Monday, July 19, 2010

Six Months today!

On January 19, 2010 one of our daughters, Grace, turned eight years old. That same day, we received another daughter into our care by way of adoption. In the six months Mihret has been with us, she has gained 10 pounds and grown from a 4T to 6x dress size. Her umbilical hernia has been surgically corrected. She is no longer malnourished...or lonely...or afraid. 

We have learned much on this journey. One thing I'm learning to discipline myself about is wondering about her past. Almost every time she wants to wash her hands at length or have her third helping of food I think about this. Did she walk far to get water? Did she, like so many we saw while we were in Ethiopia, drink water carried from miles away in yellow jeri cans? Did she ever take a bath in clean, clear water? How many times a day or week did she eat? Did she only eat injera? Did she have access to any protein? Was she loved by her family? What did they think of her hernia? Did they not know what it was? Only a few hours south of her region (Wolayta), the tribes believe if the top two teeth come in before the bottom two the child is "mingi" and they kill them, so this quesion is not unreasonable.

These questions, and countless others, have regularly flooded my mind. They are unanswerable in this life. SO, I'm realizing that I must let them go and discipline my mind to not think about them. Even when I do that, questions about the future rapidly replace them. Such as, "Will she want to go back and help her people? Will she long to know her culture? Will she embrace it? Will she take the Gospel to them?" Those, and others, too, are unanswerable.

This is part of that issue of faith to which we have been called in Hebrews, " ...for without faith it is impossible to please God."  We pursued Mihret in faith, we have her now because we trusted in God's Word, and we continue to live by faith. "My righteous one shall live by faith and if he shrinks back, My sould shall have no delight in him", says Almighty God.

Daily life with her is good. She's a joyful, sweet, pleasant child and we are very glad to have her.  Not only are we glad to have her, but we're so grateful to the Lord for all we've learned about Him, His kingdom, this world and ourselves along the way. If I were to share all of that, this would be a very lengthy post! Suffice it to say we have become more sanctified because of this choice. We do not regret it. We rejoice in it and in the One who put it in our hearts. The end purpose of all of our choices should be to worship Christ more fully, as He deserves. Our prayer is that this is happening...daily.

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Mid-Summer Update

Here we are at the Test Pilot School Graduation in June.
The school graduates two classes per year. It's such a rigorous program, graduation is a big deal!

The two youngest in the pool with Daddy! Mihret, especially enjoys the swimming pool.
She is still fascinated with clean water!

It's been hot here. That was the catalyst for cutting her hair.
Thirty minutes of effort every morning just to make it look nice should have been enough for me, but everyone kept saying, "It's so beautiful, don't cut it". After I felt the density and weight of it in my hands, I understood more fully why she sweat so much. Perhaps this will make her a littlemore comfortable.

Our house addition is finally done! We love it. It so practical. We now have a full bath near the loft bedroom and kitchen, an enhanced laundry room, pantry, coat closet and covered front porch with an external closet for coats and shoes (more pics to come). We also have a brand new sidewalk. I found the azealas at a local Amish store on closeout for $6.00 each. What a gift! They will look lovely as they grow.
Over the past month, most of us have experienced a nasty virus that lasts for almost a week (hence, the lack of blogging or other efforts at communication). When I got it last week, I was in bed for a few days.
One morning I came downstairs to find this lovely banner from my children.
"Children are a heritage from the Lord..."
This is Mihret on Monday at the hospital for her umbilical hernia.  We were aware of it when we were introduced to her and the adoption agency asked us if we'd still accept her with it. We knew we had the resources to have it repaired and thought it was a minor issue. Here she is looking at the iPhone the anethesiologist gave her as she was headed into surgery.
Lack of good communication has been difficult in this.
But, she looked at me and said, "Tummy fixed, Mommy?"
Meanwhile, Stirling and Rachel have been in PA at White Sulphur Springs, the Officer's Christian Fellowship family camp. We get them back on Friday and Steven leave for Mexico to visit for two weeks.