Thursday, April 28, 2011

The Answer to a Six Year Old's Prayer

I have to share a story with you.  This is one of those times that I truly believe God answered just because he loves us.  It is what Prof. Lauter would call an "earnest" from God.  

Let me start with.... through this whole adoption the Lord has laid people in our paths that have supported us spiritually, physically, financial, etc.  He has showed us time and time again that he simply loves to love his people.  In our lives we have been taken care of time and time again and I want to again, give God the praise for this family that He sustains.  

My story starts over Easter weekend.  We were out at the house in the woods.  Kelty (our dog) was being his normal active, fun self and running around in what we call his "happy run".  On one of the turns something snapped in his back left leg and he let out a hjelp.  He stopped putting pressure on it and sat down.  This was on the Easter holiday weekend (no one's open).  So we nursed him, kept him quiet and waited.  (Well, Andreas did, I was throwing up).  

This past Tuesday I called my friend Slavik (who is a vet here in town, he is a friend from my Swedish courses).  Sam and I took Kelty in and Slavik took a look at him.  Kelty is not a small dog, but he turns into the biggest chicken at the vet.  Turns out he snapped the ACL in his knee.  The vet that owns the clinic came in and asked me if I had insurance on my dog...
DISCLAIMER:  I had no idea until that point that you could insure your pet.  I have heard of it for people who bread or show their pets, but not for the common house pet.  

Needless to say my answer was no and he said...This is going to be expensive.  Okay, I like to have all the facts on the table so I asked how much.  Turns out it is around $2500.  YIKES.  He was very nice and said we could do a payment plan and everything.  

All I kept thinking is that we are going to China in two weeks, how in the world are we going to not only get the money, but find someone to care for Kelty in that way while we are gone?  He told us to go home and think about it and let him know.  The surgery could take place on Thursday.  I came home and Andreas and I tried to find anyway possible to do the surgery.  When it came down to it, we simply could not come up with the money.  The next day we received our final adoption bill.  That sealed the fact that we could not afford the surgery.  The only other option was to put Kelty to sleep.  He was obviously in pain and stressed.  

Andreas and I did not come to this option litely.  To be honest I have laughed at some of the extents that some people have gone to to save their pets.  But it didn't sit well with me that we had to put Kelty down because he still has so much life in him, but we couldn't let him suffer either, it just wouldn't be fair to him.  

So yesterday we told Sam.  I had to leave the dinner table because I didn't want Sam to see how sad I was.  While I was in the bedroom I heard him say to Andreas that they simply needed to pray and God would give them the answer.  So he took Andreas from the dinner table and they sat down next to Kelty.  Sam prayed his little heart to a Mighty and Powerful God that heard every single word.  

Today, Andreas and I went out to the house in the woods and dug a grave for Kelty.  We had our neighbors say goodbye, we were preparing ourselves to say goodbye.  Kelty spent his day stuck to me like glue.  The plan was for the vet to come to our house tomorrow and put him to sleep.  

After digging the grave we came back to town.  I let Andreas off at our house and went to get Sam, who was at a friends house.  Before I got to Sam, I received a call from Slavik.   Slavik put the other vet on and he told me to bring the dog in as soon as possible and they would do the surgery.  I told him that we could not pay for it and he said he would do it for free.  FOR FREE! Then he said they would take care of Kelty for us when we were in China if we couldn't find anyone else!!!!

I ran and got Sam and got home to Andreas and Kelty.  We were so excited to share with Sam that God had answered his prayer!!  That God had heard him and was giving Kelty this chance to live.  Sam was overjoyed!  How exciting it was to share with Sam in a tangible way that the God of the universe heard him and answered!!!!!!!! 

How exciting that we could see how the God of the universe loves us so much as to show us in so many tangible ways. I truly believe that he wants to do that for everyone if we would just listen and follow him.  

So, thank you God for this earnest of love.  Thank you for a kind hearted vet.  Thank you for being so real to my beloved son.  Thank you for giving David a chance to have a puppy dog to play with.  Thank you for being in every decision and every part of our lives.  And thank you for allow us to have Kelty for a few more wonderful years.  

So never doubt that the God of the universe is waiting to give you an earnest.  Look for them, they maybe in the smells of Spring, in a day off, in a friend or whisper of love.  He loves is just that simple.


I've Got Two Letters for You...

Yes, I have two wonderful letters for you.  On their own they seem plain and of no specific importance, but together these two letters mean......

Travel Approval!!!!

Yesterday we officially received our travel approval from China.  We will be keeping out tickets for May 11th and David will be with us for the first time on May 16th.  We will be returning to Sweden on May 26th.  It is finally happening in less than two weeks we will be on our way to get our son.  Praise Jesus!


Monday, April 25, 2011

A Different Kind of Easter

I always look forward to Easter.  We have our devotion book that we do for lent.  It prepares us each day to walk through so many of the emotions, heart issues and true events that took place.  After doing those devotions together for 37 days we came to Good Friday.  We have traditions that we always go through to help us remember and try to understand a little bit more every year.  Well, after Good Friday service and a drive home to our house in the woods, I was done.

Let me take you back to last Wednesday night, well actually Thursday morning at about 3:00 am.  I hear Sam calling....''Daddy....Daddy (I think he knows I wake up cranky) I shake my wonderful man and tell him Sam is calling for you.  He calls back, but Sam still calls for him.  So he gets up and makes is way into his room.  I hear from the other room..."Daddy, I threw up!" I'm up!  Andreas and I go into full action to get his bed clean, him clean and make sure that he is okay (all the while holding down the gag reflex).  He was so sweet the whole time.  This is actually the first time he has really thrown up in his life (besides the one down my nighty when he was 3, but that was more crying and upset, not sick).  We got him back into bed and I slept in the bunk under him, but not before it happened again...had the bucket ready that time!  So Thursday was my day to try to keep this wonderfully energetic child quite...yeah right.  I did my best, but by Friday, he was ready to go.  So we let him and he has been fine since.

Now.... back to Good Friday.  Yep... mamma got it too.  I was up all night.  My poor husband tried to say around a while, but the truth is he really didn't want to get sick...can't blame him for that one.  So I stayed on the sofa for two nights (not a problem, that sofa is sooooo comfy).  Andreas got out of the sickness this time. I am glad for him.  But all of this made Easter a bit different for me...

Instead of celebrating as a body of Christ, I was home alone.  I was left to think and rejoice and praise...just Jesus and me.  I really enjoyed it.  Not that I would have chosen it, but I am so thankful that He meets us where we are... spiritually and physically.  I reflected on the reality of what was and the reality of what is because of what was.  I came back to something I already knew, but obviously needed a refresher on.... Easter is not just a day in time, but a life lived because of that day in time.  My life would look completely different without the hope and salvation that Easter brought through Jesus and I need to remember that daily and live because I know the reality of it.  Only when it is real in me can I show my sons why it makes a difference to believe and live life for God.

Only in Christ can any of us find TRUE life and TRUE hope....thanks for the reminder Jesus.

Happy Easter all,

Thursday, April 14, 2011

Happy Birthday Little Boy


You are three years old today.  Happy Birthday my little boy.  I wonder what you are doing today on your special day.  Is there someone celebrating you?  Are your foster parents giving you the presents we sent?  Are they telling you how special you are?  I want to believe that they are.  

Today, in Sweden, we celebrated you.  We bought cupcakes (a popcicle for your brother).  We sang to you and have a video to prove it.  We have a gift for you and most of all a family for you.  I want you to know that not only did we celebrate you today, but your farmor and farfar did too.  Not only will you be a son, but a grandson, great grandson, cousin, nephew and brother.  These are all gifts that I wish to tell you about and watch you experience.

I saw vitsippor and blĂ„sippor for the first time today in bloom.  Your birthday will not only mark the special day that we celebrate you, but the beginning of Spring here in Sweden.  I loved having my birthday at the beginning of Spring in the States and now you will get to have the same thing here in Sweden.  With the Spring brings hope and renewal, all that is to come for you.

I wonder if sometime around today your birth parents are wondering about you.  Around this time in 2009 they had to leave you to be found and taken care of.  I am sure they are sad, but have hope that you are well and have a family.  I cry for the sadness that they must feel and pray that they are comforted by the one true comforter, Jesus.  I also celebrate your parents because they had the special privilege of bringing you into this world and holding you on your special day.  They loved you for the first year of your life and made the the hardest decision ever to give you a chance to be healed and to live. I will always be incredibly thankful for them and the sacrifice that they made.

So as you sleep in China, your family misses you in Sweden.  Happy Birthday today.  We will see you in a month and celebrate the rest of your birthdays together.  Sleep well and know you are loved.


Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Another Milestone

VISAS we have VISAS!!!!  I have three passports in hand with 1 visa in them each, praise Jesus. These visas state in English and Madarin the we are allowed one entry into China no later than July 8th 2011.  Yeah, they gave us permission to enter the country...I am thankful for that one.  Just one more thing to cross of the list.

I have to laugh at my passport.  I have two visas from different entries into Nepal, one Swedish resident visa and now I have one Chinese visa.  Oh, the stories a passport can tell about your life!


Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Crazy Tired and Busy

I know I haven't written and I am sorry for that.  I can't believe how long it has been since I have had my camera out and taken pictures.  I still carry it everywhere, but no pictures.  Am I too busy to think about it?  Am I too tired to care at the moment to capture the pics?  I just don't know the answer to those questions right now.

First of all, I am incredibly tired.  I have had hot flashes all through the night for about 2 to 3 weeks now.  I know, officially those are called night sweats, I don't care what they are called, they are waking me up at night.  This is producing one cranky Laurie!  Please pray these go away, I need sleep!!!!!  I pray they are gone before we go to China, that would not be fun.  For now I have my fan right by my bed and it gets turned on several times a night.  I also have my handheld fan (Darcy, you would be so proud).

Second of all, I am crazy busy.  I am still doing my Swedish class, Bible study, house chores, chaufer, cook and normal everyday things, while trying to get all the stuff ready to travel.  I feel like my brain is on overload (the tiredness adds to that I am sure).

Thirdly, we will be traveling to China on May 11th and returning May 26th (we think).  Everything is preliminary.  We are still looking to receive that wonderful TA (travel approval).  We will be picking up our Visas tomorrow from the Chinese Embassy in Gothenburg.  It is hard to believe that after waiting to adopt for over 3 years, we will be traveling in a month!  Needless to say we are excited beyond words.  I can't wait to be the mommy of two boys and hold my David (even though he will probably be terrified of me and think I am a crazy woman).  Sam gets more and more excited everyday.  Now, David might think that Sam is a crazy boy....and he would be right.  However, I think that David will really like him.  Sam alreadly loves his brother.

So this is life right now. I will try to snap a few pics and get them up.  Spring has arrived here in Sweden.  It is always a welcome relief to see the flowers emerge out of the previously frozen earth.  The sun has started to warm this tundra and we are all very thankful for the change.  As we press on towards Easter, Spring is a good reminder that Christ renewed hope with his reserection. How thankful I am for that salvation which he offers.  Take some time and reflect on the road that Jesus traveled so many years ago to the cross.  We see it from this side of time when we know the triumph of the outcome, but try to look at it from the other side for a moment. Remember that for 3 days it was dark and the disciples thought the world was lost forever.  I pray that it gives you the joy and thankfulness that it has given me.