When I last wrote about my dream I had questions. While I received an answer back on the question I’d asked I feel as though I was left with more questions and more struggle. I’ve been wrestling through this passion God’s given me and how He wants me to put it into practice.
I believe this weekend my question(s) changed though. For the last month I’ve been asking what am I supposed to do with this. Looking back I see that in some elements this is me seeking how to do it in my own power [hint: this never really goes well].
I feel that it’s time to share that passion that I feel God is fueling to be my dream.
About a year ago God heavily placed orphan care on our hearts. It’s something that has grown in intensity. We read all we can, we follow people who are doing adoption & orphan care advocacy. Our hearts break and tear at that stats we hear. We believe God has called us to do something.
For me (and the both of us) these stats are overwhelming. I wonder how I can make any difference to such a huge problem. Especially when I know I we’re supposed to do something, knowing that if doing something only touches one life it still makes a world of difference.
I feel that God wants to lead me into something with adoption & orphan care advocacy. It is very general and broad and I’m still left with lots of questions as to how [especially since i have no sense of entrepreneurialism] .
Saturday Shawn and I sat over chips & salsa and a shared Mexican mini-appetizer plate. We discussed what we’d heard so far from the speakers at !C//Orphan. We discussed the overwhelmingness of the emergency that is set before us. And he brought up new ways we should be asking our questions. From “What am I supposed to do?” to “Lord, what would you have me do?” They are the same question but one as I said earlier puts the weight on me, while the other Jesus power is behind it.
So once again I ask for your prayers as we both seek God’s guidance. Pray that fear would have no part in our seeking. Pray that we would have open hearts to where God leads. One thing I plan to do over the next several weeks is to contact people who are doing adoption & orphan care advocacy and see how I can get involved.
This weekend there is a gathering of like minded individuals meeting with The !dea Camp about ending the orphan crisis.
Adoption and orphan care is something that God has placed very heavily on my heart. He’s brought a number of people into my life that are in the process of adopting (Elora & Russ [adoption site] & Erin & Chris).
One thing that God is teaching me over and over is that He adopted me. He brought me from the dregs of life into the inheritance of a King. Through His grace and compassion for us He adopted us.
His grace overflowed for us. He adopted us and has sent the Holy Spirit to serve as a form of orphan care as we walk the road of sanctification until we reach the day of inheritance.
Fridays are my worst day to blog. In other words I rarely have a post on Fridays. In order to resolve that I’m planning to have a reoccurring topic on Fridays called Elements of Grace. In this my hope is to post more often on Fridays and focus my heart and mind more on my One Word.
I’ve decided that by deciding to participate in One Word 2011 I’ve opened my life up to the Holy Spirit to come in and rearrange this life I’ve so magnificently laid out. Convictions happen more frequently. I’m stopping to think before thinking, speaking, etc. I find myself more grieved over sin that is both subtlety and blatantly not acts of grace [in addition to other sin].
This wasn’t something I expected. I believe my expectations were that I would magically just start having grace towards people. I never took into account that it meant purging anything out.
Have you noticed God purging out sin in your life via your One Word?
My daily reading plan includes three chapters in the Old Testament and one in the New Testament. I’m currently reading through Genesis, 2 Chronicles, Psalm, & Acts.
Last night I was reading 2 Chronicles 18. It is the story of King Ahab, the king of Israel and King Jehoshaphat, the king of Judah. In short King Ahab asks King Jehoshaphat to go to war with him. Both kings bring in their prophets to ask if they should go into battle and if they will be successful. All the prophets say that they should go and that they will be successful. Only King Jehoshaphat’s prophet tells King Ahab that he will die in battle. Needless to say, Ahab dies. At the beginning of chapter 19, a different prophet comes to King Jehoshaphat and rebukes him.
The rebuke was that he helped the wicked and love those who hate the Lord. A similar rebuke happened in chapter 16 of Jehoshaphat’s father, King Asa.
King Asa ended up getting a serious foot disease. The chapter ends with Asa’s death.
I was thinking about the difference in the rebukes. They are similar, but different. They were delivered by the same man. Asa receives a serious health condition. Jehoshaphat receives an encouragement.
The only major difference I can see is the difference of heart. Asa refused to repent. Samuel doesn’t say whether Jehoshaphat repented or not, but as far as I can tell with what I’ve read he must have.
Lack of repentance has serious consequences. God is always ready to forgive. Why do we refuse to repent especially when we know the consequences may be worse than if we did repent?
This year Shawn and I will celebrate being a couple 14 years and our tenth anniversary. We’ve fought for our marriage, for our couplehood. In truth the years haven’t necessarily come easily.
As with any relationship you work to make it work. Each person sacrifices their will for the others. When done right it’s a beautiful dance.
I’m not always the perfect dance partner and neither is he. We do our best.
Without a doubt I’d rather have no one else as we move across the dance floor. He is the only one I ever want to come home to. The one I want to envelope me, and hold me after a long day. He’s the one I want to celebrate with. The one I’d always rather be with.
I love the way he makes me laugh, and his smile [what first cause my heart to skip and my breath to sigh] still sends me into a whirlpool. After 14 years he can still make me melt into a puddle.
Happy Valentine’s my Love.
I love the story telling of Amber and Elora. They spin words in to beautiful webs. Every one of their posts are filled with multiple layers. Filled with fancy descriptions of ordinary things. I love reading their words because they wrap around and through me.
I wish I wrote more like they do.
When I was in college I planned to major in journalism. I have always had a love to write. Back then I wanted to be an editorial columnist. I wanted to state the facts and share my heart in an honest way. My mind doesn’t naturally come up creative words to describe the ordinary. I have to work for it, and even then I am occasionally left wondering if the imagery works for the reader or just myself.
My writing here is more like what I wanted to do when I was in college: the facts, my heart, in an honest way.
Earlier this year Jenny decided to take her blog in a different direction. Focusing on photography. Sharing her life through the lens of her Nikon. The words she captures are beautiful. Capturing a brief moment in life. They are different than the words I type to create a new post. The imagery is different than the ones given us by Amber and Elora. Each of us is utilizing gifts and talents that God wrote into our DNA.
God has given us each gifts and talents that are different from those we are close to. He made us unique. For this I’m glad. How boring would it be to read the same style of writing from everyone.
Yesterday was a heavy heart day.
I learned that someone I greatly admire is getting a divorce and my heart absolutely breaks for her and her (ex)husband.
I learned that someone whose name I’ve only seen in passing on Twitter and been to their site now twice, that while they are currently in Uganda bringing home their new baby girl, they were robbed. Including her passport and half of their adoption funds. My heart breaks because I see attempts of the enemy to bring discouragement, doubt, and eyes unfocused off Christ.
My soul aches as across Twitter feeds I see broken hearts, broken families, lives ripped apart by the death of a family member, hearts that long to see the sun shine on them.
These are the days that I need to cling to His promises. To bury myself in them.
He is our strength
He heals and does not turn away from the downcast
He is for us
The enemy will not prevail against us
He is our fortress & our deliverer
What other promises do you cover yourself in when the turmoil of the world wears heavy upon your shoulders?
Over the last year God has given me a heart and passion for the orphan. He’s shown me in countless ways how I too was an orphan and how He adopted me into His family and am heir to all the riches He has.
In the last year He’s brought a number of people into my life that are in the process of adopting. I can’t explain the joy I have when I learn some one is adopting, is going to, or has. My heart swells to reaches far outside my chest.
Adoption fees are expensive. They can range anywhere from $9,000 to $20,000+ for international adoption, but within those numbers there is hope, joy, rescue, and love.
James 1:27 says that true religion is caring for the orphans and the widows. You may not feel called to adopt, but you are called to care for the orphans.
This week [Feb. 06 – 12, 2011] you can not only care for the orphans but help Elora & Russ bring their child home. They are hosting a trunk show through Noonday Collection. A site whose sole purpose is to bring income to impoverished countries by selling jewelry, scarves, and gift items made by artisans in those countries and help fund adoptions.
This week when you purchase any item(s) from Noonday 10% will go to Russ & Elora’s adoption fund. All you have to do is enter Elora Ramirez in the “instructions to merchant” section of the online shopping cart.
There are a number of great items for sale. And don’t forget Mother’s Day is just around the corner or even buy your wife a Valentine’s gift. I’m sure in this case she won’t be upset if it’s late. 😉
ps.: If you love coffee, you can also purchase coffee through Just Love Coffee and help fund Baby Ramirez adoption. I just ordered my first bag last week.
Early yesterday morning I had the most beautiful dream. I awoke from it with a heart filled with joy and aching. I laid there in the quiet dark of early morning and cried out to God to move. It haunted me throughout the day and my cries echoed.
I’ve shared before our lack of local community, and lately the ache has grown more fierce. My heart aches, booming low like a kick drum within my chest.
I love the online community that I have. And I wouldn’t give them up for anything. A couple of them have become my closest friends and confidants over the last year. But I long for hands to hold as I walk this road called life. For shoulders able to catch tears of joy, frustration, and sorrow.
You see…my dream…was that Shawn and I were part of a community of like minded people that we did life with. It was truly a beautiful scene. The laughter still rings in my mind’s ears.
And my heart aches that we don’t have that. My spirit is starving for it. I can’t help but think that God gave me this dream because it’s His dream for us as well. We were created to be in community, and I can only imagine that if my heart aches as much as it does His hurts even more.
I know that He will answer. I know that He will provide. Like I said, He created us for community. In a sense I would say this dream could even be prophetic, even if the faces and the place are different, because I know He wants this for us.
Time for some honesty….do you struggle to read the Bible?
I’m a reader by nature. I can (and have) spend hours reading on the couch. But when it comes to reading onion skin thin pages that offer the benefit of life and growth I can’t seem to sit for more than just a few minutes and never on a consistent basis.
The Bible is full of mystery, murder, suspense, triumph, love…everything I love in a great book, but my devotion to it is lacking. What is it that keeps me from stepping into these pages the way I do any other book.
Today I want to step into the story. Have words given by the God who created me flood into my heart. I want to prepare heart as He leads me into this next season.
And because I know God’s timing is perfect, and I believe He has a sense of humor this arrived in the mail today from a dear friend. It is a Bible reading plan journal.
Where are you currently reading/studying in the Bible? Did you know that there is a group of women who are reading through the Bible chronologically in six months, and furthermore that some of them just finished reading it through Genesis to Revelation in 90 days?
If you recall part of my digging deeper into my One Word this year is scripture memorization. In January I dedicated myself to memorizing Colossians 3:12 & 13. It went surprisingly easier than I’d thought it would. A couple weeks ago I had two nightmares in less than a few days. My joy was to lie in bed reciting this verse over and over. To allow the goodness of God envelope my mind rather than the images that shook me awake.
For February I’m memorizing Proverbs 22:11 (NIV)
One who loves a pure heart and who speaks with grace will have the king for a friend.
Prudence is a 30-something writer who lives in Arizona with her husband Shawn and their chihuahuas Lengua and Zeus. She writes her life, her experiences and her crawl back to hope. Eventually, she hopes to visit India – a place that’s captured her heart without ever stepping foot on the soil.