Dec 22, 2010

Listen

A Great post from Christian HomeKeepers Network.

Listen
At this festive season of the year, Mr. Scrooge,” said the gentleman, taking up a pen, “it is more than usually desirable that we should make some slight provision for the poor and destitute, who suffer greatly at the present time… We choose this time, because it is a time, of all others, when Want is keenly felt, and Abundance rejoices.” – Charles Dickens

Have you ever been walking by, or driving by a place minding your own business when suddenly you are struck with the knowledge that you could do something specific to help someone?


Did you listen? Did you act? Did you allow yourself some sentimental feelings and then go on to the next thing?
Did you convince yourself that it was too much, too difficult, not needed and not realistic? Or, did you listen… to the voice of the Spirit calling you to be Jesus’ hands, feet, mouth, arms, ears?

So many times I hear Christian women say that they thought they heard the voice of the Spirit talking to them, telling them to help someone. But they didn’t obey because it was awkward or strange, or difficult…and the next time the Spirit spoke, it was more difficult to hear, harder to obey.

Listen.

This is the season when want is felt more keenly, when gestures of kindness are appreciated more deeply. Let it be your way of life long after Christmas is gone. Let abundance rejoice all year!

Lord of the destitute and forgotten ones, open my heart to feel pity but more than that, open it to pour out mercy and love.
Let my attitudes and actions speak for me. Let me reflect your beauty to those who have lost what it is to be cherished and cared for. Love through me this Christmas and bless through me. Amen. Article by Sylvia Britton

Dec 14, 2010

A Movie Worth Changing Plans For

A Movie Worth Changing Plans For new made-for-TV movie slated to air on January 8 explores adoption, sacrifice and life priorities in a way very few films today do. “Change of Plans” tells the story of a young, jet-set couple whose all-too-perfect lives may be irreparably altered by four orphaned children. I had the chance to preview the director’s cut this week and came away inspired and thoughtfully challenged.

When Sally Danville’s (Brooke White of American Idol) best friend from college dies in tragic accident in Africa, she leaves behind four children—three of them adopted from countries around the world. Sally and husband Jason must now grapple with choices that will shape the rest of their lives. Step by step, the couple realizes that for every inch they open their hearts and home to the children, the plans they had mapped out for themselves will likely be lost forever.

The film gets its strength from the underlying story and real-world decisions it represents for each of us. The acting, music and script are not Oscar quality, but still solid. The widows the story offers into the potential challenges of adoption and foster care are perhaps understated, but not absent: it’s clear that to welcome a child into our home is not a cost-free choice. Many adoptive families and others involved with kids in the foster system will likely see parallels with their own stories as well.

Refreshingly, this movie earns its “family friendly” identity not merely by cutting out sex and violence, but by delivering a thoughtful challenge to some of the great lies of our era. Most narratives today, from commercials to movies, implicitly argue that fulfillment is found in getting what we want. “Change of Plans” points in the opposite direction, helping us see that real life is only found by embracing the inspiring-but-costly invitations God puts before us.

If your evening January 8 is not already booked, I’d encourage you to spend it enjoying “Change of Plans” with your family and perhaps a few friends. Doing so sends a message to TV producers and advertisers that there is, after all, a market for quality programs. More importantly, the story just may provoke a change in your plans as well.

Dec 3, 2010

Rodriguez Party of 9

Having 7 children was fun, interesting, tiring, exciting. The kids were great, it was their crazy parents that were truly difficult. Both parents share inappropriate things with the children. The father is the worst. I finally ended up banning him from coming over and told the mother that if she wanted him to see the children she wound need to supervise visits. The dad came over upset that I wouldn't let him stay with us. Why I would let anyone with a criminal past, on drugs stay in my home with my precious little ones that I've protected and nurtured. It makes sense, If "I" don't do drugs, don't expose my kids to bad things, what makes him think he can? I never cease to be amazed at the constant stream of expletives exploding out of his mouth at any given moment. Obviously he isn't allowed into my home swearing and speaking in a totally vile way in front of my children or any children in my care. I insisted he leave when he then tried to work the 10 year old up into hysterics with how mean I am for not letting him stay with me. He started telling them vulgar things about their mother. He mentioned how he was going to be sleeping out in the cold and on the streets. Then he wanted to take his daughter with him! Enough, he had to leave. I told him that if he tried to take her while on drugs I'd be calling the police. I told him that it is totally irresponsible to tell the kids all that he does about their mother. That sort of thing needs to be between the two of them. You don't include children in that. He started saying that I'm siding with their mother. The truth is, both of them behave worse than their own children. It really is difficult. I told him in the nicest way possible to "man up." Even if you were sleeping under a bridge you don't tell that to your children so they can worry about you and get them all hysterical." That's totally cowardly and beyond selfish. Besides that I've offered many times to drive him to a mens shelter, he was just too prideful to go. He basically was trying to get the girl to misbehave. She started saying she wanted to go with him knowing that he's homeless.

That was it. I packed his stuff (we're storing the family's stuff in our garage) and he isn't allowed back. His behavior was totally bizarre, selfish and crazy and I'm not having it. Another time he showed up at the school before I could get there to pick the 10 year old girl up. I asked what they talked about and she told me that he is on the streets. I asked how she knew, she said "because he told me." I said "so he showed up and told about how he is on the streets and homeless?" She said "yes" and started crying. What kind of a person does that? He feels miserable that he is on the streets (because of his drug use and unwillingness to work) and he wants EVERYONE else to be miserable too. EVEN his own children! It bothers him that they are all comfy in a nice warm home when he is outside. I'm so disgusted I could vomit. I have no respect for men that don't behave like men. I've prayed for this family again and again. I'm waiting on a miracle because at the moment change doesn't look likely. The dads is going into a court ordered treatment so I pray it works and He gets right. Unfortunately I'm not overly optimistic.

Dec 2, 2010

Going from 5-7 children!

Have 7 children isn't all that difficult. I'm good with my own but I'm awesome with other peoples kids. I seem to have higher expectations for my own. With other peoples kids I can be more laid back, grins, giggles and fun. I had to be strict as these children went from raising themselves to now needing boundaries set. We did have to be super cautious and watchful as these children have been exposed to a crazy home environment and I didnt want to leave any opportunity for any of that being relived in our home. It did feel at times a huge hassle getting 7 children all dressed and out the door to two separate schools on time and then having to homeschool my 5! That part was a little crazy. I think when we adopt we will only take in younger children because that was a juggling act for sure. When I dropped off the tween at high school I looked out at all of those children and wondered "which of these kids is also homeless? " "which of them is in foster care or living with relatives?" Which of them didn't have relatives to live with in similar circumstances.

High school is such a critical point in life anyway. It's such a time of searching, seeking and coming into your own. It's the period of figuring out how to make your way in this world.. Add to the confusion of adolescence, homelessness and family turmoil, all while trying to fit in, be normal, and get good grades. These kids have had a lot to bear. I can relate to their struggle. The boy is bright and witty, he is parentified and has often times had to take care of the parents, who act startlingly enough, like children. The girl concerns me more as she will do anything to fit it in. Not unlike the chameleon that changes with it's environment. She is sweet and has so much potential. She too, is older than her years. It's sad to me that she is only a year older than my own. Yet she knows far to much about a great many things, much more jaded. I see a bit of myself as a kid in both of them. I tell them they are not their parents and that they can do great things if they let God use their lives. They respond well to boundaries and for the most part listen. It is a relief I'm sure to be able to just be children. They seem very (and this is what they tell you in the foster classes NEVER to expect) surprisingly GRATEFUL! This song reminds me of the children.

Three in the morning and I'm still awake
So I picked up a pen and a page
And I started writing just what I'd say
If we were face to face
I'd tell you just what you mean to me
Tell you these simple truths:

Be strong in the Lord and never give up hope
You're gonna do great things, I already know
God's got His hand on You so don't live life in fear
Forgive and forget but don't forget why you're here
Take your time and pray
These are the words I would say

Last time we spoke, you said you were hurting
And I felt your pain in my heart
I want to tell you that I keep on praying
Love will find you where you are
I know 'cause I've already been there
So please hear these simple truths:

From one simple life to another
I will say, come find peace in the Father

Be strong in the Lord and never give up hope
You're gonna do great things, I already know
God's got His hand on You so don't live life in fear
Forgive and forget but don't forget why you're here
Take your time and pray
And thank God for each day
His love will find a way
These are the words I would say

How we added 2 more children to our family

So a family member called us at around last month 1pm explaining to me that they were getting evicted. AGAIN! They needed boxes and to store "a few things in our garage." I was hesitant as we still have stuff from LAST time they moved out... over 3 or 4 YEARS AGO!! They also needed help moving it. This made me apprehensive because I KNEW they would end up asking if they could stay with us. I KNEW they would try to manipulate us (again) and try to bring all that they are, dysfunctional, drug addicted, self consumed, and crazy, into our peaceful home. I called several friends for pray and advice. (Proverbs 15:22"Without counsel purposes are disappointed: but in the multitude of counsellers they are established.") ALL agreed not to jeopardize my family with taking in the adults. I prayerfully considered offering to take the children. (an offer I've made before)

It stressed me out because I pictured the children on the street. It hurts to see the children bear brunt of suffering from the foolish mistakes of their parents. I knew I'd be forced to say NO. I am by nature a DOER, helper, a rescuer. Present me with a problem and my mind immediately begins thinking about how to solve it. 9 times our of 10, I've either been through that particular trial or situation, knew someone how has, have read an inspiring book or resource about it (to point you to) or will find someone who has and get their advice for how to conquer whatever this situation is that needs fixing. I am a servant. A good portion of my life is spent serving others and training my kids to do the same. We feed the homeless, visit the elderly, bring meals to the sick, care for the widow and most especially advocate for the orphan. It is who we are, IT IS WHAT WE DO! However, I have long since been gifted with knowing the difference, the thin line that can easily cross over to enabling. I have seem over and over in my life and in my family what happens when you bail out the drug addicted. We have family members going into their 60's that have never had to "grow up" as they always had someone to take care of them and face the God given consequences of their choices. It's actually quite cruel when you consider the turmoil that follows when those that bail them out pass away. They'll have grown OLD and have to face a LIFETIME of consequences that should have been dealt with in youth or early adulthood. A life wasted not learning to yield to the natural order of life. It's not pretty... In fact it's downright ugly. Lord knows I am who am today because I had to sow that which I reaped, both the good and the bad. My heart is to point others to Christ, but not to become someone's crutch.

I remember telling this family member years ago that if they didn't let go of this activity and repent of their sin that it would completely destroy their family. I'm not psychic, I just know God's word! They mocked and berated me. Since then I've seen them dragged lower than dogs. It's heartbreaking. It's hard to explain to my children in an honorable way. For a long time I'd withhold the information from my children. Now I've decided I will share it. I'd rather my children learn what consequences follow sin and how to avoid it.

Anyhow, sure enough this family asked if they could stay with us for a "day" until they get their check. (which they already admitted wouldn't be there for about a week) I told them no but that we'd be willing to care for the children until they got back on their feet. They were shocked, more blaming. She asked again when I arrived and then told me she's not sure how I could do that to her. She earlier told me how she would never do the same to me which is funny considering my childhood. She would and she did. However that is not the reason I said no. For the sake of my own family I stuck to my guns. I have worked long and hard to have a peaceful godly home. I don't swear, drink or do drugs, heck we don't even watch TV! I certainly won't invite people who do those things and lack every bit of common sense of self control into my house. When I arrived the police were there and their belongings were all on the sidewalk curb. One of them was arguing, swearing with a roommate. I was going to say no to storing their stuff but I figured it would be less traumatic for the children if I moved it into my home. I remember when I was young my mother had all of our belongings in storage and didn't pay it. ALL of our things were lost. Every photo, every thing! I only have 2 photos of my childhood. (Sadly, This is true of many foster youth) My children ask me what I looked like as a baby and if they look like me. I have no idea! I took all 5 of my children and made many trips back and forth all day moving their belongings to my home. It was late into the night when I finished. I took the their kids to Walmart and got them school supplies needed for school the next day. I explained to the children that we love them and they could stay with us as long as they wanted. I explained that in our family we don't fight or do drugs so we couldn't allow that into our home. They nodded in agreement and enjoyed going from sharing a house full of addicts, strippers etc. to having their own rooms in a stable home. We went from 5 kids to 7 in an instant. My children were excited and the kids seemed excited as well My husband and I, feeling up to the task and feeling certain that this is God's will.

Dec 1, 2010

December 1st World AIDS Day


Enable Education (Don't forget to pause the music on playlist so that you can hear the videos)
Dec 1 is World AIDS Day-Consider how you can help the millions of children orphaned by AIDS! Please watch, read, share and pray for ways to help. (James 1:27)
Watch the video below and educate yourself about the TRUTH! Also, please grab the Dec 6 issue of People magazine and read about an amazing adoptive family (Kiel & Carolyn Vetter Twietmeyer )!The Truth Pandemic World AIDS Day Campaign is part of an ongoing educational initiative to encourage public awareness about the facts regarding HIV transmission and orphans living with HIV/AIDS. Project HOPEFUL believes that education is key to addressing the needs of orphans with HIV and families/individuals who would seek to adopt them. Truth Pandemic - Learn the facts about HIV/AIDS and Adoption, How you can get the virus and how you cannot. Help spread the Truth Pandemic video by sharing it with 5 of your friends. www.ProjectHopeful.org
truthbutton


How can YOU help for World AIDS day?
http://www.hopechest.org/5for50/ There are 5 things that every one of us can do to help the 50 million people in our world suffering from HIV/AIDS. Here’s how it works:
Give 5 minutes a day to pray for those suffering from HIV/AIDS.
Give 5 hours a week to fast for those suffering from HIV/AIDS.
Give 5 dollars a month to the Five for 50 Fund and support worthy causes.
Give 5 days a year to travel overseas and help alleviate poverty and suffering.
Give 5 people an opportunity to join you on your journey.
This is a way everyone can participate and be part of the solution to a world crisis.

A few HIV Adoption Resources
http://www.projecthopeful.org/resources
http://www.positivelyorphaned.com/

HIV Adoption! Oh yes you can!

People sometimes ask me why on earth we would ever consider HIV adoption when there are perfectly healthy children that need a home. Why on EARTH would I ever subject my children to something as scary as HIV? Am I CRAZY or just plain irresponsible? Usually it's just that they have old school notions on how the disease is spread. They don't know the facts about HIV adoption. Truth is there are only a few ways to contract HIV. There has never even been a single solitary report of ANYONE getting infected just from living in a home with some one who has HIV or AIDS. That includes sharing drinks, kisses, hugs, sharing utensils, bathing , swimming together. I'll elaborate more on that later. The main reason I wish to adopt an HIV or AIDS orphan is because well, SOMEONE has to. Those millions of people dying in sun shara Africa, and in many other parts of the world often times have children. Those children still exist after the parent passes on. I have prayed from childhood that God would allow me to adopt the children that would otherwise perish. I have seen how these poor children deteriorate if they do not have access to proper food and medication.

Honestly though, the idea of HIV adoption occured to me years ago in Junior High. I remember I was in the Principals Office for misbehaving. ( I was a bit of a hand full, heck, still am) There was an article in a magazine or newspaper about a young little orphan girl that was dying of AIDS. She had no family to care for her, to love her, pray with her, to whisper sweet words of comfort to her in her final hours. She didn't have anyone to show a mothers tender care. It spoke of how she died in some hospital type setting unnoticed. There at 11 or 12 years old my heart broke at the thought of a child slipping into eternity without ever being LOVED. No one to wipe her forehead, no one to hold water to her parched lips. No one to make she she was comfortable or held and rocked and sang to as she took her last breath. The injustice of it all tore at my heart and flooded my soul in anguish. I vowed to either adopt children like that or to start an orphanages or children's home to take care of children like that. Here we are years later and I can't get the image of of my mind Sadly this is all to common for many HIV AIDS children. JUST READ THIS STORY ABOUT THE 6 year old that is shunned by the community because he is an AIDS orphan. http://master.dailychilli.com/news/7638-the-lonely-life-of-a-six-year-old-boy Who will look after him when he becomes to weak to care for himself. I look at my 6 ear old daughter and picture her living on her own by herself... Does that break your heart open yet? Selah HIV adopted daughter of the Twiet-meyers says " Children aren't dying because people aren't helping. the need families like mine. Read her compelling story HERE. http://positivelyorphaned.org/2010/11/27/hiv-adoption-article/
Worldwide, 42 million people are estimated to be living with HIV/AIDS. Of these, 3.2 million are under 15 years of age. In the United States, according to the Centers for Disease Control, there were 816,149 reported cases of HIV in the United States. Of these, 9,074 cases of AIDS were in children under the age of 13In 2010, the number of children worldwide who have lost one or both parents to AIDS is expected to reach 25 million :( In sub-Saharan Africa alone, over 15 million children have been orphaned by the pandemic. This is the first video I ever watched on HIV Adoption. Please watch it is SO informative and inspiring. It will open your eyes to the suffering of these precious little ones. You;ll probably learn a thing or two you didn't know before.
HIV Adoption, Oh YES YOU CAN! http://www.facinglife.tv/episode/season_3/episode_7/episode_307_video_full.htm
Ezekiel 34:16 I will search for the lost and bring back the strays. I will bind up the injured and strengthen the weak…I will shepherd my flock with justice!

Nov 13, 2010

Oct 25, 2010

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Oct 19, 2010

Daughter Date with Anaiah





I went on a Daughter Date with Anaiah. We went to a mommy & me girls bible study/craft. God allowed my path to cross with a sister saint that I have not seen in quite some time. It was such a blessing to my heart to fellowship with her. (and her lovely little daughter) It's so amazing the way the Lord works. Anaiah is such a beautifully sweet precious child. I Iove when she confides her dreams and thoughts to me. It is such a privilege being her mommy. I will make this something we do a lot more often. They grow up so fast. I don't want to miss a moment of this time God has given me to train, love, nurture and influence this little princess. I remember slinging her not to long ago. Where on earth did the time go?

Oct 13, 2010

Heidi Baker - Father's Heart

Let this settle into your spirit! I just LOVE Heidi Baker!

Oct 1, 2010

Our first homestudy meeting


On Tuesday, we had our very first home study meting. It was a very chaotic day. I went back and fourth between whether or not we should cancel. We had issues with childcare and all sorts of urgent things that needed to be taken care of the same day. I also signed up to bring a meal to a friend that had a baby. I felt such opposition. I pondered whether this was an attack from the enemy to keep us from adopting or the Lord saying it isn't time. We considered adopting the siblings of a friends sons from Ghana. I prayed to the Lord and said " you know I don't want to inconvenience anyone and I don't want to go outside of your will. If you want us to adopt you'll help me find childcare for my children with someone I trust." ( which isn't a whole lot of people) Finally, miraculously my friend called saying that she would love to watch my children and to have them over. Our kids were able to play with her dog, chickens, a bunny and pet horses nearby. They had a blast. Huatzin and I discussed that if this meeting went bad or if something didn't feel right we'd go ahead and pull the plug and try to adopt from Ghana instead. I cooked the meal for both families, stopped at the store, dropped off the kids, dropped off the meal, and got to our appointment with 2 minutes to spare.

The meeting went really well. I really like our social worker. ( I didn't think I would) She left us feeling very hopeful which is something they don't do in the classes. They always tell you worst case scenario and overestimate everything, especially timeframes. In the classes they told us it could be anywhere from 12-18 months or more to get certified. She told us it could be as little as 4 or 5 months or less depending on how quickly we got everything turned in. Our social worker was very optimistic and down to earth. There aren't any siblings matching our preference at this time. ( Black or Asian, or any HIV orphans) She did mentioned that with our flexible preferences of 0-5 any ethnicity, willing to accept siblings, drug exposure and some special needs we probably wouldn't wait long to adopt. YAY. A really total God thing happened. 2 years ago our entire family fell in love with a sibling set. They were so "perfect" for our family in every way. I told her how we used to pine over a sibling set on the heart gallery. She asked us which one. I mentioned their names. She KNEW them. I have asked around all over the "system" and had just given up hope that I'd ever know what happened to them. She told me that it was such a shame I didn't contact her sooner. I wish we wold have considered her agency first instead of Olivecrest.
( we had a HORRIBLE, TERRIBLE AWFUL experience with Olivecrest, ( I've since met many others who have also) which eventually led to us not getting a sibling set we desperately wanted, and kept a sibling set from ever being ADOPTED into a loving home. Our family might have looked very different than it does now. I will keep them in prayer for as long as I live. They are on my wall and in my heart forever. When I pray my my own children I pray for them. We have not since then, seen any other sibling group that matched our preferences so perfectly. The Lord at least gave a bit of closure.

I am so excited at what the Lord is doing in our family. I am bubbling over with anticipation to on getting licensed to adopt. I DREAM of the day they call us saying " we have a match for your family." I await especially for the moment when we hear " "these children are now fully and legally YOURS!" I long for the day He uses our family to bring joy, hope, love, rest and closure to orphans. I pray we will be able to rescue, redeem and ransom little ones on the brink of destruction. We want to be the ones that bring stability and peace to them. We want to show them the love of a father and mother, to lovingly point them to the Christ.

Psalm 68:6 "God sets the solitary in families: he brings out those which are bound with chains"
For as many as are led by the Spirit of God, they are sons of God. For you did not receive a spirit of slavery leading to fear again, but you received a spirit of adoption in which we call out, Abba, Father. The Spirit himself testifies together with our spirit that we are God's children. And if children, then also heirs heirs of God and coheirs with Christ, if indeed we suffer with him in order also to be glorified with him. (Romans 8:14-17)

Sep 20, 2010

I hate helping one person at a time

Read this. Really gets you thinking, and praying! This is by Ashley Higgins

i had the privilege of traveling to dublin, ireland last week. my squad-mate andrea made the trek for the second annual world race awakening. there were nearly four-hundred people who came to ireland for the event. current racers, alumni and guests gathered together for four days of worship and teaching. the lord showed up in a mighty way during our time there.

toward the end of our week we had an afternoon free so andrea and i decided to explore the city a bit. we had both been to dublin since our squad launched there just over a year ago. we were wandering around town without much of an agenda. we prayed, rather flippantly, that the Lord would give us a divine appointment.

be careful what you ask for.

as we meandered the temple bar area i noticed a young woman who was wandering aimlessly. she looked lost, confused, tired, needy. i struck up a conversation with her and offered to buy her some food. we walked to a nearby cafe where all she wanted was a smoothie. i tried to get her to eat a muffin or something more substantial, but she insisted that a small drink was plenty. we sat and talked with her as she told us her story.



jackie lives on the streets of dublin. she goes from shelter to shelter every night looking for a place to sleep. she was violently raped ten years ago in an murky alley where she was trying to rest. as a result of this atrocity, jackie refuses to sleep outside. she hadn't slept in four days when we met her last week. she could hardly keep her eyes open she was so exhausted. it was only terror that willed her small, fragile self to stay awake. we tried walking her to a hostel but she could hardly stand up straight, let alone walk the many blocks it would have taken to get her there. as people walked by gawking, jackie began to cry. "why do they look at me like that," she asked as tears streamed down her face. "i would never hurt anyone and i am just as good as they are." "i'm a person, too." i had no words to offer. any christianeese answer i could have mustered up would have done me no good, anyways. there are no answers.

we finally stopped. we sat in the doorway of some hoity-toity business with suited money-makers coming in and out. they didn't have to say anything for their disapproval to speak volumes. we sat with her and prayed. it was a simple prayer. a prayer of protection, hope, and comfort. i gave her all of the cash i had, just ten euro.

and then we walked away. we walked away and made our way to quaint little irish coffee shop where we sipped on our caffeinated beverages of choice. we asked questions and said the 'it's too bad's." we fed ourselves justifications and rationale as we devoured our banana-caramel dessert. we made our way back to the conference and we worshipped our hearts out.

and then normal life just kind of carried on. and we rode a bus and hopped on a plane. and now i'm sitting back in my comfortable bed in my nice, american apartment. i'm in need of nothing, really. i'm surrounded by dozens of jesus-loving people. i have food in my pantry, clean clothes in my closet and money in my wallet. i feel well taken care of. i have a supportive family and network of friends all around the world. i feel safe and secure. i won't lose sleep tonight from fear of being abused.

but somewhere on a dark, irish street corner jackie is sitting.
alone. cold. hungry. tired. terrified. hopeless. depressed. rejected.

and it's just not okay with me. it's not okay with me at all. but i have no answers. i don't know how to fix it. there is no remedy. and i don't want nice christian answers about how i did everything i could and now i just have to trust that the lord will take care of her. there is truth in that, absolutely. but i don't find comfort in those justifications. it's not good enough for me, anymore. i'm not looking for solace or commiseration. i don't want well-intentioned condolences anymore.

because there are millions of jackies in our world. millions.
millions of orphans. millions of women being sold into sexual slavery.
millions of people living in inhumane conditions because of poverty.

and, i know. i have to believe that what i am doing is helping. that licking stamps and stuffing envelopes; reading blogs and projecting numbers is actually changing the world. but today, it's hard to believe that. it's hard and it doesn't seem like enough to sit behind my desk. because i want things to be different. i don't want to feed one hungry person, i want to end hunger. i don't want to bring comfort to just one woman who has be dejected and abused. i want to abolish modern-day slavery and start a jesus revolution beginning with the pimps and sleazy men who prey on the helpless women and children. i don't want to hold one orphan in africa. i don't want there to be orphans in my world at all.

call it idealism. call it naivety. call it impractical, unrealistic, stupid, ridiculous, foolish, crazy, or a waste of time. call if whatever you want.

i'm going to call it kingdom. and i'm going to fight like hell to make it happen.

as much as i hate it most of the time, i'm going to keep loving the one in front of me. i'll keep buying the jackie in my life a smoothie. i'll pray my simple prayers. and i will keep searching and crying and fighting my guts out and asking questions...until the earth looks just like heaven.

because jackie is somewhere in ireland, sleep deprived and void of hope.
and i refuse for that to ever be okay.

Sep 16, 2010

Sept 2010 Rodriguez /Josiah update


I just wanted to give an update on what's been going on with us. We have had some really great things happen and some heart aches as well. Such is life.
1) We have been trying to get caught up financially from all of this craziness of having a sick kiddo, medical bills, hubby trying to catch us up from being out of work for over a year. We REALLY wanted to help bless a dear friend Stacy Richards and her family adopting 4 year old Solomon from China. It was my goal that we'd be able to donate a very huge amount to help them adopt their son form China. Well the Lord knew we would not be able to do it personally. He did however give us the idea to hold a raffle that brought in about $3000 to help them. It is totally the ALL the Lord. That is way more than I would have been able to donate. She is in China RIGHT NOW showing him the LOVE of a mother and father for the FIRST TIME in his life. They are preparing to come home soon. The Lord blessed such feeble efforts and I am rejoicing in His provision. Many of you KNOW how much we are pro-adoption and have wanted to adopt for years. I live vicariously through the experiences of my many amazing adoptive friends. Thanks to the many that prayed and participated. This is an example of how the Lord CAN use you to help orphans even though many of us are struggling financially. We may not all feel led to adopt but we can ALL help regardless of our circumstances. James 1:27 "TRUE religion is looking after orphans and widows and keeping oneself unspotted by the world. " Follow them here if you want to see how the Lord miraculously provided to bring Solomon home. http://mycupoverfloweth.blogspot.com/
2) We have attended an Above Rubies www.aboverubies.org retreat FAITHFULLY for years. It is our annual family "thing" that we look forward to. Last year we couldn't go because Josiah was still going to the hospital constantly, my husband Huatzin didn't have a job and we couldn't afford it. I was very disappointed. We hoped to go this year but layoffs began at Huatzin's work and we couldn't justify the money needed to go even if we camped nearby AND brought our own food. The Lord supernaturally provided above and beyond what we could dream or think. Some compassionate and generous person paid for our entire family to attend the whole weekend. I almost didn't accept it as I figured "wow that is too much money." The retreat coordinator informed us that our family wasn't even the largest family they paid for! I am blown away. It was JUST what I didn't know we needed. We were SO blessed and refreshed. We made some great memories. I asked the Lord "is this respite from the past year or the calm before the storm?" He told me just to "trust Him and Be still, and that I don't need to know how every little thing is going to turn out. "

3) Huatzin got laid off. The Lord prepared our hearts for it. At least with construction /new plumbing you sort of KNOW when it is about to happen as the work dwindles. Huatzin is always one of the last to go so he can see when it's coming. I think that is better than being surprised and caught off gaurd. It gives you time to prepeare your heart and lets you kow how to pray. We hope they remember him for the foreman position coming up in a few months. Think of us when you ride the new Little Mermaid ride ( Disneyland) in May. My hubby helped put the plumbing in. This also means that our home-study will probably be put on hold. Must not be His will right now. Not my will but Thine.


4) Josiah has had a cold and began getting bruising. The enemy wanted me thinking he was relapsing. I rebuked him as I feel the Lord has healed my son. One of meanings of Josiah's name is "Whom God has HEALED!" I called today and was told that Josiah's labs were back and his platelets we 145,000!!!! His Hemoglobin, red blood count and white count are fine. He is only 5,000 short from being somewhat NORMAL!!! Can you BELIEVE IT!!!! When we went in last year he only had 8,000 platelets and was in serious danger. Now he is fine. You can look on my blog at the 12 children with his same diagnoses (Aplastic Anemia) ALL of them have had to undergo either Bone Marrow Transplants or Immune Suppressive therapy. God healed Josiah with breastmilk and prayers of many saints around the World!!! You have truly witnessed a MIRACLE!!! Nancy Campbell asked me to write about how nursing helped him. The Lord has SAVED MY SON! Many people prayed that the Lord would show up MIGHTILY on our behalf and He did in a huge way! Yay Jesus! Huatzin is out of work again but last year we had a son that was diagnosed with a serious life threatening blood disorder and our options were bone marrow transplant, or a therapy that can have fatal results. Our present circumstance seems so minor in comparison. I can REJOICE I can PRAISE him because He has made my lot secure. The boundary lines have fallen for me in pleasant places, surely I have a delightful inheritance! Bless you, THANK You for sharing in my joy. I can't STOP PRAISING HIM thanking him falling on my face in worship and gratitude!!! In Christ, Alida w5


Psalm 16:5 Lord, you have assigned me my portion and my cup;
you have made my lot secure.
6 The boundary lines have fallen for me in pleasant places;
surely I have a delightful inheritance.

7 I will praise the Lord, who counsels me;
even at night my heart instructs me.
8 I have set the Lord always before me.
Because he is at my right hand,
I will not be shaken.

9 Therefore my heart is glad and my tongue rejoices;
my body also will rest secure,
10 because you will not abandon me to the grave, [fn3]
nor will you let your Holy One [fn4] see decay.
11 You have made [fn5] known to me the path of life;
you will fill me with joy in your presence,
with eternal pleasures at your right hand.

Alida, blessed wife to Huatzin. Mama of 9 y.o twins Canaan & Elijah, Anaiah Grace 6, Josiah Valor 3, Hezekiah (Ki) 1, born at home in water. Awaiting many more by way of adoption.

Sep 15, 2010

What Wondrous Love is this?

This song is a family favorite. Michelle Tumes sings it beautifully. Love, In Jesus, Alida w5

Lyrics from The Hesperian Harp, 1848, by Dr. William Hauser (no. 234)
1. What wondrous love is this,
O my soul! O my soul!
What wondrous love is this, O my soul!
What wondrous love is this
That caused the Lord of bliss
To bear the dreadful curse,
For my soul, for my soul,
To bear the dreadful curse, for my soul.

2. When I was sinking down,
Sinking down, sinking down,
When I was sinking down, sinking down;
When I was sinking down,
Beneath God's righteous frown,
Christ laid aside his crown,
For my soul, for my soul,
Christ laid aside his crown, for my soul.

3. Ye winged seraphs, fly!
Bear the news! bear the news!
Ye winged seraphs fly! bear the news!
Ye winged seraphs fly! bear the news,
Like comets through the sky,
Fill vast eternity
With the news, with the news,
Fill vast eternity with the news!

4. To God, and to the Lamb,
I will sing, I will sing,
To God, and to the Lamb, I will sing;
To God, and to the Lamb,
Unto the great I AM,
While millions join the theme,
I will sing, I will sing,
While millions join the theme, I will sing.

5. Come, friends of Zion's King,
Join the praise, join the praise,
Come, friends of Zion's King, join the praise!
Come, friends of Zion's King,
With hearts and voices sing,
And strike each tuneful string,
In his praise, in his praise,
And strike each tuneful string in his praise.

6. And when from death we're free,
We'll sing on, we'll sing on,
And when from death we're free, we'll sing on;
And when from death we're free,
We'll sing, and joyful be,
And through eternity
We'll sing on, we'll sing on,
And through eternity we'll sing on.

7. Yes, when to that bright world
We arise, we arise,
Yes, when to that bright world we arise—
When to that world we go,
Free from all pain and wo,
We'll join the happy throng,
And sing on, and sing on,
We'll join the happy throng, and sing on.

Sep 11, 2010

What does love look like? Arms wide open

Be sure to click the music off on my playlist so you can hear this beautiful spirit filled song. The little girl seen with Heidi Baker ( Iris Ministries) on 4:25 of this song was found by Heidi as a toddler raped, bleeding, diseased, and abandoned on the side of the road. God used Heidi to rescue, ransom and REDEEM her life and she has joy, love and peace in Jesus! I have the movie about Heidi's ministry if you want to see it! What does love look like? is the question Ive been pondering... Close your eyes, lift your hands and worship Him!
This is how I know what love is.
This is how I know what love is. Love, Alida w5



Arms Open Open by Misty Edwards
"What does love look like? is the question Ive been pondering
What does love look like?
What does love look like? is the question Ive been asking of You
Once believed that love was romance, just a chance
I even thought that love was for the lucky and the beautiful
I once believed that love was a momentary bliss, but love is more than this
All You ever wanted was my attention
All You ever wanted was love from me
All You ever wanted was my affections to sit here at Your feet and tell me
What does love look like? is the question Ive been pondering
What does love look like? If all of life comes down to love then tell me
What does love look like? is the question Ive been pondering
What does love look like?

Then I sat down a little frustrated and confused
Your fire of life comes down to love. And love has to be more than sentiment,
More than selfishness and selfish gain

Then I saw Him there
Hanging on a tree, looking at me
I saw Him there
Hanging on a tree, looking at me
He was looking at me looking at Him, staring through me
I could not escape those beautiful eyes
And I began to weep and weep

He had arms wide open, heart exposed
Arms wide open, He was bleeding, bleeding.
Arms wide open, heart exposed
Arms wide open, He was bleeding, bleeding
Loves definition
Loves definition, was looking at me
Looking at Him. Hanging on a tree
I began to weep and weep and weep and weep
This is how I know what love is.

And as I sat there, weeping, crying, those beautiful eyes
Full of desire and love. And He said to me
You shall love Me..You shall love Me.
With arms wide open, heart exposed
With arms wide open, bleeding, sometimes bleeding
You shall love Me.. You shall love Me..


If anybodys looking for love in all the wrong places
If youve been searching for love, come to Me. Come to me.
Take up your cross. Deny yourself.
Forget your fathers house and run. Run with Me.
Cause you were made for abandon your heart and listen
Cause you were made for Someone greater, Someone bigger, so follow Me.
And youll come alive when you learn to die.
And He said to me

You shall love Me. You shall love Me

With arms wide open, heart exposed
With arms wide open, bleeding, sometimes bleeding"

Sep 10, 2010

How do I say this nicely...

Or perhaps, what I should have titled this "What I SHOULD have said!" Alright I'll just come on out and say it. A raffle takes a good deal of work. Distributing prizes does as well, especially as I am in the middle of preparing my home for homeschooling. If I travel all over all day delivering prizes with my 5 children (including my baby that hates the car and lets every body know it via an often times deafening ear piercing, glass shattering shriek/scream/WAIL) and I get to your door and you look out your window and refuse to open your door because you see a (minority) lady with a Kia full of kids that you don't recognize... I will not stand there at your door answering 20 questions trying to get you to open your door to deliver packages that I've gone out of my way to hand deliver to you and about 10 other people. I will not beg and plead. If you don't answer or don't want to open the door because you want to know who I am, what I am doing, how do I know you, What do I have, where I'm from, who the raffle is for, how I know the person from the raffle is for etc... ALL from your closed door, etc I'm LEAVING. I have dinner to make, children ( 5 of them) that need tending to, and I still have to sit in traffic to get home. It is both insulting and rude to a person that has been busting her behind to help others. (you) Obviously if you are to terrified to open the door your neighborhood is bad enough that I can't just leave your packages there. I will instead drive back home and you will have to descend from on high from your nice little neighborhood to my home....in SANTA ANA mind you, to pick up your prize. :-)

One person was somewhat apologetic. I won't even get into details. I was thinking "Gee I know a few verses I could underline for you." You know the ones about not showing partiality. The ones about The mark of a Christian being their LOVE for others. Jesus said we are to "GO out into the world and make disciples.. I'm thinking that is pretty hard when you don't even open your door to someone based on appearances. What if I was a neighbor needing sugar? What if I needed help and was in danger? What if I was lost? What if I didn't know Christ and saw how this person treated others? Which leads me on my soapbox. I believe that true character is how you are to people that don't go to your church or look like you. It's about how you treat the non english speaking person, the waitress, or the homeless person that greets you, the person who comes to your door with a question (or stuff you may have won from a raffle! :-) True character is who you are when you don't think anyone (or anyone you know, or anyone you work with or attends your church) is around. I then had to explain to my kids (that were helping me deliver prizes as to the reason that people heard us knocking but wouldn't answer the door. AWESOME! Did they think we ( My 9 & 6 year olds) would rob them. Doesn't He own the cattle on a thousand hills? Isn't everything God's.

And what about this verse Hebrews 13:2 " Do not neglect to show hospitality to strangers, for by doing that some have entertained angels without knowing it. " OK, Off the soapbox. Most people (almost EVERYONE ) were VERY sweet and appreciative. Only a couple gave me a hard time. Thank you for not making life any harder than it has to be you wonderful saints that were kind and thankful. I appreciate your decency. Alida w5

Just SAY YES

Sep 6, 2010

Paul, Stacy and Solomon UNITED!

Paul and Stacy were able to hold their little ( 4 year old) Solomon for the first time. I can only IMAGINE how this must feel. I told my children to lay down and close their eyes. I told them to picture in their mind that they live in an orphanage surrounded by many many other children. You belong to the state and not a real family. Imagine that they have NEVER known a mother or fathers touch. That they've never had someone make them a special meal just the way they like it. They've never had someone to tuck them into bed, never had someone pick the up and love on them and cuddle them with kisses when they've skin a knee or are hurt. Never had anyone to comfort them when they are scared or have had a bad dream. Never had anyone tell them I love you son. No one to pray with you and teach you about Jesus. No one reads a special book, sings them a special song, tells them stories, dreams with them, hopes with them. NO ONE to tell you how special you are. At times the sadness and loneliness is so unbearable for your little heart. Deep down you are scared and in survival mode. You always long for a family like other boys ad girls. You hear stories of what it must be like to belong in a family and wonder what it must be like. the orphanage is all you've ever known. You long for something different, something better. How do you feel?

Now imagine that for the first time in your little life, a mama and daddy come for you to bring you into their family. They hug you, kiss you, and LOVE you, and tell you you BELONG! How do you feel? I shared with them that it's the needed of over 150 MILLION orphans. Many of those children will never get to experience the joy, bliss and comfort and peace of mind that Solomon has. The feeling of rest. I asked them never to forget how that felt and to remember as God tell us the orphan. I asked them to never lose their heart for the orphan and to always thing of ways they can help the fatherless and the widow. They prayed that God would help them. I believe He will. Look at these photos. Doesn't Solomon look so peaceful! It's because he he is LOVED. He knows who his daddy is. His earthly father will point him to his Heavenly father.

Look at how he adores his mother. Can you imagine having a mother and father for the FIRST TIME IN YOUR LIFE? This is God's heart for EVERY family. His desire is that all would have a home. Romans 8:14 "For as many as are led by the Spirit of God, they are the sons of God.For ye have not received the spirit of bondage again to fear; but ye have received the Spirit of adoption, whereby we cry, Abba, Father."
You can stay updated through her blog http://mycupoverfloweth.blogspot.com/



Sep 3, 2010

We raised nearly $3,000 for the Richards Family!!!

Go Jesus, we raised around $3,000 helping the Richards family bring Solomon HOME. We I say "WE" I mean each and every one of you that prayed, spread the word, donated or purchased tickets. ALL of you helped a beautiful boy get home to His forever family. You helped rescue an orphan from an institutional setting, a lifetime of loneliness and brought him into a loving, godly family! Praise the Lord, you helped with a mighty work but don't stop now! There is so much more to do. There are 153 MILLION orphans needing help of some kind. Please earnestly pray and see how the Lord would use your life to help the fatherless.

“and if you spend yourselves in behalf of the hungry
and satisfy the needs of the oppressed,
then your light will rise in the darkness,
and your night will become like the noonday.”
Isaiah 58:10

Sep 2, 2010

Adopting the Waiting Child

This is so good. I just HAVE to repost!
Watch this sweet short video. You'll be glad you did. Then share it with others.

Aug 30, 2010

Master cleanse 27 days!

I made it to 27 days on the cleanse and was fully prepared to go to 40 days but went camping and forgot all of my cleanse stuff at home and ending up breaking my fast for the sake of saving my pocketbook. I will rest my body for a week or so and finish out my remainder of the cleanse. I should mention that I got really sick not ending the cleanse gradually. I won't go into the TMI details of HOW sick I got, but suffice it to say, it wasn't pleasant! Many MANY days of a sick tummy.

On a side note, I am down 30 lbs and look and feel really good! I would still like to lose about 30 more before my 30th birthday. But I'm willing to do that via a vegan and /raw lifestyle. I can't stop talking about the benefits of the master cleanse!

Aug 20, 2010

Day 20 of the Master cleanse! Down 24 pounds

I am on my 20th day of the master cleanse. It is hard for me though as I did a 10 day cleanse before this almost back to back. I really feel I should have waited longer between cleanses. It's like I've done 30 days of the cleanse!

I am down 24 pounds though I did not do this at all to lose weight. This is getting hard. I am tempted to quit at the 21 day mark... the taste of the lemonade is getting pretty repulsive. I typically forget to drink it because it's getting to be a pain to make the lemon/syrup concoction. (which in turn makes me feel weak. Also, this may be TMI but because your detoxing, you kinda SMELL funny. I take multiple showers now or take my shower right before I go anywhere. I also try to use a nice smelling lotion. They say you've cleansed well when you get the white coating on your tongue, and later on it turns back to pink. I have not yet had that happen. My asthma is gone. I have not gotten to that really energetic clear thinking stage yet, but I have not been getting enough sleep. Maybe that has something to do with it. I'll take it day by day.. I was originally hoping to make it a 40 day fast but that seems far off. I ran out of my gallon of organic maple syrup. This means I am buying those super expensive tiny jars from Trader Joe's that last only every other day and lemons are getting expensive. This cleanse is really eating into our budget. I will say though, I was going out the door, when I looked down and my skirt fell completely off! It's too loose. Dangit. I really LOVED that skirt. :-) But that seems like an ok problem to have. Ok I sound really whiny right now huh. I'd like to get to that feeling of enlightenment many speak about so maybe I just need to persevere. ;-) UG, pray for me. On the brighter side, My hubby can't stop telling how darn awesome I look. :-) He's a cutie. It is REALLY encouraging because I have started meeting tons of people who have done the cleanse! This is great because I heard lots of negative comments so it's good to hear about many NORMAL people giving great feedback about the benefits and the legitimacy of this cleanse.

Safe Families Model!

The Safe Families Model
What a beautiful alternative to foster care! I ended up in foster care because my mom herself was in foster care lacked support as a teenage single mother. Things like this could provide the Titus 2 mentoring support needed to keep families together, share Christ and keep children form becoming orphans.

Aug 18, 2010

Raffle for Adoptive Family/GREAT PRIZES &Curriculum


HOLD IT! STOP THE PRESS!  Please do not buy any curriculum until you check out our raffle! We have almost 60 different donations from many well known  organizations and ministries. Many items for non homeschoolers too!  HELP AN ORPHAN GET HOME!!! James 1:27 PLEASE HELP US MAKE THIS THE BIGGEST BEST RAFFLE EVER!!!  ONLY $5.00 a ticket!!! REALLY FABULOUS PRIZES!!! The Richards family only has a few weeks to raise the remaining funds needed to bring their son home from China!! http://bringingsolomonhome.blogspot.com

Items available...
Gift Certificate from Apologia, Blackbird & Co.
*TWO $200.00 gift certificates to Rainbow Resources Center Inc.
*A Carole Joy Seid Seminar Gift Certificate! www.carolejoyseid.com
* 2 CD's and a Soap Gift basket from Generation Cedar! http://www.generationcedar.com
* The Hole in our Gospel  * A brand new parallel amplified bible  *Stylish back pack bag,
*Joshua The Warrior Action Set 
*Who is God and can we really know him by Jon Hay and David Webb.
*3 separate “Milestone Reading complete reading programs.” 
*Write-shop Primary book A and Activity Worksheet Pack
*The well Planned day, *The well Grounded  Middle schooler
 *The well guided high schooler
*Melissa & Doug Pirate Puzzle and tiger puppet/.
*The Latin Road to English Volume 3!
*Destined to Soar by Gospel For Asia.
*Jean Wells Worship-Guitar Class Vol 1.                  
*Christian Heros Vol 1-5 from YWAM
*Eat your way around the world. by geomatterS                 
*Infrared Alien flying remote control set
*TWO copies of “They sold their souls for Rock N Roll www.goodfight.com
*7 Copies of Let us Highly Resolve: David and Shirley Quine. 
 *The Gift of dyslexia
*A journey Home DVD by Franklin Springs Media.          
*Original  Intent from Wall builders
*T Shirt by BJU, Homeschooler do school anywhere and everywhere
*Jacket from generation Joshua.
*Art supplies by Miller Pads and Paper. 
*Prima Latina Teacher & Student manual 
*Accelerated learning  by global learning strategies.                   
*God your real dad
*History through literature 3 books. 5 in a row, Augustus Cesar, by Beautiful Feet
*Fun and Educational Places to go in Southern California 8th Edition.
*Gentle babies, growing healthy                         
 *CD lamp & quill bible resource
*Our Time Together Complete set from Full Amour Ministries
* Book from Circle C Adventures.                      
*Classics for Children
*Gift Certificate from Apologia
*Books from Creation Research institute!
*Building  A BIBLICAL WORLD VIEW CD
*Why the Bible? 
*1 Don’t Waste Your Life Study Kit, and 2 Illustrated Job books. from John Pipers Desiring God Ministries
*1 copy each of Preparing To Be A Help Meet, Created To Be A Help Meet and Good and Evil.
*2 Raising Godly Tomatoes books
*7 copies of Highly Resolved. * Gift pack from Institute of Creation Research
*College Prep Genius class DVD and booklets
*Classics for Kids by The Boston Pops & Arthur Fiedler
*Homeschooling at the Speed of Life by Marilyn Rockett 
*  Managers of Their Homes http://www.titus2.com/ecommerce/products/prod_listing.php/1100 
And much much more! VISIT  http://bringingsolomonhome.blogspot.com Donations from these Sponsors 
Beautiful Feet Books, BJU Press, Blackbird & Company, Carole Joy Seid, Carolina Christian Book Fairs, Circle C Adventures, College Prep Genius, CollegePlus Store
Cornerstone Curriculum, Desiring God (John Piper), Drills, Skills & More, Franklin Springs Family Media, Full Armor Ministries, FUN Places Publishing, Generation Cedar, Generation Joshua, Generations of Virtue, Geography Matters, Good Steward Books GoodFight Ministries, Gospel For Asia, Great Products Online! Growing Healthy Homes Institute for Creation Research, Ladera Reading Solutions for Dyslexia
Lamp & Quill International,Mad Dog Math, Memoria Press, Milestone Reading
Miller Pads & Paper, Passing the Baton International, Picture This Bible
Rainbow Resources Center, Inc, Raising Godly Tomatoes, Schola Publications(TheLatinRoad), The Well Planned Day, Titus2.com, WallBuilders
Worship Guitar Class, WriteShop, YWAM Publishing
The more donations we receive the more you can win! Also, if you have a good working vehicle you are not using, I can put you in contact with a WONDERFUL mom in need.  We may not all be able to adopt but we can ALL help an orphan get HOME! Alida w5 http://ransomedredeemed.blogspot.com/ 

Jul 21, 2010

Yes you heard it, we are IN PROCESS to ADOPT!

We have taken the classes we have finished the paperwork... We are handing in our application tomorrow! We are praying for a minority sibling set of 3( I prayed that the Lord would double us back when we only had 4!) I heard him say He would make me the JOYFUL fruitful mother of MANY children. I want 8 kids before I turn 30. Not much time if you ask me! We want to help keep a sibling set together. My heart quickens and is stirred every time I see beautiful black children. My heart does the same when i see little Asian children as well. I have always wanted at least a few noticeably black children. My children are on the lighter side. Though they are beautiful as well. I always wanted to have a little girl with braids, beads and various hair accessories. ;-) Our family could definitely use a bit more melanin up in here. ;-) Along with Asian, Asian Indian, Native American, Arab, and Caucasian children too. We'd just prefer a black or mixed with black sibling set first. However, we are open to other ethnicities as well. Though I don't want to limit the Lord in whatever type of children He has for us, so we are listing our preference but open to His leading.

I remember watching on either dateline or 20/20 when I was a teen, a BEAUTIFUL Christian family of about 20-22 children. They had children of every single color and ethnicity. They were such a close amazing family. I remember thinking that must be what the Kingdom of heaven looks like. I wish I could find the clip or blog of them online. (please pass it along if you find it) By George I'd like to see families on earth as it is in heaven! We are praying for at least 1 girl, 1 baby and 1 toddler and a 3 4, or 5 year old. We'll accept accept drug exposed etc. My heart has been flung open and far for children with blood disorders and other medical conditions from this whole situation with Josiah. At the present time I have a huge heart and burden for special needs and most especially, HIV orphans... Please keep us in prayer! Love ya'll. In Christ. Alida w5
To learn about HIV adoption click here


http://www.projecthopeful.org/
http://www.huffingtonpost.com/leslie-goldman/hiv-adoption-its-happenin_b_374762.html
http://www.positivelyorphaned.com/
http://fromhivtohome.blogspot.com/
http://www.adoption-link.org/chances-by-choice-program.aspx
http://heldts.blogspot.com/2007/01/raising-hiv-positive-child-hiv-and.html

A very neat family that I respect and love!

Jul 14, 2010

Sharing at the Children's Home! Things I wish someone would have told me (Part 2)

My handout to the Children's Home teens

Things you should know ( Things I wish someone would have told me)

You will need to purpose not to let your circumstances destroy you! Do not let anyone or anything deter you from reaching your full potential! It is up to YOU to make something of yourself. I purposed not to let my present situation ruin my life or my future. You can too! 1 Corinthians 15:58 Therefore, my beloved brothers, be steadfast, immovable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, knowing that in the Lord your labor is not in vain. There will be those who say you can’t meet your goals or call you names but please remember the wise words of Madea. “ it ain’t what they call you, it’s what you answer too.” ;-) Learn to flourish wherever you are. Bloom where you are planted.

You are not an accident! Some of you are walking around feeling defeated and feeling like you are an accident, a mistake. This self defeating thinking brings about self destructive behaviors and suicidal thoughts. (by the way, with suicide- I realized one day that if I killed myself, the people who hurt me might feel bad, or they might not, but they would go on with their lives, I wouldn’t! ) Jeremiah 1:5 tell us that “Before I formed you in the womb I knew you.” Before the foundations of the World were created he knew you and knew how long you would live and everything about you. Matthew 10:29 says “the very hairs on your head are numbered!”

God LOVES you! For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life (John 3:16). But because of his great love for us, God, who is rich in mercy, made us alive with Christ even when we were dead in transgressions—it is by grace you have been saved (Ephesians 2:4-5). "…the kingdom of heaven is like unto a merchant man, seeking goodly pearls: Who, when he had found one pearl of great price, went and sold all that he had, and bought it." Matthew 13:45-4 Sweet sister you are that Pearl of great price. He died so that you might live.

He has a plan for you and your life! Jeremiah 29:11 “For I know the thoughts that I think toward you, says the LORD, thoughts of peace and not of evil, to give you a future and a hope.” Romans 8:28 “And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose.” It doesn’t mean life will be easy but it does mean that if you let him He can use your life for good. That good things can come from evil the most terrible, painful situations that you have. Your pain and hurts are never wasted with God! He may even use your life to help others going through the same things you have. He holds your tears in a bottle. Psalm 39:12. Give Him your hurt and don’t let it destroy you.

God is the perfect parent! When your father and mother let you down, remember that He is always there for you. I remember feeling so abandoned, unwanted and unloved. Until God showed me Psalm 68:5 “A father to the fatherless,a defender of widows, is God in his holy dwelling.” Psalm 27:10 “When my father and my mother forsake me, then the LORD will take me up.” Jesus said in John 14:18 "I will not leave you orphans." He is El Shaddai “ the All Sufficient One.” He is capable of meeting all of my needs and yours.

Set goals. Aim high! Then revisit these goals weekly or monthly. A quote I love is “Shoot for the moon. Even if you miss, you'll land among the stars.”Philippians 3:13 “But one thing I do: Forgetting what is behind and straining toward what is ahead,I press on toward the goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenward in Christ Jesus.”

You are not your parents- Just because they did drugs, were criminals, did ________(insert whatever is applicable to your situation here) doesn’t mean this is you have to! You have a choice to make. Follow in unhealthy footsteps and generational dysfunction or walk a higher path. I chose the latter! Drug addiction ends here! Violence ends here! My children will have a good heritage!

On Forgiveness- Corrie Ten Boom, a Christian woman who survived a Nazi concentration camp during the Holocaust, said, "Forgiveness is to set a prisoner free, and to realize the prisoner was you." You will have to forgive those who hurt you to heal. This doesn't mean you pretend nothing happened, but release the anger and hateful feelings and thoughts, forgive them and move on. For some this means forgiving but never being around that person who hurt you because they will try to take advantage of that forgiveness, but releasing yourself from the hate, hurt and burden!

On Choosing wise friends. I kept falling into sin and making foolish choices, then the Lord showed me that I it was because I was hanging around FOOLS! My friends dropped out, partied did illegal and immoral things and it wasn't long until I dabbled into the same things. I learned 1 Corinthians 15:33 Do not be misled, for "bad company corrupts good character." Proverbs 13:20 “ He who walks with the wise grows wise, but a companion of fools suffers harm.” The secular version of this would be “birds of a feather flock together.” Chose friends that inspire you and encourage you on to great things, also try to become a friend that “ Hebrews 10:24 speaks about. ” And let us consider how we may spur one another on toward love and good deeds.

Read your bible. The Holy Bible- I couldn’t figure out why I kept falling from the commitment I made to the Lord of repenting from sin and I realized I wasn't reading His word. 2 Timothy 3:16-17, "All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness, so that the man of God may be thoroughly equipped for every good work." It doesn't happen by osmosis. Read and learn wisdom and discernment. I recommend most especially PROVERBS! I would have saved myself lots of heartache and gained much had I read Proverbs as a teen! Some like to read the proverb number that coincides with the same day of the month. So Proverbs 1, for the 1st day of the month read Proverbs 2 for the 2nd day of the month and so on.

It may be bad, it could be worse! It is hard to hear I know. You may feel stuck in this place and maybe you don't feel like other kids/teens. It doesn't seem fair. One thing I learned is that God never mentions ANYTHING about being "FAIR", (you won't find that ANYWHERE in Scripture) He does say however, that He is JUST! I thought I had it rough, then I read about orphans in Liberia, all over Africa, China, Mexico and places like Russia, India and many other countries. It helps me to pray for and support or sponsor these children because it reminds me that most of the world is struggling to survive. Most live on less than $2.00 a day in abject poverty. It doesn't mean that my situation doesn't matter, it just shows me that there are others who are deeply hurting too. Look for ways to bless them.

Being a Christian isn’t all sunshine and rainbows. Nor does it make you perfect. Just because you come to Christ doesn't mean life will suddenly get easy and everything you ever wanted is going to happen for you. John 16:33 “I have said these things to you, that in me you may have peace. In the world you will have tribulation. But take heart; I have overcome the world.” God uses trials to refine and make you stronger and more like Him. Surrender to it and embrace it.

Take advantage of the resources you available to you! Accept help. Many of you have access to transitional housing, free college, counseling, health insurance and an whole host of opportunities. Realize that MOST of the worlds population do not. Now make the most of it and use it to do great things with your lives. Please don't squander this opportunity. it is HARD trying to make it all on your own! Trust me!

Do not take revenge-This is helpful in many situations in life. Just thought I’d mention Romans 12:21 Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good. Apply this verse to any situation you may have. You’ll be blessed and see much fruit.

Learn to set boundaries. There is a book called boundaries and boundaries for kids /teens that is amazing. You will need to learn to set boundaries of what is acceptable to you and what you won’t tolerate then enforce them. You’ll need this skill in all areas of life. Get the book if you can. I’ve had to learn to set boundaries with both family, friends, boyfriends, employers, coworkers, teachers, and now in parenting etc. "The purpose of having boundaries is to protect and take care of ourselves.  We need to be able to tell other people when they are acting in ways that are not acceptable to us.  A first step is starting to know that we have a right to protect and defend ourselves.  That we have not only the right, but the duty to take responsibility for how we allow others to treat us."

Family is what you make it- Your birth family might not be the greatest. That doesn't mean you have to subject yourself to people who belittle you, criticize you, squash your dreams, hurt you, discourage you, or want to see you fail. Chose people to be like family to you. I prayed for a godly mentor and got 7! We celebrate holidays and special occasions with people who love us unconditionally and want what's best for us. Recognize that you can chose family that meets your needs and that loves you for who you are! (newly added) This doesn't mean you have to totally discard your biological family either. Often times my biological family is just not capable of interacting in a healthy loving and kind way. Try not to take it personally. ( difficult I know) When this happens I lovingly enforce the boundaries I have set, and take a break from them until our relationship can be healthy and my personal space and peace of mind aren't being violated. I have my extended support systems/family type relationships that I can turn to so I am not waiting around for change or a relationship that may never happen. This frees your heart to still bless and be blessed by loving others and frees your bio family from being able to blame you for their short comings. It also models what healthy give and take relationships are all about.

Do the NEXT (right) Thing- (By Elizabeth Elliott whose husband Jim Elliott was martyred in the Amazon, based on the movie End of the Spear ) We all make mistakes, it’s part of learning and growing. When you make a mistake, learn from it, repent and move on. Don't let it drag you further into sin or cause you to give up! Stop and do the NEXT right thing!

I want to leave you with this wonderful verse
Isaiah 43: 1"Fear not, for I have redeemed you;  I have summoned you by name; you are mine. When you pass through the waters,   I will be with you; and when you pass through the rivers, they will not sweep over you. When you walk through the fire, you will not be burned; the flames will not set you ablaze, For I am the LORD, your God, the Holy One of Israel, your Savior;

I want you girls to begin thinking about what changes you can make that will bless or better you and your future! I leave you with these words. One Life to live, twill soon be past, “Only what’s done for Christ will last. “
_________________
Poem by C.T Studd Only One Life
“Two little lines I heard one day,Traveling along life's busy way;
Bringing conviction to my heart, And from my mind would not depart; Only one life, 'twill soon be past, Only what's done for Christ will last.

Only one life, yes only one, Soon will its fleeting hours be done; 
Then, in 'that day' my Lord to meet, And stand before His Judgement seat; Only one life,'twill soon be past, Only what's done for Christ will last.

Only one life, the still small voice, Gently pleads for a better choice. Bidding me selfish aims to leave, And to God's holy will to cleave; Only one life, 'twill soon be past, Only what's done for Christ will last.

Only one life, a few brief years, Each with its burdens, hopes, and fears; Each with its clays I must fulfill, living for self or in His will; 
Only one life, 'twill soon be past, Only what's done for Christ will last.

When this bright world would tempt me sore, When Satan would a victory score; When self would seek to have its way, Then help me Lord with joy to say; Only one life, 'twill soon be past, Only what's done for Christ will last.

Give me Father, a purpose deep, In joy or sorrow Thy word to keep; Faithful and true what e'er the strife, Pleasing Thee in my daily life; Only one life, 'twill soon be past, Only what's done for Christ will last.

Oh let my love with fervor burn, And from the world now let me turn; Living for Thee, and Thee alone, Bringing Thee pleasure on Thy throne; Only one life, "twill soon be past, Only what's done for Christ will last.

Only one life, yes only one, Now let me say,"Thy will be done"; 
And when at last I'll hear the call, I know I'll say "twas worth it all"; 
Only one life,'twill soon be past, Only what's done for Christ will last.”

Jul 13, 2010

Sharing at the Children's Home! Things I wish someone would have told me

I was asked to speak again to the teen girls over at the Children's home. When I came to Christ years ago, I asked the Lord to use the suffering in my life for good and to help others. I didn't want my pain to have been without purpose. Even though it's only about 10-20 girls at a time, it is the Lord answering the deepest desires of my heart. I am always SO blessed and excited when I get to share what the Lord has done for me. I It sounds silly but to me it feels as though I am walking on holy ground! I know that what He has done in my life He can do for others. It is my prayer that seeds are planted, hope is restored and that lives can be redeemed and souls are brought into the kingdom in the lives of the foster youth here in the US.

I shared a bit about my upbringing. I told them how I used to be in foster care. My father was in and out of prison and on drugs. I lived with my grandparents and how my grandfather was violent and my grandmother and I fled to a domestic violence shelter. I spoke of the abuse from my father, neglect from my mother.. I mentioned things like the shoot out at a gas station when I was about 4, followed by a high speed chase on the freeway by the police and my mother being arrested on Christmas day, and how the police gave me a doll because they realized I didn't receive anything that morning.

I spoke about my stay at CASA and CSP youth shelters, and how it changed my life even though my mom was on drugs. I spoke about finding needles in our home and being kicked out when I was 17. I shared all the things I've learned along the way and what I wish people would have told me. Included in Part 2 next post) I gave them the print out of what God taught me along the way and we took turns reading it together as a group. Most of it was straight scripture!!! Some of the teens were blessed and some it was hard to tell. Unlike the other other time I spoke and the response was huge. I included The Fathers love letter. I ALWAYS bring along either this letter or the kids comic book letter. It's words have transformed my life!

One of the girls was so excited that we both lived in the same shelter. I was surprised to hear that some of the workers and counselors there would try to crush the hopes of the girls wanting to have faith in Christ with snide remarks and sarcastic comments. Some of the very people that should be helping them are some of the biggest faith killers and dream destroyers. One made a comment that "they only visit so they can get credit." Ok well, I'm not in school and I am a homeschooling SAHM of 5. I don't think any of the ladies were there to get credit! I can't figure out fir the life of me, why ANYONE like that would get a job working with children! Especially broken hurting children! It reminds me of Matthew 18:6 "but whoever causes one of these little ones who believe in Me to stumble, it would be better for him to have a heavy millstone hung around his neck, and to be drowned in the depth of the sea." Anyway, I think our group did good. All we can do is offer our meager efforts to the Lord like the boy with the loves and two fishes and leave the cultivating and multiplying of the fruit up to Him. I am confident that if we show up, He'll do the rest. Watch this and let it settle into your spirit. Let it transform your mind and spirit in Christ. Be blessed as you set your mind on things above and know who your daddy is and who you belong to! Love, Alida w5

Jul 9, 2010

Results from the Bone Marrow Donor Testing/Josiah Updates

Update on Josiah!

Ladies, Sorry I haven't updated in a while. I try not to dwell on his diagnoses much but I realize that keeps a great many of you praying saints out of the Loop. Forgive me. I wanted to share. Josiah is doing GREAT! He hasn't needed a transfusion since February! His platelet numbers just keep climbing and climbing. He is not near normal but he isn't transfusion dependent or hospital bound so that works for me! I believe he is HEALED! I believe the turning point for us is we had the AMAZING team from Bethel lay hands on him. We also prayed for healing at an Arthur Blessit event. ( we got to touch the cross that has been ALL OVER the WORLD! I just needed to be around people that had hope the Lord would heal him. I need encouragement that He could and would heal Him. I really feel that the Lord has given me the prophetic word that he would be healed by the simple fact that Josiah means -whom God has healed.

THE RESULTS
As you recall our WHOLE Family went in to get tested to see if any of us were a match for Josiah. ALL SEVEN of us. I was saddened to learn that not one single person is a match for Josiah. Can you BELIEVE it? I couldn't believe it! I actually asked her if she had the wrong paperwork, because I couldn't see HOW it was possible that none of us were a match AT ALL! Each child has a 25% chance of being a match. The only match within our whole family is Canaan with Hezekiah. They are complete matched with each other, but Josiah does not have a single solitary match among any of the members of our family. I am told that unrelated donor matches are RISKY. I was pretty down about it. I felt as though the wind were knocked out of me and was paralyzed by the result. Until I realized that God had removed my plan B. As in my prayers went from "God PLEASE heal my sweet darling son, and if you chose not to, we'll do the Bone marrow Transplant." To the same fervent prayer of desperation that most of the world does that doesn't have the medical care that we do. The "whom do I have in heaven but you," only YOU can make my son well. By the power of your precious blood Jesus please make my son well and cause his bone marrow to function properly and remove whatever is in his system that is causing his bone marrow to be destroyed. Lord restore his body to perfect health."

I am such a planner and a striver. The Lord removed that weight off my shoulders that thinks I can somehow scheme and fix it. I then rebuked the results the doctor gave us. The enemy wanted me to get focused on the fact that he doesn't have a donor when my son is already healed! So we just praise the Lord and thank him daily for doing such great changes in our son and refuse to let anyone or any circumstance rob us of our joy in Jesus. I am overcome with joy thinking about how free we have been though this whole ordeal. My son has only been hospitalized TWICE! This is UNHEARD of in the Aplastic Anemia community. If you read the posts of those on my blog with this disease they are constantly quarantined, hospitalized, sickly. I just read of a sweet boy with AA that passed away. My son is happy, healthy, full of energy and blessed. I do not know how the Lord will use this experience for His glory, but I know he has ordered my steps! I know that there is a purpose for ALL of it and my job is not to understand or figure it out, but simply to TRUST! The Lord is so good! Huatzin has been working for about 1 month now. We are trying to budget again ( which was impossible to do when he wasn't earning ANYTHING!) Now to get back into the Dave Ramsey style gazelle bill paying/saving emergency fund. On to trying to save up for a house AGAIN, and a 15 passenger van or turtletop bus, along with paying off our MOUNTAIN of medical bills. He is able to do abundantly above all that we can asked or think! Thank you for the love, support and encouragement and prayers! YOU and all the saints are what has kept my sweet son out of the hospital! (along with extended nursing) Bless you, In Christ, Alida w5

Jul 5, 2010

National Afro day! Happy 4th!


Here I am rocking my fro!

Here are some lovely ladies Rockin' theirs!


















Atheism-Pull the Plug

Unless someone care's

Unless someone care's

Compassion Verse

"Lifehouse Anything Skit"

Our Mighty Arrows

Our Mighty Arrows