The Trust of Abraham

Graceful Abandon: The Trust of Abraham on the Adoption Journey
Graceful Abandon: The Trust of Abraham

The trust of Abraham was a mighty thing. I found myself crying out tonight for the trust of Abraham, because I need it.

The definition of faith is “complete trust or confidence in someone or something.” Taking that a step further, I looked up trust. It adds depth to the definition of faith. Check it out. Trust is “firm belief in the reliability, truth, ability, or strength of someone or something; confidence placed in a person by making that person the nominal owner of property to be held or used for the benefit of one or more others.”

Why am I praying for the trust of Abraham? Because his story resonates with me tonight like none other. Abraham longed for his son. He was promised him and then…well, then he waited. And waited. And waited. And then, finally, when he was pretty gosh darn old and tired of waiting, his son was born. God always keeps His promises, but I know I’m not alone in thinking that I wish His timing were more like mine. I like things in a now sort of way, if you know what I mean. 

I have waited for four very long years to have Emily call me “Mommy.” I have waited to have her in our home, at our table, as our child. For this summer, we were able to host her and that has been amazing. But in 13 hours, I will once again be saying goodbye to her and trusting God with her. I don’t have a blessed clue how Abraham did it.

I sat in our library tonight, holding her, as she prayed. Tonight, instead of praying in halting English, the words flowed from her in her native tongue. I only caught a tiny portion of what she prayed; our girl poured out her heart tonight for at least ten minutes. Her tears flowed nearly as freely as her words, and all I could do was hold her and cry with her. When it was my turn to pray, words would barely come. I was choking on everything I wanted to say, and then it was as if the Holy Spirit whispered in my heart: “Ask me for the words.” So I did. And then I could speak.

Lord, give me the trust of Abraham. Help me to understand trust as he did. Lord, You are good and your mercies endure forever. Every good and perfect gift is from you. You give and take away. You are faithful. Blessed be Your name. Help me to mean these things in my heart; give my heart the trust of Abraham.

And then I cried. The tears fell like the rain during a hurricane; they came violently and consistently and shook everything. I couldn’t see through them. And then, the whisper. “The trust of Abraham. Trust Me.” 

Abraham trusted completely. He not only trusted that a son was coming (and Isaac did come eventually!), but he trusted God with Isaac’s life wholly. He climbed a mountain with sticks and a knife, preparing for a sacrifice to the I AM, and the only lamb he had with him was his son. He climbed that mountain knowing with each step that soon God was going to take back His promised child, and yet believing in the reliability of God. How on earth did he do it? 

I think that’s the point. There is no earthly way he could have. It had to be supernatural; it had to be the Spirit of God giving him that trust. That’s why I have to pray for it — I don’t already possess it. But just as God gave Abraham the trust, so He will do it for me. And for you. I want to trust God so completely with my children that I acknowledge that He is the true owner of them; I am merely a steward of these tremendous blessings for the short amount of eternity that they spend on this earth with me. 

God didn’t tell Abraham to climb the mountain, ready the sacrifice, and look for a ram in the thicket. He told him to gather Isaac, climb the mountain, and be ready to sacrifice him. God hasn’t seen fit to fully fund our adoption or even have our paperwork approved and travel dates issued before we said goodbye to Emily. Like Abraham, there is potential for more loss in my future. In her future. But I want to trust God like good ‘ol Abe and know that my God is reliable, true, able, and strong. I want to trust God more than I do today. I want to acknowledge God’s ownership of each of my children and relinquish my temporal hold on them because I understand that His grasp on them is eternal. 

Lord, You are good. Blessed be Your name.

 

 

Mommy, I Want…Forever.

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Today I was out with my daughter. The daughter of my heart, and Lord providing, our forever daughter through adoption. We are hosting her this summer, which is a miracle; I shared that story last month. We had gone out so I could mail out our I-600a form, the final U.S. document we need for this adoption process. It was a monumental moment and so I offered her an ice cream or other treat to celebrate.

She looked at me, shook her head no, and smiled.

I asked her, “Well, my precious daughter, what DO you want?”

And she looked at me and said, “Mommy, I want…I want…I want FOREVER.”

Time stood still. Tears fell faster than the rain we were sitting in. And my heart shattered into a million pieces. That seems to be a theme this adoption: pieces. “WHEN is my forever, Mommy? I wait forever already. I want forever with Mommy, with family, in Alabama. WHEN?”

The answer I gave her was, “Iznioo.” (Ukrainian for I don’t know). I don’t know, dear girl. I don’t know when the documents will be processed. I don’t know when they’ll be translated. I don’t know our travel date. I don’t know when we’ll have the money to travel to get you. “But I want forever, too, sweet girl, I do. I promise, it’s soon.”

I love looking in my rear view mirror and seeing her with my whole crew. There will be a giant hole when she flies back to her orphanage in a few weeks. When she goes back to being a child without a family, a child waiting. Please, Lord, don’t let her wait long. We’re coming, we’re coming…

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I will never forget this day. Ever. It has shattered my heart and filled it at the same time. I hate that all that stands between us and forever is a pile of papers (that will be done in just a few weeks) and a chasm of funding. I hate that there is a brokenness in this world that orphans children at all. I love that we serve a God who redeems and who puts the lonely in families. I love that I can offer her hope.

Will you please consider being a part of that hope? That provision? Our donation link in the column on the right of this blog (all the way on the bottom if you’re on a mobile device). If you want to waive the paypal fees, you can email me at graceful.abandon@gmail.com for our account info and save us the 2.9% that is assessed through YouCaring. Check out our facebook group for jewelry that is for sale, inspirational art, giveaways, and more!

Thank you! Thank you for praying, for giving, for offering words of encouragement. Thank YOU for being one of those PIECES we need so desperately to finish this puzzle.

I’m Owning My Health & You’re Invited Along

 

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I’m on a healthy lifestyle journey. The foundation of it all is my “WHY.”  We all need a WHY that is bigger than our WHY BOTHER? My “why” is that God has given my a purpose with my life and I can’t fulfill it unless I am healthy. I need to keep up with the 8+ children God is filling our lives with. I want to be able to laugh, play, run, hike, climb, and grow old with them. I want to be young and full of vitality, even when I’m in my 60s and 70s just like my grandmother was, so that my husband and I can travel and serve and enjoy this beautiful world together.

No one can walk the journey of health for us; we have to do it ourselves. Everyone knows it takes diet and exercise, but sometimes it’s hard to know which diet and what exercise. The list of supplements can get overwhelming. I’m simplifying my journey to the basics of what I know works for me and I’m inviting you to join me in doing the same. No more ten different supplements. I’ve been two years on an eating plan I love, a year and a half with exercise that helps, and now I’m settling one one supplement regimen that is easy. And, of course, I start each day with intention.

To do that, I take time in the morning to meditate on the Word. I believe that time in Scripture and prayer is foundational to every single aspect of life.

To build on that foundation, I focus on my health and healing by ensuring that I am getting the proper nutrition, exercise, and supplements. I’m sharing what I am doing and some links with you. If you purchase from those links, it doesn’t cost you any extra money, but it may bless my family a little bit with some commission or free product. You don’t have to use them if you don’t want to; a google search will bring you to the same sites.

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I think about my nutrition. I want the foods I feed my body to be good fuel, not just good tasting. I stick with whole foods whenever I can, but every now and again I like my bacon, some hot wings, Chinese, etc. But whenever possible, I make those meals a healthy as possible, too. Enter: Trim Healthy Mama. It helps keep my blood sugar in check, helps me manage my weight, is a balanced approach to nutrition, and has been amazing for me. I like a lot of Paleo and Whole 30 recipes, but the principles I live by are THM. It has been helping me heal, I’ve lost 50 pounds so far (I started out with about 130 to lose, so I’m more than 1/3 of the way to my goal!), and my family loves the food I make.

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After that, I think about exercise. I used to be a coach with a popular company and did a few different 90-day workout challenges with them. I never really saw a lot of results. Someone introduced me to T-Tapp and I was really skeptical, but the results were indisputable and I’ve loved it ever since. Not only do I tone and tighten, I am healing from the inside out. Yes, that’s right: my choice of exercise is helping heal my body by balancing hormones, getting my lymphatic system moving, and helping me stay in alignment which helps with body aches, elimination, sleep patterns, and more.

Lastly, I use supplements. I’ve been getting them from a variety of places and building my own regimen based on experience, research, and the guidance of a naturopath. However, even with all of that, I still ended up in the hospital with severe GI distress and issues. Over half of my stomach was covered with ulcers, and they were even blocking a large part of my tract so that food was getting stuck. I was very unhealthy and looked awful, felt horrible, and couldn’t do what I needed to do to get through each day. My hospital stay was only the beginning of a long road to recovery. It turns out that because of all of my issues, my body was starving to death even though I was eating and taking supplements. Why? Leaky gut.

Enter Plexus. After only 3 days of Slim drinks, I didn’t need the acid reducer or PPI to eat or sleep comfortable. WOW. Now I am starting Tri-Plex, which is a combo of three products that contain all of the various things I was taking individually and then some. I can’t wait to see my progress in this. I believe, after 7 months of researching the products and company, that this is going to be the missing piece on my healing journey.plexus

I’ve started a Facebook group for those who want to journey alongside of me. You can do what I’m doing, do your own thing, or sit back and observe. It’s up to you. But I know I love being a part of a tribe. Everyone does better with support and we all know how hard it is to eat well, exercise, and make our health a priority when life keeps us busy. Let’s nurture one another!

Support Adoption with a 2-Night Getaway to Orange Beach!

The most humbling part of adoption is the fundraising. While our family can financially support the addition of more children to it, it is hard to have a ginormous lump sum all at once to go bring them home so that they can be our new additions. That’s why we sell jewelry, do photo sessions, make art, mow lawns, do car washes, sell T-shirts, host spaghetti dinners, and just blatantly toss our donation links out there (see mine, on the right hand column of this blog? Or the very bottom, if you’re on a mobile device?). But it’s hard, often discouraging, and very humbling EVERY.SINGLE.TIME. we do it.  It’s exhausting, but it’s worth it.

From the bottom of my heart, I thank each and every one of you who have prayed for us, said words of encouragement, asked about our children, and supported us financially in this process.  You have been amazing, and I’m completely humbled.  One of my friends once told me… “To whom much is given, much is required.”  I have been given more than I could ever imagine, so I know that I will be required of much in this life. That’s why an opportunity to GIVE BACK makes us *so* happy. An amazing woman has offered us two nights at her stunning beach condo in Orange Beach as a thank you to one lucky person. 

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This absolutely, amazing, relaxing, LOVELY OASIS of a condo is 3BD/3BA on the bay in Orange Beach (a half mile from AL/FL line). It has deeded beach access across the street.  It has an indoor and outdoor pool.  You will also have access to a fishing pier and a small workout facility with dry sauna and steam room. 

Additional Notes:  Availability begins in May.  Cleaning fee is typically $150.  However, if you prefer to clean up after yourself, the owner has agreed to that.   The value of this getaway is $600!!!

HOW TO BE THE LUCKY ONE:

All donations made to our adoption fund through 11:59 p.m. EST on August 7, 2015 will be entered to win this 2 night stay at the beach!  Every $10 donation will be 1 entry!!   $20 will be 2 entries, $30 will be 3 entries, and so on.  There is NO LIMIT to how many entries you can get, woot woot!  You can book as early as August, if you want, as long as there are no reservations on the dates you request. When you win, I’ll email you the contact info to handle that.  As each donation arrives, it will be added to a spreadsheet with the appropriate number of entries and I’ll use a random generator to pick the winning number.

To make a donation to our adoption fund, send your contribution via paypal to lisaytucker@gmail.com as a gift to friends/family so that there are no processing fees involved. If you would rather send a check, please email me at that same address to request our mailing address.

 
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Fine Print: Must have at least 100 entries to draw. If 100 entries are not received by draw date, giveaway deadline will be extended.  Can only be redeemed on dates not already reserved.