Dear Family and Friends,
Many of you know that this has been a challenging and exciting year for us as a family. In it all, we have experienced God’s very special goodness and grace in a number of specific ways: Houston’s premature birth launched the year, adding to our family the unspeakable joy of new life. Elle has grown so much, says so much more and continues to delight in her status as Houston’s big sister. Together, they provide us with many stretching learning experiences as parents, punctuated by fun seasons of laughter at their hilarious antics. Andrew has graduated with his degree in engineering from Oregon State University and is working at A-dec. We have recently moved into our home and I have begun to develop my own business in photography. For all that God is doing to reveal to us and to teach us about His character and faithfulness, we are so grateful and thankful to Him.
Plans for Application to Adopt
At this time our desire as a family is to follow-through on what we believe to have been God’s prompting to adopt a child from Ethiopia. Both Andrew and I have had a heart for the children of Africa since before we even knew each other. About two years ago, we became aware of each other’s desire to adopt a child from Africa. When we both felt the Lord was really calling us to adopt, we started looking for an agency to adopt through. We found All God’s Children International (AGCI). At the time, AGCI’s only orphanage in Africa was located in Ethiopia. This is what caused us to settle on Ethiopia as our adoptive country. On further investigation and prayerful consideration, we arrived at the decision to move ahead with the application process, knowing that it will take a substantial amount of time and resources. We are committed to what we believe God has led us to do in this regard. We also understand that this is our own personal undertaking and something that we can trust God to direct and bring to fruition from the beginning of the process through to its conclusion.
An Attempt to Raise the Necessary Funds
Because the amount of money needed to initiate the application process is rather significant, we have been attempting to apply our creativity to the challenge in hope of finding ways to raise the necessary funds:
- One way we have thought to do so is through the sale of a T-shirt with a map of Africa printed on the front. The shape of the country is formed by the repetitious printing of the words “John 14:18”. The back of the shirt has the verse fully written out - “I will not leave you as orphans; I will come for you.”
- A second idea is to distribute empty baby bottles to people who express an interest in and a willingness to place their loose change in the bottle until it is filled.
A Personal Request
In the meantime, may we ask you to prayerfully consider standing with us in support of this desire to adopt a child from Ethiopia? Would you be willing to:
- Pray with us that God will go before us, opening the path, setting the obstacles aside and directing us to the child of His choice for us
- Let others know about the T-shirts and bottles on our behalf
- Invite your friends and family to participate in filling the baby bottles with change, to buy T-shirts and to tell others about them
- Distribute bottles to your friends and family
- Provide us with creative ideas that may help us accomplish the goal
Thank you for considering our request and thank you so much for your prayers and encouragement.
Warmly yours in Christ,
Courtney, Andrew, Elle, Houston and Ivy