The Five of Us, Spring 2014

The Five of Us, Spring 2014

The Parable in Me

I have been rereading a book I first encountered in college (we won't count how many years between then and now!) and I can't devour it fast enough, but I have the nagging need to slow down and read it prayerfully and let it really sink in and change me. The book is The Return of the Prodigal Son by Henri J. M. Nouwen. Before you go thinking "I've heard probably a sermon a year on this tired old story," let me tell you I feel like it's turning me inside out!

The quote I've been mulling all night is, "I am beginning now to see how radically the character of my spiritual journey will change when I no longer think of God as hiding out and making it as difficult as possible for me to find him, but, instead, as the one who is looking for me while I am doing the hiding." This comes in the midst of his comments about the father in the story. He's talking about the fact that this story is only part of Jesus' answer to the Pharisees' question about how he could enjoy eating with tax-collectors and sinners. The other two parables that serve as Jesus' answer (the lost sheep and the lost coin) also serve to illustrate the Father's character--it is HE who seeks. While both the younger and elder sons in the Prodigal story must come home (the one from wild living and the other from duty), it is the father who seeks them, who runs to greet them, who begs them to enter his joy. It's the father who is like the shepherd going out to seek his precious lost sheep. It's the father's character that is illuminated when the woman lights every lamp and sweeps every corner for her coin. It's the younger son, the elder son, the sheep, the coin that is lost, that is hiding, that is me.

I could go on and on and probably write a book about this book! It's like Nouwen's introspection is a mirror for my own self-reflection. I keep cheering and cowering alternately as I find myself spelled out on the pages, again and again (and it's not always flattering). Thus, the need to slow down and let the Light shine in and bring up areas to be confessed and repented and changed brought into right-ness. So, I'm going to go ahead and devour the rest (there's not much left now anyway) and then I'll go back and re-read it slowly, prayerfully, devotionally, painfully, joyfully. And, I'll probably let you in on some of the journey as I go.


My Man and Me

My Man and Me
married 7/7/2001


ours through biology, born 7/25/2004, home 8/1/2004


ours through adoption from Liberia, West Africa, born 7/15/2005, home 10/25/2007


ours through domestic adoption, born 1/15/2011, home 2/10/2011, final 8/3/2011

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Round Two Timeline

  • 9/24/08 Home study update home visit for Ghana adoption
  • 10/15/08 Dossier sent to AOHG
  • 10/15/08 I600A application sent to USCIS
  • 10/30/08 First heard about possible domestic private adoption
  • 11/18/08 Last spoke with contact about possible domestic adoption; expected to hear back about meeting with birthmother
  • 12/3/08 Withdrew application from AOHG
  • 1/6/09 Found out another family had been chosen for possible domestic adoption
  • 1/21/09 USCIS fingerprinting appointment
  • 1/8/09 Received USCIS fingerprinting appointment notice
  • 4/11/09 Sent Pre-Application to Covenant Care Adoptions for Domestic Infant Adoption program
  • 6/8/09 Social worker visit to update home study from International to Domestic
  • 7/24/09 Received completed home study update
  • 8/25/09 Went "on the list" for birthfamilies to choose from
  • 4/28/10 Found out a birth mom had chosen us
  • 5/8/10 Met the birth mom
  • 5/11/10 Got the call that birth mom changed her mind
  • 5/19/10 Birth mom's scheduled c-section
  • 11/30/10 Visit from DSS sw about foster parenting
  • 11/30/10 Got the call that another birth mom had chosen us
  • 12/21/10 Met with the birth mom
  • 1/15/11 @1:42 PM BB was born!
  • 1/19/11 ICPC (interstate) paperwork sent to GA for approval
  • 1/31/11 ICPC Clearance Approved
  • 2/10/11 Placement Ceremony and Pup comes home!!!!
  • 8/3/11 It's Official! Pup's Adoption Decree was issued