Delight yourself in the Lord and He will give you the desires of your heart. Psalm 37:4

Wednesday, August 8, 2007

First Pictures

Unfortunately, the baby cottage did not have pictures to send us right away. Imagine giving birth and not getting to see your baby for 17 days!! That is what it felt like. I woke up in the middle of the night, every single night for 17 days straight checking my email for pictures. (I knew the middle of the night was day time for Africa). Finally, on April 16, 2007 we received our first pictures of our babies. I received the email in the middle of the day but did not open it. I called Todd to let him know we got the pictures. He told me that I had to wait til he got home from work so we could look at them together! Augghhh! More waiting!
When we first opened the email, it was a strange feeling. There were the two babies that we had been praying for, for 1 year. The anticipation was so amazing, unlike anything I had ever experienced. There were so many emotions warring within us, that we were almost in shock. Our response was different than I had imagined. We didn't say anything for several minutes. We just stared. It was as if something that has seemed so abstract for a year, had all of a sudden become tangible.
Almost a day later, when the reality was finally setting in, we couldn't believe how beautiful they are. It is so strange how we can be so in love with these two children that we have never laid eyes on and have never held.
God, thank you for choosing these two children from the beginning of time to be a part of our family. Thank you for choosing us to be a part of Your amazing plan. We love you Lord.

Christopher (on left) Priscilla (right)

Labor Pangs!

On the morning of March 30, 2007, I received a phone call. It was Mary, our liaison to the baby cottage. She said, "Are you having any labor pangs?? I said, "Do you have our babies?!?" The answer was YES!!!
I was able to do a three way call so Todd could be on the phone for this exciting news. We were shaking, giggling, crying, so overwhelmed with joy and excitement. We found out that we have a little boy named Christopher Ndugwa and and a girl named Priscilla Christine. They were both abandoned immediately after birth at Mulago Hospital in Kampala. They are not biological siblings, but they are only six days apart. Christopher's birthday is June 29, 2006. Priscilla's is July 5, 2006.
Our friend on the phone said, "I want you to know how we knew these were the Jesus Babies... Amani Baby Cottage had their eye on little Priscilla for us. They would set her on the ground and get a little boy and put him next to her. They would shake their heads saying 'No, this isn't the right match.' They would get another little boy and place him next to Priscilla. It was the same reaction, not the right match. Next they placed Christopher next to her. The two babies looked at each other, lit up, and gave each other a big, gummy smile! The workers knew this was the right match. They realized that Christopher and Priscilla Christine were the Jesus Babies. They said, 'How much more Jesus can these babies be when they both have 'Christ' in the names they came with!'"
We are thrilled! We are jumping with joy! We are praising God! Could you hear us shouting from the roof tops?

Answered Prayer

I was talking on the phone to one of the missionaries at Amani Baby Cottage. We prayed together and then I mentioned how seriously Jaden and Kellen take prayer. I told her that they pray everynight for the babies in Uganda. I also told her that for a couple months, Kellen had been specifically praying that the children would not be afraid of the dark. (Kellen knew that the baby cottage was without power regularly.) He has a fear of the dark and knew how real that fear is. From a tender heart, Kellen prayed that God would protect the kids, take away their fear, and give them each a flashlight.
The missionary on the other end of the phone gasped and said, "Tell Kellen that God has answered his prayer!" One of the neighbors of Amani donated generators and lights to the baby cottage. There were just enough lights left over that they could be strung across the toddler house. There is no more darkness!
God is so good! He cares about every little detail.

Still Waiting

We still do not know who our Jesus Babies are, but we pray for them everyday. Our children have such a love for these two babies that they do not even know yet. It amazes me how God can give us such a great longing and deep love for two children on the other side of the world whom we have never even met. If we love our Jesus Babies so deeply, how much more does our Heavenly Father love us?

Homestudy & I-600a

The first step in this adoption was getting a homestudy completed. After calling around and receiving a few closed doors, God put us in touch with A New Arrival. They were absolutely wonderful to work with. Our social worker loves God and has a heart for adoption and missions. We saw how God had orchestrated little details (like closing doors) to bring us to this place. Our first homestudy visit was April 13, 2006. Our homestudy application was finished and submitted July 6, 2006.
During this time we had also been working on our I-600a which is a petition to the United States Department of Justice seeking approval of an application for advance processing of orphan(s). It is another required step in the adoption. It normally takes about 3 to 4 months to hear acceptance. In our case it only took 30 days! Praise God!So now we are officially waiting! Waiting to find out who our Jesus Babies are!

God has answered, Jaden has heard!

Amani Baby cottage heard the story about Jesus telling Jaden that "we are supposed to get a boy and a girl, we are to pray for them, we are to protect them and keep them safe, it doesn't matter who they are or what they look like, and Jaden will show you which one." The baby cottage then termed our babies the "Jesus Babies." They said, "we don't know who they are or when they will be here, but we just know that we will know when the Jesus Babies are here!

How it all started!

My mom went on a missions trip to Uganda, Africa in the summer of 2005. Before she left, we told her that we would commit to praying for her everyday. We took every opportunity as a family, as well as individuals, to pray for "Grammy." We prayed while driving, doing the dishes, sitting at the dinner table, in the bath, at bedtime, and again in the morning. This was a precious and enjoyable time for each of us. God taught us so much during this time, and it was amazing to watch a tender and compassionate heart develop within Jaden and Kellen. We explained that Grammy would be working in a baby cottage in Africa, and that these little children did not have daddy’s and mommy’s to love them, hold them, rock them, read to them, or tuck them in bed. Kellen was especially concerned for these children and would volunteer to pray for them every night. One day he asked if the children ever got "ow-ies." When I told him they did, he asked if we could bring them to our house, clean them up, and give them band-aids.
As soon as my mom arrived home, she shared amazing story after story. All the stories shared a common thread—God is powerful and He is in control. God had orchestrated this trip, He answered our prayers, He did incredible things through my mom and others, and He changed lives. He even changed my heart. I had never had a desire to adopt internationally—until now. There was this new desire that sprung forth from my heart. I shared my desire with Todd, who has always wanted to adopt internationally, and he responded enthusiastically. Our children were excited at the idea of having another sibling. At this point we thought it would be neat to adopt a little girl.
We decided to pray about adopting to see whether this was just a great idea, or if it was truly a desire from God—something He wanted. Again we prayed together and alone for a couple weeks. One morning Jaden woke up too early, so I sent him back to bed and told him to wait until 8 am. After we were all up and having breakfast together, Jaden said something I will never forget. He said, "Mommy, when you sent me back to bed, I did not go to sleep, so I was NOT dreaming, but Jesus told me that we are supposed to get a boy and a girl, we are to pray for them, we are to protect them and keep them safe, it does not matter who they are or what they look like, and Jaden will show you which one." As you can imagine my mouth dropped open and just hung there. I asked him to repeat it again. And then again. I wrote it down. Every time, he said exactly the same thing, same order. He never changed a word. Now how common is that for a four-year-old to be so specific, precise, and accurate every time? Todd and I knew that Jaden had prayed about the adoption-we had heard him from the hallway one night after tucking him in bed-and now Jesus had spoken to Jaden and he heard! We were confident that something very special and profound had taken place that morning. God answered our prayers by very clearly showing us we were to adopt, not one, but two babies. We had a choice to make now. We decided to obey God and respond with faith.
There are a lot of unknowns, and in the world’s eyes, a lot of fears. We have chosen to reject the social stigma that five children are too many. Instead we feel blessed that God has placed five of His children in our care. Psalm 127:4-5 says "Like arrows in the hand of a warrior, so are the children of one’s youth. Happy is the man who has his quiver full of them." We also have chosen not to embrace what society says about our financial status. Yes, there are sacrifices. We don’t get to eat out often, we don’t have the newest furniture, but we operate within our budget. However, we know that God provides for us. In Job 41:11 it says "Everything under heaven is Mine." God owns everything. If He is calling us to adopt, He will give us the resources we need.
God is awesome. He is so good to us. He gave us this desire. It was something we wanted. He fulfilled it. We are receiving two children that God had chosen before the beginning of time to be a part of the Moore family. We are blessed. I think 1 Samuel 1:27-28 sums up how we feel, "For this child I prayed, and the Lord has granted me my petition which I asked of Him. Therefore I also have lent him to the Lord; as long as he lives he shall be lent to the Lord."
What a neat reminder to us…that just as these children will be adopted into our home and called our children, we are adopted into God’s Kingdom to become His children—no matter what our past, our looks, or our uniqueness.

Sunday, August 5, 2007

Get your T-shirts here!

Support our adoption by purchasing a t-shirt!

Youth (red t-shirt): S, M, L
Adult (grey t-shirt): S, M, L, XL, 2XL
Cost: $10 plus postage
If you would like a t-shirt, just leave a comment and we will be in touch with you!

**The first graphic shows the front of a red shirt. The second is the graphic on the back of the shirts. The actual graphic has blue, not purple in it.

So far we have sold about 280 shirts!!