• Immediate Needs

    updated 8.29.11

    We do what we do as missionaries supported by people like you.

    We also prefer to give away as much content as we can, and not cloud that issue with a lot of public requests. That said, we do have specific needs that are met by people who believe the work we do has value.

    If you'd like a short list of immediate financial needs, you can find it HERE.


    Note: This will be updated regularly

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Join Me Wednesday!

What’s more fun that a good debate? ¬†The running commentary with your friends, of course!¬†The Republican presidential candidates are facing off on Wednesday, September 7th.

I’m inviting you to join me online at 8pm eastern, 7pm central on 9.7.11.

Tune into the debate on your TV, open your laptop and let the party begin…we’ll have realtime reactions to candidates answers, polls, and relevant links on the fly.

Register for a reminder email before the event.


Doing What Matters

Regan - A Zoe Baby

Guy Kawasaki tells start up companies to ‘make meaning’. ¬†Good advice for ministries too.

The photo to the right is the meaning that we’re making.

Little Regan was born August 27th. His brother, Josiah, is a year older. ¬†He was adopted by a family one year ago. ¬†When Regan came along, God placed him in the same family with Josiah. ¬†Rarely do siblings adopted a year apart end up in the same family, but God has a plan…

I can only imagine the destiny on this brotherhood. ¬†God so desired they grow up side by side that He orchestrated events beyond all likelihood to see that they had a mother and a father AND their own brother. ¬†I’m also humbled that the Zoe Foundation had a small part to play in both adoptions.

Stories like Regan and Josiah’s remind me that what we do matters and give me the encouragement to press on. ¬†Thank you to those of you who have contributed to The Zoe Foundation* as well as our personal missions support to see that little ones like this are set in families.

*FYI, we have a few other recent Zoe babies pictured on the front of the Zoe site, along with an auction for a special edition Make the Tracks JHS guitar pedal.  It is quantifiably cooler than a Red Ryder BB gun.

Taking Cues from Closed Doors

Sometimes you hear the voice of God in what you can’t do.

That flies in the face of most of the very good teaching that we’ve heard on hearing God. ¬†Usually, hear the voice of God with opportunity. ¬†We feel directed to do something based on what door opened, who invited us, what new chance we were given…but if we think that’s only the way He speaks, we could be missing it.

Musician Jason Upton‘s recent tweet sent me into hysterics because it accentuates our ‘must do’ mentality. ¬†We live as if to admit defeat is to assume the role of a failure. ¬†

Untrue.  Defeat happens to everyone, but to really be a failure takes a lifetime.

I spend more time in frustration with what I’m not able to do than I do listening to what God might be saying in it. ¬†

I think I need to find that couch.



There is no manual for raising multiples. There are simply some things that happen between multiples that defy prediction or explanation.

Anna River and Mercy Rain look similar – they’re not identical – but their personalities are very different.

  • Mercy wants to cuddle with you.
  • Anna wants to flash her million dollar smile and run so you chase her.
  • When they play with their babies, Anna calls Mercy “Mother…”, as if Anna is one of the dolls.
  • Their verbal communication is different in cadence and and sound. ¬†When she gets intense, Anna. accentuates. every. word. ¬† Mercy sounds a little like Kate Jackson.

For all their differences, they are inseparable. ¬†Whoever wakes up first immediately goes to find the other. ¬†They hug and have their own coded twin conversations that I imagine goes something like this…

Continue reading

Ready, set, go.

Today’s an exciting day...The Spirit of Adoption podcast makes it’s move from the interwebs to broadcast radio in Washington, DC. ¬† Thanks to our friends at 730 WTNT The Truth for helping make this a reality.

If you’ve wander here via the show, I’d encourage you to poke around a bit. ¬†Search the archives, uncover a little history, and make yourselves comfortable. ¬†I blog here several times a week on adoption, family life, scripture and whatever strikes my¬†curiosity.

If you’re going about this backwards, meaning you’ve come to the blog looking for the show, you can find it live and podcast at SpiritofAdoption.net.

Read long enough and you’ll get an inside look at life with seven kids – It’s sometimes funny, sometimes poignant, always worth the hassle.

Welcome, new friends! ¬† Let’s get to know one another.

Copious Consumption, Finite Fulfilment

I stumbled into the kitchen this morning as I do most other days.  With robot-like precision I made myself my drink of choice:  A four shot americano.

Twenty minutes later, my email was thinned, the news was read, and the americano was gone.  I grabbed a shower and started tossing things in my bag to head to the prayer room.  On a whim, I fixed myself another americano.  Yes, with four more shots. Continue reading

What’s in a name?

History does not tell us if Earnest Shackleton was a particularly religious man, but surely he was prophesying when he christened his ship The Endurance.  Even though he understood the overwhelming challenge he face in attempting the first march across Antartica, so much happened that he could not possibly have anticipated.

How would he have known…

  • That the ice would be early in the fall of 1914, leaving them trapped in the ice, far from their goal by January of 1915?
  • That the spring melt of 1915 would not free their ship, but that it would remain fast until October?
  • That once the ice did begin to shift, rather than breaking free, his ship would be crushed, leaving his men to abandon the craft, only to stand on the ice staring down through the hole where the ship used to be?
How would he have known…
  • That he and his men would spend 497 days either on the ship or on ice floes before they set foot on land once again?
  • That once they found their way to land, it would be Elephant Island, one of the most inhospitable places on earth.
  • That he would be forced to split the party, and a portion of them would have to once again take to their open boats for a fifteen day sail through a storm that sunk a 500 ton steamer?
  • That his portion of the party would include McNish, a carpenter that he threatened to shoot for insubordination, but recognized that he would need his skills later.
How would he have known…
  • That on their second landing, they would put ashore on an island that was inhabited, but find themselves on the opposite side of the whaling camp, separated by a glacier never before crossed by man?
  • That after climbing the glacier with little or no climbing equipment, they would need to slide down the other side through thick fog, sitting in shovels for sleds? ¬†When his men objected, Shackleton is credited with saying “Well, we very well can’t go back…”.
In the end, Shackleton worked to collect each of his men and returned to England having not lost a life in the journey.  How could he possibly have known that when he named his ship The Endurance?

As leaders, we chart the course for our initiatives early with a hundred finite decisions that work together to establish the culture for our ministry.
  • Do you cancel an outreach because it rains? ¬†You’ll cancel it for other reasons.
  • Do you boldly approach strangers or hang back, waiting for them to make the first move? ¬†You’ll hang back your entire life.
  • Do you lead by example, knowing it’s going to be harder – and more rewarding – than you expected?
Ministry – as much as Shackleton’s odyssey – requires an uncommon endurance. The same goes for those of you on the adoption journey. ¬†Going in, you know there’s a lot to it.
¬†You can’t pre-imagine every struggle that will materialize. ¬†At the end of the journey, you innately know it was worth it all, even if it required every bit of your endurance.
You might as well get used to the idea and call it what it is.
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