Friday, April 6, 2012

The Stuff of Life

A man is what he thinks about all day long.
~Ralph Waldo Emerson

If you stop me in public and ask for a picture of Sterling, this is the picture I will share with you. This image captures what she gives us everyday. Can you imagine what she might be thinking? What would it be like... to be a baby among 150, an orphan in a nation of over 700,000 abandoned babies (Unicef, 2010), and then suddenly find yourself a single person surrounded by a Mother, a Father, a Sister, and a big Brother?

How much would your life change?

Our daughter knows us. She has special gestures, expressions, and sounds for each one of us. When I come home from work, she leans into me and smiles. Each time this happens, I realize that I am living in forever.

What lies behind you 
and what lies in front of you, 
pales in comparison to what lies inside of you.
Ralph Waldo Emerson

These days are incredible. Watching these three gives me hope without limit, and love without boundary. We did not chose any of these children. Caleb was born to us, Aleksandra was chosen for us by an official, and Sterling was matched with us based on our dossier information by a beaurocracy. When we watch them together... Kellie and I see the provision of God. These three are fully ours. These three are brothers and sisters. I am blessed to live in a house of miracles.

Life has given more to us than we deserve, and has taught us that what comes our way is often more than what is expected. We may come down for a breakfast of bacon and eggs... and find that the first day of April has given us smiles, courtesy of a mom with whimsey (marshmallow cream, a yellow M&M, and two small pretzels). 

We awaken to sounds that vary from laughter, screams, running feet, toilet lids slamming, children falling out of bed (BOOM), and many unexplained bumps in the night... and each of them reminds us that we are given these days to live together. We take these moments of transition and we do our best to daily embrace them. We strive to strengthen our ties to each other, our anchor to God, and we seek to work on our shortcomings. We know that soon the day will come that we will go. And so... we embrace today while we prepare for tomorrow.

Still round the corner there may wait, A new road or a secret gate.
J. R. R. Tolkien

My favorite little feet rockin some tiny Toms. ~ Kellie
We are a family on the move. We have our eyes set on where we intend to be in 15 months. We are Convergent Missionaries-- meaning that we are shifting every aspect of our lives to reach that goal. And we daily press toward the mark. We do this simply because our belief compels us to do so. The miracles that we have experienced in our house... can be experienced by countless others. The world is overflowing with orphans. And the world has people who can love them. 

When we reach out to a child... we save ourselves.

But God doesn't call us to be comfortable. 

He calls us to trust Him so completely 
that we are unafraid to put ourselves in situations 
where we will be in trouble if He doesn't come through. 
Francis Chan, Crazy Love

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