Wednesday, February 24, 2010

I Would If We Had the Money.....

I woke up with some thoughts on my mind at 3 something this morning. I was so wide awake that I thought it must be my “get up” time. Each night, before going to bed, I ask the Lord to wake me up when He wants me to spend time with Him. I often “hear” a knock or what sounds like someone calling me. I usually instantly get up. In fact, yesterday I jumped up and out of the bed with such a start that Dw woke enough and mumbled, “Don’t get out of bed so fast!” Ooopsie. Sorry babe.


Always very exciting to me that the King of the Universe wakes me to hang out with him. And yes, He wants to do the same with you. If you’ve never asked Him to wake you up to hang out with Him, just do it! After spending time with Him, I am even more convinced that He wants me to share my heart. So here goes…


Being an adoptive mom I have often heard (what seems like a zillion times), “ I would adopt, but we just don’t have that kind of money.” Let me be real honest here. Those words actually kind of tick me off. What is it that the general population has the notion that everyone who has adopted won the lottery or inherited a boatload of money or their income generates enormous amounts of money? Seriously?


This is what I want to say to each of those who have said that to me:


God’s heart is for the orphan. He longs for every single one of the orphans to be in a family. When a family purposes in their heart to bring one (or a dozen) home God will move every single mountain, hill, bump, embankment and obstacle (financial, immigration, job situations, health issues, etc.) to bring them home. Bar none. There is not one thing that He cannot and will not do or move to bring home an orphan to a family (or single mom) whose heart is willing.

That being said, I am convinced that Almighty God is looking to see how serious we are.


In fact let me go out on a limb here……I am equally convinced that HE will bless each one’s home immensely when they choose to bring a little one home. He will bless beyond measure, beyond what anyone could have dreamed or hoped. The blessings won’t necessarily come in ways that were expected, but they will come ~ and hearts and homes will overflow in abundance.



Over the years I have run into many nice and often well-intentioned people who are “pursuing the American dream”. They have duped themselves into thinking that this is where happiness and joy come from, that this is their “right”. They’ve gone to school for “it”, they’ve then worked for it, thus they’ve earned it and so they most definitely deserve it. Really?


Friends, God did not put us on this earth to indulge ourselves. He put us here for one purpose and one purpose alone. And that purpose would not be to die with the most toys. In fact if a person is someone who easily generates money, it is a gifting from God and it is only for the purpose of giving away. It is not to hoard or spend frivilously. It is to give to those in need.

He put us here to love Him first and serve others. Period. To care for the orphan and widow. To minister to the poor. To live selflessly. In fact “selflessly” is defined this way:
“having little or no concern for oneself, especially with regard to fame, position, money”
OR
“devoted to others' welfare or interest and not one's own”.


But serving others boils down to a few basic things…..like giving up our selfishness and our stuff. Giving up the pleasures as we know them. Giving up our time (ouch! That’s a big one, probably equal to the “money thing”). Giving up our freedoms. Giving up the things that tie us down, both financially and materialistically.


And frankly speaking, if you don’t want to give anything up, then you’re right – you can’t adopt. It takes an intentional act of our will to live selflessly - to be able to “afford” to adopt.


We could have hid behind the “we can’t afford it” and rightfully so. Dw's a pastor. We have had many, many medical bills and expenses (wheelchairs, canes, handicap accessible ‘stuff’) over the years dealing with the Multiple Sclerosis, etc.


But here’s the bare-naked truth. We decided to go against the flow (just like many of you did!). We decided to “throw caution to the wind”. We opted to cause all our peers to shake their heads. We voted for sleepless nights (at our age!) - waking up to put little ones who’ve fallen out of bed back in, or snuggling with a little one who’s throwing up or coughing or having a bad dream. We chose more kids knowing that we would be denying ourselves more “stuff”, fewer invites out, more clutter, endless bickering to break up, more medical bills, more teen years to maneuver through and more weddings to pay for. We knew what we were getting into and ran for it anyway!


So how exactly did we pay for each of the four adoptions we’ve done in the last just over 2 years?


Well! We opted to sell our big home and get out of mortgage debt. We had lived mortgage free for many years, until we moved to this expensive town. So we took our equity, built a sweet home and then turned around and sold it, so we could, once again, be mortgage free.
With our equity we opted to buy something half the size and in wrecker condition, but not have a mortgage. We opted to have two yard sales where we sold everything that we could. (Both yard sales together we made $3,300. – that’s a lot of junk sold!) (On a separate note, only the things that were most loved of all did we not part with, but ended up losing in the fire. I sometimes wonder if there is a spiritual nugget in that, and one day if the Lord should give me clarity I will write about it.) We opted to sell our beautiful camper that held tons of fun memories....


And since many are visual learners and can picture it better…..let me put it this way....

By our choice, we said good-bye to this beautiful home we built:

To trade "up" and have no more mortgage at this little log home:

That meant trading this kitchen that held some really fun memories.....


And the beautiful Colorado great room with a huge loft.....


For this log home with this view from it's loft:


We chose to SIMPLIFY our lives....

and that became our "theme song"...

Ya' know? A Place Called Simplicity


So that we could snuggle with this treasure from China.....


And this treasure from Africa......



And this Princess from Africa.....


And this Princess From China.....


Knowing that our view would no longer be this from that home....

And our family picture would no longer look like this.....

But instead we would have our arms full and our hearts overflowing.....


And, no, we wouldn't trade the journey nor do we wish for our old lives back....

We are so grateful for the simpler life (even with all the pain we have walked this past year)....our hearts are thankful that we've heard the cry of the orphan and we were obedient to God's plea...cause serving Christ and serving others is the only way to true happiness.

93 Simply Sweet Words:

  1. Wow, you have no idea ho much I needed to read this post today. I am sending you an e-mail with more details

    Mandi

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  2. What a beautiful testimony of obedience to God's word to help the orphans and widows. As we get closer to retirement and have lots of unexpected medical bills we wonder about finding the "right home" for us. Even though our adopting days are behind us, we still desire to help others in any way we can...this post spoke to me on my desire for a home that has it all for me who is housebound. I think we would rather be debt free so we can help others...
    God bles you Linny in the passion you have for the orphans. As a pastor's wife I know how hard it is to make ends meet at times...no complaints here, just understanding!

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  3. Linny,
    A beautiful post! You know I wrote to you some time ago to say, "we are adopting again!" and then a few months later wrote "we just can't do it. The money is too much. This is our 4th adoption in 5 yrs...blah, blah, blah." Well, we were MISERABLE with that decision. We knew in our hearts that we were meant to be this boy's family and we let the fear of money issues get the better of us. So we changed our minds again and said "Please let us adopt this boy. He's really meant to be ours." And the agency said yes, of course, and we sat down and took a good look at how we were spending money and where we could pull the money from. In the past, we have not applied for grants because we felt that others were more deserving. This time, we feel called to apply for some due to the severity of his sn and the medical costs when he comes home. But, even if everyone says "No" we know that God will have a plan and we know the money will be where we need it to be when we need it.

    For that week that we had said, "no" to this adoption, my DH and I sniped at each other all.the.time. We hardly had a civil word for each other. I cried and cried. As soon as we looked at each other and said "yes!" the tension and strain disappeared. I believe that if we had stayed in that place of fear, and continued to say "no" it would have been the end of our marriage as we know it. Oh we would have stayed together because we made a covenant with God when we married. But it would never have been the same. How silly were we? Both hurting over a bad decision. Both thinking the other was the one who just couldn't do it. Both of us wanting this son, but too afraid of a little thing like the finances, to move forward.

    So glad God gives us a chance to correct our mistakes! When it's His will, it's His bill, and if we are willing to make changes in our lifestyle, He can do the rest.

    I know this is an incredibly long comment, but you bless me over and over when you share your heart. Maybe someday we'll be traveling through your hometown and I will get to stop by and hug you and say "thanks!"

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  4. Linny,
    I do agree with what you are saying...yet we were in process to adopt again...and my husband lost his job. He's now making $10/hr...and we are facing bankruptcy. :( Sometimes God's ways don't make sense...even when we are 'following His will'.
    Questions without answers.
    Pam

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  5. Oh Linny, how I needed to hear your words today!
    Thank you for taking the time to write such a beautiful post.

    I do believe the mountains will move if we remain steadfast in our faith. I do believe the mountains put in our path are to only strengthen our faith.

    I can only tell you that during our most desperate times, I have found so much satisfaction in helping others, even if just a little, during my time of need.

    I can't even begin to explain the PEACE it brings me when trying to navigate in this storm.

    Your words were a BLESSING to me today!

    Thankful,
    ~Amanda

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  6. Linny, I was just thinking on my way home from work last night about this very subject. That morning I had been exercising with my Boot Camp crew. One talked about her recent visit to Colorado to go skiing and another talked about her plans to visit Mexico with friends to go to a Resort Spa. On my way home from work, I thought, Some invest in stocks, some in bonds, some in real estate, some in vacations, some in stuff. I choose to invest in children - the "income", "dividends", and rewards will last me a lifetime.

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  7. Linny, I can't ever read your blog without being touched, and without the Lord speaking to me.

    I have a heart for the orphan. I have been praying about it, and praying that the Lord would speak to the heart of my husband, as he has been so overwhelmed with life and stress that though he's said he wants to adopt, I really don't think he means "now".

    Well the other night we were driving home from somewhere and I think something came on the radio about orphans. I've spoken with my kids extensively about adopting and how perhaps God has a little one out there right now waiting for our family. Well, after hearing this commercial, my kids naturally started asking about adopting. My husband's answer was "that's the last thing on my mind right now". :( I was so sad, but just knew (and even moreso after reading your post!!) that it's just God telling me to pray more. It takes a lot to stand back and realize that it's not about us- that yes, we will always have stress and bills and maybe even money problems. There will be issues with family and there will ALWAYS be a lot on our minds. But to stand back and know, despite all that, that God is calling us to bring in a little one (or many!) is a wonderful thing. I pray that my husband will get there soon. When we start to look at it as you always have- that that's our child way over on the other side of the planet, then it hits you how there is NOTHING more important! How could we possibly wait another minute??

    So I continue to pray. :)

    I love you Linny!! <3

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  8. I love your heart...we just moved to a smaller country home...that cost less.... to accomodate my fourth child, (second adopted) coming from Ethiopia this year.

    question...something you said, I am really struggling with right now: "endless bickering to break up".

    With only 3, I have this too. and it really rips up my heart.....please please share how you handle it...and break it up. It does feel constant. Especially between my youngest daughter (adopted) and my middle son.

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  9. Oh Lin,
    What a beautiful post...thank you so much for sharing your heart and your "sacrifice"...looking at your treasures, I believe that it all adds up to assets in your column...you gave up something that "looks" precious to get truly precious blessings...
    Since finding your blog, my heart has been awakened like never before to orphans...maybe because you speak so eloquantly...maybe it is because I know my childbearing years are almost over and yet, my heart wants more babies to hold...can you please pray specifically for our family...that God would change hearts, open eyes and move mountains for us...I don't want to share too much here...

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  10. LOVE LOVE LOVE this post!
    This was also on my heart just yesterday... I truly do get so tired of excuses for not adopting... God TELLS us to help the orphan!! No ifs ands or buts!!
    Love your heart, Linny :) Thank you for sharing with all of us!

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  11. So perfect Linny! So many people assume that we are rich when the truth is that the more we give up to bring home another child, the more we want to give away and do without! More on my heart, but a little darlin' needs help...LOL.

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  12. Your post hit home to me today. I've been working on simplifing our lives these past few months and it's not been easy! We are in the middle of making a HUGE life change and I keep pushing away the fear that wants to latch on to my neck and strangle me. I needed the reminder, again, of how when we walk in the steps given to us by our Savior, HIS way will always be best.

    Thank you for taking the time to not only write your thoughts but share pictures, see your story of how God worked in your lives for your children!

    Blessings on you today!
    Melodie

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  13. Recently, I had two different people ask me how much our adoptions cost. I hadn't really added it up before, but I guess it would come to about $100,000! Woah! I was floored! Because we have never, ever had any money for our adoptions! My husband is a carpenter and makes a modest income(although it is more than enough, and much more than most of the world lives on!).

    For our first adoption, we sold a collector car that my sweet hubby had had since he was 16. We always tell Lily that she is worthy WAY MORE than that car. No contest.

    The other three have simply been through the total provision of God. And the funny thing is that now that we have 5 children, God just keeps on providing everything that we need. And He keeps giving us money to give away. And it's so much fun!!

    Blessings,
    Sarah

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  14. So many of those words I needed to hear today. ..."How the LORD will make a way"...

    This week was the WORST parenting class we've had yet (Week #8) and negativity reigned. My spirits were beaten and bruised.

    This adoption journey we are on has been a breeze minus the ugly, negative tone of which case workers use towards these little one's who need love, safety, and nurtuing to heal their hurt.

    I soooooo agree with the things you've said here in this post. If for no one else the encouragement was for me. :)

    Be blessed sweet sister!

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  15. You may have given up wordly treasures here on earth to do God's work, but I have a feeling you're gonna have one boat load of heavenly treasures when you meet Jesus! I'm reading the book Heavenly Crowns right now...wonderful sharing with my kids about sending treasures ahead and not hoarding them here.

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  16. This is exactly what the Lord spoke to me about today. The time is now and God loves the orphan and will do miracles to bring them home. Thanks for all the insipiration!

    The Arnold Family
    www.arnoldfamilynews.blogspot.com

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  17. Once again, your family amazes me. You are such an inspiration to me and everytime I read your blog God speaks to me in such a profound way. Being an adoptive mother of 3 with special needs, I can attest to giving up much. Yet I would not have had it any other way.

    I love your last paragraph....cause serving Christ and serving others is the only way to true happiness. AMEN and AMEN. Hugs and love

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  18. Tears, Linny. These are the words I want to say to all the times I hear this comment.
    And they are certainly treasures. The only thing that is eternal and will take with us to Heaven: their souls.

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  19. Thank you for sharing your heart with me! The Lord is teaching me so many things from you. I'm delighted!!!

    We too have experienced the blessings from adopting.
    We needed to put our sons in bunkbeds. Before adopting they spend very little time together. Now I hear them at night talking up a storm.

    Our youngest son is learning to be a leader to his 2 asians sisters.

    We are all learning to live without and we are now much happier. We are learning to serve others.

    We are learning so much about medical issues and hospitals. Now we have greater compassion.

    We have been to China!! (Wow,a one income family) We've seen Hong Kong, Guangzhou, Yunnan, Beijing...the forbidden city, the great wall.

    God is truely amazing. He can and will glorify Himself through us/you.

    To others wanting to adopt. Step out in faith. We did, we only made $55,000. a year and had three bio kids when we started adopting in October of 06. Now we waiting on our sixth child.

    Blessing,
    Michelle

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  20. well said. i get the same comment all the time--my husband is a teacher, and i stay home (and homeschool) our kids. we have 4 adopted, 1 bio, and they're all under the age of 7.
    how do you guys drive around?? do you have a big bus? or do you have to drive separately?

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  21. AMEN!!! Yep. I'll be printing this one out (complete with pictures) and carrying in my purse for distribution to "not gettin' it" folks who like to comment. My heart aches when I think about all the children who could have homes if only believers would be obedient to God's call to care for orphans.

    And then God convicts me as well, when I read your story and hear my precious adopted son call me "mama", it makes me redefine what "doing my part" really is.

    I also want to thank you for letting me take part in your Memorial Box Monday. You have the dearest readers who blessed me with their comments. (It's hard to pour your heart out then hear nothing but crickets chirping in response.)

    May God bless you and your sweet family as you sacrificially store treasures in heaven. I can't wait to see the view from your log mansion in heaven.

    Much Love,
    Kathie

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  22. I hear you! I think I will just direct people to your blog from mine. You say just what I would like to say.
    Just sent 455$ to get our paperwork authenticated ouch! but DH told me this AM we can't let Liang wait any longer than necessary.

    Chris
    www.shallrunandnotbeweary.blogspot.com

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  23. I just wanted to say thank you- and your new home seems like the perfect place for a loving family to snuggle up in! May God bless you more and more- which I know He always does!

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  24. Yes, yes and YES....Amen....well said....perfectly done....I could not agree more!

    As I shop for markdowns, choose beans and rice over steak and go without buying anything for myself....I want to say to those who also ask me how we do it....THIS IS HOW!

    Blessings,
    Julie :)

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  25. You brought tears to my eyes. I hope you don't mind, but I plan to put a link to this on my blog. God provides, I've repeated this phrase so many times as I've heard the phrase, "We just can't afford it right now." We've never gone into an adoption with the money...never. It's been amazing watching God work. One of the hardest things that I hear is, "I just couldn't do that." Our dream is that every Christian would even just take one month out of their lives and ask God if HE wants them to adopt. I think the face of the world would changed if everyone would just ask and be willing to accept the answer.

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  26. Loved this post. We did a second adoption as a complete walk of faith. We have been home with our son almost one year, and realized that we don't have any debt from bringing him home. I'm still not sure how we did it, or where all the money came from. It is inexplicable. So to all of those people who want to adopt, but are stopped by finances? Just start the process and wait to see what is provided when you need it. Sometimes at the last minute, but provided. Irresponsible? No. Faithful!

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  27. Still praying to get past the uscis. Wanting and simplifying for us isn't the problem. Well of course it is sometimes we don't want to, but we have learned to live with less- so we could have more (children). Praying.

    Praying that more will see that it isn't a trade- it is an UPGRADE!! :)

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  28. Oh this post just made me all weepy!! It is about stepping out in faith and allowing God to move in and through us! That's a lesson I need to learn. I so want to adopt from overseas, so my prayer will be for Him to make it happen. Send them HERE or send me THERE.

    Gosh I love your family and I've never met them! LOL

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  29. Linny, You never fail to inspire me. In fact, to be quite frank, somedays I DON'T read your blog because I don't feel like being challenged!! lol (I do come back later and read it though lol)

    I just finished reading the story of George Muller with my girls. Wow. And your story of selling all your things and then the most loved items burning in the fire? It reminded me of when he came home to his new wife and she had just put out all her family heirlooms and he told her to sell it all. I still have a hard time with that. She did it and didn't say another word about it! Wow!! And yet you think if she hadn't, yes, those things could have been stolen or lost to fire.

    Yesterday I was listening to a country song called "Temporary Home." Again reminded me that this home and these things are just temporary. And your post just spoke that to me again. (That house you built was absolutely amazing by the way!!)

    Anyways, thanks for always speaking what God puts on your heart and for being so encouraging. I know God isn't done working in our family...

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  30. God must be speaking to a lot of people lately! My post was on this very same subject today!
    God is at work that's all there is too it!

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  31. Thank you for these words, true words, of God's grace and provision. We are waiting to bring our daughter home and still have a bit financially to go. We certainly can't afford adoption, but God can and He has provided EVERYTHING we've needed EXACTLY when we needed it. He is amazing, awesome, and wonderful! He has truly blessed our family and I know He will continue to do so.

    BTW, it also irks me too when I hear people say "I can't afford to adopt."

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  32. So good! Thank you for posting!

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  33. FABULOUS FABULOUS FABULOUS post, dear Linny!!!! woooohoooo. I LOVE it. I can sooooo relate to every single word you wrote. Some are just NOT willing to sacrifice in order to follow the will of God. Oh how I pray my family will never ever hold on to material STUFF. It just is so not worth it.

    Love you heaps. Thank you so much for praying my sweet girls home. I am nervous, but excited as we prepare to add these angels to our family.

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  34. Linny,
    I loved your post. We brought home our son on Feb. 27th last year, so we haven't even been home a year. I know that we will in some way, in God's time, add to our family again. However, right now we feel that God is calling be to be at home with our three children, and that's a HUGE step...income cut in half! We don't have a large house....less than 1600 square feet. We do have lots of junk, so a yard sale or two could be two-fold. :) I would be lying if I said I wasn't scared of how things will be once we are only on one income, so we cannot commit yet to another adoption. That being said, I know that God can provide the way...He did the first time.

    **Another note, according to new Philippines rules, you have to earn 10k for each family member....that's not happening on one income. People see things like this and think the doors are closed.

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  35. We're getting married in June, and we will be adopting in the next few years. I wish I could go back a couple of years and re-examine my priorities. I bought a house that everyone told me to buy even though it was a stretch financially. Then the bottom fell out of the housing market here. I'm so thankful I can afford the house that I cannot now sell. I'm thankful I have no other debt, buy we're praying as a couple what the best ways were can be stewards of our money in spite of my housing blunder. I'm about $100K underwater now. I so wish I had listened to what God was trying to tell me and did buy then so I'd have more to help families adopting right now, something I did before I bought the house. I still do as much as I can, but the house payments can be overwhelming. I've asked for forgiveness in my disobedience and also asked for God to make the house a blessing and not a burden. He fulfilled that request last year when an unmarried mom and baby moved in.

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  36. i am speechless (doesn't happen often) and just sit in awe of your overflowing heart. what a sweet encourager you are and than you so much for sharing your journey. lives are changed because of you, linny.

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  37. Wow! I did need to be reminded of this again. We have 3 kids by adoption and room for one more in our house, well, maybe we could actually have more than "one more" so I want to get some strategies for simplifying a house. I know it can be done, you did it and I know I can if I get a few pointers about sleeping arrangements, eating etc. My dear father-in-law who is waiting for us in heaven used to say that one child took all his money and four took all his money so it really didn't matter. Love that sentiment! My dh and I are waiting on God to see how he wants us to move with this dream. Thank you for being an inspiration.

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  38. Amen! Very well said........ I am telling everyone who will listen that this is the year I am beginning to live by my new motto, "Less is more". I am trying to simplify and hopefully one day bring home another child. My heart has been drawn to Ethiopia these days........

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  39. oh, Linny, bless you for allowing Him to speak through your words. to speak through your life!

    we feel our next child out there and are working through getting rid, doing without and simplifying in order to bring them home!

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  40. What a beautiful post! I have been following your blog for a bit and am in love with it:) My husband and I are in the process of adopting a child from Ethiopia. It has been a crazy/wonderful/scary/beautiful journey. God Bless!!

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  41. Beautifully written as always. I felt your heart on this one!

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  42. Amen

    Love,
    Janet, Kevin, Ted, Philip, and Eli

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  43. You are so right Linny. We make very little money but God afforded us this adoption. I am also taking a 2 year leave of absence from my job so I can be home with this precious gift. I get mad when people who make and have so much more than us say we can't afford to do that. Or " I can't stay home, we can't afford it" If we can do it anyone can!!!

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  44. Terrific post Linny! You couldn't be more right. I keep saying that we need to simplify our life and have a yard sale to clear out our house. Thanks for this post to spell it all out for me! By the way, I love the earlier family photo and seeing your treasures as younger folks! Little Graham was so cute!

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  45. Thank you for this. So many people cannot understand our burden for orphans and think we're "crazy". Oh well! I highly doubt we're "finished" I know the Lord will bless us with more angels from where ever HE choses.

    Love ya!

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  46. Ahhhhh, Linny, I do SO LOVE my visits to your place. How I needed to "hear" your words.
    Thank you for your words today.

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  47. Amen and well said! I can feel your passion for adoption and the orphan in this post, but even more so, I can feel the heart of God through your words. Thank you for being an inspiration and a vessel of God's love. You always seem to say the right things at the right time...great encouragement. Thank you! You guys are such beautiful people! :)

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  48. Amen Linny! Beautiful post! Thank you for the encouraging words!

    Do you think I could talk to God during the day? and not the middle of the night!

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  49. Great, great, great post! My hubby and I have talked about this repeatedly over the last few days!!
    Thank you, and blessings
    Barb

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  50. Wow! Thank you once again for your words! God has taken us(and still is) on a bg ole journey from "I deserve" to "all I desire is You Lord". He led us to move 3 years ago from our big fancy house in the woods to a tiny, incredibly simple little house...to get rid of over half our stuff and to adopt another little one. Ever since December when we filled up our minivan and headed on a trip to do "whatever" the Lord wanted for 4 weeks...we have been hearing Him whisper even more....to take captive EVERY thought, account for EVERY penny, to give MORE and listen more and it is beyond beautiful becuae, guess what? We are hearing and experiencing Him even more!!!!!

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  51. Well, I suppose it should not at all surprise me that tonight God would use your blog to encourage me along my own journey to adopt. After all it was your post about single mom's adopting that nudged me to get the ball rolling. I am a single mom with 3 treasures in my home ...and one currently in Russia(he just happens to have down syndrome). This has been a week of discouragement, wanting so badly to be able to run to Russia and snatch that sweet baby up and bring him home. Discouraged that I just keep encountering one obstacle after another. Last night I spent some serious time before the Lord begging him to show me what to do, how to do it. Was it time to call it quits and walk away, is this just the enemy? .... asking him for just the smallest shred of reassurance and what i got was a flooding of reassurance. Thank you Linny for being obedient. For being HIS messenger to me as i lay here at His feet tired and worn with empty aching arms knowing the Lord WILL fill them soon. Funny how even the smallest of things like the words "or single mom"in parentheses can mean so much .... Yes the same God who put the stars in the heavens and caused the trees to sprout cares about every single detail and knows exactly how to prick my heart .... He is so AWESOME!!!!!!!! So once again ... thank you!

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  52. God led me here after our $3800 down payment on the
    ukraine adoption today.

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  53. Wow Linny!! Thank you for sharing that!!! Thank you for being a vessel to bring truth and an example of what it looks like.

    I have a friend that is supposed to bring her two home from Ghana next month and is still short on funds. I just preached her a message after watching Beth Moore go off about Believing God, and Now I'm going to send her this link. What incredible encouragement, and I can't wait for her to read it. I know that God will provide for her, and I know she "knows it" but is stressed. I can't wait for those two little ones to come home to us and I can't wait to see how God provides for it:O)
    Lots of love to you,
    jenn

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  54. You amaze me Linny, truly. I have been a stalker for awhile, but feel led to finally comment:)

    We are in the process of adding our first child through adoption. She will be joining our other 4 living and one sweet precious baby boy in Heaven. We are thrilled to welcome this sweet girl, HOPE, and pray that she will stay with us forever. My husband is also a pastor, but we look forward to adding more through adoption. I have never conceived easily but so related to your prayers to be a mother.

    Linny, thanks for the encouragement you give and the love that you share for our Savior! I love it. Your family is just beautiful!
    Sara

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  55. You amaze me Linny, truly. I have been a stalker for awhile, but feel led to finally comment:)

    We are in the process of adding our first child through adoption. She will be joining our other 4 living and one sweet precious baby boy in Heaven. We are thrilled to welcome this sweet girl, HOPE, and pray that she will stay with us forever. My husband is also a pastor, but we look forward to adding more through adoption. I have never conceived easily but so related to your prayers to be a mother.

    Linny, thanks for the encouragement you give and the love that you share for our Savior! I love it. Your family is just beautiful!
    Sara

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  56. Wow - I totally agree with you. The Lord has allowed us to adopt 6 the 'cheap' way - through the US foster care system. BUT now is calling us to give up our lives for them as we move next week to Livingstone, Zambia to take care of orphans there.

    We are scared, yet excited as we follow His leading.

    Michelle

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  57. Linny,
    When God called us to adopt, we had student loans still to pay. We had a mortgage (still do). We had two kids already. We had already decided I would give up the career to be a SAHM... a SAH, homeschooling, M.

    We answered yes to the call, but we did tell God that since this was HIS call, HE had to provide. We were unwilling to go into debt to bring Ellie home. Since he's anti-debt, we figured He'd answer :-). No huge inheritance fell in our laps. No generous benefactor stepped forward.... BUT God gave my husband an opportunity to work extra hours during the process - which paid more than half our expenses. The County Court refused our money when we did the background check (I know!!! We were shocked too). A complete stranger met our kids, heard their story about getting a sister, and pressed $40 into their hands! There are more stories...

    The bottom line is GOD DOES PROVIDE! We just have to take that first step in faith!!!

    Blessings,
    Karen

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  58. Wonderfully stated. Love love love your blog post. The financial part is where we are struggling right now but our faith will carry us through the time of questioningGod will provide. Wondering if you can give me some ideas for meals. We are trying to simplify in the food department. Anything will help. I hope your ears are always ringing I am always talking about you guys like we are best friends. Love and many blessings
    Jill
    www.campfunk.blogspot.com

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  59. Thank you servant of God! For hearing and obeying God's direction in all areas of your life. With work we will be there some day;) We have been married 23this year and had been married 17 years before we began to adopt.For our first adoption we went into debt(we have almost not recovered since the economy ~ my Dad's estate house was to sell in Florida so we could pay for our adoption in 2005/2006 ~still not sold 2010). We are not rich, have now lived in the same house for the last 20 years. I stay home to raise our girls. For this last adoption I cashed out my 401K, made and sold candy, had garage sales, put items on ebay, had a cooking party and asked for money from family. We chose a SN because we wanted two girls close in age (18 months apart) so we have a 2.75 & a 4 year old;) We have a $5,000 deductible on our insurance and no dental insurance. God gave us an amazing little girl with a corrected clef lip and clef palate. She will require speech therapy, ear tubes, and other surgeries along the way. But, we are trusting that this is a God thing and we need to comply. I am blessed to be the mama to these gifts from God, our cost of material things is nothing compared to His cost of His Son. Again thank you for delivering a message from above with love and grace.
    Mama to Lily Grace & Sarah Jade
    avaseofchangeforlilygrace.blogspot.com

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  60. Beautiful!
    People think we are rich too.. Hahaha! Not by worldy standards. It's about the choices we have made, what we have sacrificed, and plain ole obedience!!!
    We have adopted 10 times in 10 years... on one income. God IS able!!!
    Blessings,
    K

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  61. Thank you for sharing your heart Linny! You have said it better than I ever could! In fact I am going to post a link on my blog back to this if you don't mind! :-)

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  62. Oh Linny you have no idea how much I needed this post today. I just finished a post on my blog about getting a bit nervous as our travel dates get closer. God woke you for me. He woke you and led you to post this for me. Isn't that just like Him?

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  63. Love it Linny! So many people just look at us and say "oh we could NEVER afford that!" I just shake my head and often end up biting my tongue. Financially we weren't supposed to have that money in our budget. Numberwise our adoption money doesn't make sense. We still have months that it doesn't make sense.. but it ALWAYS works! Sure we are still renting and we went down to one car... but ya know? He was WORTH IT! Can't wait to get started again... Once you've heard the call of the orphan and you've experienced the amazing, supernatural provision of a living God, I think it's pretty impossible to "unhear" and "unbelieve."

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  64. Love this! I just posted somethings similar this week too.
    http://cottagegirl.blogspot.com/2010/02/ends-of-earth.html
    Thank you for sharing your heart. I always see Jesus in your words!

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  65. I am going to go out on a limb here and will probably make some people very angry. I hope not, but I know emotions run high in the adoption community.
    1. Not everyone has the means to adopt. My family of three lives on under $6000 a year. One of my children is disabled. I cannot truly meet their needs as is. Adding another child to the mix would not be fair to anyone.
    2. Not everyone is a good parent, therefore not everyone should add more children into their lives.
    3. Although God calls us all to care for the orphans and the widows, this does not mean He calls us all to adopt children. Sometimes I think that means helping a local mother support her children so she doesn't have to give them up for adoption. Sometimes, it means supporting the organizations in other countries that care for the orphans and widows. Sometimes, it means bringing a child into your home. There are many things people can do to live up to that mandate.

    You have comment moderation, so I truly doubt my comment will get published. Either way, maybe it will enable you to see from a different perspective. Blessings to you and yours.

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  66. Praying for a miracle today as the Council meets in Ecuador! LOVE this post! So true!

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  67. So well written. Thank you for the reminder and encouragement that it's OK to turn down the material things we think we need in exchange for seeking adoption. God seemed to place a "theme" for raising $$ in each of our adoptions..the previous one being "every penny counted" and now this one "$4.89". I just KNOW He will multiply the $4.89 we started with over and over until we get our newest one home. Some people avoid discussing funding their adoptions; but we don't. How can we NOT share the miracles of His work by sharing our stories to encourage others fearful of stepping into adoption due to funding? We can't. Thanks for just one more reminder on this. Blessings, Jennifer

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  68. God has laid it on my heart that adoption is right for our family. I have always known this and even when we were crowded into a mobile home off grid, I prayed that when God provided just a little more space then it is time. We live very simply by choice. But God has blessed us with a home now where we do have room for another. He has also blessed us with six of our own.
    Is there an income guideline to be approved?
    Your story is right on and so true.
    Blessings,
    Tonya

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  69. Thank you for all of your posts about the orphans. These posts softened my heart to at least one more from China. I know the Lord is going to move mountains to bring home our 4th son and 6th child home from China.

    Thanks again for having a heart willing to listen to God's heart.

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  70. Thank you for all of your posts about the orphans. These posts softened my heart to at least one more from China. I know the Lord is going to move mountains to bring home our 4th son and 6th child home from China.

    Thanks again for having a heart willing to listen to God's heart.

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  71. Thank you for all of your posts about the orphans. These posts softened my heart to at least one more from China. I know the Lord is going to move mountains to bring home our 4th son and 6th child home from China.

    Thanks again for having a heart willing to listen to God's heart.

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  72. Thank you for all of your posts about the orphans. These posts softened my heart to at least one more from China. I know the Lord is going to move mountains to bring home our 4th son and 6th child home from China.

    Thanks again for having a heart willing to listen to God's heart.

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  73. Needed to hear that tonight as we are embarking on our second international adoption and LONG to bring more than 1 home...thank you for being obedient and sharing!

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  74. Thank you for writing this. God has been stirring my heart lately, and you and a few other women who blog have truly inspired me. I think God is using you to bring us to a place where we cant say no to adopting!!
    I referenced you in my blog, I hope thats ok!!
    www.musicallypink4one.blogspot.com
    Thanks!! :o)

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  75. Love this post and couldn't agree more! We have never had the money to adopt our kids, but God has always provided. And one thing that amazes us is how He provides for our daily needs as well. My husband's income has increased much faster since we started adopting than it did in the many years prior to our adopting. It's astonishing, actually.

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  76. Oh, my goodness!!! I just luv the Jesus in you :) Jesus, give Linny even more to spur us on, in the 3> of adoption. Amen, Cindy

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  77. wow... interesting, yet not surprising with how God works... that I would find you today. I have been feeling God's tug...and my own empty arms.. to adopt again. Just today I was thinking that the reason my husband isn't ready to do so is money. We are just barely getting by now, and I know it's the reason he's not ready to move forward again. Thank you for sharing. We don't have equity in our home...lol but I know we can find more money some where. I guess it's my new mission to look for it. :o)
    Praying for God's wisdom and discernment.
    Thank you again for listening to God at 3 a.m. and sharing.
    Blessings
    Andrea

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  78. What an amazing testimony to what is truly important in this life.

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  79. AMEN!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I LOVE LOVE LOVE this post. THANK YOU!!!!

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  80. Thank you. We are in the midst of saving for our last payment, and then travel costs (and we may need to travel twice to Ethiopia due to new laws). There are many things that we have gone without since starting our journey, but I can't imagine not being here. Thanks for your encouragement.

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  81. Hi there, First time reader, here, just browsing through. God has placed a passion for adopting on my heart (and my husband's), and I have asked Him for the very thing you talk about. Lord, give me the financial freedom to do it, and I will! I know how that sounds. But I work full time to pay the bills generated by our family of 5. My husband, who is a Type I Diabetic in fair health, stays home with our children. His health issues and lack of energy have led to more than one lay-off; he just cannot work enough to be the "bread winner." So, here's my predicament: I would need to be able to stay home and care for any adopted children. My husband wouldn't be able to take on any more alone. But I don't have that choice right now. I know that if God wants us to adopt, He will make a way. This post you wrote is wonderful, and I've read the same messages from other adoptive bloggers. I know it's true. It's really not about the money. Maybe financial freedom is not the way God will answer, but I will wait and see... and continue to pray for His Way.

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  82. Oh Linny! I've been following you for a while.....and was blessed that you had a link back to this post...this is EXACTLY where my husband & I are at! I feel God is just confirming with this....we've felt lead to sell our house that we built three years ago, to free more money up to care for orphans & widows....we know most people will not understand when we do...to most people it is still about the American Dream....

    I just wanted to thank you for being very real with us all, and in doing so encouraging us all along the way...I'd love to get to meet some day!!

    Blessings!!!
    Chris in WA state

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  83. All I can say is Amen, sister!
    When people ask us how we cram into our tiny home - I say, "Oh, and we still have more room!!!" We are happy, we are close - that is what I love. Would I love a big fancy home, oh my yes, but it would still not satisfy or bring what I have now!! Blessings to you for saying it out loud!

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  84. I saw this on someones elses facebook comments. It looks like it has been posted for awhile and my comment will be dated way later than all the others. WOW. Praise God From Whom All Blessing Come!! And I am Really enjoying your music but it sure is difficult to type while holding up my hands in praise to the Lord. I am Really Blessed reading your blog. I wholely agree. I'm listening to Days Of Elijah. I love that song!

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  85. Hi Linny,

    I almost didn't comment b/c I know you must be thinking why is she saying this in the midst of all we have going on with Karl, but ...

    The Prez and I are stepping out again and the finances this time ... well, we don't have it. At. All. It was easy the other times. Not easy but certainly not painful, cutting to the quick like this time. Requiring faith in God providing financially like we've not known with our other adoptions.

    We are pulling S.T.U.F.F. out of our house to sell it. People, including our family, think we've really lost it this time around. They aren't exactly unsupportive, but they aren't excited either. Someone said, "Well, what is going to be left in your house?" Um, a whole lot of stuff still. We have beds, blankets, photos, dishes, still so much stuff, to much to mention.

    Anyway, I had to click over and read this b/c I knew the Lord would speak to me through it. DH and I would love to find some land with nothing on it and build a home with whatever money we have from the sale of our home. We are looking, but can't find anything remotely cheap. We will keep looking though. We have our home 3/4s paid for, so it would be a huge move in the right direction.

    Thank you though for this post and keeping it linked on your sidebar. And please know I'm praying for Karl and hoping you can update with some good news soon.

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  86. I love this post and your raw honesty. Yes God can when we just say Yes. I'm anticipating what He is going to do and excited to learn more of His heart.

    I've bookmarked this to read again with my hubby!

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  87. You amaze me, I dont know if I could do what you do. I know I have enoughlove and faith in god, but financially and physically I dont think I could do it. mainly physically. but you bless and inspire me and others. God Bless you. you and your family are amazing. thank GOD for YOU

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It's always good to hear from bloggy friends. Bless you.