Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Smoke Detectors and Kia's

Smoke detectors and Kia's...what could these things have in common?

Well, they are the tools Satan uses against me. Anytime Joe and I begin to really buckle down on the budget and tithing, the Kia (or our other ghetto fabulous vehicle) goes out...and not just goes out, but catastrophically falls apart, always costing a thousand dollars or more. It was the story of our summer. And it happened again the day before we submitted our adoption application. To start the process, it costs right around $3000. To pay for the Kia, $1500. Blah!

The other thorn in my side is smoke detectors. You'd think being married to a firefighter would help me in this situation, but it does not. Always.in.the.middle.of.the.night. When Joe is away at work, the chirping starts or even better, the full blown alarm mode at 2 am. Coming from the demon possessed one at the top of the vaulted ceiling. Thankfully my children can sleep through anything, (except my phone alarm vibrating at 4:30am), so they are always untethered. But kid you not, the night before the application was turned in.

Needless to say, although it sounds like frat house warfare, I do believe it is spiritual warfare. My biggest weakness is apathy, which comes when I am tired, frustrated, or feeling small. These attacks, although annoying and derailing at times only prove this is worth fighting for. Caring for "the least of these" has eternal significance, otherwise Satan wouldn't care.

"You were running a good race. Who cut in on you and kept you from obeying the truth? That kind of persuasion does not come from the one who calls you." Galatians 5:7, 8

My prayer is that I don't doubt what the Lord has called our family to. He was clear in the message and has been faithful in the details. From the moment we stepped out and announced we were adopting, it has been one attack after another. I am not trying to sugar coat it, it has been more personal and deep than stupid cars and chirping appliances, but He is faithful. This is only the beginning and I know Satan is not done, but I am grateful to be serving a God who has already won the battle.

"I know that you can do all things, no plan of yours can be thwarted." Job 42:2

So, despite money being siphoned from our account and the deafening 2 am slap in the face, we went forward.

"We know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose." Romans 8:28

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

The Why

"No eye has seen, no ear has heard, no mind has conceived what God has prepared for those who love him." 1Corinthians 2:9

January 2010. Life was so good...a new decade, we love our jobs, we love our house, we love our church, the twins (the 'all-boy' boy and the beautiful princess) turned 3 and are becoming funnier by the day. What more could we want? We were content, happy, and feeling like we were settling into a good place.

Then...Haiti, January 12, 2010.

With the devastation came pictures, like this one:

These children had to sleep outside because their orphanage building was compromised. 3 year olds, just like Brody and Annabelle. Alone, cold, scared, no mom or dad to tuck them in, hold them, and whisper that everything would be just fine. We felt helpless, we have room, we have blankets, we have warm beds, we have food, we have love to give. God stirred our hearts for adoption.

"Religion that God our Father accepts as pure and faultless is this: to look after orphans and widows in their distress." James 1:27

We spent the next year trying to save money and pray what our next step would be. Our prayer, from a Hillsong song became "break my heart for what breaks yours, everything I am for your kingdoms cause."

"Heal my heart and make it clean

Open up my eyes to the things unseen

Show me how to love like you have loved me

Break my heart for what breaks yours

Everything I am for your kingdoms cause

As I go from earth in to


Hosanna, Hosanna,

Hosanna in the highest."

Hillsong United, Hosanna

God quickly led us to Ethiopia. Ethiopia is a country with almost 5 million orphaned children primarily due to the AIDS epidemic, famine, and poverty of the country. 80% of the population lives on less than $2 a day. 10% of children will die before their 5th birthday. Children are not likely to go to school or have access to clean drinking water. The situation is even more dire for young girls. The options for a young, uneducated girl are prostitution or a lifetime of sexual abuse. It is overwhelming and we began to feel helpless again. We can't help millions of children, but then we realized we could help one and that is one less orphan.

"From everyone who has been given much, much will be demanded; and from the one who has been entrusted with much, much more will be asked." Luke 12:48

So on January 12, 2011 (1 year after the Haitian earthquake that moved the earth and our hearts) we submitted our application to adopt a child (or children) from Ethiopia. We believe God's picture of our family is not yet complete and we will begin a season of making our way to the rest of Team Sims.

"I remain confident of this: I will see the goodness of the LORD in the land of the living." Psalm 27:13