Saturday, December 21, 2013

Just a lot of stuff I want to say….

I know this Duck Dynasty thing has turned into an avalanche. It started rolling as soon as people had differing opinions, and I don’t see it ending anytime soon. It gives people something to fight about, and people love to fuss and argue.  It lets us all climb up on our high horses and proclaim that WE are the right ones. If we don’t watch out we will be knocked off that horse by the avalanche.

I am a Christian. I LOVE me some Jesus… in fact, I love Jesus more than anything or anyone. He is my EVERYTHING. He is the reason I get up and breathe everyday. I love Him. I have struggled in the past with gay marriage and how to minister to homosexuals without throwing that word “sin” in it. I struggle, because I love people so stinking much it hurts. I don’t want to hurt them… I want them to see the hope and love that can only come from Jesus. I want them to live in complete freedom. I have tried to skirt around the subject so that everyone is happy. Unfortunately we know life doesn’t work that way.

I love people. I believe we are all sinners as the Bible says. I love straight sinners, I love gay sinners, I love vain sinners, I love gluttonous sinners, I love sinners who spend too much money on clothes. I love thieving sinners, I love murdering sinners, I love sinners who aren’t honoring their parents, I love Christians who are sinners because they judge others. In short I love all people, and that love is not based on your sexuality, your addictions, your professional accomplishments, your issues, or your hang ups. I respect the fact that everyone has an opinion, and I try to be respectful of everyone’s opinions, whether I like them or not. I will admit that is a difficult task sometimes, but I try my best. Sometimes I fail.

I believe that the Bible is God’s own word breathed into existence. I believe that He ordained every Word in it. I don’t understand a lot of it, but I don’t have to. I accept all the other things on faith. Although I don’t understand His reasons who am I to question GOD? Who am I to say that something He said is a sin is not a sin? Who is anyone to say that something God said is sin is not a sin? Who decides that part of  THE HOLY BIBLE isn’t applicable anymore? I actually heard a man on CNN state that parts of the Bible don’t fly in the city square anymore. I almost caught my breath, because he certainly forgot to Whom it Is he goes Before. Shiver. He had decided that part of what God said didn’t apply to him, because he didn’t want it to.  That’s the catch. If you take part of It you have to take all of It. That’s where lines get blurry and crossed.  To believe every Word of The Bible doesn’t make me a bigot, a racist, or a hater. It makes me a child who trusts her Father.

Having said all that I have such a huge love and compassion for the gay community. I have a fierce love and need to protect the gay people I love and their families. I don’t participate in anything that isolates ANY group of people in the name of Jesus. He NEVER isolated anyone. If He wanted to talk about the choices they were making in their lives He sat down with them and talked. They had a conversation. He helped them work things out. He told the Truth, and He told it like it is. They’re all His Words, and I trust the way He used them. For reasons I don’t completely understand The Church as a whole has decided that homosexuality is THE SIN. It’s THE SIN we need to address constantly. It’s THE SIN that we need to fight against. It’s THE SIN that deserves all of our attention constantly. Do you ever wonder why that is like I do? I believe that part of it is the fact that it’s easy to call people out for sins we don’t struggle with. It’s much easier to stand firm on a subject we’ve never struggled with isn’t it? Why isn’t the church focusing on heterosexual marriages and the decline of the Christian family as God intended? (That’s another story all together.) BUT WE LOVE GAY PEOPLE. WE HATE THE SIN AND NOT THE SINNER. I hear that everyday at least once. One day I was praying and discussing this issue, and God gave me a thought. My sexuality is PART of who I am, but it doesn’t define me. My sexuality has NOTHING to do with my spirituality. My spirit is not sexual. My spirit is as pure and white as a virgin thanks to the blood of Jesus. I think about Jesus A LOT more than I think about having sex with my husband(sorry Andrew),because I think of Him all day long. If someone asked what my identity is I would reply “I am a follower of Jesus”. I wouldn’t say, “I’m a heterosexual woman who struggled with sexual sin a great part of my life who happens to be married to a man”. All that describes part of me but not the core of ME. When did we stop looking at people as a whole? When did we start breaking people up and putting them into all these sinning categories? Does that help us glorify The Kingdom? I know that I personally can fit into several sinning categories, and I refuse membership to all of them, because Jesus took care of that on the Cross.

The entire point of that novel I just finished was to give the foundation for what I’m about to say. I believe that Mr. Duck Dynasty Phil had the absolute right AND responsibility to Biblically answer the question he was asked. I do not condone the words that came out of Phil’s mouth, and I have specific reasons why. When we use The Bible as a shield we are standing up and representing The Church. We are representing Jesus. We are the model. I don’t believe for one second that Jesus would’ve used the vulgar descriptions Phil used. When Phil agreed to answer that question he chose to answer to a huge audience representing Jesus Christ, and honestly, I don’t think for one second that Jesus would have handled it that way. I think He would’ve quoted the Scripture that dealt with the question, but He would not have been mean about it. Jesus would have told the Truth without all the graphic ugly details. It’s not only WHAT we say. It’s HOW we say it.  The more I thought about it I tried to put myself in the place of a gay woman reading that. I hope that if I was a gay woman I would respect Phil’s opinion, but I would absolutely have the right to not like what he said. I don’t have a dog in the A&E fight. At first I was all roaring about his right to say whatever he wants. and then I posed a question to Andrew last night. What if my little family had a Christian television network that’s purpose was to spread the gospel and represent Jesus?  What if Phil would have used those words on our network? Would I have wanted to greet Phil with a slap on the back the next morning? Probably not. I doubt I would’ve fired him, but we would’ve had a discussion about how to respectfully say things. My network. My right.

Before I push publish there is one last thing I want to put out there. Liberals call for conservative Christians to tolerate EVERYTHING. They want us to tolerate and not say a word about anything that society does no matter how badly it offends or hurts us. We are to take it. We are supposed to tiptoe around abortion and hot button issues, because Heaven forbid, we may OFFEND somebody.  We are supposed to stand quietly when our government tries to erase all traces of  the God Whom this country was founded on, because some of what He said offends some. We are supposed to shut up. Sorry. It doesn’t work that way. If you ask for tolerance you are to GIVE tolerance. If someone says something you don’t like you aren’t allowed to go into a huge hissy fit, because they don’t agree with you…. You calling him a bigot and hater is no better than what he said. Sorry. That’s just the way it works. It’s not always easy to give tolerance and kindness to those who offend us, but being hateful and ugly gets us nowhere, and it gets you nowhere. Do we want to be right, or do we want to make a positive difference? I personally want to live my life in a way that pleases my Savior. Sometimes that may offend some of my friends and family. To that I say I’m sorry, but I am accountable to Jesus and no one else.

The end.

I love all of you. God bless you, and have a MERRY CHRISTMAS!

Tuesday, December 17, 2013

I’ve been kidnapped by my own body.

I'm sure during many times in my life I've been "those people"... those people who walk around all day taking care of themselves, their kids, their home, their lives. When you're one of "those people' you don't even think about what you're doing, because it's normal. It's what we're supposed to do... We don't give it another thought. We may think about how tired we are.. how much we have to do.... where we have to go.... but do we ever stop to think about how lucky we are to just be able to DO those things? The things that make us exhausted and aggravated... the things that we wish we didn't have to do. We should be thankful for those things. Unfortunately no one is really ever thankful for those things until they can't do them anymore. That would be me.

First of all let me say that I am not trying to be all Debbie Downer, and I don't want pity. I'm hoping for some understanding... some understanding for myself as well as all the other people who have also been kidnapped by their own bodies. Kidnapped by my own body..... What does that mean? Well, to me it means that this human shell that possesses my soul and spirit have been hijacked and held prisoner by this body I have.. this body that has pesky old dysautonomia as well as a heart that doesn't get the memo either. This body that traps me... it traps my will. It traps my desires. Sometimes it even traps my hopes and dreams. Let me try to give you a glimpse of what this looks like.  When you're trapped in your bed for days on end you see the world existing without you. You see your beloved husband doing all the things you wish you could do for yourself. You're beyond thankful that he does it with such love and grace, but you still wish you were doing it instead of him.You hear your baby and sweet girls playing in the other room, and you also hear your baby calling "Mama", because he doesn't understand where you are. Said beloved husband brings him on many trips to visit the sick room, but he doesn't want to be in there. He gives a kiss or two, but he wants to live in the world with the living.. the doing... the moving. Who doesn't want to live in that living world?

On days one and two I'm generally ok emotionally. I don't LIKE being stuck in the bed, but my body is so exhausted that it overrides my feelings and gives into rest... For me it's not sleep... I can't sleep. I have to just lay there. Lay there and rest. Lay there and let my body try to replenish the lost energy and motion... Let it try to recover from normal everyday living, because somehow ordinary living has pushed me to this state of laying. This state of watching... the state of feeling like I don't exist. I KNOW people love me and care about me. I don't doubt that for a second that my existence matters to them. I know that my existence has a profound effect on their lives and is most of the time a positive addition to their existence.... but then I lay and lay some more.... By days 3 and 4 the depression starts to kick in. I fight it. Oh how I fight it. I talk to Jesus a lot... trying to keep myself on track... I watch good shows on Netfix... I eat too much junk that's not good for my body. I try to stay ME, even though I don't feel like me at all. I feel like a nuisance. I feel like dead weight... I know that Andrew will be so mad at me for saying that I feel like a nuisance to him, because that fabulous man goes out of his way to make sure I know I'm not that to him. I'm his beloved. For some reason he adores me and has no resentment for the time this body steals from our lives.... I pray I would be as good if the situation were reversed. I probably wouldn't. I'm not nearly as good as he is.

IF I hit days 5 and 6 like I did this time I go into the "I'm about to go over the cliff. I'm going over the edge" category... This is when I cry to Andrew about how TIRED I am of this... I complain about how I'm so tired of being sick and tired. I tell him how I don't know if I can take anymore... that I'm going to lose it. I FEEL certain that I'm going to lose it, but somehow I never have. I don't even really know what lose it means... I do get plenty pissed off at my situation, but I don't lose it. I guess I don't lose it, because Jesus has it. I don't stop and ask Him WHY I have this anymore. I don't scream at Him how if He loved me He would take this from me... He would take it away... He would heal me... I don't, because I know how He feels about it. It grieves Him that I am plagued by this. It HURTS Him to see me hurt... lonely... depressed...exhausted... losing hope. He hates that my body has paid part of the price of living in this fallen world, but He doesn't take it from me. Trust me. There are times when He does take it from me... He gives me that extra something to get back up... to function... to live in the land of the living, and I am so thankful for those times. Those times make me appreciate the things that aggravate most of the world (including myself sometimes). We all have our cross to bear.. We all have our "thorns". Our thorns come in all shapes and sizes, but we all have them. We all have something.

As I've gotten to this ending of this episode it becomes clear to me WHAT  I need to pray for...WHAT I want... what Jesus wants for me. I want to handle these times with grace and dignity. I want to make it through these episodes finding SOME WAY to be thankful for them, because I trust that He does and will use them for my good. I have to lean on Him and not my own understanding, because most of the time I can't think of one good thing that comes from it... As soon as I type these words He shows me one good thing. Because of this mess I live with I have been able to stay home with these last 3 babies. I have been able to provide what they need from me even in these circumstances. I pray in someway my hurdles can encourage someone to push ahead through theirs... We may not can jump a hurdle, but we can sometimes crawl around it. I want to stay ME. I don’t want to let anything steal my me from me.

Today I want you all to stop what you're doing and just be thankful. Be thankful for the long line at Target, because you're actually able to stand in the line. Be thankful that you can't figure out what to feed your family tonight, because it means that you can cook and prepare something. Be thankful for the loads of laundry, because you can bend over to pick them up and put them in the washer and dryer. Be thankful as you grumble about making up the bed, because the bed is made up, because you're not IN it. Right now I’m thankful that my sheets are IN the washer. :) I want you all to know this is as much for me as it is for you. I have to focus on the good in all moments. I have to take advantage of the moments that He heals me and gives me what I need to live life. I have to be thankful for the aggravations that are really blessings. I WANT to be thankful for irritations and aggravations of just living this life.... I had a bad chest pain the other day. (Don't worry. I'm fine) It was a bad one, and it scared me. It scared me, because I knew in that moment how important I am to all the people who live this life with me. I KNOW how important I am to Jesus, and I know I have work to do for Him. I prayed to Him that I didn't want to leave. I knew I wasn't dying, but I had been feeling nonexistent. I had been feeling like I didn't matter or contribute enough... but He was gracious and reminded me that I DO. I matter. I contribute. I live.

 

Friends, if you’ve read all this I thank you. You’re always so good and supportive when I go through anything including the dreaded episodes. I love you all more than you can imagine. Stranger, if you’ve stumbled upon this random post I pray it gave you something you needed or maybe something for someone you love. In this moment I am thankful. I am thankful that Anne Pearce is home sick with me today, because I am getting to listen to a crazy story about dinosaurs, cowboys, and the desert. I didn’t miss the story, because I was trapped in my bed. I’m thankful, because I’m sitting up on my couch typing this for you… and for me. I’m thankful to exist and live this life. Do something crazy today… Do something with your body that you can do and never think about. Jump. Run. Stand. Twirl around in your yard. Just do SOMETHING, and thank Him for it. I may not be able to jump and twirl, but I’m about to walk to the washer. And for that I am thankful.

Thursday, July 4, 2013

Sometimes you have to walk through a door more than once.

 

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Everyone who has experienced the miracle of Hudson is no stranger to all the heartache that we trudged through, as we navigated the path to him. There were so many mountains and valleys that at times we doubted if we would ever see the end. If it wasn’t for our strength in The Lord we never would have made it past road block number one. He strengthened us at each stop, curve, bump, detour, and speed bump along the way. When I look back at the journey I don’t feel sadness or despair. God replaced all that with love and thankfulness. I can’t deny though that I was more tested during this time than at any other time in my life, and some horrible things happened to us.  We can’t pretend it was all sunshine and roses, or it takes away from the beauty of the story. It would take away from all the good God did from the ugly.

I don’t know if I could choose the “most horrible” thing that happened. Those kinds of life changing events can’t really be compared. Each had it’s own individual stamp and affected us differently. I will admit that when someone asks about the troubles along the way the adoption scam is the first thing that comes to my mind. It’s not always in my thoughts, and there are times that it doesn’t cross my mind at all. I think what makes it different than the other things is that is was planned evil. The failed adoption and other hurts weren’t intentional. They just happened. This was different. The woman who manipulated and lied to us CHOSE to do what she did. She knowingly and willingly preyed on us at a vulnerable time in a very deliberate way. She had an objective, and she would do whatever it took to meet that objective. We all know that nothing she did stopped Hudson from coming to us, and she had no power over God’s plan for us…. but it did hurt. Deeply.

It’s been almost 2 years, and during that time a lot has happened in the life of Davanna Dotson. Thanks to a detective that truly cared about the hurts she inflicted, federal charges were placed against her. This detective fought against her being released on bond, because she knew what she would do…. and she was right. The one and only time Davanna was released from custody she was scamming adoptive couples within 24 hours. A little hardheaded much? It just goes to show that she still believes that she is above all… she believes that she can have whatever she wants… I think she actually believed that she was smart enough to get away with it again. Thank goodness she was wrong. She was stopped, praise God. There is comfort in knowing that she’s in a place where she can no longer prey on adoptive parents…that she can’t hurt all the children and other people who are also affected. It needs to stay that way.

Davanna ended up pleading guilty. It may have been the mounds of evidence they had against her, or maybe she thought that if she just admitted to it and said she’s “sorry” that they would just let her go. I can’t stand by and watch that happen. The sentencing hearing for Davanna is on July 25, and there’s a chance that I will be able to go and testify as a victim. Words can’t explain how badly I want to do this. I believe that God would let me speak with power and conviction and show the judge how her actions affected not only Andrew and me but our children… our friends and family… all of you who read this story and ached for us. I believe that the words I say could convince the judge that she needs to be put away for a long time… that was she did was serious. It really has nothing to do with the money she took from people. Money can be replaced. It was what she TOOK from people emotionally. Praise God that Andrew and I were strong enough in Him to move forward. How many were not? How many victims are out there that were too embarrassed to admit to what happened to them? How many people don’t know there were tons of other families that this happened to? That it wasn’t just them? How many people lost hope in humanity? How many people were forever changed by what she did? I know that I can’t fix what happened or heal any of these people. Only Jesus can do that. I do pray that I am given the chance to show the judge that she can’t be given the chance to do this again, and that she needs to pay for her crime.

There is so much more I want and need to say about this, and this post is already longer than I intended. I will write more later. I feel like I need to document the rest of this journey. It’s so easy to forget all the things God does for us, and I know He will show Himself in this. I want to remember it all to share with Hudson and others who need to hear it. I won’t know until Monday if I’m going to be allowed to testify. I’m praying that God’s will be done and not my wants. If He wants me to go then I pray He paves the way. Until then I’m just going to live and trust.

There’s a whole other part of this that I have to write about later, and that’s the love and forgiveness I feel for Davanna. There’s so much I WANT for her to have, and that can be summed up in Jesus. I’ll write more about that later, because it’s a very important piece to this puzzle. Until then please pray for those who make the decision about those who testify, and pray for God to build me up and have me ready for battle. I know that He will take care of it all. He has so far, and I know He won’t leave me now.

I love you guys,

Lou

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

October baby

I was looking back yesterday at the last date I posted....The few days before Oct. 3 I was posting a lot. I was filled with things God wanted me to say.... Have you wondered where I've been? At 3 am on October 3 I got a phone call that Hudson’s first mommy was in labor. She was headed to the hospital and wanted us to come THEN. I was immediately up and running around like crazy. I had things packed for Hudson but not for Andrew and me.... It crossed my mind several times that she was a little early (4 weeks), but I didn't give it much thought.

We arrived at the hospital with plenty of time to spare and spent the day with Hudson's first mommy as she prepared to give birth. We shared some precious times that I will never forget, and we were there with her when she brought our Hudson into the world at 4:04 pm. It was a miraculous experience that I will always treasure. Hudson was born at 36 weeks and had immediate breathing issues. He was in the NICU for 9 days until we got to leave with him and take him to our hotel....During those days God did so much for all of us and performed so many miracles for Hudson. There are so many things I can't wait to share.... I know that God wants me to tell the story of Hudson. I was so blessed to be able to share his story with SO many people around that hospital, and I am still sharing his story whenever I get a chance. I will tell the entire story over time, and I still have so much to tell about the days that led up to Hudson's birth. There's SO much to tell.... Be patient with me. I will tell it all.

Today I just want you to know that whoever you are and wherever you are that God loves you. He loves you whether you love Him back or not. He exists, and His Existence has nothing to do with whether or not you believe in Him. He is God, and He has plans for YOUR life. There's nothing special about me people... He can do the same amazing things in your life if you just let Him. I pray that through Hudson's story some of you will have a new encounter with our Father and see Him in a new way. If you have any questions feel free to leave me a question in the comment section, or email me. If there are parts of Hudson's story that you want to know more about I will be happy to share that too.

Thank you for still being here and caring about Hudson and my family. I feel honored to be able to share his story with you.

Minutes after Hudson was born…045

I only got to hold him for a minute before they took him away. Look how bad his coloring was…..

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This is around midnight the day Hudson was born. We had to wait hours to see him. When we finally got to I kept myself together in there but sobbed all the way back down the hall… my poor sweet baby.

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And Hudson a couple of days ago. God is SO good.

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Love you all,

Loulou

Tuesday, October 2, 2012

And He said, "I have prepared their hearts".

Adoption. Oh adoption. The joys. The miracles. The faith. The presence of God. THE MONEY. Oh the money. I always comes down to the money. I have learned many things from God over all these adoptions, and I can tell you with 100% that He.always.sends.the.money. It has come different ways with each adoption, but it always comes from God. I could go on and on about the money we lost in the scam and the failed adoptions, but that's not what this was about. Each time something happened I would always say, "I don't care about the money. God will send more." And I meant it.

Fast forward to today and Hudson's adoption. In our grief and confusion we had agreed that maybe God didn't want us to adopt... We were trying to move forward in our lives. We started saving for the down payment of a new home, and I'm thankful that we did. Those few thousand dollars would become what we had to pay for the adoption. It's kinda funny, because we had the exact amount that it usually costs with our attorney in a NORMAL adoption. Guys, have you ever known anything NORMAL to happen to ME?  Nope. Not the way I roll. Hudson's adoption is out of state, and that almost doubles the cost, because we had to hire attorneys and social workers in Louisiana as well as Alabama. We also have to be prepared to stay 5-10 business days in Louisiana after Hudson is released from the hospital. In my "old life" and in my old patterns I would be a nervous wreck about right now... I mean come on! Now Hudson is coming earlier than we thought, and we don't have this money. Go ahead. Ask me if I'm worried or nervous. My answer is a loud and resounding "NO!" Why? Because I know that God's got this.

I'm sure you know that there's a conversation with God somewhere waiting to be told, and here it is. Andrew and I have been praying non stop about financial provision since we were blessed with Alex and Hudson. We have trusted that God will send it, although we have NO idea where it will come from.... That actually excites me. Here we are...awaiting the birth of our promised son, and we have NO idea where the money will come to pay for it. :) No idea. That means we get to sit back and watch our Father go to work. We are going to get to have a front row seat in the "God will send everything we need for Hudson" show. Don't you want to watch too? Who doesn't want to see a miracle? Right? I don't know about you, but I'm ALWAYS up for a miracle. I love miracles.... and God LOVES to bless His children with miracles... I feel a BIG miracle coming.

Now. This is where it's going to get real. I have been praying about what to do. Do we wait? Do we have fundraisers? Do we do some raffles? Sunday morning when I woke up and told Jesus good morning He said, "I have prepared the hearts of the people who are going to send provision. Do it now." Well. Nothing like clear direction from Jesus. I'll take it over advice and my own whimpy ideas any day of the week.

God made it clear to me that this isn't about Andrew, me, or even Hudson. It's about you. In the whole scheme of things money is nothing to God. It's all His anyway. He could choose to send provision any way He wants, but He has chosen you. He made it very clear to me that He is giving His children the opportunity to take part in the miracle of Hudson. He wants you to own a part of the miracle that IS Hudson. This may sound weird to you all, but I say what God tells me to say. Sometimes it's awkward for me, because I'm not God. I'm just Loulou. I have learned to trust Him and His Word and not my own. SO... God says, He is blessing YOU by ALLOWING you to bless Hudson. In other words, you're not doing Him a favor by chipping in a few bucks. Now from ME I'm overwhelmed and honored that you would give a dollar. God evidently has plans for some of you. That's between you and Him.

I did pray specifically that only those who's hearts God had prepared would give. I don't want one single person giving out of a sense of obligation....I ONLY want provision that God is directing His children to give. And guess what? Even if you get your drawers all in a wad over this, get mad at me, and don't give anything I STILL LOVE YOU AND SO DOES GOD. You may NOT be meant to bless Hudson. I don't know... I don't know ANY of this, but I do know this is how God wants it. And who am I to question Him? I also know that this adoption will be funded the way God wants it funded....

I guess now it's time to tell you how you can help. God has made it clear to me that He doesn't want me to specify an amount, that He will send us what He wants us to have. It's not about a number. It's about FAITH, TRUST, and BELIEVING Him.  Not believing IN Him. Believing HIM. Believe what He says He can do and will do. So that's what I'm doing. For now I'm going to set up a neat little button on my sidebar where you can donate if God leads you to do so. If He leads us to go ahead with a raffle or two, then we'll do that....but this is the way He wants it for now. Andrew and I are overwhelmed and thankful that you even care to read the story of Hudson. We are so blessed if any of you decide to give any amount. It's not about an amount of money. It's about watching God work. And that's my favorite thing to do.

I love each and every one of you who has given your time and love through prayer through this entire process. I don't think I would have made it and been the person I am in Christ right now if you all hadn't gone before Him FOR me. For that I am eternally grateful. If you decide that all you are supposed to do is pray, then we accept that as gladly as we do any amount of money. Your prayers mean WAY more to us than a donation. Whatever you do I pray that God will bless you through it. I know He will. He ALWAYS blesses His children.

I love you all,
Loulou

Babies tend to be unpredictable people.


Yesterday Andrew and I drove to Louisiana to go with Alex to her drs appointment. She has been feeling a lot of pressure and pain and is generally feeling like she's about to "pop". Little back history: Alex has never been entirely sure just how pregnant she is. Due to circumstances she didn't have any medical care until she was 24 weeks pregnant. When they did an ultrasound the due date given was Oct. 29. That really never made much sense to her when she was looking at dates. Fast forward to weeks 30 and 33 of the pregnancy. She had another regular ultrasound AND a 4-d ultrasound, where they told us he weighed 4 lbs. Their prediction based on his size was Oct. 19. The one at 30 weeks was Oct. 20.... SO the drs are WRONG. LOL. When we went yesterday she had already dilated to 1cm. Our boy is "down and in position". She also dropped dramatically last weekend. This isn't her first baby, and she recognizes the changes that are happening to her body and to Hudson.

So, we are on GO. I am sterilizing bottles and getting everything packed up today. We are on the schedule to be induced Oct. 23 if she hasn't had him by then. No body thinks that's very likely. I AM HAVING A BABY. SOON. I know that most of you have traveled this entire journey with us, and so you know the significance of those words. You know these words are part of God's promise made to me in my bathtub quite a while ago. You know those words are shining in my heart and through my mouth.

Oh Lord  you are so good to me. Who am I that you would bless me SO? Who am I? I am dust. But I am Your dust. Thank you Father. Thank you for Hudson. Thank you for Andrew, Logan, Hayden, Anne Pearce, and Essie. Thank you for my friends and family. Thank you for these people reading this story, and thank You for letting me tell it. I am nothing. You are everything.

What are you waiting for friends? Let go, and let God make a miracle in your life!

I love you all,
Loulou

Monday, October 1, 2012

Ying and Yang; Hudson’s story Part 2

Have you ever noticed that there are times when you can’t get one thing done in an hour, and there are also times when an hour seems like a year with 100 million things accomplished? I want to talk about an hour. The hour I want to talk about will probably be more than one post. I’m going to write about it, until I feel like it’s time to stop. A lot happened in this hour.

Remember in the earlier post when I told you that the day we got “the call” I had left my phone in my bedroom? One million things happened from the time I picked my phone up until we actually walked out the door to meet Alex. Have you ever been blind sighted by something?? You know those times that something happens, and you just don’t know where to put it? You hear words. You know what the words mean, but you don’t understand that those words are for you. You are overwhelmed in less than a second by words that TOTALLY change and redirect your life. We have a choice in that moment. We can trust selfish predictable scared selves, or we can reach out and take that perfectly scarred Hand of Jesus and let Him pull us to a new place in Him. I’d like to tell you that in that instant I immediately went for Jesus, but I didn’t. I retreated to that safe place inside of me that I had created. There was a safe place inside me that had walls built around it…the walls were there as protection, and I know that God put some of those walls in place to protect my heart….not because He didn’t think I could handle anything else, but because He loves me so much He didn’t want to see me hurt anymore. Once those walls were there they were mine… I could choose to keep them in place, OR I could choose to let God throw a few sticks of Jesus dynamite and blow that wall to smithereens…  When things are happening like this we don’t see the choice this simply….all of the pieces of overwhelming stimulus are coming at us like arrows… one after the other after the other after the other. Each arrow shows us a completely different scenario based on fear, uncertainty, confusion, rage, selfishness, pride, vanity, SELF. God doesn’t shoot arrows at His children, but we know who does. So….. What does a girl do when she’s being attacked by 10,000 fiery arrows, and her husband is in the other room even more freaked out than she is??? She calls her best friend.

Oh my sweet Natalie. I will tell you that tears started flowing at the first word of that sentence. My Natalie. My gift straight from God. My sweet darling Natalie who has held my hand through every step of this way…. My Natalie who has had to hear more pain and grief in my voice than anyone should ever have to hear from someone they love. My Natalie has grieved with me. She has held me up. She has prayed for me when I couldn’t pray for myself. She has believed in me when I couldn’t believe in anything. Even though is she many many miles away physically her spirit is ALWAYS here with me. It’s funny, because when I call her sobbing I usually start with, “Don’t freak out but……” or “NAT!!!!!”….. OR “a lot of incoherent sobbing that sounds like

“Natttttidon’tknowwhattodosobsobsobsnotsnotsnotsnot”

to which she always replies without fail, “Oh hun”. Oh hun. I can’t tell you the number of times I’ve heard that and just what comfort and certainty come from those 2 simple words. I’m sure you’re thinking that immediately Natalie screamed at me that there was no decision to make….that I was supposed to immediately go meet this girl, BUT Natalie doesn’t operate that way. She is the mish to my mash. She is the potato to my patatoe….the tomatooooo to my tomaaaato. LOL. She is ying. I am yang. Yet we fit perfectly together. Since we are ying and yang, Ying has felt the same pain Yang has felt, and she doesn’t want Yang to feel anymore unnecessary pain. You guys know the tip of the iceberg when it comes to situations and possible babies thrown our way. Natalie has been on the Titanic the whole trip. YET. After her initial shock she is ALWAYS able to take a step back and just listen…just process…. I know she is praying constantly as these things happen and seeking guidance. I know that she secretly wants to come throw a big cloak over me, so the pains of the world can’t hit me anymore. I know that she wants to come get me and take me to Target for a Diet Coke and just pretend like this isn’t happening to me, but she doesn’t.

In the over 5 years that Nat and I have been best friends she has helped me make every monumental decision and a million tiny day to day decisions. Sometimes she just listens until I finally get it myself, BUT most of the time she feels very strongly about situations one way or the other. This time she just didn’t know. We didn’t know. We both just sat on that phone and cried, while I am trying to find God’s path for me and my entire family in a few short minutes…. When we are like this we may not be on our knees, but I know our Father is with us. He hears us. He guides us…. He leads us.These conversations are honestly some of the most precious prayer times you can imagine, and I trust what comes from them without hesitation.

Oh my Natalie. My precious Natalie. I thought this post was going to be about the decision I made that day, but instead God led me to share with everyone the way He helps me make the biggest decisions of my life. When I am beside myself and can’t even just BE with Him for all the arrows flying He sends me a shield in the form of a precious blond haired Mormon from Utah. He sends me my soul sister. He sends me the one whose spirit I’ve known all my life without knowing it. He sends me my Natalie.

My dear Natalie, I love you more than words can say. You know what you mean to me, and I know what I mean to you. I do want to take this minute just to thank you, although thank you isn’t enough. Thank you for being you. Thank you for loving me even when I may not be the most lovable. Thank you for ALWAYS trusting the Spirit in me and NEVER once thinking I’m crazy (well besides my constant crazy)… Thank you for listening to our Father and holding my hand through all the roughest seas I can imagine. I’ve told you many times that I don’t know what I EVER did to deserve you, and I know that I don’t. I am so thankful He gave you to me anyway. This journey is beautiful now, but thank you for navigating all the mountains, valleys, rocks, and boulders that we’ve had to go through, over, and around to get to this spot….and what a sweet spot this is. The only day that will be better than bringing Hudson Roberts Lynn home will be the day that I hand him to you, Natalie Roberts.

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“He comforts us in all our troubles so that we can comfort others. When they are troubled, we will be able to give them the same comfort God has given us” 2 Corinthians 1:4.  You ALWAYS give me comfort. ALWAYS, and I KNOW that comfort comes straight from God Himself.

I love you. Jonk.

Sunday, September 30, 2012

I can't help myself.....

I had to share another picture with you guys. I can't stop looking at them... They amaze me over and over and over. God amazes me minute by minute. Let Him amaze you today in your life.

Sweet Baby Hudson Part 1

Here I am. Sitting in front of this computer with a big story in my heart, and I'm not quite sure how to get it out. I quit blogging for a while, because it was too hard to share my emotions with the world. After the adoption scam and failed adoption I couldn't grieve in public. I had to heal in private with my Savior. He was the only one who could heal me.....and heal me He did. I will always be thankful for all the things that I went through on this journey, but this story is not about the past and the hurts. It's about my present and future and all the joy that is coming my way. It will take me a while to tell this story. It may come in bits and pieces...it may come in between other things.. I don't know. All I do know is that God made it clear to me a while back that this isn't my story. It's HIS story, and He trusted me with it, because He knew I would share it and give Him the glory. I only hope I can tell it in the way He wants. I'm praying for guidance and for His words, because this isn't ABOUT me. It's isn't ABOUT a baby. It's not ABOUT my family. It IS about God.
After all the bad things happened I want to make it clear that I NEVER lost my faith or trust in God. I knew that He would make happen whatever He wanted to happen. I just lost focus of what that was. See. When God makes a promise to us He always keeps His word. He doesn't change His mind. It was hard for me to grasp. As soon as He led us to adopt again things started happening like crazy...Things that weren't from Him...things that were meant to stop us on this journey...bad things. And Bad things don't come from God. My pastor was preaching last night about how we all have a “Goliath” in our path. Let me just say that I had about 10,000 Goliaths in mine. The devil used every fear and past sin behavior I had in his attempt to make me NOT trust God and move forward. Of course he did. Satan never fights harder than when we adopt children. Every time a Christian family adopts a child he loses another one. He put up the biggest fight I have ever gone through. During the battle I started to doubt myself. I didn't doubt God. Maybe I had just misunderstood what He told me in my bathtub all those months ago. Maybe He used that to put me in place to stop the scammer...to advocate for the baby...to speak to his father in jail about Christ's love for him. I didn't know. All I knew was that since Adrian's adoption didn't go through NOTHING had happened. No leads on babies. No words from God. He was very quiet where the adoption was concerned. Last May Andrew and I decided that we were done. We talked ourselves into believing that God had released us from the adoption...I laugh out loud as I remember that moment. Actually I would like to go back in time and slap the crap out of both of us and yell, “Get over your stupid selfish selves!!! This isn't about you and YOUR comfort!”, BUT because we quit worrying about the adoption (which we shouldn't have done anyway) we had 4 glorious months of just being us. Our family was just our family, and we were thankful and content...well, we THOUGHT we were content.
During this time I was as close to God as ever. He continued to show me things about myself and allowed me to grow in Him. He had already proven to me that He NEVER leaves my side, and that He is always there to comfort and heal me. His Presence was as close and real as always.
Now let's fast forward to August 17. It was a Saturday, and we were all laying around in our pj's. I had left my phone in the back for a couple of hours. When I went to get it I had tons of texts and missed calls from my attorney. “Where are you LOU??” “LOU CALL ME”. “Lou a birth mom has chosen you guys”. WHAT??? WHAT???? After all this time and our decision to stop, and NOW a birth mom chooses us?? Do we want to even THINK about this?? What do we do? This part of the story will be an entire post in itself, but for now you get the picture. Shock. Picture shock. Picture total shock, a freaked out husband, and me on the phone with Natalie. Now picture God's amazing Grace and Mercy flowing down... and His peace... ahhhhh His peace.
There is so much that fills in this space, and it will take forever to tell, but the most important thing is this little face.
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Meet Hudson. Meet God's promise. Meet God's grace and mercy and peace all rolled into one precious little soul. Meet my son. Oh friends! God is SO GOOD ALL THE TIME. He NEVER changes even through all my doubt, worry, and selfishness. His plan stays intact. It's just up to us to trust and follow. We've chosen to trust and follow.
This is only the beginning of Hudson's story. I made a commitment to God that I'm not stopping the telling of His story until He stops me. It doesn't matter how long it takes or how busy I am. God has done some amazingly fabulous things over the last 6 weeks for this family, and there are more to come. I'd love it if you'd commit to tagging along and witnessing Hudson's journey. I know that God has something special planned for each and every one of you who chooses to do so. How do I know?? Because He's already told me He does. He's prepared each and every heart of the people He wants on this journey. He TOLD me He has prepared hearts. This isn't for me. This is for YOU. Search your heart and see if God is asking you to come along. I have my hand extended to you and am more than happy to pull you along, and God?? God is always ready, and He is ready now.
I love you guys,
Lou

Monday, June 18, 2012

I’m finding my new “New”.

I’ve been struggling lately with WHO I am.  It’s been difficult making my way in this new life after the year long crazy rollercoaster adoption ride we were on. After months of praying we know that God has released us from the ride. I know that we did what He wanted us to do and that He put us in some uncomfortable situations all to bring Him glory. I pray we did that… I know we can never do enough for Him, but I’m thankful that He gave us the chance. They were painful lessons to be learned, but in the end it was all worth it.

I thought I had my immediate future pretty mapped out, and then BOOM. The girls are going off to kindergarten, and my days are going to be empty. EMPTY. Part of me screams “HALLELUJAH!!!!”,  and part of me doesn’t know what to do with myself. I know that I need to use this time to rest so I can stay healthy and able to take care of my family. I can’t rest all the time though…. I have to do things to keep myself busy. I HAVE to be creative….

Lately, I’ve been pulling out all of my forms of craftiness….. I’ve been sewing for the girls, slip covering, and redoing some furniture. It makes me feel alive. Alive, but tired. :) I know that I will have to pace myself, so I don’t get burnt out or over do it. For now it feels good to do some of the things that I love to do but haven’t had the time to.

Some of my newest projects are below.

I’ve made some new outfits for the girlies.

I used this classic Jennifer Paganelli fabric for some sweet capri pants and ruffle tank tops.

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More classic Jennifer was used for these maxi dresses my girls wore to my niece’s wedding last weekend.

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I slip covered this $10 chair and took it from this:

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to this:

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and I’m in the middle of redoing this hall tree for a client:

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I don’t know what all God has in store for me, but I trust Him and His path. I know that all these things I love will come together in a way that works. God is ALWAYS good like that.

Love you guys.

Sunday, January 8, 2012

God makes beautiful things….even through scammers.

When I look back today at that devastating moment just a couple of short months ago it seems like yesterday and 10 years ago at the same time. That day became a defining moment in my life and more importantly my relationship with Jesus. I'm actually sitting in the same spot on my sofa (not intentionally) where I was when the realization that we had been attacked by evil hit me. I can't really explain that moment...The moment when I KNEW that it was a lie. I do need to make something clear here. At this point WE STILL THOUGHT SHE HAD A BABY. That we weren't getting the baby was devastating enough, but more than anything else we were frantic for the safety of that  baby... In my mind there was an innocent little angel being sold to the highest bidder. I didn't know that she had gotten that picture of "Jeremiah" from the Internet or a picture frame at the dollar store. I was operating on the assumption that the baby was in danger. In this short period of just a few minutes I experienced every human emotion possible....well, except for happy and all words that mean the same. There was no happiness here at that point. Just try to picture a dark hole of devastation sucking every thing out of me. When she texted me (the coward refused to talk) that she wasn't giving us the baby my first emotion was devastation.... I felt like I had been kicked in the stomach. Literally. I was sobbing and gagging...I kept thinking I would throw up. I remember the exact look in Andrew's eyes. I saw pain...His pain wasn't about the baby. I could see how hurt he was seeing ME hurt. What do you say in a moment like that? There are no natural words... there is nothing HUMAN that can be done for a broken heart. My heart was broken...not just for the baby.. mostly for humanity or the loss of it. HOW in the world could someone be SO evil? How could a mother use a child for financial gain? How could someone be so flippant about the hurt she caused others? I can tell you how, and his name is Satan. I would experience extreme grief then anger. Serious anger. Anger like DeAmberdevilgirlyoubetterbegladIcan'tgetmyhandsonyoubecauseIdon'tknowwhatIwoulddotoyou anger. I remember holding my cell phone contemplating all the ways I was going to let this evil girl have it...Oh, trust me. I had some fine things planned for her......

Then everything changed, and his name is Jesus.

I love Jesus. Every day when I wake up He is my first coherant thought. I try my best every second of every day to do what He would have me to do. At least that's what I say. I've had the opportunity many times in my life to do what He wanted me to do in that moment, but this was the first time I obeyed.

As I was about to type my very human selfish message to DeAmber (as she called herself) I was filled with the MOST AMAZING LOVE I HAVE EVER EXPERIENCED IN MY LIFE. Love. For DeAmber. For the girl who had just devastated my entire family and broken my heart. Love. Pure love. Instead of being the angry person I wanted to be, I let Jesus make me who HE wanted me to be. I got to feel a TINY fraction of the love he feels for us....the love he has for us NO matter what we do...kill, lie, cheat, steal...selfishness, vanity, anger, entitlement. It grieves him to no end, but He loves us anyway. So... instead of lashing out at her in anger I let Him give me the words for her...the words that told of the love He had for her, which was evident in the fact that He was having me reach out to her instead of hating her. I told her that I couldn't imagine what had happened in her life that made it seem like what she did was ok or made her capable of doing it. I told her that Jesus loved her and was reaching out to her at that moment. She didn't care. I think that's what hit me the hardest. She didn't care what He was offering her after she did what she did. In her mind she had done nothing wrong. It didn't matter how she had hurt not only Andrew and me but also our children...She didn't care..... or she did care but was so full of evil she didn't want to try to fight for herself. I don't know...

When her attitude of indifference was apparent things changed. The Holy Spirit was giving me things to say to her that would NEVER come out of MY mouth. I would NEVER be bold enough to say the truths he had me say to her. I'd try to walk away, and He'd bring me back to tell her something else. When she wasn't responsive Jesus told me it was ok "to dust off my shoes and walk away". (Matthew 10:6). So I did.

Wow. I didn't know how else to explain what had just happened. Wow. How do you explain what had just happened to me?? With words??? I didn't really know how. As amazing as this sounds the MOST amazing part of this story hasn't happened yet. I started explaining to my dear spirit twin Andrea what had happened with words... Not texts. Words. Words that enter the atmosphere...words that are HEARD by all. Something happened in that moment when I spoke the words of God...the words He gave me to speak. WHEN THE WORDS CAME OUT THE WALL CAME DOWN, and OH How the wall came down.

The power of the words of the Lord. Amazing power people. That part of the story comes next, and I promise. It's GOOOOOOD. This is where the happy comes back.

Dear God, thank you for this part of my life, and thank you for allowing me to share it with these people. Most of these people I've never met or will never know. I know there is a purpose in all you do, and I pray that this story you've given me will give someone somewhere what they need. It's not about me. It's all about you, and your honor, and your amazing glory. Please use what you've done in me to touch the person or people out there that you've had me share this story for. Please lead all those who need it to this place to read it. My biggest prayer is that through this you would lead someone to you in a way they've never experienced before. It's all for you. I love you with my everything. Amen.

I am usually hesitant about sharing this entire story with "strangers", but I've come to realize that it's not MY story. It belongs to Jesus, and the whole purpose is to glorify him and bring more people to his Kingdom. I'm asking that you share this story. Share it on your blogs, on your Facebook, through your email. Send to who God leads you to.....

Part one of the story can be found here, and the story of how we were led to adopt again can be found here.

Thursday, January 5, 2012

At least she was a professional scammer….

I want to share this story, although it was one of the most painful experiences of my life.

It all started with this woman:

DaVanna Dotson

And this baby:

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The story of what happened to us is here. I’ve copied a part of it for you to have here. If you go to the page and the video I’m the woman in the shadow. I didn’t want my face broadcast all over the place, but I thought it was important to tell our story.

A Fairhope woman who wanted to remain anonymous believes evil exists and it's found in Oklahoma. "Disbelief that someone could be so evil, and what amounted to $600 and something dollars," said a Fairhope woman who did not want to be identified.Oklahoma police say 20-year-old DaVanna Dotson faces eight felony charges for fraud. Her alleged crimes spans several states including Texas, Kansas, Alabama and Utah.Dotson was arrested in Oklahoma, where she lived on September 23 of this year. Police there said she preyed on people desperate for a child of their own."She says she has a baby born August 30, three weeks old. And she needed money to get to Mobile, and needed a home for the baby," said the Fairhope woman.Through a series of texts and phone calls, police say Dotson makes hopeful adoptive parents believe their dreams of having a family are coming true. Dreams pinned on a picture of a newborn baby boy she calls Jeremiah.

Text, after text, after text, police say Dotson assured potential adoptive parents like one Fairhope woman that she wants them to adopt her son. But first, she needs gas money to bring them the baby. A baby they've been dreaming of. The twisted tale of text messages describes a mother desperate to get back to Mobile and give baby Jeremiah a home. The Fairhope woman said Dotson asked her for $400 to pay for her trip from Oklahoma to Mobile and then asked for even more money. See for yourself in this excerpt from the text messages exchanged after Dotson describes trouble heading south. The Fairhope woman questions Dotson, who claims to be on the road driving to Alabama with the baby.  Potential adoptive parent: Do you know where y'all are? How much further do you have?Dotson replies: Nine hours, I'm going to need more gas.

The Fairhope woman questions her further.

Potential adoptive parent: You don't have enough to make it here? I thought you said $400 was plenty for gas? I need to hear back from you. The worry intensifies. The potential adoptive mother: We sent you $575. We want to help you get here, we just need more information. Where are you now? Dotson: I can't stop, I rather drive. If you send me another $500, we can just do everything closed and I'll bring him straight to you then we can go from there.

The Fairhope woman explains she can't send anymore money, and ask a question she fears she knows the answer to.

Potential adoptive parent: Did you ever intend to place this baby?Dotson responds: Yes, but I am not placing him with you."It is hard to describe at first when the moment sank in it was all a lie that there was just no baby, just devastation," said the Fairhope woman."My husband was sitting there, and I was sobbing because we've already gone through failed attempts at adoption and this was hard on us."

The Fairhope woman is just one of the people Oklahoma police said Dotson scammed. Lynn Hamlin, an investigator with the Muskogee Police Department said she has never seen anything so sinister. She said Dotson's deviant detailed deception took place in eleven states, and possibly more. "It is so widespread. A lot of the victims were from Alabama," said Investigator Hamlin. “It was one of states; so to speak, she was working on at the time she was apprehended." Hamlin said recently an alleged victim has stepped forward who is from Perdido, Alabama. The alleged victim was given the same story as the Fairhope woman, and many others across the country. Hamlin said the Federal Bureau of Investigations could get involved in the case since it crossed state lines. "Hopefully, we can get the FBI involved also and that gives us more resources that our State's District Attorney's Office," said Hamlin.

This story was well written except for one part:

Police there said she preyed on people desperate for a child of their own.

I’m not “desperate” for a baby. I wasn’t clinging to some hope that they was “the answer to our dreams”. In all reality I thought that we were helping a girl get home. I had actually told Andrew the night before that if we didn’t end up with her baby that at least we had helped someone get home.  There was never a baby though.

I’m not telling this story so anyone will feel sorry for me…That’s not it at all. Something amazing happened to me at this time, and it has ended up being one of the most amazing experiences of my life. I know this post has a lot of information, so I’m going to tell the other part of the story in another post coming soon.

Love you guys.

Saturday, December 31, 2011

Dear God, Are you there? It's me. Loulou.

I've been thinking about this blog lately.... How I miss it. How I miss writing down all my feelings and experiences. In the past whenever I've had hard times or troubles I've written about them, but this time in my life has been different. I really don't know why. I have had more hardships, trials, and just plain old bad stuff happen to me over the last 5 months. I've also had the most amazing experiences with God that I've ever had in my life. Why haven't I written about them? I've always gotten so much love and support from the blogging community and other adoptive parents. All I can figure out this time is that I needed to learn to rely on God alone. I needed to learn that instead of writing everything down and calling my best friends that I needed to go straight to Him....Straight to the source of all strength and comfort. God has taught me so much about myself in these last few months and has given me a glimpse of who He intended me to be. I still have A LONG way to go, but I'm on my journey. I'm on my path. At times I've stumbled over fear and doubt, but He keeps pulling me back up. I'm going to try to tell you all some of what's happened to me over the next few posts. I don't know if anybody will read this, but I know that I'll be happy to have it one day.

I shared a while back that God had let me know that there was another baby for us. I fought against it harder than I've ever fought God, but He showed me through much prayer and time with him that he was trying to give us the biggest blessing in the world. Once I accepted it I had such peace. I felt such urgency at the beginning...like I had to get stuff done NOW....it couldn't wait. I had to do all I could in my power to get things ready. So. I did. He led me directly to our attorney that we had gone to church with a few years before, and we knew we were where we were supposed to be. At that time I honestly felt that God would seriously be dropping a baby on my doorstep at any moment.(I still don't doubt that could happen, but my feelings about it have changed tremendously).

Since August we have had 2 failed adoptions, 1 match fall through, and we've been scammed by an adoption scammer. We have totally drained our adoption account through these situations. Nice huh? I had never been so sure about God speaking to me in my life. I KNEW what he had told me, but I was so utterly confused and disillusioned by all the things that were happening around me. With each of these experiences I went through times of serious doubt and confusion that I KNEW weren't from God. I couldn't understand WHY all these things were happening to us, and I know that I will never understand. I don't need to. I never doubted His unending love for me or the promises he made. I think as Christians we all go through the times of, "WHY GOD? WHY is this happening to us?"...especially when we are doing His will. It's taken me time to digest a lot of what happened, but I learned that the devil comes after us the most when we are truly living for God and desiring to do his will. The closer we get to God the more threatened the bad one gets, and he unleashes all he has against us. Of course he does. Does Satan want families living godly lives? No. He'd rather see them torn apart by sins of the world. Does Satan want orphans to find families. No. Of course he doesn't. Everytime one of the fatherless comes to a Christian family Satan knows he's lost another one. He doesn't like losing. I've actually told him several times out loud that he may has well scamper away. He's not getting me or my family, and he's certainly not keeping me from the plans God has for me.

With each of the losses so many people remarked that if it was God's will then it would have happened. I trust God and know that he didn't want to see us hurt over and over, but I disagree with that viewpoint. As I questioned God about these things He gave me answers. The thing is, God DOES have a perfect plan for all of us. Does God's will always happen? No. It doesn't. We live in a world of free choice. If God's will always happened there would be no pain. No sadness. No orphans. No hurt. No sin. Every one of us has choices to make each and every day.... to do his will or our own. We are all given the opportunity to choose. Those of us who love him strive to make the right choices, but ALL are given the chance to do the right thing. It's up to us to have God's will done on this earth. We are the vessels. All of us...believers and unbelievers have to COOPERATE with God in order for his will to be fulfillied. Regardless of belief EVERYONE has the knowledge of good and bad inside them. They KNOW that they are or aren't doing the right thing. People KNOW when they are being selfish. They just don't care that they're selfish. They let their selfish desires rise above what is best of anyone else including their children. I have seen SO much ugly on this journey.... ugly I didn't even know existed. I have also seen beauty from the ashes. I have seen God take all that ugliness and use it to bring me closer to him. As I've experienced pain over and over I've also felt more love than I knew was possible. God's sweet perfect love has picked me up over and over. I know that some people close to me have questioned why we keep going forward. Can't we see that God really doesn't want us to adopt again? Haven't we learned anything from these things that have happened? Can't we see what God's really trying to tell us? I wish I could make them understand that although I know they love me those words mean nothing to me. I choose to trust man or God. I choose God. I choose God. I choose God today, and I will choose God tomorrow. I'm learning to trust and grow in the times of quiet. I'm learning that he is the lamp unto my feet. If I follow that light I can't get lost. That doesn't mean that I won't experience hard times and pain. Quite the contrary. When we follow that light we are subjected to ridicule and suffering. Darkness doesn't like the light, but darkness doesn't understand that it's impossible to put that light out. That light will never go out.... That light will shine for eternity, and I am so thankful that beautiful light is here to direct me where to go. I'm going to share over time where the light is leading me. I'm going to share all of it. The good. The bad. The beautiful. The ugly. The joy. The despair. All of it. I know that at the end of this journey there is ultimately a brighter light and SO MUCH JOY. I know that God is blessing our family and will continue to do so. I know God has a plan for us. A plan for us to prosper and not be harmed...a plan that has a hope and a future. I honestly am looking forward to EVERY step along the way and am joyfully expectant of all the good he will continue to bring. I don't worry about the bad and the ugly. He can handle that all by himself.... I choose not to be burdened by the bad and the ugly. I choose joy. JOY. Joy is goooooood. Don't you agree?

I have done A LOT of sewing for the girls… These are just a few things I’ve made.

The girls in this year’s Christmas outfits:DSCN3217

Essie with her DS purse I made for her:

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Anne Pearce with her fabric dollhouse purse I made:DSCN3291

Inside of dollhouses:DSCN3307

with my girliesDSCN3314

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Fun peasant top out of some saved Heather Ross fabric. I love this picture of my Essie

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and this one of Anne Pearce:DSCN3342 - Copy

Sunday, September 11, 2011

Lou Lynn- the world's most persistant control freak

Yes, that would be me. I haven't been writing during this adoption process, and I see now that I should. It's not about who (or if anyone) reads this. It's about me being honest and accountable to God and myself. The truth isn't always easy to face. In fact, most of the time it's our instinct to run away from it. It's hardest to admit that there's something wrong with us... not other people, US. These past few weeks have been some of the most difficult times I've had with my faith. I've been questioning God instead of questioning my own motives and my own selfish desires. See? We didn't want another baby. We were content and as happy as could be. Then BAM! The world as we knew it came tumbling down. We grudgingly accepted God's will and decided to move forward on this journey to another child, our son. I was SO SURE at the beginning of this journey.. so sure of MYSELF. Not of God. That's where I always screw things up. He tells me things to do, and I submit (or so I think I do). I've realized that agreeing to do His will isn't submitting. We may be submitting to the actual task, but we have to submit totally, and give it all to Him. As Christians, haven't we heard this a million times? Let go, and let God. I tell myself rather indignantly that "Of COURSE I'm letting God! He's the one who told me to do this in the first place. Would I be doing this if I wasn't submitting?" That's how I've been justifying the fact that I've really been looking out for myself instead of letting Him lead the way.

There are some truths in this situation:

In my mind my age is one of the biggest factors I have against me. Let's face it. I'm 41. I may not feel (or look as most say) 41, but the number doesn't lie. I see myself raising a teenager in my 50's, and it scares the crap outta me. Most people will be have grandchildren (and it's likely that I will too) at this age, not raising teenagers. Everyday that creeps by without a baby means that I'm one day closer to oldness! :)

There's also this undeniable fact: When you adopt, your entire life is put on hold. I've never been good at putting this to the side and just living my life. Who can? It's a baby for Pete's sake. I HAVE TO MAKE SURE THAT I'M DOING EVERYTHING I CAN TO FIND HIM AND BRING HIM TO US. Tag. You're it. There it is as plain as day. I think I have to do things, when I don't. I don't have to go looking for a baby. He will send him. Now, that doesn't mean that I didn't have to find my fabulous attorney or get things together for our home study. All those things have to be done by me. God isn't going to come down here and get our last 2 years of tax records together...some of this IS our responsibility. It means that I don't have to be in charge of this. I don't have to spend every waking moment wondering if I'm supposed to call someone, or do something else to make this happen. I don't have to control this.

Yesterday an expectant mom had an appointment to view our profile. From the outside looking in it was THE PERFECT situation. No one could argue, so I decided that this was meant to be. God had lined this up Himself, and THIS was our baby. Big surprise, it wasn't. I had my heartbroken and was screaming out to Him asking WHY HE had let me be broken again. AGAIN! Every time this happens (it's been twice so far) I feel like I've had a miscarriage. WHY in the world would he put me through that pain again? The thing is that HE didn't. I did this all to myself. I convinced myself that what I wanted was God's will. How could it not be?? It was PERFECT! Didn't God himself make all things perfect happen?? Of course He does. When it's His will, not mine. I had let the desires of my soul override what His Spirit was telling me and doing in me. I let that voice of selfishness speak over His Holy Voice. Yesterday morning as I was SO sure that this was it I heard this tiny whisper inside myself saying, "This isn't it". I heard it a few times and hushed it. THAT wasn't God! That must be the devil trying to weaken me. It WAS God. He was trying in His loving way to let me know that this wasn't going to happen, but I chose to shut that sound out and hear what I wanted to hear. I wanted this to be our baby in every way. I had orchestrated this most amazing plan in my head and boldly told everyone that THIS was God's will. I KNEW it, because He told me. It was a beautiful plan, but it wasn't His.

After that happened yesterday I had myself a big ol' fit. I screamed at Andrew and had a marvelous pity party. I declared how we should just return every single baby item we had bought in preparation. WHY keep all these things when it may not even happen? What was the use? It took me a while to get this together in my meager mind: All this preparation is FAITH. FAITH AND COMPLETE TRUST IN GOD. Faith that He is going to follow through with what He first told me in my bathtub not even 2 months ago. He is going to send our son. Oprah would be proud, as I've finally had my aha moment.... Lou Lynn is not in charge of this adoption. Or this day. Or this life. It's not in my hands. It's all about grace. The grace and love that only comes from the Creator. THE Alpha and Omega. The It and All.. Our Father in Heaven. He lets me wake up every morning and be a wife and mother. He gives me the love to pour out on my family and those around me. He does it all. Why in the world would I ever think that a plan I created could be better than the plan God has for my family? It's not. In fact, I suck at trying to be in charge of my world and circumstances. Everything God does is perfection, and I know that the plan He has is more amazing than anything I could ever dream up myself.

So what happens now? I'm going to be still and wait. Wait and listen. Wait until He unfolds His plan and brings me my son. I don't have any idea when this will be. At the beginning I felt that it would be soon, and that was why I felt such urgency to get things done fast. Now? I don't know. It may be months from now, or it may be tomorrow. Either way I know it's His timing and not mine. I'm finally going to do what I've claimed to have done in the past. I'm going to truly let go, and let God. Just typing that brought a smile to my face and tears in my eyes all at the same time. Jesus is going to do this and carry me along the way. He will order my steps and the way my baby comes to me. I don't know about the rest of you, but I can't wait to see how this turns out. Ain't God just something else? Yes peeps He is, and I for one am so incredibly thankful that He is.

Love to all,

Sunday, August 7, 2011

Buckle up, and hold on tight.

God has made some major changes in our lives last week. This time last week we were still fighting God's desire for our family. Today we're all on board. What's this new mission we're on? After 2 biological sons and 2 adopted girls we are officially adopting our 5th child. Two weeks ago if you would have asked me if we were adopting more I would've said, "NO. NO. We are DONE." I actually said that if God wanted me to adopt another child that He would have to deliver him to our doorstep. At this point I'm not putting it past Him.

In the last week God has changed my heart from a mother who thought her family was complete into a mother whose heart is filled with love and longing for a baby. It's truly amazing. I will admit that it wasn't easy getting to this point. I argued with God more about this than I ever have. The following is a conversation I had with Him last week while I was in the bathtub:

Me: God? Ummm. I need some clarification from you.... Is this screaming in my head about a new baby from you or some secret longing I didn't know I had?
God: All good things come from me.
Me: God. I'm 41 and have 4 children
God: So?
Me: I was just starting to get my life back. Andrew and I have been able to travel, and we won't be able to do ANYTHING again for years.
God: It isn't about YOU.
Me: I thought I was done.
God: Are you ever done serving me?
He then showed me all the times over the last 3-4 months when I've had a conversation with people considering adoption. Over and over I heard, "I've always wanted to adopt, BUT". I never let them past the but. Don't give me buts. I have a pacemaker and health issues. If I can do it anyone can. God only whispers to certain people about adoption. If you're getting that nudge what are you waiting for? "Well, we don't have the money, and I heard it was expensive." I hit right back with the fact that God sent over $64,000 over for both of the girl's adoptions. Don't give me excuses! If you're supposed to do it, then just do it for Pete's sake...

Yada
Yada
Yada

After that I actually laughed out loud in the tub. He gives it to me as good as I give it! :) After some intense conversations with Andrew (who hadn't given into the nudging) we finally agreed that "if God is going to make us do it we will. But we don't want to." What a crappy attitude I had. I was having these urgent feelings to get started...I couldn't sleep or eat...My stomach was upset constantly. I called several agencies. They were all great, but I didn't feel like my baby was there. I finally made some big decisions Thursday (I'll share later) and was at peace. I knew we were on the right track to our baby.

Friday I was cleaning my house with my headphones on listening to my Christian music. All of a sudden I heard some lyrics that completely got my attention. I started bawling and was just covered with His Spirit. I tear up now just thinking about it. I realized in that moment that while I was fighting God and demanding explanation He was trying to give me the biggest blessing He can give. While I was whining He was trying to make me mother to another child. Me. Lou. He trusted ME with another one of his beloved. I was overcome with humility and immense gratitude. I just stood there crying and thanking Him. Last night at church He confirmed so much to Andrew and me with music and the message. We went to the altar where we both cried like babies and prayed for our son. See. I know the baby's a boy. I just feel it in my heart, and Andrew does too. I have NO idea when he's coming, but I do feel it will be soon...The way God changed us so quickly and gave me all those urgent feelings are for a reason He will reveal in time...

You know what? If we wouldn't have listened and ignored Him we would've been abandoning our child and denying our family of the love and joy he will bring. Wouldn't have that been awful? More awful that words can say? Now I can't imagine not being on this path running towards my son.

I invite you all to share this journey with us. If you're not a long time reader let me fill you in on something: God LOVES to do some crazy amazing business with our adoptions. He LOVES to perform visible miracles, and they're a sight to behold. This journey isn't only about the baby...it's also about my continuing journey towards Jesus. Everyday He brings me closer, and I can't wait to see what He does for our son. I promise He will amaze you. He rocks like that. God loves to show out with adoptions. :)

So peeps, if you're going to hang around buckle up, and hold on tight. I don't know what God is going to do for all of us through this, but I know He's going to bring me my son in a HUGE way. I just feel it.

How amazing is our God? I mean seriously. How AMAZING IS OUR GOD? He amazes me more with each and every day.

I'm going to give more details over the next few days about all we're doing and how we're proceeding. It's such an exciting time. I am going to ask every single one of you to pray for our son and his birthmother. I am praying for her peace and to have His direction with her decision. I pray for the health of our birthmother and especially our baby. Do you want to know his name?

Oliver Andrew Lynn.
Ollie for short.

Come along with me on my journey to Ollie.
Edited... There has been a name change (or 10), but his name is OFFICIALLY
John Andrew Lynn... Our John Andrew
and then it was about ten other names until the PERFECT name for our son:
Hudson Roberts Lynn with a story coming soon.
I love you guys.

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

A New Awakening

There are many reasons for my long blogging absence. I took time to really look at myself and what I wanted for my life. I’ve always loved the Lord and felt His presence in my life. His presence was especially strong during the adoptions… Once Essie came home things changed..life stopped… All of a sudden we were basically trapped at home. Essie couldn’t bear for me to be out of her sight, so church was out of the question. I’ve noticed that when I’m not in fellowship that it’s so easy to slip out of  “The Walk”. Life in the natural world takes over…we start worrying about the day to day things going on, and His presence fades away. Granted. He’s always there. It’s us who push Him away. This spring I experienced the biggest hunger for God. I knew that Jesus was calling me, and I wanted to listen. He started speaking to me through music and people around me… He started whispering in my ear and pulling me back to Him. Out of the blue one day I announced to Andrew that we were visiting a church close to Fairhope  named Bay Community. As soon as we walked in that church we knew we were home. I couldn’t get enough of my Bible. I read and understood more than ever before. I’ve almost completed the entire Bible in a little over 3 months. God has put so many people in my life that have helped me on my walk back to Him. Our entire lives have changed! We have always been a happy family, but things are different. I’m closer to Jesus than I ever have been. My focus has changed.

I began to see that I was always looking for acceptance from you guys. I NEEDED for you to like the things that I did… I was too worried about it. I want to share my life but not for attention or adoration. I just want to be real. Some HUGE things have happened to me and my family, and I’m going to be sharing those things… I will tell you that we have something BIG happening in our lives right now. That’s a post or 10 in itself that I’ll tackle soon.

God has put so many GOOD CHRISTIAN friends in my path.  Some are new friends…some are old… All are loved. He has blessed me so much, and I just want to share it with you guys. I’m sure there will be furniture and clothes posts, because those are things I love to do… There will be more about my family and our journey to the things God has in store for us. I hope you’ll tag along, but it may not interest you. That’s ok too. I’ve learned that those who need to read it will find it.

Love to all of you.

Thursday, March 31, 2011

Needle and Thread Thursday. Damask bunny fabric oh my!

I actually bought this yummy fabric last year but never did anything with it. Sometimes I do that. That MAY be the reason I have 3 huge storage containers full of fabric.. :) Anyway, when I started thinking about a style of outfit that I wanted to make my girls this fabric immediately came to mind. My girls are in love with bunnies, and I knew they’d love them.


These may just be my ALL TIME FAVORITE outfits I’ve made the girls. Is this outfit love or what?


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The top was made using the Cathy pattern by Jennifer Paganelli. You can make either a top or dress with this pattern, and it’s SO EASY. I’m already thinking what I’m going to make next with this pattern. You can buy this and all Jennifer’s other patterns here.



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Close up of the ruffle neck. I opted to make a rolled hem with my serger instead of the hemmed edges shown in the pattern. I shortened the width by an inch to accommodate this change. The hemmed edge also looks fabulous, but the rolled hem is so quick and easy.


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I love the super long ruffle on the bottom of the top. It’s so girly and twirly! You can see some of the bunnies in this shot.


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I used my favorite SewSensible Boutique bottoms pattern for the pants. I made them capri length, lengthened the ruffle, and used a rolled hem here as well instead of a hemmed one. These pants are so easy and always turn out so precious. You can get the paper version of this pattern here and the downloadable pattern (I use this one) here.



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We had a little impromptu photo shoot after their bath last night. Here’s Essie. I know she’s mine, but how adorable is this kid?? Seriously.


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My other little model. Anne Pearce wanted to sleep in hers. :)


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Do ya think she’s a ham? Ya think?


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Essie was trying to watch American Idol and model at the same time.


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I can’t remember where I got the fabric last year, but I found mine on Etsy. I couldn’t find any when I googled, which makes me wonder if it’s been discontinued. I should’ve bought 10 yards! This collection is by Tula Pink and is named Hushabye, Let me know if you guys find any…


I’ve really been on a sewing spree lately. Sometimes I have no interest in it and at others I want to live at my sewing machine. I have fabric ironed and ready for these 2 patterns:


This is Sewsensible’s applique apron skirt. I haven’t made it in a LONG time and am excited to make it again.


Applique' Apron Skirt Sewing Pattern - DOWNLOADABLE



I also can’t wait to try this new pattern. It’s the Boardwalk Ruffle Sleeve Dress by Monkeysbug.



Don’t hesitate to ask me any questions you have about sewing or these patterns. I would love to help anyone jump in and start sewing!


Love and hugs,


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