Tuesday, May 28, 2013

Oh boy! We have a name!

I got the call as I sat in carpool line on April 15th. The birth mom said "I choose Jenny, Aidan and Ella Mae to raise my baby". Shock. Tears. Joy.

The kids hopped in the car before the reality had even set in. Ella Mae opened the door and I screamed at her "She chose us! The birth mom chose US! We are getting a baby!!!!" She immediately started to happy cry. I love that she does that. Aidan was in shock and squealing with happiness.

Before we even got home, Ella Mae was staring out the window and said "we should name him Josiah". "Where did that name come from?" was my response. It was random. She said "I don't know....I think there is a kid at my school named Josiah".

The first thing I do with baby names is think of what sort of crazy nicknames kids could come up with at school to terrorize my child. I don't know why I do that...........


Jojo.....the memories came back like a flood......and then God made it clear why this would be his name. 

This is a picture of my sweet friend Deb {the one I went to Africa with} holding Jojo. Jojo had Down syndrome and he was being cared for by our friends at Ekisa {the orphanage for children with special needs that Deb and I visited in December}. Unfortunately for us here on earth, Jesus took Jojo home to be with Him last year. {you can read a little tribute to Jojo here}.

I remember hearing about him. I remember wishing for a family for him. But, sometimes things just don't work out how we think they should on this earth.....and we must TRUST that God's plan is better than ours! 

So, in honor of Jojo, 
and so many like him 
who never had the chance 
to be in a family here on this earth, 
we will be naming our baby 
Josiah Harrison Clark....
and we will call him Jojo!

Josiah had already been agreed upon by the kids and I when I found out that the literal translation from the Hebrew is "Yahweh supports" or "Yahweh heals". Wow. I needed that affirmation! 

Harrison was my grandfathers middle name. I never had the opportunity to meet him because Jesus took him home when my mom was young. BUT, he and my grandmother CHOSE my mom. They adopted her. So we will honor them in this way.....amazing how things come full circle!

We have been so blessed already on this journey! There are a few random items that we still need but more than anything we need:

1. Prayers
2. Funds

As I have said before, I have NO DOUBT that GOD will provide every single dime we need to bring this little guy home. We would be honored if you would become part of our little family in this way! We have already raised almost 1/4 of the money we need and every little bit helps!!

If you would like to make a tax deductible donation to our adoption fund, we would be honored. Click here to go directly to paypal {if for some reason the link doesn't work, go to projecthopeful.org and click "matched families" under the "adopt" dropdown menu}. You can also make a check out to Project HOPEFUL and mail it to me at 6166 Eagle Point Circle Birmingham, AL  35242.


jennymo, Aidan and Ella Mae...and soon to be Jojo : - )

Tuesday, May 21, 2013

Now why this fear?

Now why this fear and unbelief?
Has not the Father put to grief
His spotless Son for us?
And will the righteous Judge of men
Condemn me for that debt of sin
Now canceled at the cross?

This song struck me to the core in worship on Sunday. I have to confess:

I. Am. Afraid.

I am a do-er. List maker. Give me things to do and I will get them did. But, now that most of my paperwork is done..... the room is ready......the necessities are all in place.....all that is left to do is wait. Wait on the Lord for the funds needed (which I have no doubt whatsoever that He will provide) and wait for the baby to be born. I am not a good wait-er.

Complete atonement You have made
And by Your death have fully paid
The debt Your people owe.
No wrath remains for us to face
We’re sheltered by Your saving grace
And sprinkled with Your blood

What if something happens to the baby? What if he is sick when he is born? What if he needs surgery? What if he has to stay in the hospital for an extended amount of time?

How sweet the sound of saving grace
How sweet the sound of saving grace
Christ died for me 

What if she changes her mind?

Be still my soul and know this peace
The merits of your great high priest
Have bought your liberty
Rely then on His precious blood
Don’t fear your banishment from God
Since Jesus sets you free 

The news is "out there" and soon his name will be announced. : - ) It is real. This is happening.

People see me and think I have it all together. I don't. People think adoption isn't hard. It is.

Because it is all about TRUST. Not trust in me or my abilities. Not trust in her. Not trust in my plans. Trust in MY FATHER who adopted me. Redeemed me. Purposed me for such a time as this. Lord, help me to trust YOU!

Jesus, all my trust is in Your blood
Jesus, You’ve rescued us
Through Your great love 

Please be praying for us while we wait!


{If you want to donate to our adoption fund, you can make a tax deductible donation via Paypal here, or you are welcome to mail a check, made out to Project Hopeful to us at 6166 Eagle Point Circle Birmingham, AL  35242}

Thursday, May 2, 2013

My review of the docmentary film STUCK....and who is to blame.

(I meant to write this post soon after seeing the STUCK premiere...however, April 15th happened to also be the day I got the call that a birth mom had chosen US! You can read all about that here if you like)

As I sat on the STUCK tour bus on April 15th speaking with Craig Juntunen (Executive Producer) I had the uncanny feeling that something was missing from this picture. And then like a wave it hit me.

I had made the incorrect assumption that any documentary film about children needing families would be motivated, at least to some degree, by a love for the Lord and a desire to be obedient to Him in caring for the orphan. But this was not the case. I quickly became aware that this movement sweeping the nation was very simply an effort to get the masses fired up about the politics behind International adoption, and get Washington's attention in hopes that the way things are would eventually turn into the way they think things should be.

I became increasingly uncomfortable throughout the 1 and 1/2 hour long film as each and every person on the screen opened their mouths and never, never, never, never did one person utter the words


I was uncomfortable, not because the film was inappropriate or entirely wrong, but because I felt as if I was watching someone else do my job....

.....and God was watching me watch someone else do my job.

Like a mother standing in a room watching while someone else comforts their crying child.
Like a father watching a stranger teaching his son how to ride a bike.

Like the Church, watching the world do our job. 

And we wonder why people call us hypocrites.

There are many issues with the way International adoptions work in this country. Do we need better oversight of our US adoption agencies. Oh yes. Do we need to improve the way the Hague Convention operates? Yep. Do children all over the world deserve to be in families rather than stuck in orphanages and institutions? Of course. But guess what friends? We can make legislation and perfect the process until we are all in happy agreement, but unless more Christian families STEP UP to ransom these children, what will be the point?

This is the part of the program where most Christians start to zone out with the "I am just not called" excuses. Let me just say this: We need more Christian families to step up for the orphan, but not every Christian family should adopt. If you give God the blank check with your life and your family and He doesn't lead you to adoption, then support someone He does lead. Same thing with International missions. You can either be a zealous go-er, a zealous sender, or disobedient (stole that from John Piper). Just DO SOMETHING.

We have many, many problems in this broken world friends. One of them is the millions of people who have not been reached with the Gospel. Another one is the people who have been reached, who claim Christ but only offer Him lip service instead of their lives.

50 years from now people will look back on today and they will think:

Adoption: Humane Society
Orphans: Brad & Angelina
AIDS: Bono
Poor: Government Welfare

What will they say the Church did?

What will they say you did?

Did you coast it out in your comfortable life, giving the bare minimum required to be able to keep your Christian club membership card? Did you warm a pew once a week and write a check, most of which will ultimately cycle back to serve you. Or, did you realize that your life is not your life at all. That we are here merely to bring Glory to our Father and serve Him alone while we are on this earth.

Ultimately, without the power of the Gospel this will simply be another movement. And, without Jesus himself coming back, nothing on this earth will truly ever be made right. We live in a fallen world and until He returns that will remain the case. But in the meantime, He left us with work to do.

And CHURCH, we are not doing our job.