A snapshot into what her future held...

A snapshot into what her future held...
Zhukovka, Russia

Monday, September 12, 2011

Volleyball and Victory!

Saturday was Karis' first-ever volleyball game, and this mom and dad are so proud of her! She played well, but more than anything, her courage is what impressed us most. She went out onto unfamiliar territory (away game), not always knowing the rules of the game nor what all of the volleyball terminology meant. Regardless, she tried, and she succeeded... huge milestone!

Karis has an inner "drive" that is inspiring, even to me, her 37-year-old mother. When people tell us what a blessing we are to Karis for adopting her (an older child), I have to laugh- they have no idea how she blesses us. Karis is a... joy, and I cannot imagine life without her now. That's the funny thing about life, we become comfortable with the "norm"... which is the normal we create for ourselves. Then, throw in an adoption curve ball, whoa, your life, and your family's life acquires a... "new norm". That's what we spent the summer working through... adjusting (fairly easily) to the "new norm". Now, however, it feels as if Karis has been in our family forever. It's all very normal. Not only is Karis reaching milestones, now that she's in a functioning family, but her mom and dad are, too! We now understand that curve balls, a "new norm", and adaptability are all actually very good things... all designed for our personal growth.

Just as Karis was courageous getting out on the volleyball court Saturday, I'm so very thankful God allowed Kevin and I to be courageous growing our family. I look forward to many more milestones... amongst us all.

Friday, September 9, 2011

Stability releases Ability

I just heard Joyce Meyer say this on TV... STABILITY RELEASES ABILITY. With a cup of coffee, each morning, I faithfully watch Joyce after getting the kids on the bus. She has an amazing ministry and annointing.

Lately, however, I've been listening, but my spirit has been critical. My faith has been shaken. My emotions have been heightened. Why? I have to believe God is working a BIG plan in our family, and satan is doing everything in his power to deture, distract, and divide. Yesterday, I worked in the morning, so I couldn't meet up with my prayer gals, but they went ahead and met and prayed for our family. The result... last night, I opened the Bible and began reading. I haven't done this in quite awhile, because I always feel that others can teach me better than I can learn through reading. NOT TRUE. By reading the Bible, an instant peace is felt, and God speaks directly to us. Why wouldn't we (me) want to listen to God? I suppose satan has been distracting me from it. Anyhow, I went to bed pondering what I had read, and God gave me awesome dreams, as a result. I woke up with energy, re-newed love for my family, and peace.

I have to be honest, after a wonderful summer of adjusting to our new daughter in the family, the start of fall has been more challenging. It isn't because of her, she is amazing! It has definitely been me. I have this thing some of you can relate to called... "Mom Guilt". I find myself asking, "Am I doing enough for Karis?" "Am I doing enough to meet Evan and Karrigan's needs?" "Am I doing enough in my career to plan financially for the future?" "Am I being a good friend?" I go through all of this in my head daily, and it simply needs to STOP. There is nothing wrong with asking the questions, but dwelling on them is not what God wants or intends. I've been a dweller.

God told me this morning that I AM doing enough, and he used Joyce as the vehicle. Her statement spoke to my spirit and actually woke it up! Kevin and I are doing what He asked of us... we adopted an orphan child, and we are giving her STABILITY. This is something she didn't have a lot of in Russia; therefore, by us giving her stability, it is releasing her ABILITY. Boy oh boy does this child have ability! She is good at pretty much everything she tries! Her English is coming along wonderfully, she is playing volleyball for the school, and classmates are asking her to hang-out! God has a big plan for Karis, and stability is the start of her success. It's the simple things God uses that grow this child that we don't even think about... things such as Karis watching her dad get up EVERY morning and go to work. Also, Karis is watching me get her and her brother and sister up each morning for school, complete with packing lunches for everyone and making breakfast. Here I feel sometimes as if I'm not doing enough, yet it's the general day-to-day "stuff" that she needs and enjoys observing. Why oh why satan, have I been letting you steal my peace?!!!

I love my life, I am very blessed, and I AM doing enough. Watching my healthy, happy kids grow, thrive in school, thrive in sports and friendships... all because God has blessed us with... stability.

John 16:33
I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.

Isaiah 33:6
He will be the sure foundation for your times, a rich store of salvation and wisdom and knowledge; the fear of the LORD is the key to this treasure.

Bryansk Home

Bryansk Home
My two favorite colors together seem to be common in Bryansk homes.