Oh give thanks to the Lord; call upon his name;
make known his deeds among the peoples!
Sing to him, sing praises to him;
tell of all his wondrous works!
Happy New Year to you! It’s been over a year now since I last posted anything on this blog, and I thought it was about time for me to post a long overdue update on what God has been doing in our family. As some of you know, I didn’t plan to stop blogging completely, but due to some health problems it seemed best for me to step away from the online world to concentrate on getting better.
Thankfully, I can say that the Lord has strengthened me greatly, and I am in much better health now than I was one year ago. I wouldn’t call this a blogging comeback quite yet, but I do hope to return to sharing encouragement with you here at Precious Adornment as the Lord gives me the energy to do so. In the meantime though, here’s a bit of the news that I shared with family and friends in our Christmas letter…
Probably much like yours, our year seems to have breezed by in a matter of a few short weeks. Looking back over 2013, I can’t help but remember how the days, months, and years before Evangelle came home just crawled by in a painfully slow manner. That heartache is a distant memory now, and the Lord has filled our lives with more joy than we could have imagined. He is good, and every day that we share together as a family is a gracious gift from His hand.
Special Memories from 2013
In Ethiopia, Christmas is celebrated on January 7 instead of December 25, and this year our family had a double celebration of the occasion. First, we had a special dinner at home where I prepared a slightly Americanized version of Ethiopian cuisine including injera (a spongy flatbread) and doro wat (a spicy chicken stew). Evangelle enjoyed sampling a cabbage and potato dish and a bit of injera and didn’t laugh too much at my attempts to bring a little taste of Ethiopia home to her.
Later in the month, we were thrilled to reunite with some of the friends that we made during our 2012 visits to Ethiopia for a belated Christmas celebration at an Ethiopian restaurant in Charlotte. We think of and pray often for Evangelle’s special friends from Ethiopia and are so happy to see them flourishing with their forever families.
April 17 marked one year since the Lord brought our family together and we were finally free to bring Evangelle home! God is good!
Mother’s Day was another important day for our family as we participated in a child dedication service at church and publicly committed to raise Evangelle in the ways of the Lord. We want more than anything to honor Him with how we handle the tremendous blessing and responsibility of parenting He has so graciously given us.
Evangelle turned two years old at the end of May. She has very much enjoyed telling people that she is two whether they ask or not! Her language skills are progressing and Joseph and I understand a lot of what she tries to communicate, but translation is still required for most other people.
She is learning to count and sing her ABC’s. She loves looking at and having books read to her, and she absolutely adores music. Her favorite album (highly recommend!) has a song called “Make Me Wise.” A day doesn’t go by without her asking multiple times to listen to “May Tee Why.” It’s the cutest thing to hear her singing along at the top of her lungs.
In September, we were able to take Evangelle on a trip to the beach for the very first time. During our brief vacation, she went from despising the feeling of sand on her feet on day one to making sand castles and squealing with delight when we’d take her running through water on the ocean’s edge by our last day there.
November brought a special treat when our missionary friends from Ethiopia, Les and Maxine Williams, came to spend a few days with us during a short visit back in the United States. Les and Maxine house, care for, and share the Gospel with close to 60 young people who would otherwise be entirely abandoned and without hope. If you are interested in supporting a ministry that is changing lives in Ethiopia, please visit the Williams’s website where you can learn more about Hope for Youth Ethiopia.
One other major 2013 event for our family occurred when we decided after much prayer to begin the adoption process from Ethiopia once again! We have been gathering and completing the necessary truckload of paperwork over the last few months and hope to submit our dossier soon after the beginning of the new year. We would be grateful for your prayers as we begin another long wait (the current estimate is 3 years) to bring another precious child into our family.
May God bless you and keep you as you seek him in 2014!