Tuesday, January 20, 2015

The Good Samaritan

Have you heard this parable?

I can picture it.

I man bruised and beaten and bleeding. Two separate "religious" men walk by. One regular guy shows compassion and stops to help. He goes above and beyond. He stops his own journey and spends his own money to care for him.

I've heard the story many times. Many. I never understood how anyone could just walk by a person in that much need. I never tried to see it from their point of view. They were wrong. How could they?!?

Lately though, I get it. I hate that I get it.

These were good men. A priest. A Levite. Think about your pastor. The demands on his time. Everyone coming to him with problems. Always taking care of his flock. Being called out from his bed and away from his family. Spending more time, sometimes, with the members of his church than his own children.

I see him walking down that road. He's been gone since sunrise and he just wants to go home to eat supper and tuck his kids in bed. He sees the man laying there... half dead. Maybe he pretends that the guy is dead. Maybe he has pity on him, but is so tired he can barely lift his own feet much less the body of a beaten man. So, he walks past. Not because he doesn't care. He does. He just can't. He can't anymore. He's been caring for so many that he's done. He. is. spent.


Matt and I were doing a study book last night called "Created to Connect" that was mailed to us just last week from Show Hope. Chapter 2 has you read this parable and at the end asks, "Thinking in terms of the Parable of the Good Samaritan and taking into account your child's history (both what you know and what you don't), in what ways is your child "injured and bleeding" on the side of the road - emotionally, physically, relationally? In light of this, what does Jesus' command to "go and do likewise" mean for you as the parent of this child?"

Ouch. Normally when I type "but God" it is because I know God is good and He has got this. Today, my "but God" is different.

I know he is hurting. I know he has injuries that are emotional that cause him to be hard to parent. I've been nice. I've shown compassion. I've neglected time with the kids that are behaving well to reassure him that my correcting him is out of love. None of my "connecting" has connected and none of my "correcting" seems to correct. I'm spent. I know what you've commanded, but, God, please don't make me right now. I can't. I want to walk by. Just this once.

Parenting is hard work. Parenting a child that is scarred and whose past isn't clear and who won't share with you or talk to you feels impossible. Thankfully, I know anything is possible with God.

So, today, I will attempt to not walk past. And if I do walk past, I will force myself stop. I will turn back. I will try to find those wounds hidden away under his layers and clean them. I will bandage him with hugs. I will care for the "half dead" boy as I pray for God to fill me up with His strength and His love and His compassion because I don't have any left.

Sunday, December 7, 2014

A few photos.

I have followed the journey of so many adoptive families. It always did my heart good during our adoption to hear the stories from decision to the adoption being completed! Some days though, I just needed to see photographs of beautiful brown skin Ugandan kids happy with their new families.

I'd like to do some video of my kids too.
If you have any questions for any of our kids (or Matt and I), please feel free to comment or email me. I think this would be a good way for all of us to talk about things and hear what people want to know! 

These are for you future parents of children from this beautiful nation.

Saturday, December 6, 2014

John is 6!

John's birthday was one of our first seconds. He turned 6 mid November :)
On his birthday last year, we were swimming at a lodge in northern Uganda!

This is his first celebration with Williams as his last name and his first surrounded by his new family.

 A superhero. A mini muscle man. A cuddler.  A cutie. An artist.

His smile has charmed many... including this momma.

 He loves to eat and is always willing to try new things.
Spicy food? Not a problem. He's tough.

 He is stoic. 
Emotional and physical pain don't show on his brave face.
Our dentist was amazed!

 He loves a story with hero and can spew off Marvel facts as if he has been watching the movies for years. His current favorite hero is Falcon.

When he gets excited (like when he got this bike!) his Ugandan accent is so strong you have to have him repeat his joyful thanks multiple times... The first two times to understand him and all the repeats past that because his voice is so darn cute.

The name John Terry was passed to him from his grandfather in Uganda.
John means "God is gracious."
Terry means "powerful." 
My prayer for him is that he realizes the grace that Jesus has shown him and that he draws his strength and power from the Lord.

Happy 6th Birthday!!


For those that don't know, John has struggled to make deep connections.
The pain and loss he has survived in his short life has caused him to not respond to situations the same way a typical 6 year old does.

It is one thing to read in books about these types of things, but it is another to love someone who must fight to love you back and chooses not to fight for that often. BUT.

But I trust that the more of God's word he hears... the more love he feels from his core family and extended family... the more times he messes up and I react with grace and calm (pray for me about this)... the more he realizes that we aren't going anywhere...

That notes like this will show up on my kitchen counter more often. 


That note, my friends, is a huge leap forward. Many steps back have happened since.
It doesn't matter though.
 I have this piece of paper that his hands stuffed into an envelope just for me. 

He has grown. 
Both emotionally and physically. 
I am thankful for this time to sit here and reflect back on what the Lord has done for him...
 on what the Lord has done for us!!!

This fit over his hand a year ago!