Saturday, April 16, 2011

An Incredible Journey...

Our family has been amazingly blessed by adoption.  As many of you know, about 4 years ago, we brought home our beautiful princess from South Korea.  A little over a year later, our son came into the world and joined our family thanks to the power of God and a young but mature birth mother here in the U.S.  Throughout this process, we have learned that God has intended us to grow our family in a non-traditional way through adoption, and continues to be an amazing journey.  This journey has opened our hearts to the orphans of the world.

First, we feel compelled to adopt again.  In all reality, this is a selfish act, as we are anxious to grow our family and those who have been around our family know that our children have given us much more than we have given them, despite the poor circumstances from which they were born into.  We are currently awaiting an assignment of an infant from Ethiopia and are excited for the moment to meet our next little blessing.

We have also elected to help the orphans of Ethiopia and Uganda through missions work.  There are close to 5 million orphans currently living in Ethiopia who need help.  Recently, some friends presented our family with an incredible opportunity to provide love and assistance for many of fatherless boys and girls in Ethiopia and Uganda.  While I will be the one traveling to Africa, it truly is a family effort, as I will be leaving my family behind for 2 weeks, which is difficult for any young busy family, and there is also a rather large financial burden for such a trip (especially while adopting).

The trip will lead myself and 34 other team members (mostly men) to Ethiopia and Uganda for 6 days each (15 days total with travel).  While there, we will be working with a great organization called Visiting Orphans who will be organizing visits to orphanages to provide the children with a rare male influence.  While there, we will be ministering to the men of the villages, providing them with tools to be more family oriented.  Other highlights will include a visit to a deep water well project with Glimmer of Hope, and a Toms shoe drop.

Obviously being sports oriented, I'm very excited that the guys from Dude Perfect (made famous by YouTube) will be joining us on the team.  They will assist us by staging a basketball shot at the deep well site in an effort to continue to grow awareness and understanding for the horrible conditions which the people of Africa live in.

With all of this being said, we're asking our friends and family to assist our family in this mission.  You can join us in this experience in several ways...

  • Prayer - We are asking for prayers for orphans around the world.  We would also appreciate prayers for our team's safe travels during the trip and that we are performing the work that God has asked us to do.
  • Purchase a Puzzle T-Shirt - With the help of some friends, we have created a wonderful T-shirt.  (Thank you Callie and Roger).  This shirt will serve several purposes.  It will serve as a reminder and help us celebrate the adoption of our newest addition to our family.  We feel strongly that by us adopting again, we are putting together another piece of God's puzzle of love.  Funds that we raise through shirt sales will go to support the ministry that we are embarking on during the mission trip.

    • The shirt has our heart graphic on it, including "Another piece of HIS Puzzle".  Under the graphic is scripture from John 14:18 stating "I will not leave you as orphans, I will come to you"
    • The shirts are available in a variety of sizes to fit everyone in your family.  They are available for $15.00.  If you live in the Springfield, Missouri area, we will arrange to have them delivered or picked up locally.  If you are ordering a shirt and don't live in the area, the shirts are available for $20.00, which includes shipping to your address.
    • We are currently taking pre-orders for the Puzzle Shirts.  They will be available for pickup/shipping in approximately 3-4 weeks.  Order them now to ensure you get the size you want!

Please help us celebrate our adoption and raise money for orphans with a Puzzle T-Shirt!

  • Donations - You can also make a donation to our mission work fund by clicking on the link below.  Any money collected here will go directly to our project.  Unfortunately, by using the button below, you will not be able to use it as a tax deductible donation.  However, if you are making a donation and would like to get tax credit for it, contact me here, and I will assist you in making a donation directly to Visiting Orphans, which makes it fully tax deductible.

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