Friday, July 8, 2011

Message #1 from Ethiopia

Amos has arrived safely in Ethiopia, praise the LORD! (Satan has been taunting me with thoughts of the plane crashing). Here is the message he sent via Facebook:

Paula, my love, I made it!!! Me and only one of my bags!! Since you packed everything for me (thanks again) I didn't know what all I would have. I have the small suitcase which has everything I need for the birth mother trip, Picture book, my clothes, and camcorder. Nothing for the little guy so lets hope it makes it here tomorrow! I Love You and thanks everyone else for the help and support.

I am so thankful for the one bag that made it! Amos will be leaving (Ethiopia is 8 hours ahead of us so he will be leaving in only a few hours) to go to where Elijah was born...rural, southern Ethiopia. The capital of Ethiopia, Addis Abba, is at an elevation above where mosquitoes can live so there is no risk of malaria, yellow fever and the like. However, once he leaves the capital, continuing to a hotter, lower elevation, Amos is at a high risk for infected mosquitoes. I remember my grandfather having malaria from the Korean war and it was really rough on him (he eventually ended up with Parkinsons, heart/lung complications and Alzheimers). Of course, I need to just rest in the LORD's provision and that His plan is for Amos to remain healthy...but we all know that sometimes that just isn't part of His plan. My prayers are for complete protection from illness, but more importantly that I will accept whatever the Lord does. That sometimes in illness we learn more of who He is, that brokenness is part of this world we live in and not until Heaven will any of us here understand the freedom from sin God intended for us. Hallelujah!!
Please be praying Amos will remember to take the antibiotic he was prescribed (in case he is bitten it will prevent malaria from being deadly) and that he is completely covered from head to toe, with not only the 98% deet bug spray I got for him but also covered with a hedge of protection from God. 
The birth family trip was optional but we decided that it would be a blessing for Elijah's birth mom to meet the ones God has provided for him to be able to leave the orphanage and to give her all the photos we have received and taken of Elijah since she hasn't seen her son for over 8 months and probably has no pictures of him. It is funny what perspective can do...we created a small photo album to give her and we have heard that these are such cherished items, I am sure she will hold onto it forever. God, thank you for blessing me so much, I am not sure why you chose me, but I am grateful! I think of how much I miss AJ, and yet I know where he is and who cares for him, the One that cares for me! My pain of losing AJ will probably never compare to the pain of her loss. She had to give Elijah up to ensure his survival, a selfless act, whereas, if I could choose right now to bring AJ here from Heaven I probably would, to be here with me. Out of my selfishness I would want him here, but that would mean he would have to endure the hardships of this life rather than the completeness of Heaven. I ask the LORD to work in her heart, to free her from any bondage the devil has over her for the choices she has made. And that Amos can be a light in the darkness of her loss, that instead of just pain she can experience the freedom that can only come from Christ. That we can somehow be as much of a blessing to her life as the life of Elijah will be to us. Being close to God's heart is like a bird being set free from a cage. Lord please set her free!
Praying for freedom and protection,


  1. Meeting the birth family is the single most important thing you can do for your adopted child at this point. Amos will be so glad that he did it. It is also wonderful to see and know the area of Ethiopia that your son is from; it is vastly different than Addis Ababa. It will be a wonderful, wonderful experience... even through much sadness.

  2. I'm with Paula (the other Paula)...and praying for both of the Paula's who just returned with a sweet son and the other who is preparing for the arrival. Also praying for protection from mosquitoes (we're headed to MN tomorrow and are already covered head to toe...every time I scratch, I'll remember to pray!)

    Love you and wish we were closer this week to encourage you personally. But know that you're never far from our thoughts and prayers.