Saturday, December 31, 2011


Mid December, Jon was up in the middle of the night with heartburn.  I had sent him a link from a blog that someone had posted with a little girl (8 years old) who was telling her story of what it was like to be in an orphanage and what the little kids really wish for.  A Mama and a Daddy.  It was the sweetest video!  He watched it and he started to look at the blog it was posted on which is where he found the information for a Foundation that gave adoption grants.  He started reading and discovered that they had received a large grant.  He immediately felt like God had placed this foundation in his path.  He had a peace that something great was about to happen.  The next day, he told me that this is a grant that we need to look into.  We started to look and realized that we needed not just information from us but references and information from our pastor.  We had about a week and things were coming together.  Our references and our pastor was able to get the necessary information in by the deadline which was the 20th of December.  We received an e-mail confirmation that all of our paperwork was in and would be reviewed and we would have an answer by mid January.
Last night, Jon and I were talking at dinner about the grant and he was telling me that someone else had gotten a grant from them and received an e-mail saying Congratulations etc etc.  I had received a phone call from a friend and went upstairs and decided to check my e-mail.  I opened it up and there it was.....CONGRATULATIONS FROM JSC FOUNDATION

We were blessed with an amazing grant!!!  As you can imagine we were ecstatic, shocked and still are in shock.  We woke up this morning wondering if we are in a dream.  Nope, not a dream.  It is just that God has blessed us tremendously!!  More than we could have ever imagined.  He has been behind the scenes the entire time.  We have seen his mighty hand on every step of our journey.  We took a huge leap of faith and knew that God would provide.  But this, we just never expected.  Thank you God!!  God is sooooooo good!  If you have faith, anything is possible with God.

Monday, December 26, 2011

We have been approved for Both Hands!!

Religion that God our Father accepts as pure and faultless is this: to look after orphans and widows in their distress and to keep oneself from being polluted by the world.  James 1:27

Right before our fundraiser in November, we recieved our approval notice for Both Hands.  Both Hands is a non profit organization with a two fold mission.  They help in a practical way by allowing us to help in our own community by helping a widow with her home and allowing us to raise funds for our adoption.  We are really excited to be able to have this opportunity.  I have had a chance to talk to JT Olsen, the founder of Both Hands.  He is AMAZING!!!  I will include a link for you to view.  He has an amazing story of how he got to where he is now.  Take a look.

Here is how it works:

We will be serving a widow from our Church, Linda Nielson.  We are really blessed to work with her.  We will develop a team of family, friends and anyone interested in serving to help do whatever she needs to help with her home.  We are planning on doing the project towards the end of  January or early/mid February 2012.  We will plan to work on her home for one day, a Saturday.  And just like a 5K or MS150, our team members will get sponsors to help support our mission.  Jon and I will be doing the same.  The funds that are donated will go into an account through Lifesong for Orphans which will be used for our adoption.  100% of what we raise will help bring Piper home!!  Lifesong for Orphans will issue tax receipts for anyone who would like them also.   We will go to local businesses to also see what they are willing to help donate for Linda's home.  We are really excited to be able to serve and help Linda with her home.  What a tremendous blessing for her and for us!! 

God has called us to our adoption and it is so neat how through this process we have been called to help a widow too.  Just as we are instructed from the Bible.  God wants us to help widows and orphans.  There are 150 million orphans in the world.  I know that we cannot help all of them but knowing that we can help give one a chance at life, a family, a future, love, share the love of God with her etc etc.  This is an amazing gift for Piper!!  I know that we will have tough times and it is not going to be easy, but I know that God will be with us and I know he will not give us more than we can handle.  It is amazing to see how we can all come together to be able to help an orphan.  If you are interested in helping us with our Both Hands Project please feel free to e-mail or contact me  We thank you in advance for your support and for your help! 

Saturday, December 17, 2011

Fingerprint Appointment

Yesterday we had our fingerprint appointment to complete our I800A.  We had to go to the USCIS in Philadelphia to have a second set of fingerprints done.  We were excited to go because it just means that we are getting one step closer to Piper.  We now need to wait for a form to come in the mail --797.  Once we get this form, we need to have our documents that we have been gathering state certified in Harrisburg.  After they are state certified, we will need to send our documents to New York to be authenticated.  Once we recieve them back, our paperwork will go to our agency for them to review and if everything looks good, our paperwork will be sent to China.  We are getting closer!  Praying we see our little girl soon :) 

Friday, December 16, 2011

Pictures from Our Fundraiser

I am posting some pictures from our fundraiser.  It really was a great night!  We are so thankful for everyone who came out to support us.  We also want to thank all of the businesses who graciously donated raffle items.  Thank you to all who volunteered to help make our event run.  We could not have done it without you!

Thank you to the following businesses who donated raffle items:
Dairy Queen
Texas Roadhouse
Moccia's Train Stop
Buck Nurseries Christmas Tree Farm
KB Portraits
Spring Mountain Ski Area
Evergreen Consignment
Iron Pigs
Lords & Ladies
Kelly's Worldclass Automotive
Boiron Basket
Sweet & Sassy
Vera Bradley
The Sparrow Fund
Bounce U
Arnolds Family Fun Center
Jungle Wonder
Monkey Joes
Chantilly Floral
Salon Supreme
Philly Soft Pretzel in Trappe
Hatfield Quality Meats
Landis Supermarket
Johanna with Mary Kay & A Salon gift certificate
Rental World
Harleysville Rental

Bake Sale


Sam Sandler's Magic Display

Isabella and Ava made bracelets and Christmas Ornaments that they were selling to help raise funds for their sister.  They were so excited for this night!!

This is a poster that Isabella and Ava made on their own.  I was so shocked when they came to show the sign to me.  They put so much thought into this poster for the fundraiser.  The little children at the bottom are the kids in the orphanage.  They drew Piper on the other side of the world.  We have been discussing how it is daytime there when we go to bed.  The building is the orphanage.  They are so excited for their sister to come home.  They cannot wait to see her!!  They love her already :)

Glitter Tattoos

Texas Roadhouse donated Pulled Pork Sandwiches and even had someone working to serve the food!  They were amazing!  Oh and there is the cotton candy table.  We made it all inside of our house!!  Sam Sandler even came over before the show to give us a hand!!

Saturday, November 26, 2011


Well I posted on Thursday evening, and Friday, Jon went out to get the mail.  He came in and got me right away.  There they were right on top of the pile--two envelopes with our appointments for our 2nd set of fingerprints.  We will go in two weeks and then wait for our 797, which is the approval from the United States to bring Piper back to the US.  We are getting close to sending our paperwork.  We are getting so excited!!!!  Praise God!!!  Thank you for your continued prayers for our journey and for Piper. 

Friday, November 25, 2011

Happy Thanksgiving!!!

Happy Thanksgiving to you!  This holiday always makes me take a look at all of the many things that we truly are thankful for.   We had a wonderful day with our family today.  We are truly thankful for the journey that God has led us on towards the adoption of our little girl.  We could not help but think of her today and also feel that our family is somewhat incomplete.  We think of her and pray for her often.  We wonder what she is doing now and who is taking care of her.  What is her life like right now?  So many things go through our minds.  It is also so neat to see that our girls are so excited for their sister.  They asked today if she will be home for Christmas.  We of course had to say that we are hoping maybe next Christmas that she will be here.  They are always drawing pictures for her and leaving little notes behind that say "I love Piper"  Just makes my heart melt when I see this.  They love her so much and they do not even know her yet. 

Last Saturday we had our Caring Carnival fundraiser.  It was truly amazing.  There were so many people who came out, a lot who we did not know.  We had a total of 371 people that came out.  Jon and I tried to talk to a lot of the people there.  It was so encouraging to us to see how people found out about our fundraiser.  I heard one person saying that they recieved a flyer at the Parade.  We had found out about the parade last minute and ended up walking in it and yes we handed out 1,000 flyers that night with our friends and family.  We prayed that those who needed to see it and be there would come.  It is so neat to see how God works.  Then Jon had talked to someone else who had read our blog and just had to come.  I have also connected with an adoption mom's group.  I connected with a friend through this group who is at about the same point as us.  They ended up driving 1 hour and a half to come!!!  It was neat to meet her and her family.  I also met another person from this group too that night.  She has her little girl.  It was so neat to meet her and her family.  There were others that came a distance to come support us as well.  I was amazed by this.  We had many friends and family that came and helped with set up, unloading, running the booths and then cleanup.  We are truly grateful for all of the help we recieved.  We could not have done it without all of you!!  It was a tremendous blessing to us to see all that came out to support us.  We are so blessed to be able to say that we raised $3500 that night. 

Right now, we have sent in our I800A asking permission to bring our daughter home to the United States.  We are waiting for our appointment to come in the mail for our 2nd set of fingerprints.  I race to check the mailbox everyday.  Praying it comes soon!!!

Friday, November 18, 2011


Well it's finally here our Fundraiser is tomorrow night!! If anyone is looking for something fun to do tomorrow night, join us and the Hilarious Magic of Sam Sandler at Christ Church of the Valley (movie church) Games for the kids with prizes, food (hot dogs, pulled pork sliders made by Texas Roadhouse, pasta salad, soft pretzels, cotton candy, baked goods, water and juice boxes) Glitter tattoos, Balloon animals, raffles. Doors open at 5:30pm for festivities and the show will start at 7:00pm TICKETS WILL BE AVAILABLE AT THE DOOR!!! Adults are $8 and kids under 10 are $5. Its going to be a great night! 

We would like to thank ahead of time Sam Sandler, all the volunteers, all the businesses that have donated, and people that have joined us in this mission to help Piper Wenzel have a family.  God has blessed us in so many ways.  We are looking forward to updating all of you on our journey sometime after the fundraiser.

Hope to see you there tomorrow night!!

Saturday, October 29, 2011

Home Study Approval!!!

Our Home Study has been approved!!!!  We have recieved the signed, notarized copies.  We are now working on other paperwork that we can send in now that we have our Home study.  Our next step is completeting our I800A which is paperwork that we need to complete to send to ask approval to be able to bring our daughter into the United States.  Then we will need to get our fingerprints done again.  Once this set of paperwork has been sent in and approved, we can start to move towards getting our Dossier complete.  (Dossier is all of the paperwork that will be sent)  We have documents that we need to have state certified and then they need to be sent to be authenticated.  Once these steps are finished we can send our paperwork.  We have been extremely blessed with donations that we will be recieving.  We will have enough to pay for our I800A and our Dossier.
We are working hard to prepare for our fundraiser that is coming up on Saturday November 19th.  (see info below in previous post for details)  The proceeds from our fundraiser will help us to be able to pay our next large fee when we are matched with our daughter.  We are really excited and we have seen God working in this whole process. 
Jon and his brother Matt went out last Saturday to hang posters and hand out flyers.  I think that Matt thought it was going to be a difficult process but after prayer, they stepped out and they began to see God work.  They went to approximately 30 places and they were able to hang posters at almost all of them.  The best one that I heard about was at McDonalds.  It had a no solicitation sign at the door.  Jon was going to leave but his brother encouraged him and said you came here for a reason.  They went in and were able to hang their sign right above the no solicitation sign on the door!!  They recieved some donations that will be used for our raffles at our fundraiser.  Let me just say, we have been blown away by the generosity of these businesses that have been willing to donate to our event.  We are really excited for this event!!!
I do want to ask a favor of you.  Would you please help us get the word out about our fundraiser?  If you are planning on coming would you consider inviting friends.  You are not only helping us, you are helping us be able to bring our daughter home.  To give her a life that she needs.  We have flyers that we can get to you if you would like or we have a flyer in e-mail format that we could easily send to you.  Please let me know if you would be willing to help.  We are truly grateful for your prayers and support.

Monday, October 10, 2011


It has been a busy couple weeks.  We have spent a lot of time gathering paperwork for our dossier as well as meeting with the social worker for our home study.  We had our last home study meeting that took place at our home today. 

We have been working really hard to get everything together for our Fundraiser.  It is going to be exciting and definitely something we hope you all will share with us.
Our Fundraiser is going to be a Magic Show hosted by Sam Sandler.  Sam has appeared in theatres, churches, schools, homes, from Montana to Puerto Rico!!  He has also performed at the Tropicana Casino in Atlantic City, NJ, Been on Good Morning America, as a guest on Good Day Philadelphia!,  and the Academy of Music in Philadelphia.  To view a sample of Sam's performance please view the youtube link   It will be held on Saturday, November 19th at Christ Church of the Valley in Royersford.  Doors open at 5:30 pm for festivities and the show will begin at 7:00pm.   We are going to have food, free balloon animals, free kids games, glitter tattoos, and raffles with exciting prizes!!!  Don't think for one minute that this is just a kid's event.  Sam puts on a spectacular show and is great for all ages.  Tickets are on sale now Adults $8 each and Kids under 10 are each $5.  Please join us on this day and help bring home Piper.

Tickets can be purchased on the following website:

Sunday, September 25, 2011

Moving Full Speed Ahead

God’s purpose what is it?  Ever since Jon and I have discussed adoption with family, church, and friends it has been interesting to hear the responses we get.  Most are in favor and some are not.  I guess that is a typical response that anyone should receive.  Sometimes it hard to hear of someone else’s calling when it’s not a calling that you have received yourself.  All I know is that we are all different.  God uses our differences in life to fulfill his purpose.  We are now starting to realize God has a second purpose for this journey so far and many more up his sleeve I am sure.  The second calling is to share our journey that God has called us to do.  We have clearly stated to people that this is God’s calling and we have chosen to follow him.  It is going to be roller coaster ride with ups and downs and twists and turns.  One thing is for certain we will stay committed to our faith in God and trust his plans.
Last weekend Jon and I gathered all of the baby items from the house and packed them into the van and set off to sell them at a mommy market at Branch Creek Community Church.  I had realized that at this point in our lives that we were most likely going to adopt a child that was older than the baby stage.  I love babies and I know that Jon couldn’t believe how I just packed the items up and decided that I was going to sell them.  The Mommy  Market was a great day.  There were so many things that happended to me that day. 
As I drove to the Mommy Market, I was listening to some praise songs on the radio.  I felt a little emotional but in a good way.  I wasn't sad that we were selling the baby items.  I felt that God was giving me a peace about what I was doing that day.  I knew that he was going to be in control of the day.  I knew that he was preparing me for the journey to come.  I got the the church and they showed me where my table was going to be.  It happened to be next to a woman who had also previously adopted.  We had talked and shared stories.  It was great to be next to her.  As the morning progressed, I saw Alicia who is also in the process of adopting from Honduras.  I had just e-mailed her days prior but I had never met her before.  I saw her walking by and asked if that was her.  It was.  We hugged and talked some about the adopting and where we are in the process.  They had recently done a Both Hands project, where you help a widow and orphans.  I had e-mailed her to see if I could talk to her about this project.  We would really like to do this also.  We are going to be talking more about that soon. 
Soon after that, my friend Jenn passed by with her daughter that they had recently adopted.  She was beautiful!!  I just couldn't believe that they were there.  Jenn told Hayley to say hi to me.  She said "hi" with the sweetest voice and waved at me.  I immediately started to cry.  It was just a beauitful moment.  Jenn and I hugged and of course I made her cry.  She just said to me, "This is going to be you soon."  Just seeing how she was doing and just the fact that a few weeks prior she was in the orphanage.  Just to see her and how far she has come was just amazing.  It was just a blessing to see God's work. 
While I was at the Mommy Market, Jon had a to do list to get some things done for the adoption.  He had to go to the Boyertown Library to get his Passport Application completed and mailed in, and then he had to get bloodwork done to complete his Physical.  When he was done, he came to the church to pick me up and help load what didn't sell.  He came in and was surprised to see that I had sold most of my items.  I had sold all of my bigger items.  I had a baby swing left, which I knew someone had looked at it to buy, but they didn't.  At the end of the sale, I had decided to donate it to the Care Corner at Branch Creek Church.  As I walking to donate the swing, I saw this person again.  I asked her if she wanted it for free.  She was so happy and thankful!!  It was also great to see how that had really helped her too.  I had a bin left of Maternity Clothes and a few other things.  Jon had looked around and saw that other people still had a lot of items still left.  Later, I counted the money that I had earned that day.  I made $275!!!  Jon and I were shocked!!  He said how in the world did you make that much???  Praise God!!  All of the money earned was going to be going into our adoption fund to help pay for fees.  We were both just amazed that we had sold much more than we had thought.  One could say that we just lucked out and sold a lot.  I would say that God had his hand on the wheel of our lives and is directing our path and knew just what we needed.
After the sale, Jon and I drove to Plymouth Meeting area to a UPS store where we had to have our first set of Fingerprints done.  I just felt really good after the Mommy Market.  Jon said that there was something different about me.  I just seemed so lit up, smiling and happy.   I was happy.  This journey has been absolutely amazing and I can say that I see God all over it.  From things that just happen to things people say, things are coming together.  We start our homestudy Monday where we meet our social worker for our first meeting.  We have been doing a lot of paperwork to get ready for our Homestudy and to start preparing for our Dossier (the paperwork that needs to be submitted).  Things have just been coming together.  We had our fingerprints done and they said it would take 2-3 weeks before we got the results.  I recieved them a few days ago, so I can bring them with us to our Homestudy Meeting.  I also was able to get another cleaning job, which will also be a help.  I wasn't looking for it, it just kind of happened. 
We have also been working on our first fundraiser.  About a month ago, Jon was praying about direction for a fundraiser.  Immediately after praying, Sam Sandler came to his mind.  For those of you who don't know him, he is a magician and a friend of ours.  He is amazing!!!  He has appeared in theatres, churches, schools, homes, from Montana to Puerto Rico!!  He has also performed at the Tropicana Casino in Atlantic City, NJ, Been on Good Morning America, as a guest on Good Day Philadelphia!,  and the Academy of Music in Philadelphia.  We are going to be planning a show in November.  Please stay tuned for information on tickets.  Your help and support is greatly appreciated!!!  Please continue to pray for us as we continue our mission to bring our daughter home.  

To see a sample of his show please see the link below. 

Monday, September 5, 2011


As I sit here and reflect on life, I can’t help but think of where life is as I know it.  I am blessed with the most awesome wife who is so genuine and caring towards others.  Jenn gives everyone the benefit of doubt and is passionate about getting to know people.  I love her very much and cannot believe what God has blessed me with.  I have three beautiful girls Isabella being the oldest 7, Ava the middle 5, and Audyn the youngest turning two in another week.  These children are beautiful in so many ways.  Each one has their own special gifts that God has blessed them with.  I pray every day for them and ask that God uses them to fulfill his purpose in life.  God has a special plan for each and every one of us in our lives.  Of course, we all have our ups and downs and all around no one ever said life is going to be easy.  At church this past Sunday Pastor Ryan was talking about the bible character Job.  In the bible, Job was a wealthy man, an important man, a man of character, a man of wisdom, a man that was respected.  You could say Job had it all.  Until one day God allowed Satin to test Job’s faith.  Job experienced great trials in life.  He lost his wealth, his friends, his family and finally his health.  God allowed satin to test Job in ways we could never imagine.  Still through the trails Job remained faithful to God.  At the end of Job, God blessed him and gave him a new beginning.
 As I reflect on Job’s life we could all question how?  How did Job lose everything and still remain faithful?  How???  It has been clear to me that this is how.  Job experienced God like no one else did.  Job understood that through his life that God blessed him and that if he remained faithful that God would always protect him and provide for him.  See we all have a calling in life and each person’s calling is different.  God uses each and every one of use to serve his mission on earth.  If we allow God to take control of our lives we can experience God’s fullness.  Job learned this!  That is why Job remained faithful to God.  One of my favorite verses in scripture is this: 
“Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat or drink; or about your body, what you will wear. Is not life more important than food, and the body more important than clothes?  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?   Who of you by worrying can add a single hour to his life?”  Matthew 25-27
As I reflect on these verses it is quite simple.  Turn everything over to God and everything will be alright.  We know we will all experience trials life is not easy.  During life’s trials our faith gets stronger and it changes and shapes who we are.
Moving On:
As Jenn mentioned on a previous post I have felt the heart to adopt for some time now.  It wasn’t until before Audyn was born that Jenn and I had discussions of adoption.  There were many ups and downs in our discussions.  After many, many conversations I realized through prayer that we were supposed to have another biological child.  So along came Audyn.  As time slipped away and Audyn started getting a little older I felt to myself that life felt complete.  I have a wife, and three girls my life is now complete.  See, ever since I was little I pictured my life with three children.  Hmmmm ””” I”””” pictured my life with three children.   Little did I know that God was tugging at my heart.  From that point on I had many discussions with God.  I felt him calling me to adopt but I was resistant.  I didn’t want more than three children.  Little did I know it wasn’t what I wanted it was what God wanted!  There were many nights that I had dreams of orphans being left by their mother crying for help.  I would wake up in the morning and try to forget the dreams.  When I would go places with my family I would see other families with biological parents and adopted children.  The children of the adopted parents would smile at me and often they would wave at me.   I would think to myself and look around are they waving at me?  I didn’t even smile at them first.  Why is this happening?  God was speaking!  I had a dream one night where God got a hold of me.  In my dream there was a lot of crying from a child.  When I looked up I saw an orphan child crying with its hands out towards me.  As I looked a nanny was holding the orphan walking back into the orphanage.  It was vivid that the child was crying out to me “save me”.  Wow, God was speaking!!!  This dream still brings tears to my eyes and emotions as I reflect on its purpose.  It was at that moment that I didn’t resist God anymore.  I knew what God’s calling was and it was clear.  We were going to adopt.  As Jenn mentioned before in another post, she was at a place where I once was “resistant”.  I prayed for Jenn often and asked God to show her signs and to speak to her.  I did not take matters into my own hands and force this upon Jenn.  I knew at the right time God would call her. 
So where are we today?  We submitted our application to Holt International and we have been approved.  Jenn has taken the upper hand on gathering all of the paperwork needed for our home study and dossier.  Paperwork includes getting copies of marriage licenses, birth certificates, and ordering criminal background checks, child abuse clearances, and we began to apply for passports.  While compiling our paper work, our next step is to complete our home study.  Our home study will begin within the next two weeks.
As Jenn has mentioned before we don't know where all of the funds are coming from to pay for the adoption.  It's not like we have been saving money for this.  For those of you that know me, I deal with numbers daily at work.  It is in my blood to sit down and do a budget and make sure that I have everything accounted for.  I mentioned to Jenn about a month ago that I am not going to do this.  God has called us to have faith and to realize that through this mission that he will provide what we need.  I am not going to lie.  At times I feel great about this decision and other times I struggle.  This is human nature just as I described how Job was feeling during his times of trials.  One thing remains certain we will always come back to a verse that speaks clearly to us.  "Live a life that is worthy of the calling you have received."  Ephesians 4:1.  Jenn has taken a few cleaning jobs to help cover some expenses and we have some savings to fall back on.  The rest is up to God.  He clearly states in the Bible that he will help the orphans and the widows.  If anyone has any suggestions on fundraisers that could help benefit this mission, please feel free to share.  We will continue to keep you posted as our journey continues.  Thank you for all of your prayers!!

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

A Day of Blessings and Some Challenges

Jon and I have seen so many blessings these past few days.  Yesterday I went to the post office to get a money order for our child abuse clearances.  I have to say--I don't always have cash on me.  I had just cleaned so I had taken my check to the bank and got $20 in cash back.  I thought enough for the money order.  Well the last time I went for a money order it was like 50 cents.  It was $1.10.  It has more than doubled.  Well I ended up being short 60 cents.  The clerk at the post office just winked and said I printed it anyway.  Don't worry about it.  I know you will pay it another time.  So off I went with my money order.  Today Jon had a doctors appointment because he had ended up getting new hearing aids.  We were planning on paying about $1200.00 for them.  When he went in today the woman he met with said that he is only responsible for $500.  We are in the midst of preparing for our home study by obtaining lots of legal documents.  I have mentioned before that we are not sure where all of the money is going to come from for the adoption.  Through these past few days, we can already see that God is lining up some funds for us to be able to use towards our home study.  He is controlling the scenes that is for sure. 

Tonight however was a little challenging.  Jon had worked a long day.  I had the girls and tried to attempt doing some errands.  Audyn had gotten sick in the car and I had that to clean up when we got back.  She also wasn't feeling good so I was giving her some extra cuddles today.  I think that Satan really tries to attack when things are going well.  On all aspects of our lives.  Our marriage and our family.  Satan for sure does not enjoy seeing that God's glory is being seen.  I had a talk with my mother in law.  She said that Satan is like a lion right around the bush or the corner ready to attack especially when things are going well and we are obeying God's calling.  She said I really need to focus on God and all of the good things that have been going on and most of all have Grace.  After our discussion I sat down at my computer and I received a devotional and you will never believe what it said.  It had recapped everything I had just talked about with my mother in law.  I will include a copy here from the Daily Devotional from Love Worth Finding Ministries with Adrian Rogers:

Be Vigilant - You Have An Enemy

 “Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion, walketh about, seeking whom he may devour.” 1 Peter 5:8
Your adversary the devil is prowling about like a roaring lion. Don’t underestimate his power.
Satan is an enemy you need to respect like an electrician who has respect for the wires that carry deadly voltage. He knows where the insulation is and he knows how to handle electricity. If an electrician loses his respect for this power, he is going to be in serious trouble.
Everything may be going great for you right now. You’ve got money in the bank, a good job, good health. You’re dancing through the forest and picking wildflowers. But behind a bush is a lion so deadly, he can pounce on you and swallow you whole. You’ve got to be vigilant.


Over the past few months, there have been so many signs--verses, songs, and even Sunday's church service.  We have been reflecting on Dan Sheldon's sermon since then.  It was about living for God "today."  We cannot live for yesterday or for the future.  Our plans can change easily.  We of course can think about what our future may look like but God knows what our future will be.  He had said that we need to live for "today" and obey God's calling.  It was a very powerful message.  Jon and I kept looking at each other.  We have been obeying and following each step that he has given us.  We have been trusting his path and we know that he will be there every step of the way. I knew we were meant to hear this sermon this past Sunday. 

Monday, August 22, 2011

"One Less"

How our Journey Began

I will never forget when Jon told me that he had a desire to adopt a child.  He told me Mothers Day, May 8th.  He came to me at night when the girls had gone to bed.  His eyes were twinkling and he said to me, “Jenn, I have something I need to tell you.  I don’t know what you are going to say.  I have always had a heart to adopt and after 3 children I never thought it would happen.  In fact, God has been putting it on my heart.  I have been wrestling with him for quite some time, telling him no God!  I already have 3 children.  I don’t want another one.  This desire was just not going away.  He needed to tell me.” 

I was shocked, especially at the fact that he was saying he wanted another child.  He had always said that three were enough.  I still remember having Audyn and holding her thinking that I could have had another child.  He was the one that would have needed convincing.  I think that I was mentally preparing myself that 3 was all that we would probably have. 
My next thought was how are we ever going to pay for an adoption.  It is really expensive!!!  He said, “Jenn, I believe God will provide if he wants us to do this.”  I have to say I was really unsure about going down the whole adoption avenue.  I really did not have an interest at all.  He just said, “I have been and will continue to pray and if it is God’s desire then he will put it on your heart too.”

I still was not on the same page for months.  I would come home from doing errands and there would be a packet on our porch from another adoption agency.  I would roll my eyes, pick it up and mumble, he’s at it again.  I would pick up the packet, bring it inside, put it on the counter and then just tell him later when he got home that he had another packet.  I didn't even open them!!  I would sit on the couch at night and night after night, he would research adoption.  He would send me e-mails of information.  I have to say that I don't think that I even read any of the e-mails.  He would ask me and I said yes I saw that you sent it but I didn't have a chance to read it. 

After months of him praying for me, I started to feel that God was moving in my heart too.  He was definitely giving me a strong desire to adopt a child.  I had so many things that just started to happen to me.  I felt him speaking to me through music, verses, and then placing people in my path.  I knew God was putting things in place for me.  I remember driving in the car and hearing a song called “I Refuse” by Josh Wilson.  (It is on my playlist below)  I was listening to the words and things just really sunk in for me.  It talks about refusing to sit around and wait for others to do what God has called us to do.  We are the hands and feet for others for them to see God's glory.  When he calls us to move, we need to follow through.   I really felt God speaking to me through this song. 

I also received countless e-mails from devotionals that I receive and every one of those e-mails pertained to what I had been processing and also about trusting God.  Having faith to believe that if God calls us to do something big, he is in the background making everything happen.  He is controlling the scenes.  ALL of them.

I had also gotten a journal from a friend for my birthday in April.  I had it sitting on my nightstand, with something else on top of it.  I was looking for a book that I could record some adoption information in.  When I moved a few things on my nightstand, I came upon this journal that I had received.  On the front of it it said "With God all things are Possible Matthew 19:26"  It was truly a good reminder again placed at the perfect time.

If you know me, I LOVE little, little babies.  In fact I had mentioned earlier that in the hospital right after Audyn was born, I was holding her and looking at her.  I had thought to myself.  I could do this again.  I could.  Jon had said no way.  Three is good.  Before looking at all of the baby stuff, I just couldn't let go of it.  You know, get rid of it.  About a month ago, a friend of mine came over with her newborn baby boy.  I looked at him and thought he was absolutely adorable but I felt like God was saying to me that I am not going to have another little one like that.  He was saying that my next one would be a little older.  I feel like I have a peace about that.  Which is surprising to me.  He has for sure been working on me.  You may not understand this, but I truly feel that God has already gave me a love for a child that I do not know or have even met yet.  I have not even seen a picture but I believe that he has a child that will be waiting for us.

We started to put some steps into action.  We had a couple of meetings where we went to talk to adoption agencies and also had some phone conversations with an adoption agency.  We had also connected with friends of ours who are currently going through the adoption process.  In fact they are there as we speak, getting their daughter.  We used to hang out back in high school.  It has been at least 11 years since we had seen them.  It is so neat to see how God works and brings people you already know back into your life to serve his mission and help each other out.  They have been giving us advice, and walking with us through the beginning processes.  They have been praying for us too. 

After meeting with some agencies and talking with them, we felt that God was leading us to use Holt International as our agency.  We sent in our application in on August 13th.  We heard back from them August 18th welcoming us into the Program!! 

Please pray for us as we start the process of our journey.  I know that it will be challenging but God will not let go of us or this precious child.  We will need to do some fundraising to help raise funds to bring our child home.  That was hard to think about but I have realized that this is a mission that God has called us to.  I know that God will provide because he never calls us to something we cannot do.