One family's journey to hear God's calling, overcome our fears, and be obedient to Him!

Friday, September 23, 2011

Dancing with the Devil

One thing is certain, Satan is smart. It has become so clear over the last year that he doesn't attack all Christians equally. Think about it. If you were the devil, who would you spend your time attacking? Would you waste a lot of time on Christians who are discouraged by troubles or defeated by sin? Or would you focus your efforts on those who were living radical lives for God? The answer is obvious. If you are attacking Satan's kingdom, Satan is going to attack you. His primary goal is to block God's work in our lives.

Take a look in the book of Job and you will see Satan in action. Job was a man of God. He lived a life that honored the Lord and was making a difference with his life. He helped others. He served others. He shared God's truth and God's love with those he encountered. Job was doing damage to Satan’s evil kingdom. As a result, Satan unleashed his full arsenal against Job.

What does this mean in our daily lives? If you are living a life of sin and compromise, you probably don't have to worry much about spiritual warfare. Why would Satan waste his time and efforts on you. But if you are living a life that impacts others and honors God, watch out. Satan has you in his crosshairs.

The devil is clever, sneaky, tricky, deceptive, and works in all sorts of ways. He knows our weaknesses and focuses his attack on that particular area of our lives. One of his favorite tricks is to fill our minds with sinful thoughts, assumptions and lies in order to pit us against our own Christian friends, family, and even our spouses. In this sneaky approach he attacks many Christians at once and quickly gets them doing his evil work for him.

So what can we do to resist the devil?

• We must stay close to God and ask Him to help us recognize and overcome the devil’s attacks. God knows the evil one hates us and He has given us the ability to resist.

• We must regularly fill our minds with the truth of God's Word, and meet every temptation with prayer. If we resist the devil in accordance with the bible’s instruction, he won’t have a chance with us. He will flee away from us in terror.

Resist the devil, and he will flee from you. Come near to God and he will come near to you. James 4:7-8

Right now, the devil and his demons are loose on the earth. God expects us to resist every time they lash out at us. We don’t need to fear the devil. We must prepare ourselves by knowing our own weaknesses and by being cognizant of the devil’s schemes. We must stand against him face to face and resist him. We must fight the good fight of faith like good soldiers of Christ.

Be strong in the Lord and in his mighty power. Put on the full armor of God, so that you can take your stand against the devil’s schemes. For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms. Therefore put on the full armor of God, so that when the day of evil comes, you may be able to stand your ground. Stand firm then, with the belt of truth buckled around your waist, with the breastplate of righteousness in place, and with your feet fitted with the readiness that comes from the gospel of peace. In addition to all this, take up the shield of faith, with which you can extinguish all the flaming arrows of the evil one. Take the helmet of salvation and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God. Ephesians 6:10-17

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Adoption News ~ IBESR Approval!

It has been 12 months since we started the adoption process on September 1, 2010.

We received news this morning that our adoption file has been reviewed and approved by IBESR. Our file entered IBESR around June 5, 2011. When our file entered IBESR we were told the IBESR process would take 2-10 months. Ours took about 3 months.

IBESR is Haitian Social Services. They have social workers that study adoption files (dossier) to determine if the prospective parents meet their requirements to adopt. They also judge if the proposed child(ren) are a good match for the adoptive family. Once the social workers approve the file, IBESR issues a Certificate of Authorization telling the courts that they have approved the adoption. Approval by IBESR is the first big step in the approval process and is typically the most time consuming. Our file should now move to the next steps, which include:

* Presidential Dispensation in which Haiti's President approves our file
* Parquet - court approvals (this is where the girls become ours legally in Haiti)
* Application for child's Haitian Passport - starts at Ministry of Interior (MOI)
* Final file submission, review and approval by the US Embassy
* Visa application filed - schedule appointment in Haiti to receive visa
* Time to bring the girls home

I ask for your continued prayers. Pray that Haiti's President, Mickey Martelly signs our Dispensation today. Pray that our file moves into and through Parquet very quickly. Pray that we don't experience any delays, that the adoption process is completed, and that our girls come home so fast that only God can get the Glory!


Praise the Lord our God. Bow before Him, for He is holy! Psalm 99:5

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

A Walk Down Jericho Road

Jericho Road is a seventeen mile road that connects Jerusalem to Jericho. The road drops 3600 feet in those seventeen miles. It is a steep, winding, descending, remote road that for centuries has been a place of robberies and sufferings. Evil lurks along this path. It is a symbol of suffering in the world and everyday life.

The parable of the Good Samaritan in Luke 10: 25-37 is one of my favorite bible stories. As the story goes a lawyer stands up and asks Jesus, “What can I do to inherit eternal life?” Jesus, being the ultimate counselor, asked him a question: “What do you think?” The man answered, “You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, mind and soul, and your neighbor as yourself.” To which Jesus said, "You do this, and you will live eternally.” The man then asks “Who is my neighbor? Jesus responds, “Let me tell you a story. There once was a man walking down the Jericho Road.”

Through the parable of the Good Samaritan, Jesus wants us to understand that on our walk down the road of life on earth we will encounter suffering, just like the man walking down the Jericho Road. But also that He expects us to be Good Samaritans and get involved with those who are suffering. God desperately wants us to get involved with those in need that we meet along the road of life.

Why are we not obedient to God's calling to help those in need? The devil wants us to believe that it is not safe, it will cost to much, or that we don't have time. What sufferings are you experiencing on your Jericho Road? Do you recognize and reach out to help those in need along the way? Sometimes I think we fail to reach out and help others because we are so focused on our own challenges along the road.

For the last year my Jericho Road has been the adoption process. Sometimes, on days like today, I have to step back and realize that my sufferings pale in comparison to the lifelong sufferings of the two children that I am desperately reaching out to with love. I am also asking God to help me always recognize those in need on my walk down Jericho Road.

We are heirs of God and co-heirs with Christ, if indeed we share in his sufferings in order that we may also share in his glory. Our present sufferings are not worth comparing with the glory that will be revealed in us. Romans 8: 17-18