Look at the birds of the air; they do not sow or reap or store away in barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not much more valuable than they? -Matthew 6:26

As we walk through this adventure called life, we remind ourselves that we are all precious children of our Father-- those of us who have walked a little further down the road striving to guide those who have been entrusted to our care for a time. Here is our journey down this path.

Sunday, May 11, 2014

Happy Mother's Day

My heart now walks around in FIVE pieces.  Blessed.

Friday, May 9, 2014

Day 5

This was by far my favorite day....D did well, we had a wonderful lunch with a new friend...and we were going HOME. :)

We ran an errand to a hotel with our driver--really nice place, so snapped a few shots there.  Family and friends.

Pictures from the balcony at the Garden Palace restaurant.  

Trying to capture the experience of driving in Addis.

Pictures will never do it justice....you just have to experience it!

Security system at the guest house. :)


Guest house....

If the kids were the sweetest memory I have, the sheep truly left the biggest spiritual impression on me. I keep thinking about these images in my head.  The sheep.  The sacrifice.  The Son.  It just seems so much more real this way.

All of these waiting to be sold, to be sacrificed.  Unknowing what their immediate future holds.  Ignorantly waiting.  But, the reality of the one who was sold and sacrificed when he KNEW what was about to happen.  And not only knew but willingly CHOSE to do it.  For us.  For me.  I don't ever want to forget these sheep.

It seems that sheep have been a recurring theme in my spiritual understanding and growth.  When we were adopting C, we found out the meaning of her name (New + Happiness= future of happiness) while at a women's conference.  I then went to a talk where the speaker explained that the shepherd knows us by NAME and calls us by the name of who we really are....tears, of course.  
There was another time when a guest preacher explained the significance of the term the Lamb of God--the Savior of the World.  Starting with Abraham and Isaac--the ram replaced 1 boy,  the Passover Lamb saved the firstborn in each family before the Israelites left Egypt, then the scapegoat tradition was done yearly to 'cast off' the sins of a community, then priests would sacrifice lambs and other animals to gain forgiveness for the Jews.  Then Jesus.  When Jesus appeared, John said, “Look, the Lamb of God, who takes away the sin of the world!"  
The WHOLE world.  What a savior.  And what a reminder it must be to the beautiful people of Ethiopia to celebrate Easter with such a tradition.
More recently, at an adoption conference, the amazing speaker told us about 'green pastures' like in Psalm 23.  There's a great explanation here if you are interested, but it isn't what you picture.  Basically, the 'green pasture' is small bits of grass on a rocky hillside.  Each sheep listens for the shepherds voice to tell him where his next bite is...the bite that will sustain him for right now.  Until the shepherd shows him the next bite.  That's not what I want my 'green pasture' to be like.  I imagine lying in the sun, relaxing, and being quiet and content.  Well, I guess I should have realized a long time ago, life isn't like that.  I need each bite--one at a time--to sustain me.  And I have a good shepherd who guides and leads me - even through the rough transition of adoption - to that next energy giving, life sustaining, savior dependent bite.  I was feeling weary, but not hopeless.  And our faithful guide has continued to bring us through these days--dependent on him.  That's a good place to be.

Day 4 Pictures

Day 4 was the day neither of us felt well in the morning....so we rested some.  Thanks, Daddy, for taking the lovely picture.

We were able to muster the strength to go to the coffee ceremony back at the foster home.
The traditional set up and grass mat.  Roasting coffee beans.

Lovely Sister.  Such a treasure in this woman who loves these kids so well.

Cutting the dabo.

Of the whole trip...these were the sweetest moments.  This is the sweet boy we now know.  The relationships between these children still amaze me....(I have more pictures, but can't put ones with their faces, so these will have to do...)

Eating the dabo with buddies.  (Can't show the buddies....but trust me, they are all precious!)

Pouring and serving the coffee in the traditional cups.

Wonderful Eshetu....loved that he was there with us for this occasion.

You can't see it very well, but if you look closely there are about a million crumbs where the kids had eaten.

Saying goodbye.

These are some pictures around and in the guest house...from the roof.
And from the balcony....

From the window....

And my husband, the engineer....documenting the engineering....