Sunday, January 31, 2010

Only God ...

Today was full of God’s grace and mercy…only God can orchestrate something as perfect as this…only God! This morning Dave, Erica and her group met us at Levi’s and Jessie’s house at about 10am. Abdisa came shortly after and we all headed to church to meet our kids and for Bryan to preach. Jessie joined us, and God’s timing was just perfect. We drove out to the poorest part of town, sort of remote, with only dirt roads. We passed mud huts, and shacks. Poverty was abundant, including the witch doctors house. Abdisa took the time to show us how people lived and explained that there was no running water or electricity. The children around the neighborhood looked hungry and thirsty. The church was just off the road and was a make shift building with a play ground and a sanctuary made from big sticks and tarps. When we pulled into the compound all the children from the orphanage were standing in a group chanting “Welcome, Welcome, Welcome,” and clapping their hands. Immediately we could see Meskerem, Eyob and Samuel in the mix of children holding flowers to give to us. We walked up and they came forward, scared and with BIG smiles on their faces and greeted us with hugs and flowers. Eyob was so excited to see Cadenn and Coral. He gave us all big hugs and told us we were welcomed. All of us were SO nervous, and there was not a dry eye among us. My hands were shaking as I greeted my daughter and my sons…ONLY God could put this together. What follows is amazing. We all walked into the church and they sat us up front of everyone, our whole group. Abdisa announced, “Halleluiah! God is good today is a good day. Meskerem, Eyob, and Samuel have parents today that have come for them. Welcome Bryan and Andrea! God bless you all.” The worship team was singing native songs and everyone was clapping their hands in joyful celebration of God’s love. After the worship team sang, Abdisa had us all introduce ourselves. When it was our turn, all of us got up and Bryan introduced his new family…ONLY God! Abdisa asked us to sing some songs and some of us took turns leading them in worship. This was much different than Kenya, where most people speak good English, hardly anyone knew what were saying, so Abdisa translated. After song, Bryan preached about a 40 minute sermon with translation…on God’s love and James faith without deeds. Everyone there said “Amen”, they understand what deeds are. They know that they are saved by grace, but they also know that we can’t say we love God, if we don’t show love to our brothers and sisters. Abdisa was passionate and was preaching like a Southern Baptist Preacher. Our kids constantly smiled and checked us out. You could see the excitement in their eyes, and the fear. But God is good and they listened intently…ONlY God! After the sermon, Abdisa added to Bryans teaching, translating for us now. He was saying that the love of God was shown in our deeds to be obedient to hear God’s word and come to show the love of Christ to them. That Jesus was glorified in our actions. That Paul taught grace, and James taught deeds, and one with the other is dead. The love of God in us is evident by what we do, and they could see the miracle of God today in these brother and sisters that traveled over 20 hours to come to Ethiopia to love the needy and share the love of Christ with them. They were all so thankful, “Amen, Amen, Amen”, they repeated over and over, then came the trilling of tongues and everyone shouting praises “Hallelujah, Amen”….ONLY God. Abdisa then called our children forward, we came too and he wanted to pray over us. His wife came out and hugged us and began the prayer because she was one of the primary care givers at the orphanage. She was beautiful. She prayed over us all, who know what she said but it was good. Then Abdisa began to pray. He prayed a blessing over each of our children. He was speaking Amharic and it was anointed. My children, Eyob especially were moved to tears. My heart was full and we were all crying, tears of joy, and tears of praise….ONLY God! After the prayer Abdisa announced God’s goodness that He would put together such a beautiful word from the Lord, and then follow it by these precious children gaining parents. He thanked us all and invited the congregation to greet us and shake our hands. The administrator of the church came up to us and introduced himself. He expressed his gratitude for the sermon and told Bryan he was so happy he preached on that subject, that the people could see the evidence of God’s truth in this group of people. ONLY God could make this come full circle. THIS DOES NOT HAPPEN when you pick up your children. We met our children in a worship service…giving glory and honor to Jesus Christ our Lord and Savior! ONLY God could make this such a smooth transition…ONLY GOD!! Today I praise the Lord of this earth for our family. I praise Him for orchestrating such a beautiful worship service and bring a beautiful family together. The kids are home with us now. We went for an Ethiopian lunch where they all ate well. We enjoyed soda and laughter. Then we went to Kaldis (just like Starbucks) for some ice cream and coffee, it was the first time they had ever eaten ice cream…what excitement. Once we were done we came home. Thank God for play dough, it is a great thing to bond over. Right now, I sit in the living room, listening to the laughter of all 9 (Levi and Jessie have 4) children playing a game of football…ONLY GOD!!! Tomorrow we are off to the Thomas Center, to see the others meet their children they way we were supposed to meet ours. We will spend time at the Thomas Center playing with the kids and then I think we will go to the beauty salon for some special treatment. Our children are so beautiful. I was watching Bryan earlier staring at them with tears in his eyes. God is so good, we are so grateful…ONLY GOD!!!

5 comments:

praisinyahweh said...

Congratulations dear ones. What an amazing blessing that God has woven together for you ... so much so that obedience is a blessing as well. My heart is so full with your tender words and is giving praise to the only One that could have done.

We love you all and can hardly wait to see you. Enjoy each and every minute of your time there.

Lisa

Audrey said...

I'm crying happy tears of joy! How I wish I could've seen their sweet little faces in person when they first met you all. What a beautiful way to meet your new children. Love you all!!

I have meetings after school on Thursday so won't make it to the airport to greet you. I know you're taking it easy for awhile at home to help the kids settle in. But I look forward to meeting them when they're ready for company.

Sue (Kerr) Claman said...

Hugs and kisses to everyone there as well as the kiddies at home anxiously awaiting the arrival of their new brothers and sister. What an amazing plan the Lord had worked out for all of you. You are so right Drea "ONLY GOD" We cannot wait to meet our newest grandchildren and kiss their beautiful little faces. We will have the airbeds all ready for your trip to Calif. We cannot wait. Tons of love and prayers... Dad and Sue

Rachelle said...

woo hoo!!!

Caitlyn said...

God s good

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