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Monday, July 18, 2011

Just What I Needed

I just feel like singing! There is nothing BIG to write about, but to me, it is HUGE!
Dinner tonight was a breath of fresh air. I made a new recipe and EVERYONE liked it (besides Hannah, who said it was a little too spicy, but that is normal), and it didn’t require my oven, which will have a rest until our heat wave breaks.
Work, weight lifting, and dive camp took three of our kids from attending, but two returned for the end and the other will be in MA starting next month for school, so we are getting used to his absence.
Anyway, we laughed together while eating, either at ourselves or with each other. Afterwards, we read Proverbs 1 in the NLT, which made sense to most of our kids. Hope then read the same passage from her Chinese bible, which made more sense to Mandy.
Let me tell you, to have the word of God read in another language by our daughter was beautiful…but that word doesn’t even begin to describe it. A year ago Hope refused to read her bible in front of us…today she lead a chorus of angels singing over us! The music must have been loud enough to tickle our ears, because we then started singing hymns and kids’ spiritual songs that I sang to my original 3 children over a decade ago. That lead to teaching Avery the words to the star spangled banner…and Hannah reciting the Pledge of Allegiance…wrapping up with the kids washing dishes, sweeping the floor (Avery did it, even though just a month ago he REFUSED to sweep!), and cleaning up the rest of the kitchen. We wound down the evening with me reading a chapter to everyone from Little House in the Big Woods, squeezing four kids and myself on one couch, pausing only for everyone being able to see the pictures.
I am struck that only 48 hours ago I was griping to God about how this was a big mistake to expand our family again. I know that we are told to do everything without complaining or arguing (Phil. 2:14) but I felt I was justified to gripe and complain and argue with God. Just like the Israelites in the wilderness! But, just like the Israelites, God drew me back to his heart and gave me what I needed for the day. Now I have hope for tomorrow. Thank you, God, not only for today, but for it all.
All my best,
Amy 艾米

Sunday, July 17, 2011

No More Games

We have been so blessed with our children! There are so many facets to them—some mesh well with others, others are like flint and sparks fly when they hit. Some children energize and others drain.
The past month has been filled with successes and dark spots. Avery has made huge strides in assimilating as a part of our family, but still is conflicted with giving up some aspects of his past. We are not asking him to change who he is or his heritage as an African-American youth. It is more like exchanging the mud pies he is so used to eating for the good nutrition we offer here. Every once in a while he really craves mud and doesn’t like it when I won’t serve it to him. That is usually when it gets ugly. Other times he is just worried that we might forget him, so he is ALWAYS talking and seeking attention. That, plus being hyper-vigilant about keeping an eye on him with the other kids…Let me kindly say that it is zapping our last ounce of sanity!
I was griping (again) to God tonight. I have laid my burdens at his feet many times, but honestly, I was complaining. I told Him that I thought He made a mistake, that we weren’t supposed to be adopting again, that I made a mistake in hearing Him. I guess that I was looking for God to reassure me in what He was doing, but tonight I just heard…silence. Not like I was alone, but just as long as I was speaking untruth, He wasn’t going to accompany me in the journey. Just because I am squeezed-dry daily doesn’t mean that this is not what God planned for me. I was looking for the best for a boy from Detroit; God was looking at the best for ME. He never promised it would be easy, it would be for my good. I heard a quote once by CS Lewis: We are not necessarily doubting that God will do the best for us. We are just wondering how painful the best will be.
On that note, I am glad that I am not alone.
All my best,
Amy 艾米