Tuesday, March 11, 2008

First Friday

No, I did not go to First Friday last week and we will be missing the next several, but I did take a little bit of First Friday with me.

Last weekend was spent with almost 200 women at an awesome retreat entitled 'The Facts of Life" with our speaker being Lisa Whelchel or "Blaire" from that show.

I will have a bit of a review and pics at the other blog but it is certainly a small world.

We carpooled up there and I rode with 3 ladies I had never met. We talked a lot. I was quiet for a bit but shared out adoption story. Julie just has a serious heart for international adoption and told me about one of her experiences. You see there is a little girl named Salem at her church in Central Florida who was adopted from Ethiopia and has a skull deformity. At first, she could not remember her name but I said " tell me, its not the family from
http://www.outofethiopia.com/? She said, well yet it is. IF anyone has read my blog over the past year, you may remember me talking about this wonderful couple as I was Salems nurse for 3 days last year? How cool is that? I told her about some of my friends who have adopted from Ethiopia and others who are adopting from Ethiopia and China.

I told my story once but its amazing how soon several people learned. Through the weekend I had people come up to me telling my they were praying for Michael and I and LynnMarie. Seriously people, there is just something sooo beautiful about strangers praying for you. I cried this weekend. A LOT
During dinner, I started talking to a new friend who was doing the audio and sound for our worship. We chatted a lot and she asked me if I had kids. I told her no, but we are adopting from China. She said, "Are you sad you are missing First Friday"'? Apparently she does the sound each month for First Fridays. She had been considering adoption before she found out she was pregnant a few months go.

Now, I am not into signs or anything like that. I do like the ladybug thing because well, I think they are cute. On the way up to the retreat I shared more of my story and the ladybug stories involved in China adoption.

Would you believe that when I sat down for our first session not one, but 5 ladybugs found me? My carpool friends got a kick out of this as no one else had them on them and we never saw them again.
During our last session, things started clicking but that's a whole other post. One of the women's ministry leaders whom I have really never talked to, just started tearing up and talked about our adoption from God. She said directly to me. "When you receive LynnMarie, and she is placed in your arms or even when you see her picture for the first time, I know that an amazing amount of love is just going to pour out of you. She said its a miracle the love we are going to feel. She forget the biological vs the adoptive parent thing. That doesn't matter. This is your child. This is your heart. Let no one try to discourage you. I am not sure why this was brought up, except for the grace of God. Our discussion was no where near this, yet she spoke directly to my heart. She continued by praying for me and just being there. Boy, was God speaking this weekend!!!! I hate to miss First Friday, but friends, there is no way I would have wanted to miss this.

There was a lot of just me and God this weekend. HE spoke and I listened. I was actually able to just sit still and listen. I learned about that.

Oh boy. This adoption is sooo much bigger than just adding to our family. Its so much more that a referral and paperchasing. This really has been a beautiful process that has changed me in soooo many ways. Everyone of you has been a part of that. Family and friends, blogging friends who read my posts and pray with me, First Friday friends and so much more. You are all a part of our journey.
As much as I want a child right now, I don't want to miss any part of this wait. I am not the best person to put my thoughts down on a blog or paper, but I am just blown away with how much love, encouragement and support is out there. I have tried to push it away at times, but God is sooo much bigger than anything I can comprehend and has given me just what I needed.

Sooo much more to say, but it could go on for a long time so it will have to wait.


Seabolt said...

WOW!! What an amazing weekend and to have God confirm that you and Michael are doing just what he has planned for your life!! AMAZING!!

Yoli said...

That was a beautiful weekend. YOu have a very pretty blog.

Margaret Miracle said...

I am sure you will cherish the memories from this retreat for years and they will give you strength as you wait for Lynnmarie. I am so glad you had such a wonderful experience!

The Straight's said...

Well we did miss you at FF, but so glad you had a wonderful weekend without us. FF wouldn't be the same without you there so you better get your schedule back in check to make sure we see you there again real soon. Thankful adoption has brought you closer to God and closer to new friends.

Fliss and Mike Adventures said...

Just dropping in to say hi and hope all is well... take care

redmaryjanes said...

Beautiful post Amy. And I completely understand what you are saying about the beauty of the journey. I have a feeling that one day you and I will meet and we'll cry like babies.

Laura said...

What a beautiful weekend you had. I am so glad you got to experience that...God bless!

The Princess's Mommy said...

What a beautiful story! Thanks for sharing. I'm still amazed at all the people who have been touched by our adoption of Lily Mei. One of the most amazing parts of the journey is the people you meet along the way.
Have a great night!

Mark, Rebecca and Sophia said...

How wonderful. I am so glad that God spoke to you so directly through the retreat.

Beverly said...

I bet that weekend was good. I have heard her speak on Focus on the Family.


Rachelle said...

I think you said it all. Sounds like an awesome weekend!

Alyson & Ford said...

What a moving testimony of love and faith you shared with us. I enjoy hearing how God is working in people's lives. Your contentment is contagious and wonderful...


Kristy said...

Everything that you just wrote about are the things I call "God Winks"!!! And it is amazing isn't it. It is also the most awesome feeling in the world to know that people are praying for you whether you know them or not. I love weekends like the one you just had, it is so renewing and life changing all at once . God bless you and your family. Our daughter Franceska that we will be getting from China will be my 7th child. Although the five older ones are my husbands, I have raised Steven since he was 8 years old,he will be 23 next week, I AM his only mom and our 15 year old daughter is adopted, but you know in our family we don't use the word step or adopted never even comes to mind. But I know exactly what that lady was talking about, because now since part of the Master plan has been revealed to me, I was never going to get pregnant because these children were supposed to be mine, and I probably love them 1000 times more because they did not come easy to me, I appreciate my children immensely, God has blessed me in ways I will never be able to explain. Adoption is alot more than just adding to your family, it is LIFE and LOVE and most of all BLESSINGS FROM ABOVE.

lid 4/21/06

Kristy said...

Are all of you ok, I heard there was a tornado in Atlanta???????????????????????

Kim R. said...

What a great realization you've come to - that sometimes you need to just be still and listen w/God. The clarity that comes from this is amazing. You know you're where you need to be. And even if that's "waiting" (for your child), then so be it. What a wonderful gift!

Hugs to you,
Kim from caesarandlouie + 2

Debz said...

That was an awsome post Amy. Don't you love it when God shows up where yoiu didn't expect to see Him so close up. Small world-maybe, divine appointment-more likely!
I hear ya with the ladybug thing, I just like them too!
Thanks for sharing your heart with us.

The Evans Family said...

Adoption is much more than adding to your family or even creating your family. We've learned so much about ourselves and what the plan for our family is. I sure can't wait to find out who Lynnmarie is. She is one lucky little girl!