Monday, August 24, 2009

In The Face of Adversity

Although my current condition doesn't present a ton of adversity...I chased a rabbit down this path in my Bible study time this morning. I believe it is important for me to continuously meditate on these types of scriptures, even during the good times. Romans 10:17 says, "Faith come by hearing, and hearing by the Word of God."

Proverbs 24:10
If you faint in the day of adversity, your strength is small. AMP

Proverbs 24:10
If you fall to pieces in a crisis, there wasn't much to you in the first place. MSG

Psalm 34:19
Many are the afflictions of the righteous: but the Lord delivereth him out of them all. AMP

"Success is not measured by what you accomplish, but by the opposition you have encountered, and the courage with which you have maintained the struggle against overwhelming odds." - Orison Sweet Marden

“The ultimate measure of a man is not where he stands in moments of comfort and convenience, but where he stands at times of challenge and controversy.” –MLK Jr.

Psalm 94:12-16

12 Blessed (happy, fortunate, to be envied) is the man whom You discipline and instruct, O Lord, and teach out of Your law,

13 That You may give him power to keep himself calm in the days of adversity, until the [inevitable] pit of corruption is dug for the wicked.

14 For the Lord will not cast off nor spurn His people, neither will He abandon His heritage.

15 For justice will return to the [uncompromisingly] righteous, and all the upright in heart will follow it.

16 Who will rise up for me against the evildoers? Who will stand up for me against the workers of iniquity?

Isaiah 30:20-21

20 And though the Lord gives you the bread of adversity and the water of affliction, yet your Teacher will not hide Himself any more, but your eyes will constantly behold your Teacher.

21 And your ears will hear a word behind you, saying, This is the way; walk in it, when you turn to the right hand and when you turn to the left.

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Father's Day

I must admit, I never fully understood what this holiday celebrated on the third Sunday in June truly meant until this year. I have always bought my dad a card and gave him a customary “Happy Father’s Day” phone call. As a son you can never truly have an appreciation for what being a father means. However, this Father’s Day was different for me. This one allowed me to view this day from a father’s perspective.

I woke up as usual to the precious “get me out of this bed” sounds of our awaking baby. I put him in the bed with us to roll around a little bit before we were to get ready and head off to church. Then Amy quietly delivered a bag full of Father’s Day goodies from her hiding spot somewhere in another room which included a precious card and a crayon drawing including an outline of Simeon’s tiny hand. I couldn’t help it, as much as I tried my eyes filled up and I couldn’t really say anything. I think I managed a weak, “thank you” in an effort to prevent a larger cry scene.

This was a day I’ll never forget. Of course, Amy has managed to one-up me by being in Kolkata at Mother Teresa’s home on Mother’s Day. I don’t think that one will ever be topped!

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Having A Blast With Our Baby Boy!!

At this point I’m not even sure why I have a blog if I’m only going to be updating it every 2 months (even though I’m trying to slow down enough to make time)!

Believe it or not, we have now been home for a month with our baby Simeon. I can’t even describe how much joy and love he has brought into our lives. God has blessed us beyond words and I can’t believe He chose us to parent this incredible little buddy. I was smitten before I ever met him and now he has us both thoroughly wrapped around his tiny little fingers.

It seems impossible, but after all of the gut-wrenching time of waiting for the moment we could finally get on a plane (or four) and show up in his hometown of Kolkata to pick him up, the severity of the pain has almost been forgotten somehow now that he is here. Before we left I told Amy that anyone who said you’d forget the pain is ridiculous. The wait was probably the most difficult time of our lives. However, it now truly feels like a distant memory.

There is so much that I could write about. Like how he says NANA when he is hungry, to how he is taking a few steps now and trying to walk, to how he has learned to wave and copy our actions, to how great it feels when he wakes up in the morning and peers over the side of his pack and play and makes whining sounds until I wake up and put him in the bed with us. I could write a book about our trip to India (which isn’t out of the question). However, for now I’ll just say how thankful and blessed I feel. I already have the greatest wife in the world and now I have the most incredible little boy, straight from the heart of God.

We are having a blast!!!

Friday, April 10, 2009

April Fools! Not!!!

Well, after my last post I really felt like a new season was on its way.  I am happy to report that it has begun to show up!


Last Wednesday, April 1 we received a call from our caseworker that went something like this…“Clint, how are you?” I answered, “I am very well, how are you?”  She replied, “Do you want to give your wife the good news or do you want me too?”  I thought about it for a split second and said, “Let’s both!  I will call her first and let the shouting subside, and then you can follow up with a call in about 10 minutes.”  It was the call that we have been waiting for since we began the process over two years ago.  The judge had approved our case!  That call allowed us to have a day of celebration that we really needed.  Of course after I called Amy she was overjoyed but still had the wherewithal to say, “This better not be an April fools joke!”  I was happy to convince her that it was not!

After all the excitement sunk in, we also understood that we still needed the judge to sign off on the guardianship papers.  This process typically takes a week.  Thankfully we got the word on the 8th that this had also happened!!!  Now we are both breathing easier now that we are out of the courts and things are out of their hands.  I have described to people that I felt as though we had a large boulder at the crest of a hill and we were just standing there holding it in place for several months.  Now it feels like we have topped the hill and the boulder is now rolling downhill and is picking up speed.  Now we can just plan our trip and enjoy the journey!!!  God is so faithful!

Below is a scripture that we quoted probably a thousand times during our wait thus far.  Especially verse 5…Enjoy!

Proverbs 3:4-8 (The Message)

 3-4 Don't lose your grip on Love and Loyalty. 
   Tie them around your neck; carve their initials on your heart.
Earn a reputation for living well
   in God's eyes and the eyes of the people.

5-12 Trust God from the bottom of your heart; 
   don't try to figure out everything on your own.
Listen for God's voice in everything you do, everywhere you go;
   he's the one who will keep you on track.
Don't assume that you know it all.
   Run to God! Run from evil!
Your body will glow with health,
   your very bones will vibrate with life!
Honor God with everything you own;
   give him the first and the best.
Your barns will burst,
   your wine vats will brim over.
But don't, dear friend, resent God's discipline;
   don't sulk under his loving correction.
It's the child he loves that
 God corrects; 
   a father's delight is behind all this.

Friday, March 20, 2009

A New Season

Well, today is the first day of spring here in the northern hemisphere and by all accounts it is exactly what the first day of spring should look like.  A cloud does not exist is the skies overhead, the sky is the bluest of blue, the birds are chirping delightfully, the temperature is much more bearable, and the grass seems to have grown three inches overnight.  Actually, my lawnmowerand I could do without the growing grass.

This year spring feels more symbolic to me than in years past.  This year spring brings with it a new gleam.  It carries new meanings and new expectations.  Gone are the days of grey clouds, dead surroundings, and cold atmosphere.  Gone are the disappointments of missed court dates and heart break.  Moved out are the days of stationary bike syndrome!  You peddle fast and get lots of exercise but go nowhere. 

Song of Solomon 2:11-13 (The Message) says this:

Look around you: Winter is over; 
   the winter rains are over, gone!
Spring flowers are in blossom all over. 
   The whole world's a choir—and singing!
Spring warblers are filling the forest 
   with sweet arpeggios.
Lilacs are exuberantly purple and perfumed, 
   and cherry trees fragrant with blossoms.

I think the following link is appropriate...          

Friday, December 12, 2008

Merry Christmas Already?

Well, I’m not so proud of myself for letting two months go by without blogging. I haven’t slowed down enough to really gather my thoughts. However, I am at home today drinking a colossal cup of coffee and that helps!

Christmas is now fast approaching. It’s hard to comprehend that it is already less than two weeks away. We have been enjoying our Christmas d├ęcor and shopping for others. Thankfully we have been finished up with shopping for a couple of weeks and haven’t really had to brave the crazy mall areas. Good job by us, for not procrastinating this year.

With the holidays staring us in the face, I can’t help but think of what it would be like to have our Simeon here with us on Christmas morning. To put him in a snuggly little outfit and play with toys in the floor with him, while watching his reaction to everything. It is almost impossible to think of what it will feel like to be able to pick him up and hold him and love on him at any time. I know that this Christmas is going to be a little different from any other. It is hard to describe the feeling of knowing your baby is so close to being home, but yet he isn’t. He is literally on the other side of the world.

His personalized stocking hangs front and center on our mantle and he already has ornaments on the tree. His room is ready to go and his clothes are hanging in the closet or folded neatly in the chest of drawers. The picture is coming together, but it will not be complete until he is here with us. With that being said, we remain hopeful that we are closer than we even know. We may be in for a New Year’s surprise! We are thankful that God has brought him into our lives and is preparing our hearts. We are blessed beyond words. We are also very thankful that other families are able to be with their little ones this Christmas.

Merry Christmas! Now, time for more coffee and to get busy.

Monday, October 6, 2008

Pause and Review

As I sit here and write, it is way past my bed time, but my thoughts will not currently allow me to sleep. Rarely is my sleep stolen away by my melancholy thoughts and emotions, however, that personality inclination has a tendency to flare up from time to time.

Ever have a day where everything is a little bit sadder, where you feel great compassion for people who you are around often, but don’t usually feel that way toward them? You know…that guy that you see at church who really has no friends or family and is going through a tough time? You think about how you should be reaching out to him, but you get “so busy”. What about when you just can’t stop thinking about your family and all the memories that are shelved in the pantry of your mind? You try to sleep but you just can’t stop sifting through the times past. You pray that they are okay but you really wish you could just wrap your arms around them. Ever have a day where you hold your spouse a little tighter in thankfulness and gratitude? Where you ponder about the remainder of your life together and what God has in store for you.

That has been my condition today. I know it is just one of the ways that God sometimes realigns our life perspectives. I know much of it has to do with the fact that we are in the final days before our little boy will be with his forever family and it has been a long wait to get to this point. We both want so badly to bring Simeon home and take care of him and give him all that he would ever need, but more waiting remains and it can take a bit of a toll. Deep down you don’t really want to have emotional times like this, but I believe they are often God ordained. He is teaching us what love is and is really preparing our hearts for more of Him. He is preparing us for the rest of our lives. This is just a reflective pause and review I guess.