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I’m ready to go!!!

Ok…so I needed just about 4 days to recover from the weekend and the 5 months of planning…and this momma is READY TO GO!!! I am SO, SO, SO thankful for the life the Lord has blessed me with–and how He has opened my eyes to SEE. I love my “new normal”. That is perfectly normal to have a van full of kids…that it makes sense to consider adopting again–even a child with HIV seems like nothing to make a deal over…because God looks at the HEART and we should too. I realize this may not be normal to “the world” but as believers if we think like “the world” then–aren’t we of the world…and not really fully Kingdom living?

I want to live for the gospel and LOVE out of it. That my friends is what the vision and heart of last weekend was about. I love how my crazy friend Mitzi McBride described the weekend on her blog and how she knew our God was and IS at work…

I knew God was going to show up, but had NO IDEA what He would do. In my own heart, He revealed some sweet things to me that I didn’t expect regarding finding my strength in Him, praying for my children, being vulnerable in my prayers, and having the time to allow Him to speak sweet things to my heart that were almost overwhelming to take in. So often times we put God in a box and do not realize it… and God wants to be experienced in all the ways He created us… through all our senses, and all our circumstances. (I’ll write more about this another time)

During corporate worship and large gatherings, I was overwhelmed… at the way we worship… at how many stories are weaved so differently, but by the same God… and how He wants to use US to CHANGE THE WORLD! I do NOT DOUBT that God is going to use the women I met last week for great change in this world. “Wasn’t this just a retreat for adoptive mommies?” Yes! BUT I see this going so much deeper… beyond ourselves and our families… and our adoption stories. I see women who represent FAMILIES who want to know more about the hard stuff. They want to know HOW to help the majority of orphans who will never be adopted, they want to give back to the countries their children came from: clean water, jobs, give self-reliance, justice, food, identity in Christ… God has used adoption to change our hearts to be more like His…. and because of that… I see families who won’t walk away at the end of their adoption story and say “the end.” It is just the beginning.

For example, what was going to be a small breakout session on HIV/AIDS and adoption, turned out cram packed full of 50+ moms saying “you know, I need to know more about this issue.” What I think is amazing is that they WERE NOT SCARED to learn more… they are willing to know TRUTH and to walk in it. That doesn’t mean everyone there will walk away and adopt a child living with HIV/AIDS, but what it does mean is that they will no longer be able to live “not knowing” and will be ready to ask God what role they will play in this “silent” crisis… I believe God is going to use the women in that session to WAKE UP THE CHURCH to “go there” in Jesus’ name.

147 Million, Into the Streets, Sixty Feet, The Cupcake Kids, and Wiphan were all there… ALL started or having in leadership adoptive families. These ministries, along with many more, are making a difference on the ground… here and around the world. There is NO TELLING what God is going to do over the next year. I can’t wait to go again next year… sit around… and hear the stories that start with “Last year, I sat here feeling God moving me towards……” The truth is, He is moving hearts… and He wants to move yours towards the things that are on His heart. Be changed… and change the world!

I really think it’s just the beginning. (Makes me think of that song we played to the slideshow “It’s the First Day of the Rest of Your Life”) Oh–our lives as we follow Him are going to be hard alright—but they are going to be GREAT and WILD!!! And this momma is along for the ride! I refuse to live a life that will make me look back at the end and say, “Oh I wish I had…” No regrets. No reserves. I don’t want to live a “normal” life Monday through Saturday and then come alive on Sunday either. I want to seek Him and follow Him fully and radically every day–expecting and looking for a miracle around every bend. Life is just to sweet and the Kingdom is just to real not to. How EXCITING IS THAT?!

On a side note—I have officially added “Go to Africa with Mitzi McBride” to my bucket list. You just gotta know this girl. I can only imagine her crazy self in Africa. Truly, it’s something to be added to my bucket list.

SOOOOO…in this momma’s home this morning—I think we need a Frankie baby and ITY fix:). Don’t you???

The big kids were at school and I told the babies we needed to have Valentine pictures made for their cards. SO…momma got on it! Don’t you think their little Valentine’s are going to love them???

Ladies…ladies…don’t get too excited. I’m his REAL Valentine this year…willing to only share him for 5 minutes with Kylie (his little preschool friend AND neighbor)…arrived to preschool early this week to see him holding her hand on the playground. How sweet is THAT? He was helping her up the stairs to the slide and EVERYTHING! Hey…I’m raising a modern day knight here ladies!!! Watch out!

THEN…it was ITY’s turn. I got this one for his Valentine picture…I was going to crop the juice out because this is a face this little guy makes 24/7 that I love…AND YOU HAVE TO SEE HIS HAIR CUT!!! I took him over to Aunt Nisia’s and she called it “fresh”…I think that’s good, right?!BUT I was scrolling through pics and decided to pull out an old one instead!

Seriously–how cute is this?!

THEN…after seeing a bunch of pictures of my old, tired self from peoples retreat pictures–I decided it was time for a change. Which means–I got out the scissors–which some of you know I do often just because IT’S JUST HAIR! (I know this makes my hair dresser friends gasp!) SO…BANGS ARE BACK! Okay–so I was going for a Lara Dinsmore look…but I went way too short…
Okay–so bad? Sure. But it’s JUST HAIR! And thought you’d like to see my crazy…just one of the many things that happens in a-day-in-the-life here:)

In other news…I got a new diaper bag! HA! I know you guys really care right? WELL…it’s not just any bag! It benefits the ministry 147 Million Orphans! AND it’s my new favorite accessory:). You can buy one here: 147 Million StoreIsn’t that a fun bag???

Alright…I have something really exciting and hold-your-side funny to share with you all this weekend!!! I’ll give you a few hints–and I’m NOT a part of it: tight black shorts, wife beater tank, sweat band and benefits orphans. Crazy combo, huh? Hang tight folks—it’s coming your way this weekend and I can’t wait to share…because I’m crazy like that!

After a few nights of good sleep…I do believe I have hit the ground running!!!

Love to you all!!! XOXO,


Christie - February 11, 2011 - 8:17 am

Andrea- I love the Valentine’s Day cards and I love your bangs! Good job with all!!

Lara - February 11, 2011 - 9:11 am

You didn’t tell me you cut your bangs yourself! They look great! I haven’t done that since I was 4 and it didn’t work out so well for me that time….

Liz - February 11, 2011 - 9:24 am

Kylie has been carrying Frank’s Valentine picture around all morning….she even put “him” in a chair next to her during breakfast!!! Not gonna lie, you would make a REALLY cool MIL 🙂
Oh, and LOVE the bangs!! I may start coming to you house for haircuts!!

Dawn - February 11, 2011 - 11:28 am

Andrea- you totally crack me up! Love your kiddos they are soo cute! Love your bag too 🙂

Can’t wait to hear your funny 🙂

mitzi - February 11, 2011 - 2:57 pm

girl… thanks for the shout out… me… you… Zambia… ITS ON!!!!

AND, the bangs are actually impressive… quite cute! nice job…. love you girl…

Katie - February 12, 2011 - 11:34 am

Hi Andrea. Been reading your blog for a while now but haven’t commented yet. I just wanted to say THANK YOU for not being content to just stay where God had you. Thank you for being willing to step out in faith and adopt and share about the good and the hard and to be a voice through your blog for orphans everywhere. God has used you to help me get a clearer vision of what adoption is about and strengthened my faith that God’s grace will be sufficient no matter what along the adoption process that we’re in. I really think the Lord must be so pleased with how you are seeking to be His hands and feet. Thanks for being His instrument of grace!