Saturday, March 5, 2011

We're home....but have a Peaches-sized hole in our family

We're back home after our first trip and are trying to remember what normal life is.  Following a whirlwind trip to Ethiopia and back, battling jet-lag twice, fighting colds, fevers, and other stuff, we feel like we've been hit by a truck - a big truck, a big truck that races at harrowing speeds through Ethiopian traffic.

We are so thankful to be back home with our five oldest kids, but there's a hollowness because our newest, youngest kiddo is still half a world away.  We know that she is in one of the best run facilities - they provide much love, laughter, food, fun, etc. - but they cannot provide the one thing that she really needs....a family.  We miss her already, but we know that she will be home soon.

Reflecting back over the last couple of weeks, I'm thankful for God's sustaining power in our lives when we're weak.  I'm thankful that He's with us and that He holds us when we're tired.  I'm reminded that He is always in control.  I was reminded specifically of this as we began our first flight across the Atlantic.  I was reading in Matthew and I came across the verse that says that not even a sparrow falls to the ground apart from the Father (Matt 10:29).  It was good to see that sparrows (and really big Ethiopian Air jets) stay flying by the Father's sustaining hand.

I was encouraged by the timing of meeting a man who grew up in the Anuak tribe in Gambella, Ethiopia on the shuttle from the hotel in DC to the airport.  Did I mention that Peaches is from the Anuak tribe in Gambella, Ethiopia?  I was encouraged by the number of American couples we met before boarding our Ethiopian Air flight who we traveling to Ethiopia for adoption purposes.  I was encouraged by the young couple with their 18 month old girl who were traveling to Rwanda to see friends and to see if God was leading them there to be missionaries.  It was clear that God was with us and was leading us.

There is so much to write, and I hope to continue to summarize and meditate on what God has taught us.  We know He has great purpose in all that He does.  We just need to stop and have a Selah moment to reflect on His message for our lives.  What is He saying to you today?

For now we miss our little girl, but our hopeful to return to her soon.  Based on other families' timelines, we expect to be back to her to bring her home around April 1.  But in international adoption, anything can (and will) happen.

A few pictures of our trip......with more to come.

 Thanks Tanya for your mad, packing skillz!

 At the Omaha airport, all luggage was checked for free!  Thanks Delta!

 My new Gambellan friend, Purro

 The Ethiopian flag in the DC airport

 The snacks on the plane?  Ethiopian Jet crackers.  Fortunately, we avoided any bad visual images and all of them were intact.

 What does a 13 hour flight do to an otherwise young and good-looking couple?

 At Bole International Airport in Addis.  We're here!

 Our Hotel Shuttle.  And you thought flying was scary.....wait until you hit the streets of Addis!

 Coca-Cola in any language is a good thing....especially when you can't drink the water.

Matthew 10:29-31
29 Are not two sparrows sold for a penny?  And not one of them will fall to the ground apart from your Father. 30 But even the hairs of your head are all numbered. 31 Fear not, therefore; you are of more value than many sparrows.


  1. Praying for a quick embassy date for you! So great to see pictures of you in Ethiopia!!!! Can't wait to read more of your trip's experience... Makes me feel like I'm back there
    Blessings as you prepare for trip #2 and to bring your little girl HOME!

  2. AH!!!!!!!!!!!!!
    YOU GUYS ARE HOME!!!!!!!!!!!(well you probably knew that!)
    I am so happy that you guys are home and praise the Lord you made it home!!

  3. love reading about your trip and seeing pix. i know you ache for your peaches and pray you will be able to return for her soon!

  4. we're so glad you guys are home safe! I know how much you miss Peaches. :( In a couple more months she'll be soooo happy to have a wonderful family! :)

  5. Reading about your trip brought tears to my eyes. Love seeing the pictures. Praying for that embassy appointment to be ASAP so Peaches can come home.