Our local newspaper, the Journal and Courier did a story today on family court in our county. http://www.jconline.com/article/20111211/COLUMNISTS30/112110316/Inside-family-court-Drama-tears-sadly-typical-day?odyssey=mod|mostview Previous to this article, I thought I knew what goes on in family court. After all, there are 2 children sleeping in our bedrooms that are a product of what goes on there and I continue to be amazed at the depth of the damage done to them. Still, I am stunned. And sad. And sick. And mad. Really, really mad! Now, I could blast the parents, sometimes generations of parents, who have used and abused their own children. But, I refuse to do that because I know from a former job that we have no idea what is behind it all. I can't change them or their circumstances. What I do know is that there are many children in our country - in our state (11,257!!)- in our county and yes, in our towns that no one wants because they come from these very hard places that this article refers to. They are wounded and broken and messed up. What hope do they have? None.....except in Jesus Christ. And who is going to tell them about the love of a heavenly Father when no one even wants them? Anyone who claims the name of Christ should be praying about how they can be part of the solution. Should everyone run out and adopt a foster child? No. It's hard. It's very hard. Dr. Russell Moore puts it way better than I can in this post, titled "Don't Adopt!": http://www.russellmoore.com/2011/10/12/dont-adopt/ . One quote from the article says, "We need a battalion of Christians ready to adopt, foster, and minister to orphans. But that means we need Christians ready to care for real orphans, with all the brokenness and risk that comes with it. We need Christians who can reflect the adopting power of the gospel, which didn’t seek out a boutique nursery but a household of ex-orphans who were found wallowing in our own blood, with Satan’s genes in our bloodstreams."
Tom and I are reminded daily....no hourly that we have Satan's genes in our bloodstream which makes us all the more humble and so very grateful for the power of the gospel and our adoption in Christ.
And while I'm ranting, I would like to go ahead and say that I believe those of us who are a tad older than the typical parents of young children are in possibly the best position to consider adopting kids "from hard places." But that will have to wait for another post since this one is so long. The above jc article gives ways that you can get involved and help, even without fostering or adopting and I would beg you to begin asking God earnestly how He would have you help!!!
Jeremy and Lucas discovered that there was even more family that they hadn't met yet when we had Thanksgiving dinner last Saturday at my aunt's house. They were hesitant at first but soon found the toys and the X box and a bunch of kids to play with and were very sad when it was time to leave.
After looking at the extended forecast, we decided to take advantage of what could possibly be the last nice day before winter sets in and go exploring. The creek behind our house winds through nearby fields and woods and thankfully, there are paths through most of it that the golf cart can manage. We found an awesome, old stone bridge and lots of hedge apples. It must have been a good year for the osage orange fruit.
And, before the snow starts falling, I just had to post some pictures of the beautiful fall we had around here. I am so blessed to see these gorgeous views from every window of our house and always think I can capture them with my camera, but it's just not possible.....at least not for me!
Jeremy and Lucas had Grandparents Day at their school on Nov. 11 and were blessed to have both sets of grandparents attend the program, visit their rooms and meet their teachers. Mom-mom and Dad-dad traveled from KY for the weekend (and won the award for the grandparents who traveled the farthest) and Mimi and Pa came from Danville for the day. We are so very thankful for God's gift of family and especially, ours!!! Even though their first batch of grandkids is much older, our parents are so willing to do it all again for Ian and Jeremy and Lucas and don't even mind that they frequently mix their names up. Thank you, Mom-mom and Dad-dad and Mimi and Pa! We love you!
We still had one day of fall break left after the wedding trip so we spent most of the day at the social security office getting the paperwork done to change the boys' cards. Not fun. However, we ended up with enough time to go to Target to spend some gift cards that were burning holes in their pockets and then, out for pizza and one game of bowling. Jeremy and Lucas don't think they've ever bowled but they did a pretty good job and of course, Ian always loves a chance to bowl!
Lucas is a fierce competitor!
Jeremy is a leftie and learned quickly
Looks like a pro!
Ian actually won the game.....of course he has a little advantage. :-)
The last weekend in October was the boys' fall break and also happened to be our niece's wedding in Nashville, TN. Tom took time off too and we headed south, got a hotel with a pool and had a little getaway with all the kids. Of course, I didn't get any pictures except for these in the pool, but we had a great time, got to see lots of family and loved being part of Kathryn and Cliff's special day. (I wish I had pictures of Lucas and Ian dancing!)
Last weekend, these crazy grandparents, along with the other set of crazy grandparents headed to Memphis for Olivia's (or rather, Troy and Lindsay's) family dedication at their church. We are so thankful we could be part of this very meaningful event. The church hosted a brunch on Saturday and their pastor talked about all of us, but espeically the parents committing to raise their children to know the Christ of the Gospel. He spoke of grounding them in truth and grace. The theme was "7000 Days to Make a Difference." Most of us have our children in our homes for about 7000 days. What are we going to do with those days? Troy and Lindsay shared goals that they have for their marriage as well as goals for Olivia and then the grandparents were asked to surround the family and pray for them. What a blessing to have that priviledge!! Tom and I can't even express how thankful we are that our grandaughters have parents who love the Lord and are seeking to raise their children to do the same.
And, I would certainly be remiss if I didn't mention that the only way we could have made this trip is because Drew, Elizabeth and Brenna stayed with the younger boys and kept things running smoothly on the home front. We are so very thankful!!!
Lindsay, Olivia and Troy
Grandpa and Grandma Ro, O, Grammy, Pops
Daddy and O
Hanging out in her rocking chair
Giving her baby a wild ride!
Welcome to my party (Troy and Lindsay had some of their awesome neighbors over for lunch on Sunday)
Playing peekaboo with Daddy
Olivia's good friend, Caroline, and her mommy
And, because it's either "feast or famine" around here, I did 6 posts all at once (which has taken 3 days!) So, you can keep reading if you are so inclined.
Lucas was a little under the weather yesterday and stayed home from school. (Poor guy couldn't be far from a bathroom.) This was one of his projects. It was his idea but I got to help come up with attributes of God and also help him spell them. Sweet opportunity to discuss our awesome God!