Adoption, God, My Story

Adoption Update: August 2019

Application Submitted…

We finally did it! 4 months after a post saying that we were getting ready to submit our application to adopt, we actually did it! Why the long wait? Well, as I mentioned in another post, we felt led by God to reinvestigate a variety of ways to adopt and schedule more meetings and phone calls with the various professionals involved in each type of adoption. I now know a lot more than I did and I’m so glad to have a greater understanding of the adoption world as a whole!

We learned more about different adoption programs such as Foster Care to Adopt, the Adopt Waiting Children program, and International Adoption. When we considered all the options each of these give us and weighed many factors, we decided to go ahead and do what we originally planned, Private Domestic Adoption. This fits best with our current priorities for adoption and learning more about the rest of the programs out there confirmed that our original intention was the right one for us at this time. It feels very good to be even more settled than we were before. 

What Will People Think?…

One thing that came to light for me personally was how much worry I had wrapped up in how people would view our adoption choices. I knew what God had placed in my heart, but I also knew all the other opinions out there and judgement that could be awaiting me. My mind kept hearing the arguments against the adoption we were choosing and the arguments for all the other types of adoption. I began to feel like I would need to defend my choices and I didn’t know how I would do that. I worried that maybe I wasn’t actually doing what was best.

Because of this inner dialogue, I started to doubt, worry, and wonder. At times, I felt like wavering and giving up. Putty, my husband, isn’t too worried about what others think. He stands firm in his resolve that God spoke and that’s all that matters. This made it hard for me to share openly with him all that was going through my mind and so, sometimes, I felt alone in this too. Perhaps what felt most difficult was hearing ‘Wait’ from God over and over again. I just wanted Him to tell me what to do! I didn’t want to wait, I wanted to be active.

Inner Strengthening…

So, after taking another look at adoption options, reading more books, and talking with more people, I eventually came to know what I really wanted and the best program for that. I came out of this weighing process feeling more firm in my path of adoption. I gained inner strength and conviction towards our decision. These past 4 months have been enormously helpful as we’ve prepared our hearts and family for welcoming another child into our home. And God has finally said, ‘Go!’

Rewards of Waiting

It wasn’t easy… the waiting. So many times I felt like I was just treading water. It didn’t feel like I was moving forward, but I kept hearing God say, ‘Wait.’ Have you ever felt like this? We can want something to happen or at least see forward motion so badly that we jump ahead and miss the growth and strengthening that happens in the waiting. But when we wait we get the joy of feeling the quickening that comes after the waiting. We feel the peace of having been patient, self-controlled and obedient. And we get to experience the hopeful expectation of the next step that God will lead us on.

God, Kingdom, Leadership, My Story

Doing Church Alone with Kids – Part 2

Together, but not…

In my previous post, I shared how I ‘do church alone with kids’ because my husband works on Sunday mornings. The kicker is that he works at our church! How can he and I be in the same place at the same time, but I am still alone/separate? 

The Assumption and the Reality…

When we decided that my husband would leave his field of physics to become a pastor, I didn’t realize how that would affect my Sunday mornings. I assumed we’d carry on as usual. He and I still sitting together at church, mingling with friends together, and driving to and from church together. But one day, I started complaining to him about his lack of presence with me on Sundays. I tried to demand more of him on that day. He made it clear that he was ‘at work’ and he couldn’t just function as we had in the past.

The Workplace…

This really got me thinking. I had to wrap my head around what he was saying. So, I tried to apply it to when I was working full time. It would be inappropriate for me to have my husband come to my workplace and just sit with me all day. It would be distracting to have him constantly talking to me and trying to get my attention while I was working or meeting with people. It’d be awkward to have him calling the shots with my time and energy while I was ‘on the clock.’ How very ridiculous that would be!

The Understanding…

When I really started to put it into perspective that he was being paid to be at church on Sunday and interface with the church members, to help in his area of ministry, and that his boss could easily see how he was using his time, I began to shift my expectations. I could see that although we can be a family at church, it actually isn’t his main focus. Although he completely loves me and the kids, he also loves the people he serves – both bosses and church attenders. 

Working it Out…

As the years have gone by, I’ve been able to work out how to function as a family with my pastor husband, even while he’s working. We have openly discussed the needs of our family and the needs of his job. We come to solutions together so that we are on the same page. And yeah, sometimes that means I shoulder more of the parental role on a Sunday morning. Sometimes, it can seem like I’m alone on the surface, but in reality we’re in this ministry together. The way in which I choose to support him and honor his role is one area that I serve. I’m thankful to be alongside him in our Kingdom Adventure.

Every job, ministry and volunteer role means sacrifice. It means a sacrifice to our expectations and the way we’ve been used to doing things. It means flexibility. We have to be able to change as the roles change. It means openness. We need to be open with those around us so that we can help each other fulfill our needs. It means growth, strengthening, interdependence, and ultimately, gain! What areas do you feel God is strengthening you? Where do you need to see a new perspective? Where do you need to be flexible and stretch? Can you see how God will ultimately bring about goodness and gain to your life as you sacrifice? He is so good.

God, Kingdom, Leadership, My Story

Doing Church Alone with Kids – Part 1

Sunday Mornings at Home

Every Sunday morning my husband goes to work. So that leaves me to go to church on my own with my kids. My husband gets up and gets ready for work and I get up and get ready for church. Then he leaves and I help my children with breakfast and getting the final touches ready for a long morning at our Sunday morning venue. After much scurrying around and forgetting this and that, we’re finally in the car and ready to drive.

Arriving at Church…

We tumble out of the car with my older kids racing ahead of me while I try to quickly unbuckle my child who’s still in that ‘very secure’ five-point-harness child seat. (But really, I’m thankful for safety!) Finally, we’re all out, I’ve locked the car…I think. Then I relock the car just to be sure and we head to the entrance. We weave through the groups of people to the check-in kiosk. My two oldest BOTH want to do the check-in so we figure out who’ll do first service and who’ll do second service. Then name tags are put on and we’re heading to class.

The Drop-Off…

At this point, I’m really tired, often frazzled, and on a mission. If you try to say, ‘Hello,’ to me, I’ll likely give you a happy and quick, ‘Hi there!’ and keep moving. (You see, if you stop with children in tow, they get distracted and run to said distraction. Then I have to go through the work of getting them back to me and off again to class.) I drop off the older two first because they *usually* go in with the least amount of trouble. Then it’s just me and my pre-schooler. We head to the class with the usual teacher and the usual toys and the usual friends. But, no. Lately, she puts on a big show of tears (I know because my sister’s a volunteer in the class and says she always calms down very quickly after I leave) and I set her down in the room and quickly exit, pulling the door closed behind me. I hear her cries as I walk down the hall. I tell myself, and sometimes the occasional bystander, ‘She’ll be fine.’ And you know what, she’s ALWAYS happy when I pick her up. Mission accomplished!

To the Service…

Finally, I’m free to mingle, but at this point most people have made it into the service and I too am trying to quickly use the bathroom, get my coffee, and bee-line it to the auditorium. Once there I finally sit down and eventually, my husband joins me. But didn’t you say your husband works on Sunday?’ I’m so glad you asked. Yes… He’s a pastor.

Although this narrative is humorous, it can also come across as complaining. It’s so easy to look at what we don’t have, in this case a husband to help with the kids on Sunday mornings, and long for things to be different. I definitely do that, but then I think about why they are the way they are. Together, we chose to be a family in ministry. There are certain things we gave up because of our choice. It wasn’t thrust upon us or the truth hidden from us. We simply made a choice and now each week, each day we see the joys and hardships of that choice. Although, at times, it can be lonely, I wouldn’t make a different choice. I’ve been so thankful for all that we’ve become as a family and I’m excited for what’s to come.

How about you? What things are hard in your life because of a choice you’ve made? Can you also see the positives that have come out of that choice? God is ALWAYS working things to our good. Romans 8:28a says,

And we know that for those who love God all things work together for good. (ESV)

It might be hard to see the good that’s being worked out at times, but we can hold fast that there is always good to come for those that love God. Join me in Doing Church Alone with Kids – Part 2 to read more about how I came to the realization of my new Sunday morning routine due to our choice to be a family in ministry.

God, Kingdom, My Story, Praise and Worship

Jamaica Roadshow

All my life I’ve loved singing. From singing on the church stage, to the school stage, to the college stage, to local performing. It’s all been fun and brought much joy to my heart. 

In high school I had the opportunity to go on our church mission trip to Jamaica. My role was as a singer in our praise band. We led worship songs as a group, but I also had the task to learn a solo song and be ready to sing it whenever asked. I chose Jaci Velasquez’s version of ‘I Get on my Knees’. I worked and worked to get that song comfortable in my voice and to have feeling with it too.

Most of the times we sang in churches and schools, but one evening we were scheduled to sing at a road show. Basically, our group was one of many that performed on a big semi-truck bed on a closed off street with many Jamaicans looking up from the road below. What a different experience this was for me! I hadn’t done anything like this before. 

We did some of our praise songs and then it was time to sing my solo. I don’t remember every part of that performance, but I vividly remember looking down at the crowd of people and seeing that they were all singing along with me. They knew the song and they were singing their hearts out with praise to Jesus! It was so uplifting and I felt something I didn’t know how to explain.

Singing Jaci Velasquez’s ‘On My Knees’ at a road show in Jamaica

After I finished, our fellow mission teammate got up and shared his testimony, but even though we had heard him share many times before, this time was different. We were all so excited when it was done and both this young man and I could only explain that we truly felt like God was singing and speaking through us. We didn’t ask for this big change in presentation, only to do well. We didn’t ask for a special experience, we just wanted people to be impacted.

Looking back, I now have words for what happened that evening. Holy Spirit. I knew God used people and could talk through people, but it wasn’t something I regularly expected. Now, I see how much Holy Spirit wants to speak through us. He wants to use us to bring life to those around us! He wants to fill us and empower us to give away more of Him!

How often have we experienced something that we couldn’t explain? What has been our response? Have we brushed it off? Have we assumed it was a one-time thing? Or have we recognized that Holy Spirit was at work in and through us? Have we pushed in for more? Have we stayed open to ‘see what the Father was doing’? Now that I know God wants to use me as a partner in ministry, I can’t help but respond with, ‘YES!’ whether in singing, speaking, writing, or praying.

A recent recording of ‘On My Knees’
Adoption, God, My Story



Doubts. They come at me when I’m trying to fall asleep at night, when I receive negative feedback, or when I hear/read about a hard story. For as much as I’m excited about adopting, the doubts still find their way in. They tell me that I’m not going to do well. They say I’m crazy to think about adding this new ‘complexity’ to my life. They tell me to take the easy road and ‘forget about it’.

Me DOUBTING whether throwing this is a good idea

As I’ve said before, I want to adopt transracially. I want to have a racially diverse family. This adds another element of doubts that come against me. Will I be able to appropriately help my adopted child(ren?) to know their cultural background? Will I know how to take care of their unique needs that are different from mine? For example, non-white hair and skin needs. Will I be able to parent them well enough so when they become adults and leave our home they can enter society well prepared? I am acutely aware that parenting a transracial child will be different than parenting my biological children. Can I do it?


Does anyone else out there struggle with doubts? Does anyone else out there wonder if what they *think* they heard from God was actually Him? Doesn’t it seem like it’s supposed to be easy if we’re following the steps that He’s laid out for us? That would make the most sense to me, but then I look at my past history in this area. Yes, there are times when it feels easy, but there are plenty when it’s just plain hard. After all, Jesus didn’t promise it’d be easy. In Luke 9:23 Jesus said,

 Whoever wants to be my disciple must deny theamselves and take up their cross daily and follow me.

However, despite the hardships we carry when we follow Christ, we also experience great grace for what He’s called us to. He gives us peace, hope, and joy. Sometimes it seems like when Satan comes against me, God’s grace comes to me in greater measure! God provides what I need to make it through all that His call on my life requires. Paul prays in Hebrews 13:20-21:

Now may the God of peace ... equip you with everything good for doing his will, and may he work in us what is pleasing to him, through Jesus Christ, to whom be glory for ever and ever. Amen.


Doing something hard as a child, but being fully supported

I have definitely experienced His grace and goodness while following God’s call. I see it again in our adoption process. In the midst of the swirl of confusion – clarity. In the midst of the chaotic thoughts – peace. In the midst of the fears – love. I hear God say to me: ‘I made you for this. I called you to adopt transracially. I put this dream in your heart. It wasn’t from you, it was from Me.’ And once again, I know I am fully supported by the ONE who knows everything. I have the strength yet again, to take the next step forward, to learn the next thing, and to speak out again in truth. God’s grace and goodness propel me onwards to follow His call.


It’s true, I’ll make mistakes while following His path. I won’t do everything right. In fact, it’s like this in every situation in which we choose to put ourselves ‘out there.’ We fail… but we will succeed too. We risk… and we keep faith. We worry… but we have hope. We are courageous. We have the ability to do something that frightens us and come out FEARLESS! I will put my insecurities in the place they belong – with God, not with me. I’ll take the dream that He’s given me and take it step by step. I’ll trust that He knows the best path for me and follow it. What will you do with your God-given dreams? Will you turn back when doubts assail you or will you find courage and strength to keep pressing onward?