came in and handed me a beautiful rose and said "Guess what scripture the sermon was over today? 1 Samuel blah blah blah *******   "WHAT???????????"  I said???? Huh??? No, the sermon was over spiritual gifts!!Right????  "No, it was all about mommas and Mother's day," Rylie said, "thought you were going to listen to it?"  "I did listen," I said, "only I didn't hear the same one ya'll did!"  BUT, I heard the one God had for me.

And then the tears began to fall again.(just as they are as I write this. :)  )  Thankful, happy, in awe of, tears.  In awe of a Savior who is in EVERY DETAIL of the stories He is directing us to live out and tell.

Guess I didn't have a "live" service after all!!!  But let me assure you of this.......I serve an ALIVE Lord and Savior.  I don't have a clue how my story will end.  All I know is, it will end!  But that END will just be the beginning for those who believe and stand firm on that believeth.

So, stayed tuned for, in the words of Cole Lawrence.....THE REST OF THE STORY soon to come!
May you and yours be blessed.

  "Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you." Matthew 7:7

Friday, March 28, 2014

MOVING ALONG!


WOO HOO!!!

We are DTC!!
(In the adoption world that is Dossier to China!)






First picture we saw of  "Bobby" on Reece's Rainbow.


I feel like we are finally moving along again!  But even with this "moving along", we still have some more milestones to meet, like LOA, I800, NVC letter, Article 5, and then TA(travel approval!! yay!)


What all this means????


It means there's still too much waiting before we can put our arms around this little guy and shower him with the love he deserves.


Please pray with us that all the red tape will get processed quickly and we can go get this precious treasure soon.


As these two monkeys are anxiously waiting for their new little brother!





And so are we!   :)


Oh! and if you feel YOU have room at your table for one more.....please go to Reece's Rainbow where you will find MANY TREASURES just waiting for a chance to fill your life with new meaning and blessings every day. May you be blessed AND BURDENED by the faces and cries of these precious kiddos. They are soooooo very worth it.

Blessings to you and yours. 



Tuesday, March 4, 2014

THE Voice


"When he has brought out all his own, he goes on ahead of them, and his sheep follow him because they know his voice." John 10:4


(My special boys from Lithuania and Russia)


One year ago, on that first March morning, I turned the page and the scripture above is what I read.
And this is what I wrote down on that page.

 "Coincidence????? No. I believe it's God telling me. 
I know His voice.......FOLLOW.   2013"

For months I had been fighting a silent battle. Not with who you think though.

 It wasn't God, but it was with those who also had my heart.

Matthew 10:34 -39 had become very personal. I finally knew and understood this verse like never before. 

34"Do not think that I have come to bring peace to the earth.  I have not come to bring peace, but a sword.(the word sword is used here as a metaphor for separation)
35 For I have come to set a man against his father, and a daughter against her mother, and a daughter-in-law against her mother-in-law.  36 And a person's enemies will be those of his own house-hold.  37 Whoever loves father or mother more than me is not worthy of me, and whoever loves son or daughter more than me is not worthy of me.  38 And whoever does not take his cross and follow me is not worthy of me.  39 Whoever finds his life will lose it, and whoever loses his life for my sake will find it."

Simply put, Jesus doesn't want to be second or third in our lives.  He wants to be FIRST.
   UNO.   零.   Один.   Vienas.

NUMBER ONE!!!

And sometimes that means not seeing eye to eye with those we love the most.

Today, March the 3rd, I sat down and opened my devotional and saw the words, "WELL, HERE IT IS AGAIN! I HEAR YOU LORD!!! (written by me a year ago.)

I was referring to the what was said in my reading material that day. And I quote, "My sheep know My voice and follow Me wherever I lead."

Don't you just love His persistance.  BUT.........

IF WE DON'T PUT FORTH THE EFFORT TO HAVE A RELATIONSHIP WITH HIM, WE MAY VERY WELL MISS HIS VOICE.

I don't want to miss His voice. 

Because if I had of missed it, I would of missed the opportunity to be mom to the two special boys at the beginning of this post.

And, I would of missed this little guy.



Following Jesus is sometimes tough.  Sometimes it's a lonely road.  But all the time,

IT IS WORTH IT. 

 And by the way. You never know what your obedience to God will do for others. Even when you fear losing some of the ones you love most.  God is much bigger and has a plan for EVERYONE.  And His timing is always perfect. (even when we think otherwise!)

I want to hear His voice.











Monday, February 24, 2014

THEY MATTERED


I know people continue to wonder "why" at our age, why with already 8 kids, why can't you just be content with what you have.  Well, I wonder sometimes too.  And then God shows me over and over again......WHY we must continue this journey that He has put before us. I could give you many reasons. But today I will only give you two!

1. I sat down this morning to have a few quite moments with the Lord and this is the first scripture I was directed to.  "For everyone to whom much is given, from him much will be required." Luke 12:48
Yep, we are blessed and we want to give back to the Lord. We know we are nothing without Him. He showed us the need and we said yes.(after lots of squirming and excuses!) With God, ALL things are possible.

2. This was in my email this morning from another adoptive mom. Just another family, the Wilks, much like us. It's another reason WHY we go, again. Here is what this mom wrote and it's so true. I just had to share.


Today an Orphan Died in China

This is a hard post for me to write, but its a post that must be written. 

Today an orphan died in China.
He was a beautiful, precious little boy who had his whole life ahead of him.  He was living with a foster family.  He was receiving monthly transfusions thanks to the amazing group of thal moms I call friends here in the states.  His paperwork was being prepared for adoption.  Unfortunately, any illness can have a significant effect on the severity of his thalassemia.  When an illness that caused diarrhea swept through the orphanage the last week, it was too much for his little body to handle. He passed from this life into the arms of Jesus.

My heart is heavy again today.  I will never be able to hear of an orphan dying without being overcome by sadness.  This isn't the first thal child who has died...

This sweet girl mattered too.  She deserved a family.  She deserved to get the best doctors coming to her aid.  But she lost her fight and passed into the arms of Jesus too.

I've often been asked "Why not adopt from foster care?"  I've been told that there are so many kids here in the US and we should "take care of our own" before we help the world.  I'm not going to argue these questions or points at all. 

I simply believe that children matter.  ALL children matter.  ALL children deserve to have the love of a family.  Someone to kiss their boo boos.  Someone to hug them and tell them they can do anything.  ALL children deserve to have food on the table.  ALL children should have the opportunity to get an education.  ALL children deserve to get the medical care they need to get better.

Today an orphan died in Yulin, Guangxi, China. 
And so did others... In China.  In Russia.  In Ukraine.  In Ethiopia.  In India.  In Uganda.  In Honduras.  In so many orphanages around the world these precious children, who have already experienced unimaginable loss, continue the fight of their lives.

An estimated 143 million orphans can be found in countries worldwide. 

I believe that all of us have a responsibility to these children.  God calls ALL of us to help. 

Pray for ONE.  If you need a picture, a story, and a name.  I know plenty of them.  Make one child your priority to pray for every day while they wait for a forever family to take over those prayers.

Sponsor ONE.  Amazing agencies are doing amazing work in countries worldwide.  They are making a difference everyday in the lives of children throughout the world.  I would be happy to point you in the direction of some that I know.

Foster ONE.  If you are one of those who has a heart for America's children, I encourage you to reach out to your local social services and find out what it takes to become a foster parent.

Support ONE.  At this moment, I know of at least twenty families who felt God's call to adopt a child, even though they didn't have enough in their bank accounts to cover an adoption, and took that step out to help care for ONE.  I'd be happy to show you families that you could support.

Adopt ONE.  If you think you might be willing to bring a precious orphan into their forever, please email me. MEPSCOASTIE@YAHOO.COM.  I will be happy to lead you to the agency and program that's right for you.

I pray that this message reaches you all.  I pray that a precious little boy's death will be the catalyst for something good to happen.  Today an orphan died in China, but I pray with all my heart that others won't have to.
____________________________________________________________________________

And so we go. Only 2 "whys" of the many I could give you.  But honestly........only ONE is needed.......

We go, because HE said to.   We have to put our love "in action" or it isn't love. May you be blessed.
 

Thursday, February 6, 2014

MAMAW'S LEGACY



Our Mamaw finally met her Lord and Savior face to face on Jan. 27.
She would say, "It's been a long time comin!!"


For 93 years she breathed in and she breathed out.......LIFE.


Marrying at the young age of 14, she and my Papaw, age 16, began building a life together based on FAITH in the Lord and their LOVE for Him and each other.

Together they lived this, and they became an example for all of  us.  After papaw's passing, 21 yrs ago, our Mamaw continued this legacy up until her final days. Family was so important to her. And as we all gathered around her as she was leaving us, it became even more evident to me how deeply their faith and love had embedded itself in me.

FAITH in the Lord, and LOVE for each other.

Many times Mamaw asked me why I thought the Lord would leave her here for so long when she was so ready to leave her earthly body.

And many times I told her, "maybe it's because "I" still need you!"  But honestly, closer to the truth would be this....."WE" still needed her. We still needed her wisdom, her lessons in living, her comfort when hurting, her strength for the path ahead, her endless prayers.  We still needed and wanted very much.........HER PRESENCE.

Thanking God today and always for my mamaw and all the things she taught me about FAITH in the Lord and LOVE for each other.

What a gift.  Love you mamaw.



Monday, January 6, 2014

HAPPY NEW YEAR!! and UPDATE!

I really find it hard to believe that it's already 2014! And I can't believe its been so long since I posted anything!! So, let me catch you up to date alittle.

My last post announced that we were adopting again. That is still happening! But not as fast as I wish.
With international adoption it's always hurry up, wait wait wait, hurry up, etc. We are in that first wait wait wait period. That's one of the hardest parts of adopting! But, we did find out some answers about our little guy that we had been wondering. First of all he is well and doing as good as can be expected. No flu or colds they said. We are thankful he has not had a major illness. They also tell us he is a very happy and strong child. He does not talk but can understand when adults tell him to do something. They told us we can use body language to communicate with him! We'll be working on that! He is a good sleeper (thank goodness because Gabe was not, is not, and thinking he will never be!) but likes to wake up on his own.  Maybe he and Cole will share a room! Anyway, I was so happy to get some info on him even if it was very little. The best part though were the pictures. He has changed some from the first photo we saw of him, but still just as precious in our eyes. Oh how I want to scoop him up and love him. 



And because some have asked me, yes, he does have that extra special chromosome! We can hardly wait to have this little one as part of our family. Please pray that he will remain healthy and feel loved until we can bring him home.

Now for the rest of the bunch.

Mr. Gabe

We had a wonderful Christmas! Too much stress and worry over things that shouldn't matter(gifts), and for that I'm always ashamed. But it was wonderful to have our family all together under one roof. With the kids spread out so far, and grandbabies here and on the way, I expect that Christmas morning is going to get more hectic for all to gather here at that time. But that is only to be expected with a family as large as ours. I'm just thankful that we have been able to do it this long, and although I was very worn out when it was all over, I really do cherish the time with all our kids and wouldn't have wanted them to be anywhere but here. I love my family.

Now here are a few pictures of our big, crazy bunch!

Family

Uncle Joey! 


Mimi, Graham and his crazy mother in the background!

My mom and daughter-in-law Erica


My boys!

Rylie, Gabe and me

My funny Casey!

Gabe and his Papa


Rylie and Garrett

Crazy boys!

 
All the kids and proud momma and papa.    :)

WISHING YOU AND YOURS A VERY HAPPY AND BLESSED 2014.