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Wednesday, July 11, 2012

The Honor Roll

Esther is learning to play patty cake!  This is huge!  For her to make eye-contact, watch me do something silly, and then imitate it is miraculous.  Her fingers are miraculous.  Daniel told me about the time another child at the orphanage, for whom non-violence was an area of future strength, slammed her finger in a door and a part of her finger came off.  I asked who reattached it.  Daniel told me that God grew it back.  Esther also has a gash on her forehead from a bad accident and as blood was gushing out so fast Daniel was worried about what to do.  But there "just so happened" to be a volunteer who came at that moment that was a medic and was able to control the bleeding.  

I love how God heals differently and creatively.  It's not all spit and mud or wash in the river or some formula.  I just love it that He is the Healer, Provider, Protector, Defender.....well I could go on but I don't have to, He's pretty relentless about making Himself known!

This amazing family will be reunited back in the USA soon!  They were our roommates here and they fly out today and I just adore them.  How could you not love a family that bought an old hotel and converted it into their home that is a child's dreamland?  Each room has a theme, many from the Bible, with trampolines, tunnels, and all kinds of creative fun.  And they let their kids spray paint their 15 passenger van.  They have adopted from Haiti before and this is their Ugandan beauty.  Dave has been such a good fill-in-the-Dad for Sebastian and I knew I was going to love Becky when she said she was going to make a bumper sticker to combat the: "My child is on the Honor Roll" one that said: "I homeschool and ALL my children are honored."  Rock on!  (point NOT being that homeschooling is the answer or anything, but to have an attitude, regardless of what educational model you choose,  that you don't judge your child based on some arbitrary standard of performance.  That their worth is in being a human created in the image of God.

Esther is on the honor roll for most improved at displaying emotion.  I was able to get her medications reduced in half and she is more alert, walks more, and is able to express herself much better.  And I have noticed no increase in seizure activity.  I know when we are in public people probably still just see "non-normal" child, we get our fair share of disturbed glances.....but they don't see the huge changes and improvements.  They don't see her sweet spirit and understand her grunts and gestures.  If they got to know her though they would fall in love!

Here is Sebastian trying his best to redirect the toddler boys so he can hold his sister....but they are a persistent little bunch!

And here is Sebastian holding his own in a football game with some incarcerated youth.  I give him an A for our homeschool physical education program this year!

I visited some children's prisons.

Some of the children are older.

And some are very young.

I brought some paper and markers.

Because I have no answers for broken systems and institutions and mindsets.  But I can bring a smile to the face of one child at a time.  

I found out that Beatrice's name, the sweet baby in heaven now,  meant "traveler through life to a distance place."  Our baby Ariana's name meant "holy and set apart for God."  As we travel through life here, we are commanded to pray for God's Kingdom to come and His will to be done on earth as it is in heaven.  I want to teach my children about our citizenship in heaven, where there is no more crying, pain, or death.  But I don't want to give them a fatalistic worldview that says, "Everything will be better when you die."  No, Jesus wants to bring LIFE to dead places right now.  

Wherever Jesus went the Kingdom broke out and the hungry were fed, the sick were healed, the children were invited, sins were forgiven, and it made people want to do extravagant things like climb out of a tree and restore what they had stolen.  Or fall down at His feet and worship.  Or jump out of a boat and start walking on water.  Christ is IN us.  As He is so are we in the world.  

Don't check out when you see the pain and suffering around you, tap into the Source of all LIFE and be His hands and feet.  Keep sowing those seeds and let Him determine the harvest in His timing.  Jesus talked about cups of cold water.  Love looks like a million different little things in different situations, but it is who we are when we belong to the one who IS love and who gave Himself for us.  You can't give what you haven't received though, so today I pray our Father would increase your capacity to receive more of His immeasurable love.  You are on His honor roll!


Debbie said...

Amen! Thank you for posting today.

mkrichert said...

"Do for one, what you want to do for everyone." ~ M. Blakeslee

I love this quote, because we can all do something for someone, even if in our heart we want to do so much more. Thank you for taking the time to write and keep us posted as you wait to bring your precious little one home.

Raquel said...

I love you.

Sarah said...

Reading your blog is such an encouragement! And Esther's smile is absolutely gorgeous!

Robin said...

I needed to hear this today. Thank you so much! And your children are beautiful :)

Janet said...

I second the AMEN!! I just love the pictures of Queen Esther! Janet