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Saturday, April 28, 2012

RUN.BUILD. GO.

Yesterday my heart beat to a different THUMP.  Our elementary school ROCKED the house!  their miles combined, they ran past Africa all the way to Australia!!  We built SIXTEEN houses for the families in Mt. Olivos ( the fundraising for these homes is now complete!!) and we raised over $40,000!!!!  I AM SO EXCITED!!!
 Rhonda Wicks (hearts2honduras), Jan Eberle(147 million orphans: lifesaver for Gwen and I :) and myself...anxiously awaiting the results
 the grades wore different colors...they looked like a pack of M&M's :)

I can ALWAYS count on these two girls to be an extra set of hands!!!


                                          Annabelle is a blur because she is so fast!
 Eden Hannah Doyle just flew home from Uganda on Tuesday, was So excited to cheer on her brothers and sisters!
 MillerAnne




i got the pleasure of holding Rhonda's grand baby for a few minutes...precious!
Sunday, April 22, 2012

drumroll.....


this week holds so much excitement on the 147 Million Orphans front!!  
we now have our non-profit status in our foundation!  you can now give funds and get a tax deduction!!   go to 147millionorphans.org.  we CANNOT wait for money to come in, so we can give it all away!! we have so many great ministries that we know the people personally, and are so excited about helping them.
when i returned from Honduras i was VERY outspoken about my desire to help build homes in mt. olivos.  those people grabbed a big piece of my heart.  i have a sweet friend named karen logan that is a huge support  of 147 and my family. She has children that attend the same school that mine do. (deep down i think my kids and i are comic relief for her)  One thing that I LOVE about her, is she ACTS.  If she sees a need, she is ON IT! After reading my blog about our Honduras trip,  Karen decided to take mt olivos before our elementary school as a fundraiser.  she had a plan that we could incorporate exercise with raising money! (what a novel thought)  she set up:  "run. build. go."  we launched it with a chapel.  I shared about my time in Honduras and encouraged everybody to help the children of mt olivos. we explained that they could RUN, we would BUILD, and then they can actually GO visit and see the houses !  (and maybe help build a few)  every child was given a necklace.  every mile that they ran, they received a little colored foot to hang on the necklace.  they could run at recess, PE, or at home.  their goal was 26.2 miles.  Most everyone ran at least that amount.  They asked for donations per mile.  the money is flowing in!  She has worked tirelessly to make this thing happen, and i TRULY believe she will see the fruits of her labor at the end of this week.  Our last day is Friday...I am SO excited to see how many houses our elementary school will build.  MillerAnne has run 38 miles!!
I have a theory.. look around at the people around you... what are they doing with their time... and MONEY?   where those two things are... so is their hearts.  you can't be like God and not be a giver.  "give and it will be given unto you.  be a CHEERFUL giver.   it TRULY is more blessed to give than receive."


stay tuned...I will let you know how much we raise!!!  we can build a house for $2500!




Wednesday, April 18, 2012

a "persuasive speech " by Grace Mayernick

this is the outline for Graces speech that she had to do for school this week.  I thought it would be beneficial for you all to hear the facts also....i wish i could add the powerpoint...it is amazing!!

Grace Mayernick
17 April 2012
Thomas Speech F
Persuasion Speech
Abortion
I.               (Slide 1) Intro
a.     (Slide 2) There are 1,172 students currently enrolled in CPA. Multiply that by ten and then add about 4 thousand. That’s how many babies will be aborted just today.
b.     And that’s just today. Each year, 42 million babies are aborted worldwide.
c.     The topic of abortion has been widely discussed for years, causing a lot of controversy. Some believe that it’s murder, while others say it’s the woman’s decision to do as she pleases.
d.     But if you look at the moral values of America as a whole, there’s a pattern that murder is always wrong. So why is aborting unborn fetuses so debated?
e.     Today, I’m going to tell you why, and explain to you all what both pro-life and pro-abortionists believe, but leave it up to each of you to discern what is right.
II.             Arguments
a.     (Slide 3) One pro-abortion argument is that mother’s deserve to choose whether or not they give birth to their child, especially if it has a birth defect or could be an inconvenience.
                                               i.     93% of all abortions occur for social reasons like these.
                                             ii.     But if a child is born with Down syndrome, it’s not like they did anything to be born that way, so why should they be punished for the way God made them? Former president of Planned Parenthood, Mary Calderone, now says that “Abortion is the taking of the life.”
                                            iii.     Some of the most joyful kids I know have Down syndrome, and the thought of killing them without giving them a chance to live, just because of their special needs, is heartbreaking.
b.     Many people would also argue that a woman shouldn’t be expected to deliver a child that she was impregnated with because of rape.
                                               i.     The Abortion Controvery website gives an example of pro-lifers rebuttal by saying that “…two wrongs [don’t] make a right[.] Rape is a crime, so is abortion.  One in the legal sense, the other in the spiritual sense…a preborn child [shouldn’t] reap the punishment for the crime against the mother[.]”
                                             ii.     Even vice presidential candidate for the 2008 election, Sarah palin says “[she’ll] do all [she] can to see every baby is created with a future and potential,” and believes that “The legislature should do all it can to protect human life.”
c.     These are only 2 out of many, many arguments that coincide with the topic of abortion. But I have an example that should give you all a clear portrayal to help understand what abortion really is.
III.           15 year old
a.      (Slide 4) A couple of days ago, my mom got a call about a 15 year old that is pregnant. She went to an abortion clinic because her mom was encouraging that path, but they couldn’t perform the abortion due to some paperwork that she didn’t have…so my mom and a few of our friends sent her a broad range of profiles of adoptive families to show her that there are so many families that would love to adopt her baby. But she has refused to look at them and is going to Atlanta today to have the abortion performed anyways… she is 21 weeks pregnant (this is what a baby looks like at 21 weeks) which is almost 6 months and 2/3 of the way through the pregnancy, so the doctors will literally chop the baby up and pull it out limb by limb. Sorry to be graphic but that’s just the reality of what happens.
IV.           Tim Tebow
a.     One thing that pregnant families often don’t think about because they just want to get rid of the baby as quickly and painlessly as possible is that you never know who the child you are carrying would turn out to be.
b.     (Slide 5) Tim Tebow’s mother, Pam, calls Tim a part of her “God story”. The doctors told her to abort Tim in order to save her own life.
c.     However, Pam knew that this wasn’t right and refused to kill Tim before he was born.
d.     Now called a duel-threat quarterback 24 years later, he has won 2 college championships, a Heisman trophy, and plays for the New York Jets.
e.     Now think about if his mother had chosen to abort him, none of this would have ever happened.
f.      Tebow is one of the most popular Christian icons in America. An amazing role model, millions of fans of all ages respect and look up to him.
V.             Joshua, Caleb, and Josie
a.     My second and last example is one that is close to my heart.
b.     (Slide 6) I have three adopted siblings, ages 6, 6, and 4.
c.     Obviously we don’t know a whole lot about Josie’s birthmother, but we do know that Joshua’s and Caleb’s birth moms were young.
d.     As it is for most teen pregnancies, abortion was an encouraged option for both of their biological mothers.
e.     But, I can’t imagine if they had chosen to go through with it instead of putting them up for adoption.
f.      Our family wouldn’t be complete without Joshua’s giggle echoing in our house, Caleb’s playful but aggressive yelling wanting to wrestle, and getting tackled by Josie Love as you walk in the door.
g.     This is what makes this topic so important to me and I hope you all see why.
VI.           Conclusion
a.     In conclusion, there are two sides to every argument. But, when I think about the times I’ve held a sweet little baby in the hospital right after it’s been born, the fact that people try to classify it as a clump of tissue as it’s growing in the womb breaks my heart. Some people think abortion is acceptable because it is their right to determine if their child lives, or they base it off of convenience. But the Bible says in Psalm 139:13-14, “For you created my inmost being; you knit me together in my mother's womb. I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful, I know that full well.” God created man, and we are supposed to be responsible for the lives he put here on earth. Thank you for listening.








Thursday, April 5, 2012

He is Risen


I've been feeling the urge to blog but have been "empty headed" on what to write. When I think about the Easter season, I am in total awe of what Christ did for me. lil' ole' me. He hung on a cross full of splinters, thorns in his flesh, and was beaten LITERALLY to death.

All of the information that is being brought to light about child slavery/children soldiers/sex trafficking is waking us up. It is showing the hate that people really have in their hearts around the world. If we REALLY open our eyes and hearts to these situations we should be broken and LONG to help. I cant help but think about the day that Christ hung on the cross. What if I had been standing in the crowd? Would I have been fighting to get to him? Would I have been crying so hard that I was paralyzed? Would I have fought to my death to help him? Or would I just stand in shock?

I like to think that I would have fought to my death. I often wonder why the disciples didn't compile a group of men and fight on Christ's behalf. i know that He told them that it was going to come to pass, but come on!! help a brother out! ( I have so many questions to ask when i sit at HIS feet one day...)

So, what do we do with the things that we KNOW about? All of the "wrongdoings" that are being done to children around the world?

rewind a few months ago... Gwen and I received a Facebook message that asked us if we would do a "FREE 1" tee. Our friend explained her situation to us and we said "YEEEES" we will do a "FREE 1" tee!

Get a load of this story: A young lady (25 years old) lives in Haiti. Megan Boudreaux is her name... (and she is AWESOME! ) She started a ministry named RESPIRE HAITI. (pronounced re/spe/rae)

-Respire Haiti was founded in December of 2010. Megan moved there in January 2011 by herself and met Michaelle (who's now her 8 year old) and started learning about Restaveks (child saves) later, she added another little girl to her family:)



-In January of 2010 she started 1 feeding program (with 70 children, now it's 2 programs, 700 children).

-Also started school in 1 room building 97 kids.
-Then she started learning more about restaveks. Realized that 80% of her 97 students were restaveks. Did some therapy with them (from American psychologists who came in) to figure out how to best help them.
-School started growing and in October- 356 children...same statistic (80% restavek). Now she's doing more in depth and PROactive dealing with the community regarding the situation of restavek.
-She has begun and will further grow her educational programs in Haiti and for the community and her school. Additionally she is desiring to start a "safehouse" for children that need to be immediately removed from the situation.

After Megan messaged Gwen and I, we went to "check her out"...look at her pics, aka "stalk her" and look who I found in her pics...in the pink to the right of Megan!!!
YEP! you got it!! Josie LOVE! and look to the left of Megan (two children to the left in the dress with the white lace around the collar) it's DAISY!!
NOW HOW IS THAT FOR GOD CONNECTING THE DOTS?!?! She knew and loved our children LONG before we did...Megan actually started in Uganda and ended in Haiti.

As I reflect back to the day of the crucifixion, I was NOT there and now I cannot do anything to help. But, one day I will stand before HIM and my heart aches for him to look at me and claim me as HIS own. I ache to hear the words "well done my good and faithful servant."
My daily prayer is "make my heart yearn for what yours years for. make my heart break for what yours breaks for. help me to LOVE the way that YOU love."
I look around at all of the "20somethings" who are giving their life away. They are yearning, and are broken, and are LOVING like no other.

The stone rolled away, and HE WAS ALIVE! What a MIGHTY God I serve!
Well, I am alive today and I WILL do my part to help Megan in all that she is doing in Haiti....you can help too...
come and see our "FREE 1" tee...

Restavek Unisex Tee

We have earrings coming...made from broken bottles. Megan has a group of people that she is helping to be self sustainable. they are making these beautiful earrings for us.....cannot wait for you to see them:)

Happy Easter! HE IS RISEN!






Monday, April 2, 2012

whew!


I am such a LOSER when it comes to posting frequently. I feel as though I could give you a list as long as my arm to explain WHY I do not have time....but I want to go to bed. I cannot wait to feel my pillow on my cheek. BUT, I have to share what my past few weeks have held.

I am renovating my kitchen. I think of that Dr. Seuss book where the children kept feeding the fish and it grew and grew and grew and grew. It went from a fish bowl to a swimming pool and so on....that was my family...we just keep growing and growing and growing. Not only do WE keep growing, but so do Grace's big ole' basketball playing guy friends! Their heads bump the light fixtures, their limbs stretch from one end of the room to the other..CRAZY BUSINESS. And I really desire for my home to be "THAT house" where everyone gathers and feels comfortable. And honestly, my life now is just a preview of what the future holds for my family in the next few years with Michael, Joshua, and Caleb's buddies.

I am always baking/freezing/storing meals for Michael that are gluten-free, so an extra big freezer is making me SMILE!

So, the past two weeks have been CRAZY with no kitchen. first of all, WHO KNEW I had so much CRAP in my kitchen cabinets? 12 years of storing stuff....completely over the top. SO, I purged! we have been eating out of two different rooms for breakfast and lunch and eating out every night. NOW, to some, that sounds fabulous. For me? Taking Caleb (wild man) and Josie Love (miss little social butterfly that has to stop/speak/hug every stranger she meets) out at the bewitching hours every day has been EXHAUSTING, not to mention EXPENSIVE.

I AM NOT COMPLAINING, (just venting a little haha) because my new kitchen is more that i could have ever imagined, and I haven't even gotten to the main reason that I decided to blog tonight...

I have had the opportunity EVERY SINGLE DAY to share Christ. I have had every type of "tradesman" come through my front door: plumbers, electricians, painters, cabinet makers, appliance deliverers, contractors, hard wood guys, tile layers ( I know all of these descriptions are not correct, but you get the picture) NOT ONE that walked through my front door, by the time they walked OUT, hadn't asked questions about my family. The first few days were comical. i could just see their eyes spinning, as my kids run through the door after school. Our contractor has two children and he has made multiple comments about our "army of a family." (however, he DID tell me that my "dinnertime" was a "well oiled machine!" and he was "in awe" haha) Not to mention, our dog, Bentley, attacking the plumbers as their legs hang out while their heads have disappeared underneath the sink! Each day that has passed, their eyes have grown warmer and warmer. The questions began, one by one, and I have shared HIS love and heart for the least of these time and time again. JUST by me and my family living life.

breakfast. lunch. homework. ball practices. piano. dinner. bath time. bed.

strangers. wondering. thinking. asking. learning.

ADOPTION: the simplest way to show (not speak) Christ's LOVE. SO thankful.


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suzanne
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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