Thursday, December 30, 2010
Friday, December 24, 2010
Merry Christmas from three-fifths of our children! We are hopeful that the remaining two-fifths will come home soon. We are finding it hard to describe how you can miss someone you've never met, but that's exactly how we feel. There are times when I'm counting to three (making sure we have them all) and I feel like someone is just missing. I'm pretty sure God has been working hard at knitting together our hearts since this process began. We cannot wait to see their little faces and give them a bath and put some new, clean (all their own!) clothes on them, and squeeze their cheeks and, oh yeah, love them for eternity.
Thursday, December 16, 2010
What is a referral? This means we will get a call (or email???) with specific medical and other pertinant information (including pictures!) about a sibling set and consider them for adoption. When we accept the referral, we will wait for a court date to be established and then travel to meet the children and appear in court---pleading our case to be their forever parents. After we pass court (doesn't happen the 1st time in about half the cases), we will return home-without the children- and wait for an embassy appointment. That will be about 6-8 weeks following the court date. The embassy has to grant permission for the children to leave the country, so a lot rides on the shoulders of that embassy date.
Friends, please pray this week that our referral will be soon and that God will continue to knit our hearts together, as we live an ocean apart.
And, during this week of Christmas, I will leave you with something that our family thinks is totally RAD: Jesus' life began and ended with adoption. He was adopted by Joseph at birth, and he designated Mary as the mother of "the disciple whom He loved" (John, the son of Zebede) as He was on the cross.
Read John 19:25-27 if you never have....to us, it's a great example of the plan of adoption. Of course, adoption is not a flawless, smooth, joyous plan, but if one can love outside their own flesh and blood----love someone who has never done anything for them---then, God's glory is written all over it.
To God Be the Glory! Great things He has done! So loved He the world that He gave us his Son.
Monday, November 22, 2010
However, our hearts are starting to stir again. It's becoming more difficult to wait. This weekend, I was listening to a great song by a good friend of our's, called In Between. It was the perfect description of how we feel these days.
We spent a great deal of time this weekend moving furniture and hanging coat hooks (looks pretty neat to see 6 coat hooks and anticipating them being full of coats and backpacks.). We feel like we are readying the Rust home for change. We are doing everything in our power to streamline and ease all the things we do every day. We moved couches and tables to allow for better "traffic" flow through the house. We cleared a room to make space for a child work/play space on the main level of the house. We put a couch in our bedroom, to prepare for children who need to be within sight/touch at night time to develop a strong sense of trust. It was pretty exciting. We took an online test after the kids went to bed and reviewed some important tips we need to research in order to be the parents all our children need and deserve.
In church, tears streamed down my face as I held hands with my son who is safe and warm and worshipping God right next to me (while kind people take care of our girls in the nursery). I was thinking about our little ones who are on the other side of the world and how we just can't get to them. Are their tummies full? When was the last time someone combed their hair or trimmed their nails? When was the last time someone told them they are the sun, moon and stars? When was the last time someone told them how much their heavenly Father loves them? When was the last time someone looked at them and took pride in their character? When was the last time someone held their hand and told them everything will be alright?
Adoption is so different from pregnancy. We knew in pregnancy when to expect our children's entrance to our world. With adoption, I don't know if it'll be tomorrow or next summer. It's like the coming of Christ. We know it's coming. No one knows the day or the hour----not even the angels.
God is in control, thank goodness. We are sure of that. We are just feeling the lonely He has set upon our family. We are not complete until our dinner table is full of children eating and laughing and even arguing. Let it be.
Nothing seperating you from me
An unrelenting gravity
I'll keep coming til there's nothing in between.
Thanks, Ty, for putting into words what this process has laid on our hearts.
Sunday, October 17, 2010
Thursday, October 7, 2010
Sunday, September 26, 2010
Let me tell you a story of redemption.
Thursday, September 23, 2010
Click on the link below to order coffee (some blends from Ethiopia!) to support our adoption. Just Love Coffee will give us $5 for every bag sold toward our adoption from Ethiopia. They also donate 10% of their yearly earnings to an Ethiopian orphanage where the owner adopted 2 girls in recent years. Jason and I have tasted the coffee and it is worth the money. We like The Roasterie coffee, and this is just as high-quality. The Tyrus Morgan CD and coffee package is a great deal, too. He's a talented musician and a good friend of our's. I know you'd enjoy his music.
We will be putting in a bulk order soon, so you can choose to order directly from the web site or you could pay me and get the bag right away from my home.
The money we make on this fund-raiser will go directly toward our travel expenses, which includes 4 round-trip tickets to Ethiopia and 2 one-ways. The adoption, itself, is paid for and ready to go (dossier is translated and sitting in the hands of our agency in Addis Ababa)----as soon as we get our referral (names and pictures of our new children). We are hopeful that will take place this winter.
Looking forward to a cold winter with some hot coffee!
P.S.: On a related side-note, Jason and I (along with Jeff and Jenny Rodgers and other friends) will be attending the Global Orphan Project "Big Event" this Saturday. I am hopeful that we will be able to finalize information regarding the 2 homes built in Uganda with the money raised last year for that cause. More information to come on that soon!
Thursday, September 16, 2010
Monday, August 30, 2010
I can't decide if it's been so rough because this particular summer experience together was the most enjoyable on record, or if it's Something Else. If it is Something Else, then maybe His point is to allow me to feel rushed and pressured so that I will cherish and enjoy my time at home when I get it (the weekends for now, and all the time next school year!).
If you read the last blog post, you know that I have been dreading the decision and the timing of me handing over my teaching position. I will tell you that there is Peace now. On the first day of school, I held Evan in my arms in my classroom. There were 2 minutes before the 1st bell was to ring, and I cried and told him that I was so happy to have had these experiences with him and that I will never forget them. I'm pretty sure he thought I was losing my mind.
Strangely, a few days later, walking down the hallways of the school with Evan before school, a Wonderful sense of Peace came over me. I truly felt fine with the blurry vision of our future.
Since then, I've been striving to just listen to what God is telling me. I've been allowing myself to be on "input" mode--reading and praying (mainly listening). Oh, what a peaceful feeling it is. I highly recommend it! I've been especially careful of what comes out of my mouth and have been remembering Matthew 12:34--
For out of the abundance of the heart the mouth speaks.
Now, back to my listening.......
Wednesday, July 28, 2010
These are some pictures of our latest visit to Freedom Fire. The first picture is our dear friend, Joey, laying on the ground so that the boys could jump off his back to dunk. You should've seen his back later that night! Ouch! The second picture shows the view from the last row, where I sat next to a new buddy, Kendren, during the message part of the night. They are all very good listeners and this week's lesson was about the prodigal son---very meaningful. That one never gets old. The last picture is of a middle school girl who was excited to get her nails done. She remembered me from last week and has quite a story to tell. I look forward to seeing her again Friday.
On our pre-children road trips, Jason and I used to play a game called "Would you rather." It was a hilarious way to pass the time, pondering numerous impossible scenarios that would never occur, but were great to visualize anyway.
Wednesday, July 21, 2010
Sunday, July 18, 2010
Wednesday, July 14, 2010
Friday, July 2, 2010
Dear Jason and Wendy,
Your dossier is now on its way to Ethiopia, and should arrive there in 3-4 business days (we'll let you know when it does). Congratulations! That puts you on the waiting list for a referral.
This is an email from our dossier case manager, who we've worked closely with for several months now. All those hours of hard work poured into the paperwork, all the hours spent earning and saving and scraping the ransom money, all the blessings from the various agencies (and family and friends) are up in the air on their way to Ethiopia as we speak!
There are few words that explain the feeling this puts on my heart today. I am relieved that we made it this far. I am excited to be that much closer to our children. I am in awe that God has allowed me live out this part of His plan.
Friends, read the following link to another mother's blog post before flying to pick up her children from Ethiopia. Heidi is so eloquent and completely, 100%, puts our thoughts into words. I hope it resonates with you. I pray that you allow God to break you and that you can begin to enjoy a new vision for your life.
I pray that Satan never again convinces me to live for ME.
May God's timing prevail. May our children, who He set aside for us, have His peace until we can bring them home. May the court system continue to work smoothly for the benefit of the children. May our family continue to grow closer to Jesus. May God be pleased with our hearts. May society never burden us with its expectations and vision for our lives.
Sunday, June 20, 2010
Friday, June 18, 2010
Thursday, June 17, 2010
Wednesday, June 16, 2010
My son, pay attention to what I say; Listen closely to my words. Do not let them out of your sight, Hide them in your heart; For they are life to those who find them and health to a man's whole body.
Evan made us proud by memorizing all the books of the Bible. He's been working on this for months now. It all started as a challenge in his Awana's class. Jason has been working alongside him to memorize all the books, and I'm actually not sure who beat whom.
Please excuse the shaggy hair-do and the Dale Jr. t-shirt. It was a hot summer night, and we ended up shaving his head that night~~~new buzz-cut pictures coming soon.
Wednesday, June 9, 2010
Dear Rust children in Ethiopia,
We are getting much closer to bringing you home! We were approved by the kind people at the immigration office today. God continues to open doors and lead us to you. May He continue to shine down His blessings on our road to you.
Wednesday, June 2, 2010
Saturday, May 29, 2010
You will show me the path of life; In Your presence is fullness of JOY; At Your right hand are pleasures forevermore.
Evan was so thrilled to see the balloons launch. Who
doesn't love seeing that look in a kid's eyes?!
I love this picture of my boys. Jason wonders where Evan gets his sense of humor. Hmmmm, I don't know.
Sophie is showing signs of being ready to potty-train. Lately, she's been changing all her babies' diapers. I hope it doesn't disturb you that she's changing Elmo's diaper right on the same table Evan is enjoying a snack. You can see in the "sad Sophie" picture that it's not as easy as you think to change a monster's diaper!
Monday, May 24, 2010
Thursday, May 20, 2010
Sunday, May 16, 2010
The most notable victory was the fact that we had so many friends and family who came to support our cause. Your presence was a huge statement to the world that this work matters.
Penny: A HUGE thank you to you. Without your hard work for the past several months, this would have never happened. The way you have cared for and nurtured this event has been pure delight for me. Mandy Sharp: A special thank you to you. The fact that you were with us on this big day meant the world to me and your help was invaluable. One hundred thank-you's to everyone else who pitched in to help, whether big or small!
The second most notable victory was the weather~~~all week the weather forecasters predicted heavy rain/t-storms and 50ish degrees. It was a beautiful morning, of 60 degrees and NO RAIN!!! Wow! It rained after the event for the entire rest of the day, but the race was dry!
A few other victories prevailed yesterday in personal accomplishments of the runners and participants. Amy Bonjour ran all the way without stopping and in much less time than she expected. That is a BIG DEAL! What a reason to celebrate!
There are so many stories worth telling from yesterday that I will have to save many for another day. God was very present and made Himself visible to Jason and me. As Jason was gathering the crowd and speaking to everyone before we began the race, we were reminded again of the mission we have to serve Him. A special song was playing on his Iphone/speaker set-up which conjured up a distinct focus on the glory of God. In fact, it's by Jeremy Riddle and it's called "God of all glory." It's one we heard the night of the Big Event with Global Orphan Project, where Jeremy Riddle played live. Awesome! No one else probably noticed, but I did! To stand next to Jason and listen as he OPENED HIS MOUTH for the speechless and told of the orphan crisis in the world, I could not have been more proud. What a faithful man I have to love and share life with......
After all the donations were counted, we had a grand total of $2680 just from the 5K. Praise God! Our up-to-date fund-raising total is $10,500. This has all come in, just since January. It's all His and will be used to serve His children in Uganda who are living homeless today and eating dirt and garbage to survive.
We will be sending His money to the "least of these" very soon! Very soon, 10-20 children will have a home and a mama. And we aren't done, yet. We have many more plans for the fatherless. We are hoping to partner with a few other wonderful people who have set up orphanages and charities. Plans are being made and details will be shared in the coming months. We have a big "plan-making" weekend set for the 1st weekend in June.
The two people standing next to the Global Orphan sign were the top male and top female runners. The top male runner received a generous golf prize from Excelsior Springs Golf Club, and the top female received $50 gift cards to Pottery Barn. Enjoy!
This was the finish line and the man who stole the show with his unbelievable talent. He finished in 18 minutes! And, he had run 5K just before this, just to warm up! That makes me tired, just thinking about it!
We had several people who chose to do the 1 mile run/walk. Lots of strollers and little ones running off their donut energy!