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147 Million Orphans


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Thursday, February 25, 2010

Normal, illinois

I vowed that I was not going to post this pic. I mean, who in the world wants to stand near these two BEAUTIES?!? Lisa Kindred volunteered her sweet daughters to run the 147 booth. Who wouldn't buy from these girls? absolutely beautiful inside and out!
Scott telling the masses....."God funds what He favors"

This is the AWESOME group of women that worked their fingers to the bone to make this day happen. We saw many tears and visible hearts moved....which makes all of the work worthwhile.

Last weekend, Gwen and Scott, and Mike and I drove to Normal, Illinois for an adoption conference. We had the most fabulous time. It took us about 6 hours to get there. It was the perfect time to look back over the past six months with 147 Million Orphans and think about what the next six months MIGHT hold. It was so nice for us to have time away and be able to talk without interruptions from little people. Gwen and I are together all of the time, so it was so good for Mike and Scott to be together just to confirm to each other that their wives REALLY HAVE lost their minds! We talked, LAUGHED, ate chocolate, hot tamales, and laughed some more.
Gwen and I opened up the conference with a challenge to everyone to find their individual place in the orphan crisis. We told our adoption stories and encouraged everyone to walk the road that Christ has laid before them in caring for orphans. They had some great break-out sessions and we finished it off with a panel. Mike and Scott joined us on stage and answered many questions that most men have about adoption. It was so neat for Gwen and I to see our sweethearts take a BOLD stand for the little angels that we work so diligently for daily....the least of these. It was truly a blessing!
I had the chance to share Josie Love's story and explain that in the case of an HIV+ child , literally to be "chosen" means to live and to choose to be their parents means that we have "chosen" an amazing and miraculous life for ourselves. My experience with Josie Love has changed my perspective. My heart feels an URGENCY now that I did not feel before. Before, there was a need for every child to have someone to call "Mommy" or "Daddy". For HIV+ children it is a life or DEATH situation. If they are not adopted, they will DIE. We had an abundance of questions regarding the "practical" day to day care of a child with HIV. It was really encouraging.
So, we are packed up again. Gwen and I are headed to Louisville bright and early in the morning. This time, we are leaving our husbands to hold down the fort. Yes, My husband will be keeping all 7 of my children...and YES! HE IS SUPER DAD!!! (and super husband!) We will not be speaking this time, just selling gear. I absolutely LOVE what we do. We feel the Lord's presence consistently. He gives us the warm fuzzies the whole time that we are explaining to people what each purchase is doing. From Haiti to Uganda to Project Hopeful, we have a LOT of orphans to care for. It gives my heart such a significant purpose. Pray for safe travels and that our armor will stand strong against the enemy.


britt said...

Hi!this is the first time i've ever posted on someone's blog that i dont know...i found yours through katie's, whos i found through leslie ludy's website. anyways, i just want you to know how much of an encouragement you guys are to me. i spent 4 months working in an orphanage last year in nigeria and i am going back in june for 6 months, praying for God to let me know if i am to start making plans to be there permanently.
i am overjoyed to see your hearts and to know there are many other believers out there that aren't satisfied with mediocrity or storing up earthly treasures. thank you for being a beautiful example of what God can do with a person that takes Him at his Word.
also, what other cities will you be in? do churches just ask you guys to come, or how does that work?
a sister in Christ,
brittni (from wichita, ks)

Kim said...

Standing in awe and covering you girls in prayer!
Great photos of Kingdom Business in action!
Love & Blessings from Hong Kong,

emily said...

Ethel would love to join Thelma and Louise on one of these road trips!!

Love you.

Molly said...

I'm so sad I wasn't there for the conference! My house is right down the street from church but I was on a college visit! :( My mom was able to attend and thoroughly enjoyed every part of it and I have spoken to MANY in our church who were SO BLESSED by you guys being there. I think I will have the joy of seeing some new little ones from around the world running around our church here in the next couple of years thanks to this conference. God used you and He will continue to use both of you for HIS glory for HIS children.
Thank you for being such an encouragement and faithfully serving our Father!
In Christ,

A Simple Country Girl said...

You all bless so many by sharing how God can and does use ordinary folks for "the least of these." It is my family's sheer joy to sponsor an Amazima child. We pray so much for her and her mamma. Thank you for being a part of that wondrous gift. Lots of love and hugs to you!

May God shower love on everything that you do this day in His name!


RaVae Erickson said...

Dear Suzanne,

It is so GOOD to see someone who is so fully walking the path God has laid out for them. Many blessings to you!


Anonymous said...

I am so glad you and Mike are on this incredible journey together. Your Aunt Brenda is so humbled by the two of you following Gods/ calling. Never stop telling your story. I just wish I was closer to help with those babies. Pray hard maybe next year :)

Are These Kids All Yours? said...

LOVE that you can share with others in this way. Praying for people's hearts to be changed, opened, and shared for Christ!

Jodi Widhalm said...

You go, Girls! So excited for you and the 147 crew! We are gathering a group of CRAZY adoptive families here in Springfield, MO - headed into Sierra Leone, West Africa. There is no adoption law there at this time, so we are pulling together for the hundreds of thousands of oprhans there who are stranded with no way out. Praying that God will move mountains and government officials in the coming months! What a crazy road....but feel so blessed to be on it! So glad 147 is growing and changing lives in the process!

Heather said...

So wanted to join you in Normal, but Zoe was sick. Sounds like many hearts were stirred. Praying for safe travels for you & Gwen. Will be waiting patiently for stories about how your journeys & kiddos have touched someone else to consider an adoption journey of his/her own.

Abbie Whitehurst said...

praying for ya'll! and yes...Uncle Mike IS SUPER DAD AND HUSBAND AND..might I add... SUPER UNCLE :)



Whitney said...

So I've never posted on your page before, but have been reading about you all for a long time now. I have one of the way cool 147 Million baseball tees, that I absolutely love and wear all the time!! I bought another one for one of my good friends, and I know she wears her's all the time too. She told me last night that she was in Target the other day and had it on. Some lady came over to her and couldn't stop talking about you guys and 147 Million and how excited she was to see that shirt here in Indiana. So just wanted you to know that we're representing and spreading the word here in Carmel, Indiana!! Also in the third picture, the bag that is hanging up right behind you. Do you guys sell those...I would so love one, but didn't see one on the website.

David and Marianne said...

LOVED having you guys here... the Lord moved so powerfully! I told my Bible study ladies the other night, if they haven't been somewhere lately that they could almost physically feel the Spirit's presence they needed to be at Christ Church that Saturday morning : ) Thank you so much for being part of waking up the community of Bloomington/Normal for the sake of the gospel, for the sake of the orphan! And thank you for reviving me in my passion of orphan ministry to keep pressing on and never give up no matter how many walls are put before me! My husband and I really enjoyed getting to know you and Mike. Praying for you and all your sweet ones! The joy of the Lord is your strength, sister!!(I'll remember that with you the next time we've got little ones crawling over us in the middle of the floor,lol)

Lisa said...


What an incredible blessing it was for all of us here in Bloomington/Normal to meet you and to be challenged . I have heard such powerful feedback about you and Gwen sharing and from the amazing "men" in your life that were so candid about the orphans. Go Husbands!!

Again, thanks from the bottom of our hearts for taking the time out of your full lives to share your hearts. We are your faithful GUARDS praying for you and Gwen and your precious families!!!!

Blessings to you all!! Love, LIsa

Polly said...

We love you girls and are spreading the rockin' 147 shirts throughout the East TN mountain area, God bless you!

Anonymous said...

Thank you so much for coming to Illinois! I was at the conference and really enjoyed hearing you guys speak, it was so encouraging!


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I am a lover of Jesus. I have the most fabulous husband that anyone woman could ask for. The Lord has blessed us with 7 beautiful children. I started this blog so that friends and family could follow our trip to Uganda to visit Katie Davis. I have decided to keep blogging to help bring orphan awareness to the world around me.
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