Monday, June 9, 2008


We arrived home today around 11:00. A hearty thank you to our friend Jennifer who took the day off work to come pick us up and offered to run any errands we needed. She is also bringing dinner tonight. I have the BEST friends in the world. As I write, I am just exhausted, but am pushing myself to stay awake until after dinner and my parents come visit. We know we will go to bed VERY early tonight, but want to try to get back on a regular schedule as soon as possible.

We were so glad to be back in the United States. Last night, we had a layover in Washington, D.C. and got a hotel room there. It was amazing how we all ran around the room like it was the finest hotel we'd ever seen in the world. We all went on and on about how great the room was, how soft the beds were, how great it was to have water we could use to brush our teeth, a microwave and air conditioning.

We are so thankful for our country after being away for these past 16 days. When you get up each morning, take a moment to be thankful for the things we take for granted. Be happy you have a place to live that has a roof that doesn't leak. Be thankful every time your stomach is full. When you go to that job you say you don't like -- be glad you have it. The average YEARLY income in Kyrgyzstan is $1500. I'm guessing you make that a month. When you fill that car up with $4 a gallon gas, be glad you have a way to go places and don't have to walk everywhere you go. When you turn your water on and it's clean enough to brush your teeth, drink and cook with, be thankful. When you want to complain about the government making rules, remember, many times they are for our own good. Lines on the road and speed limits are not bad things. When it's so hot outside you can't stand it, be happy that air conditioning is the rule, not the exception here. When you complain about laundry, be glad you don't have to walk several miles to get the water in a bucket, wash your clothes out in a tub and hang them on a line to dry. When you complain about having to cut the grass, remember, it could be with a scythe or you could have animals tied in your yard to just eat the lawn down. We are such a privileged nation and as a nation we are so ungrateful much of the time. It's very sad to me. I'm so happy that our family got a chance to see another way of life. I hope we never forget it -- I fear, most of all, that we will and will become a family of complainers again.

It was hard to come home and find photos of the baby on the refrigerator and in frames sitting around the house. I've taken the down as the reminder of how excited we were before we left is too hard. And while we don't expect to hear any news of a new referral soon (our in-country staff is visiting the U.S. and won't return to work until after the first week of July), we think it's best to give ourselves the time to be sad before we receive another referral.

Our trip home was long and a bit hard at times. United is NOT the best airline I've ever flown, to say the least. The last part of our flight was delayed about 1.5 hours. We were on the plane a large part of that time with NO AIR. When we arrived in Nashville, we waited 45 minutes before our luggage came out. Several other things occurred on our flight from London to Washington, D.C. If there are other options that are similarly priced for the next trip, I suspect I will investigate other options.

The doggies and kitties were ALL glad to see us and we were glad to see them. Once the laundry is done and things are put back where they belong, we can get on with our lives. Barbie, our new friend we met in Bishkek gave me some good advice the Friday before we left, "Give yourself time and give yourself grace." We are going to do that.

I received another "WOW" moment in my inbox today. Years ago when we first started our adoption journey, I was struggling with our wait times (domestic) and I said, "I wish God would just send me an email." In some email I got that day, a verse from Habakkuk 2:3 came. I wrote the verse down and taped it to my computer where it stayed for a long time (until I got a laptop). TODAY, I got my Purpose Driven Life daily devotional and it was, again, on Resisting Discouragement. The verse for today's devotional was Habakkuk 2:3. It was so moving, I wanted to share some of it here.

In Habakkuk 2:3 (NLT), God says, “These things I plan [for your life] won't happen right away. Slowly, steadily, surely, the time approaches when the vision will be fulfilled. If it seems slow, wait patiently, for it will surely take place.”

We can fight discouragement. Here's a tip to help: When you get discouraged, focus somewhere else. Say to yourself, I don't have time to be discouraged right now. I'm too busy fulfilling my life mission.”

This doesn't mean you should be a Pollyanna and pretend everything is okay. You can be realistic, but you also need to be optimistic because you are a Christian: I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me. (Philippians 4:13 NIV). God says, Lo, I am with you always. (Matthew 28:20 KJV). He will help you and he will strengthen you. Faith starts with optimism.

Some of you have been praying for something specific and you haven't yet gotten the answer Just be patient. The answer you're waiting for will not be overdue a single day. God's timing is always perfect.

So God continues to meet me where I am and use the promises He has given me all during this adoption process to re-affirm to me that things are going to be ok -- that He's taking care of it. He reminds me using verses that are familiar to me and through people who love me that I'm going to be fine and that my daughter is out there and will come to our family in God's timing.

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