Sunday, November 29, 2009

Heart project

I am so excited! Today I learned that Samaritan's Purse has an amazing giving opportunity through their Children's Heart Project. You can buy an airline ticket to save a child's life by bringing him to the United States to have surgery that is unavailable in his native country. Of course you don't have to buy the whole cost of the ticket, but you can share that cost with others. The whole ticket is $2,200 and the shared cost is $220.

This has obviously struck a major chord with Casey and me. We are so blessed to have a son who has benefited so much from our country's excellent medical care. I thank God continually that He allowed Carter to be born in a country where he could receive such care. Soon, we will be blessed again to adopt a sweet girl into our family who is in desperate need of heart surgery.

I know the heart of a mother who has a child she cannot help. What a privilege we have to be able to provide a miracle for a desperate family!

Casey and I are giving each other the gift of a shared airline ticket through Samaritan's Purse this Christmas. I cannot think of a single gift that could make me happier.

Please watch the video below and consider joining us. We only need nine more families to join us and we can save a child's life.

Monday, November 16, 2009

An Ordinary Radical's Life

My Bible study group is reading a hugely challenging book by Francis Chan called "Crazy Love". I think all of us in the group are feeling challenged by the question "what does God require of us?". Should we all give away all of our possessions? Should all of us pick up and move to a third world country? Live on the streets and minister to street people? What?

The truth is that some of us are called to that kind of living. God may be calling us to that kind of life and we should start today. Others will be doing those things in 5 years or 10 years.

But for today, this very day, we need to ask God how we can love, serve and obey Him now. It is our actions, lived out daily, that transform us into the women that God intends us to be. Sometimes the most radical thing you can do is not move out of the country, but choose to love that difficult person in your life. Pray instead of watch tv. Give away that one thing you want to keep.

It is in these small actions that God will reveal the amazing plan He has for your life. Some days we are called to step out in faith and do a huge scary thing for God that requires all of our courage, but most days, it is the small acts of love that are our contribution to the kingdom God.

Monday, November 2, 2009

A Word about Parent Teacher Conferences

This week is one of those highly emotional weeks for me- right up there with birthday weeks, first day of school, Mother's Day, ya know, the biggies. Yup, it's Parent Teacher Conferences.

During the conference itself, I am in basically in one of two states- holding back tears, or full out crying. It doesn't matter if the child is doing great with one two areas for improvement (you know the teacher must come up with something, even for that perfect child to work on), or if the child is failing to meet basic standards. I'm a wreck.

There is nothing like the conference to make you feel downright vulnerable (only thing worse- the dreaded IEP meeting!). There, on paper, is this cold, unfeeling, objective look at your child. As you look at her successes and failures, I want to tell the teacher- sure this child is a little behind in this area- but do you know how far she has come?! Just a few seconds ago, she was a little baby, unable to even sit up on her own and now here she is, reading a novel! Or, just yesterday this child flew on an airplane to meet her mother for the first time and never even held a crayon, much less count backwards from 10 in a foreign language! Do you know we didn't know if this boy would live or die just two and half years ago? So what if he still has a pacifier!

Should the teacher complement my child on some academic or social achievement, well, here comes the waterworks! This proud mama is bursting with pride. Yes, yes, I taught her that! It seems just yesterday I had to spank her because she insisted on running into the street while laughing in rebellion- now look- she is Student of the Month!

Oh my. This week I will be reflecting on all I have managed to teach my children, and all I have yet to teach. I have one conference down, two to go. I will come in with a list of things to discuss, and leave with maybe addressing just one, because that is really all I can take. I will second guess myself, and congratulate myself.

Sweet Teacher, go easy on me. These are my babies, my precious children. I have poured every fiber of myself into them. When you are tough on them, you are tough on me. When you express understanding, it is my heart that melts. Thank you for all you do. And please pass the Kleenex.