Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Lord, I'm Amazed By You

You dance over me , while I am unaware.  You sing all around, but I never hear the sound.
Lord, I'm amazed by You.  Lord, I'm amazed by You. 
Lord, I'm amazed by You. 
How You love me.

This is the song of my heart.  This is what He is teaching me right now in this journey of adoption - how deep and how wide is His love for me.  He is doing this through my love for Meilí. 

Meilí is not officially our daughter. I have never seen her face, never held her, never heard her cry for me.  She doesn't even know that I exist, and yet I love her with this crazy, unexplainable, indescribable love.  Just the thought of her brings tears to my eyes.  I have such a longing for her to be mine, to hold her in my arms, to kiss away her tears.  I want to tell her how much I miss her and how we have prayed for her.  I want her to know that she is fearfully and wonderfully made, and that God created her to be mine before time began.   

"How is this possible, to love someone so deeply that I have yet to meet?," I ask myself. 

Then I hear My Father whisper to my heart, "This is My love for you.  Before you were my child, before you even knew I existed, I loved you so much that I died to make you Mine.  I longed for you, longed to hold you in My arms and tell you of My love for you.  I wanted you to know that you have been fearfully and wonderfully made, and that I created you to be Mine before time began." 

And then I start to get it.  I get a glimpse of His great love, His Amazing Love, and it overwhelms me. I have done nothing that would merit this kind of love, yet He lavishes it upon me, His adopted daughter.  He loved me even before I was His.  And now, because of this, I cannot sing a song about His love without weeping.  I can't think about His dying to make me His without it breaking my heart.  My worship is different.  My life is different. 

And that is what adoption does-it changes lives.  

When God called us to adopt almost a year ago, we said yes, without reservation, without hesitation.  Our cry was, "Lord, just send us a child who needs love, and we will love her and give her a family."  We wanted to change a life, and yet it is ours that is being changed.  We so wanted to give but never realized how much God would give us in return.  Through adoption, He is giving us a glimpse of His great love for us.  He is giving us more of Himself.  And I am amazed by it.

Lord, I'm amazed by You. 
Lord, I'm amazed by You. 
Lord, I'm amazed by You. 
How You love me.

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Hope Blankets: Update!

Hey Everyone!  Just wanted to give a quick update on our Hope Blankets!  As you know, on Sunday, September 18, we had our Hope Blanket Kick-Off.  These blankets will be going to babies in two different Chinese orphanages.  We started out with 98 Hope Blankets, and 70 of them have already been sponsored.  These 70 blankets are now in the homes of their sponsors, who are praying over these blankets and for the babies who will receive them.  The stories I am already hearing of children and families praying for orphans are incredible. 

We have 28 blankets that still need sponsoring.  Here is how it works.

1.  Sponsor a Hope Blanket - $25
$15 will go for the blanket and shipping costs.  The rest will go towards helping with some of our adoption cost.

2.  Pray
Take your blanket home and pray for the child who will receive it.

3.  Return Your Hope Blanket
Return your blanket on or before Sunday, October 30, as we will be praying over the blankets as a church body.  At this time, we will collect the blankets and prepare them to be sent to China.

4.  Seek God's Guidance
Pray about how God would continue to have you involved in caring for orphans.

We are so excited about the 70 blankets that have already been sponsored, and so thankful for those who are praying!  Please pray with me that God will raise up another 28 people who are willing to be involved in orphan care by praying over a Hope Blanket and for the child who will receive it!  Thank you!

Meilí: Choosing Her Name


Many are the plans in a person’s heart,
but it is the LORD’s purpose that prevails.

Prov. 19:21

Isn't it funny how we tend to have a plan for everything??  Our schedule, our meals, our kids' lives...everything.  And , for us, planning the names of our children was no different!  Before our first son Gabriel was born, we had two names picked out, one for a boy and one for a girl.  We used our boy name and held on to the girl name, thinking we may need it for the next baby.  Well, the next baby came, and the next and the next, and they were all BOYS!  Each time we got pregnant, we pulled out that baby girl name just to put it away again!  For NINE years we held on to this girl name, but never got the chance to use it!  

So, when we first began the adoption process, we just assumed that our daughter was finally going to receive our girl name.  (I wonder if God just laughs at our attempts to run the show!!)  In planning our announcement to our family that we were expecting again (through adoption), we wanted to give each member of our family a painting of her name written in Chinese characters. 

It was when we started planning the details, trying to find someone to do the artwork for us, deciding exactly what we wanted everything to look like, that I began to feel hesitant about her name.  God began speaking to my heart, whispering that He had another name for her. 

Of course, names are a BIG deal to us, so when I felt God speaking to my heart, I was unsure whether I really wanted to begin the process of name-picking again.  I told Tollie what I was feeling, and he was just as unsure as I was!  It was like doing a name-change on one of our kids. 

Nevertheless, we began to pray and to search for the name He had for her.  We searched American names;  we search Chinese names (which can be difficult when you can't speak the language AT ALL!).  Finally, one day, Tollie called from work and asked me to check on the Chinese translation for two words.  The first word was rainbow, and , if you have read our blog, you know how significant rainbows are to us. When we couldn't even repeat the translation of rainbow, we decided that maybe that wasn't the one.  Then he asked me to look up the word beautiful.  The translation came back "Meilí" (May-LEE). 

We loved it -  for lots of reasons.  First of all because it sounded beautiful (and we could pronounce it!).  And, secondly, because it was MY NAME!!!  My Chinese students gave me a Chinese name when I was in China - Wang Fu Mei -- Mei being my first name.  Mei and Meilí -they are the same word in Chinese.  Talk about a WOW moment.  We realized that God was giving her my name.  This precious little girl who has been in my heart for eleven years was going to have my name.  This was His gift to me- my gift to her.  She will have part of me through my name. 

Sometimes, we plan and organize and decide how things should be, and that is okay, but most of the time, our aim is too low.  God has such good plans for us, and He is able to do so much more than we can ask or imagine.  Our plans are fine, but His word tells us this:

Many are the plans in a person’s heart, but it is the LORD’s purpose that prevails.
Proverbs 19:21

God purposed even before time began that she would be our daughter and that her name would be my own - Mei, given to me by my Chinese students, and, Brooke, given to me by my parents.   His ways are so much higher than our ways, and I am so thankful. 
God has allowed me to give her my name -- 

And isn't it just beautiful!!

Meilí Brooke Gosnell