Hey everybody! Whew! What a wonderful whirlwind this week has ween...oops, I mean been :) I don't even know where to start! I think I've looked at our daughter a thousand times since Wednesday. She is so beautiful! I can't wait to show her off to all of you :) Thank you SO MUCH to all of you who have been so excited for us. The day we found out, my neighbor Amy brought over a balloon bouquet (pink...I love it!!!) and Carrie, with her own three African princes and princess, brought over pink cookies. I have been so blessed with the e-mails and blog comments. I would love to print them all off in a book for our daughter one day. We will see if that just is a good thought, or if it will actually come to fruition. I am very good at good thoughts :) Speaking of that, I think I made a promise I need to make good on--our daughter's name. Well, because she is not officially our daughter until we pass court, I cannot tell you here Ethiopian name, but I will tell you the other. As far as we know, unless we change our mind in the next several months, our daughter will be Selah Joy [Ethiopian name] Black. Isn't it perfect? You can tell us if you agree, if not, just do what your mom taught you and, well, you know :) The reason we selected two middle names is because we want her to have her Ethiopian name, and we wanted her to have our family tradition of biblical "J" middle names as well. Since Jezebel wasn't the nicest character in the Bible and Jael is a little too gory, we thought Joy was perfect. May our new daughter mark a transition in our family's life, filled with joy and closeness with our Savior. We can't wait for her to join us!!!
Speaking of joy....we had two HUGE blessings today. First, traveling families got home yesterday and two have already promised pictures of referred babies/children within the day. I can't tell you how many times I've already checked the computer since I read that. Second, we got a blessing that just about knocked our socks off.
Last night we got a text from the lead pastor at Crossroads asking for our remaining adoption expenses. Then, at church this morning, he had Karl get up and speak about our little one (I wish I could have shown pictures!) and what the plan was for the next couple of months. Pastor Marc went on to ask for the congregation's financial help and pledged $1000.00 from his publishing company personally. He said very eloquently that we cannot save the continent of Africa, but we can save this one child. Because of his generosity and desire to help, and the generosity of our church family, we are now $4000+ closer to having the adoption paid for!!! PRAISE THE LORD!!!!! When Karl and I started this journey, we thought we would be repaying the bank for several years. Now, that will not be the case. Again, PRAISE THE LORD!!!!
Thank you to all of you who have given so generously to us. In monetary ways, as well as with your prayers and words of encouragement and time and in other ways....we are blown away by the goodness of God shown through His people! We are also pumped because this giving to us personally will also allow us to give more generously to the Transition Home where referred America World children/babies go as well as the orphanages that America World helps support. Because of the worldwide food crisis, Ethiopia is in dire straits, and the orphanages and Transition Home are also having a shortage of essential items. We plan on filling two tubs full of donations, much of which will be formula, vitamins, and other requested items. We will keep you posted on this as the time grows closer.
Again, thanks for everything! I will try to get back to posting the "Hope Lives" study tomorrow and we'll just be a week behind. I'm sure you all understand a little lapse in the plan :)
Red Letters campaign- Adoption Journal