We can hardly believe that we leave for the Democratic Republic of Congo just one week from today!!!! The days are ticking down to try and get our kids ready for school, which is not an easy task, especially considering that they don't have things like school supply lists for elementary school out yet! We will do our best and my sweet Mom and Brian's sweet parents will help pick up what we've missed (we're SO thankful for them!). I am working on gathering up everything we need to pack for us and the girls for what may be a 2 week trip, but could stretch longer.
Which leads me to the reason for my post today. We have a few very specific prayer requests that we would be SO grateful if you would join us in praying over.
The first is, Monday is our girls VISA appointment (this is actually while we sleep tomorrow night)! Our U.S. Embassy in Kinshasa usually issue VISA's on Tuesdays, but we understand that it would be a miracle for the girls to actually get their VISA's the very next day. Which means they wouldn't get them until the next Tuesday (the 13th). We arrive the day before (the 12th) which would mean that we wouldn't be able to start the "exit" process until Weds. the 14th. So, please pray for a miracle, that our girls will get their VISAS issued that very next day (the 6th)!
The next prayer request is that God would perform yet another miracle and allow us ALL to return home on Aug. 26th. I know I have asked for prayer for this before, but here it is again. Brian HAS to be home on the 26th and if our "exit letter" is not ready, I will need to stay in the DRC with the girls and bring them home myself (unless I can recruit one of my friends to fly over and help me bring them back) Jazzy's 8th birthday is the 27th and school starts the 28th, both things my heart aches to miss. So, we are asking God to allow us all to be home, together, on the 26th.
Our final request is for our last chunk of travel money. We are still around $15K short of having all the money we need for this trip. God has done AMAZING things on this front already, and we know that He's not going to leave us hanging now. For example, we are being featured on Give 1 Save 1 Africa Monday, so stay tuned for that. Some amazingly talented friends, lead by Scott Chestnut, created a very powerful video for us that we could not be more excited to share. If you aren't familiar with Give 1 Save 1, please check out their blog at: http://give1save1africa.blogspot.com/ The idea is, if we give $1, we can save 1 child. I think so often people think that what they have to give isn't enough to make a real difference, but the point these awesome ladies who run the blog are making is, if you have $1 and you pass along these family's stories and more people give $1, it adds up very quickly and everyone gets to be a part of caring for orphans! We are super excited they were willing to share our story right before we leave!!
Of course, "thank-you" from the depths of our hearts to all of you who have been part of supporting us financially and/or praying for our family up to this point! Thank you SO much and way to go for being a part of caring for orphans!
WE BELIEVE WE CAN ALL DO SOMETHING!
What we do will look different for every one of us…but each of us can and should do something.
For us, it is to bring home four more little girls. We realize this is small in relation to the world and all the thousands of orphans in it–but it will be big for us, for our family, and for their future. It will not be easy…and the world may look at us like we are crazy…again. :)
We do not believe everyone's calling is to adopt but that God does have a part for all of us to play in caring for orphans and widows. Your calling will most likely not be easy, either... ours, sometimes, seems overwhelming . But Mother Teresa said it best when she spoke about giving–that we must give until it hurts…
...all parents know how much it hurts to be apart from our kids. I have spent the last eight months (since we found out about our girls) thinking about the girls day and night. Wondering if they are healthy and what they might be doing. Wondering if someone has held them and loved them that day. This month, I have been praising Jesus that in just a few short days, when our girls cry out at night–they will have a mama and a papa rushing in to hold them…to sing to them…to remind them that they are safe. They are home.
When they are home, we will have a new form of "giving until it hurts". That in my opinion is the most beautiful part of the entire journey. Katie Davis wrote this on her blog this week and it is beautiful and so true!
"Watching them grow in their knowledge and love of the Lord is by far the best part of parenting. Without a doubt, parenting reveals to me more of my own depravity and more of my loving Father’s heart than anything else ever could. I am humbled and grateful."
We too are humbled and grateful that God would allow us to witness His work in healing and redeeming these little hearts. It is truly a miracle!
Thank you in advance for your prayers. Of course, we will keep you posted on how all of this unfolds and how God answers our prayers as we lift them to Him together.
We love you all.