The Journey Home

Friday, July 22, 2011

Please help us pray her home......

It's been a while since I've been able to sit and update this blog.  Summer in a youth ministry is C-R-A-Z-Y busy.  We have seen God move in subtle and overt ways through all of the trips and camp, through Sunday nights and Bible studies.  We are grateful to play a small part in what He is doing, and continue to pray for student's hearts to be drawn to Him.  

In the midst of all of this, we are still in the middle of our adoption.  There have been circumstances take place that have halted it temporarily, and for this we ask you to pray.  The orphanage in which Biruk was (which has been her 2nd home since November) has been shut down by the government.  She and the rest of the children had to be moved to a non-Holt affiliated orphanage in the same town.  This, of course, is a very difficult thing for the children.  They are now having to get used to a brand-new orphanage with brand-new care givers.  My heart breaks not only for Biruk but for all of the other children.  Please pray for them.  Please pray for the perfect love of their heavenly Father to cast out all fear.  Please pray for paperwork to continue to be processed so that we can finally get the call to bring her home.  Please pray that these children will hear the song that Abba sings over them, according to the book of Zephaniah.  We don't know what the kids were able to bring with them and what they had to leave, so we're praying that the family book we made for Biruk was able to go with her.  If not, we're just praying that God will remind her of Aaron and I often and that He will whisper over and over and over that we are coming for her.  We have not forgotten her.  We want her. 

I need others to pray alongside us.  We received a picture of her just today, and it is ripping my heart out.  The saying goes that the "eyes are the window to the soul."  As I looked into those big brown eyes I saw confusion, sadness, and fear.  I want for all of those sweet children to be home.  There are 2 other Holt families besides ours who had children moved to this new orphanage.  Please pray for them as well.  We need prayer that they will be moved to the Holt-affiliated transitional center in Addis Ababa to await our Embassy date.  We were told that our kids would be moved there after the court decree was issued, and that happened for us on June 17th.  For reasons beyond our control (but thankfully not God's!!) she and the 2 other little girls were not moved, and now we're kind of stuck due to the orphanage closure.  

Thank you friends, for helping us to pray Biruk home.   

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

The Hard Eucharisteo

"Be joyful always; pray continually; give thanks in all circumstances for this is God's will for you in Christ Jesus.  Do not put out the Spirit's fire; do not treat prophecies with contempt.  Test everything.  Hold on to the good."  1 Thess. 5:18-21

"Rejoice in the Lord always.  I will say it again:  Rejoice!  Let your gentleness be evident to all.  The Lord is near.  Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God.  And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus."  Philippians 4:4-7

So I'm in the middle of learning something beautiful....and hard.  I feel like I'm on the cusp of understanding.  I'm reading, I'm pondering, I'm praying, I'm asking questions, I'm meditating on the truth of Scripture; today, though, I got an object lesson.  The kind that plays itself out in the everyday-ness of life.  The kind that tears a hole so that God Himself can fill it.  

There are few phrases that can inflict a wounding like the words, "I hate you."  Especially when those words come out of the mouth of a precious child whom you would give your very life for.  A poor choice was made.  A privilege was taken away for the day.  Anger and hurt bubbled over and the words spewed forth venomously, hitting hard and wounding deeply.  Hot, stinging tears behind (disbelieving) eyeballs. 

Now, Lord??  Give thanks now??  Don't you mean "Give thanks in every circumstance except when your sweet child hurts you with those terrible words."?  

"Now, child.  Even now.  Give thanks to Me now."  

So I tried.  I asked Him to help me to be thankful even now, even in this.  I found a quiet spot and sat still for a moment, soaking in morning breezes and sounds.  I took a breath, and I thanked Him.  He gently reminded me that I'm not the only one who hears those words.  He hears them too, from hurting, angry children.  He whispered to me to rejoice, because in a small way, I was "fellowshipping in His suffering."  Why rejoice in that?  Because He tells us in Romans that if we share in his sufferings, we also share in His glory.  

I still felt hurt.  But strangely, better.  I'm beginning to understand that God can use everything, really everything to draw us into deeper relationship.  Even this hard hurting can serve a purpose.  I'm still learning.  But the hole created today may very well have opened a door to understanding Him a little bit better...and love Him more for it.