Thursday, December 24, 2009

In 3 Vibes from our Home to Yours -- Merry Christmas!!

(The first bit of scenery on this video is nice and then around minute 4 of this video is a pictorial view of Ethiopian children and art telling the Christmas Story...)

Its a festival of nations every day here at the Tucker's!! Merry Christmas everyone! We are sharing a flavor of how we will be celebrating our savior, Jesus' birth this Christmas--how incredible He has completely included each one of us in His gift of salvation! Blessed Christmas to you all.

Ava and Bruik's gift to you from their ancient Ethiopian culture--who have known God's presence and message for thousands of years--such a rich Christian heritage...

This song reminds Richard and I of our families and growing up in the Washington D.C. area with all of its fabulous musical experiences...

And a vibe we have always loved that now beats stronger in our home :)...sweet Nicole C. Mullens met our new children the other day and blessed them with a dose of affection and love...We love you, Nicole!...

And...shhhh don't tell our Papa Daddy Griffith but here's a song the kids are going to perform--with Ashley doing the solo :) this afternoon after we do our annual Christmas dress-ups play and Tucker talent night--hopefully I can share that with you all later--its sure to be cute ;)--very "Cosby-eske"

Blessed Christmas, everyone--a saviour has come--CELEBRATION TIME !! :)

Love to you!
Love, Gillian

Sunday, December 20, 2009

A Precious Christmas Gift

Just on Friday we experienced Christmas. One of our children sinned in a "big" and "obvious" way--one of those doosiers that is such an obvious oppurtunity for God's grace and forgiveness. As we talked, confession and Godly sorrow quickly fell on this child. As I hugged this child and we prayed for forgiveness God prompted my heart to remind that forgiveness is like pressing "delete" on the computer. God wipes away our sin so completely away in the moment of our confession. This resonated really well with this repentant heart. Later in the day we realised just how much. A couple of us were sitting in the car waiting for a while to meet up with someone and we were looking through a newspaper from this week to fill up a little time. We had already exhaused the name game and "I Spy with my little eye" know...the things we moms do to keep the ball rolling...;) Flipping through the newspaper, we came to the sports section and of course Tiger Woods story was front and center. When I shared a boiled -down and generic version of the tale of the past weeks my repentant one from earlier in the day said with MUCH emphasis. "WELL! SOMEBODY should tell him!" Tell him WHAT, hon? "YOU KNOW! About the delete button! He has to know about God's forgiveness so He can be forgiven and have a fresh start." And then...this child...looks me straight in the eye and asks, "Mom, who's going to TELL him?" Uhhhh...I gave a rather weak answer--pretty lame actually about how Tiger Woods was pretty hard to access and some other stuff...this was not good enough for my one who had been forgiven much. "NO, Mom! SOMEBODY has to tell him or he's going to be stuck in sin!! Who's going to tell him?" If you know Tiger--we have someone here who needs to TELL him something. Until then we will most likely be figuring out how to get an email to him and most importantly praying for this child of God who can access God's love and delete button forgiveness like any other man on the Earth. "Peace on Earth...Good Will to you..For unto YOU a Savior has come", little child,Tiger Woods, Mommy, Daddy, Friend, any man, any woman...

Friend, for this Jesus came to Earth--Our forgiveness. He gave up so much. the Bible says he HUMBLED Himself to pour all His deity into the form of a little baby. Access to instant foregiveness--freedom to turn from our sin --and its power broken off of us--forever. Get back sin. ANY sin. In the name of Jesus. Go away shame. ANY shame. In the name of Jesus.

Oh, Blessed Christmas. He has come to bring peace to our hearts. To make us white as snow before a Holy God. Really. Even that sin that you keep hidden away from sight--oh, what if they knew about THAT one? Yes, that one as well--washed away with the blood of the baby from Bethlehem. The one who loved you so much that He could not stand to be separated from you. The one that suffered to live a perfect life for you to then die and was raised to life in your place--this is the miracle and the wonder of Christmas...

I speak of forgiveness for this is the gift that we each and ALL received at Christmas. No one of us has out-sinned another--we EACH need the gift of Christ's cleansing.

There is something that is pressing on my heart with greater and greater measure this Christmas season.

It is related to the part of the Christmas narrative where Herod kills all the little boy babies age 2 and under. This part of the Christmas story has always horrified my children--it is not even included in all Bible Story books--yet it should be for this is what our enemy
--the ancient enemy of human kind,
--is ever on the move to do
--to wipe out
--to destroy and kill the image of God.
And to do this perhaps at the hand of a parent --is even more powerful. Oh!! That's horrifying! Stop the Christmas story!!
--but wait
--in each generation,
there has been a Spirit of the Age that says 'sacrefice your children and you will be free'
--a lie straight from Hell
--that has risen in every generation.
Just flip the pages of every era of history and you will see Roman babies dying on rocks--left to die. Babies sacreficed in pagan fires. Babies killed at the hand of the sword of war...And today...Rwandan babies found in garbage bags--left struggling on the steps of orphanages, Chinese baby girls in danger, millions of children enslaved in human trafficing, pawns of the lusts of man...The horror.

And yet...looking off these shores...drawing our map closer in...zooming into our country, our city, our street, maybe our home...did you know...that in our country... In America today... That 4,000 babies will die...
Not of the swine flu--if this was the case it would be on CNN.
Not in car accidents--oh the outcry and the ammendments in traffic legislation if this was the case.
Not by accident in hospitals--the lawsuits and the outrage if even 4 or 40 babies would die this way --EVERY DAY.


Every Day

4,000 children will die in abortion clinics and hospitals.-- 4,000 will die today.

4,000 will die tomorrow and on Wednesday and on Thursday and 4,000 more on Friday.

4,000 you all.

Every day. Every day. Every day. Every day. Every day. Every day. Every day. of the week.

Let this sink in.

And find something to do about this--for LIFE is reflected/ given from the Christ child.

Life is required for our babies.

Ask God what your part is in this genocide.

Be blessed with a gentle glance into a miracle...

Perhaps abortion has touched your life in a very personal way. Perhaps there is a glory baby in heaven who has eyes like you and laughs like your husband. Remember the delete button. There is nothing that God cannot forgive you for. NOTHING. He forgave His beloved King David, the man after God's own heart who murdered one of his dearest officers. He is able to create in you a clean heart and to purify you from ALL unrighteousness. Sin confessed is sin forgiven and forgotten by God. If we confess our sin He forgives us our sin and cleanses us from ALL unrightesousness. And those who are forgiven MUCH have the precious oppurtunity of loving God MUCh--of really "getting" Him and how He loves us. It is an oppurtunity to let go of shame and reach out your clean hands toward the heart of God and what it beats for. One of His greatest attributes is that of the rescuer. He would allow and invite you to rescue other babies from our own Spirit of the Age that has deceived one in six women in our country at some point.

There are SO many wonderful ministries that are laboring to love and save the babies of our land. Here's a link to one I have recently heard of that's vision is to save one million babies and instead get them adopted into loving Christian families. It is called the Zoe Foundation.

Love and Life in the One who has Forgiven us and "Pressed the Delete Button!!"

Spirit of the Age
by Michael Card

I thought that I heard crying coming through my door.
Was it Rachel weeping for her sons who were no more?
Could it have been the babies crying for themselves,
Never understanding why they died for someone else?

The voices head of weeping and of wailing,
History speaks of it on every page.
Of innocent and helpless little babies,
Offerings to the spirit of the age.

No way of understanding this sad and painful sign.
Whenever Satan rears his head there comes a tragic time.
If he could crush the cradle, then that would stop the cross.
He knew that once the Light was born his every hope was lost!

Now every age had heard it, the voice that speaks from hell.
"Sacrifice your children and for you it will be well."
The subtle serpent's lying, his dark and ruthless rage.
Behold it is revealed to be the spirit of the age!

Soon all the ones who seemed to die for nothing
Will stand beside the Ancient of Days,
With joy we'll see that Infant from a manger
Come and crush the spirit of the age

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Join Us on a Christmas Errand Adventure!

This season we have not been of the "ready for Christmas really early" ranks!! Today was our first trip out to do any Christmas errands--and we are thrilled that most everything on our simple but made- with -love list was found and accomplished on our first stop--Yee Haw!! THAT is a REAL Praise!! As you'll see below, I had some cheery elves, Ava, Bruik, and Jack to "help" me along the way today and to provide alot of music in our sleigh and to anyone near us in the 2 stores we visited :)! And my Giant Elven husband was home a little today too to assist in the erranding. A real gift to share the season with my Santa hubby!! Please join us on our adventure today...

Click to play this Smilebox slideshow: Tucker Elves
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Love and Joy to You!
Love, Gillian

Friday, December 11, 2009

Crazy? Who? US??

Singing Away :)

(Please scroll down to end of my longish blog posting to hear our favorite Christmas song of the season) :)

Just a little crazy to brighten up your potentially busy day or night :).

...A song we are hearing from 3 year old Ava these days...Sing along if you'd like to the tune of We Wish You a Merry Christmas!

"I miss you MR. Chrismiss
I Miss you Mr. Chrismiss.
I Miss you Mr. Chrismiss
An ah Habby Newb year!!"

...and now 6 year old Jack's version...

"I wish you a Merry Christmas
(repeat 2 X)
And a Happy New Year

Glad TITANS We Bring to you and your King!
We wish you a Merry Christmas and a Happy Near Year!"

You too can route for your favorite team while belting out carols!!--And do this EVERY time you get in the car with Mommy and you'll be having fun just like we do! :)

Yes, life rolls at the holidays with 8 children's activities:) Just last night we had...

24 cups of dirt cake created for a 3rd grade project...cookie "dirt and dust" covering the counters and many mouths :)

1 Graham whipping up rice Crispy Treats for an 8th grade party

8 portions of Homework, Homework, Homework...

1 Mommy overseeing of the other 3rd grader's Landform Project--yes, its the desert and sand is all over our dining room--as well as a coyote, a catus, and a body of water :)

7th grade Wrestling practice

2 playdate friends over

2 tent forts made

FIVE golden rings!! (Just Kidding)

We DID have 8 ladies and lords a-leaping on the trampoline and having a dance-off in the living room, though :)

And a real live 10 grade Florence Nightengale in full costume, just come in from a high school presentation...

And an Oeidipus (spelling) queen costume to create and another Theater presentation

21 Plans for a Kindergarten Polar Express Party for Jack's 6th Birthday Party...

3 basketballs bouncing as the boys practiced basketball for Graham and Richard's team

10 mouths for dinner

4 advent candles at worship time

3 children to be bathed

2 boys who "wrecked" the bonus room and are sent to clean it

1 pretty normal evening around here...

And 1 new discovery in the midst...If you need an inside activity that is REALLY fun?...Open up a bag of large marshmellows and have a snowball fight...we laughed and chased until our sides ached...and until Annie dog started getting to the marshmellows...just wouldn't change all this for the world...its "too much"...but then "crazy" is SO much fun...

NOW, For our FAVORITE Christmas song this season. Toby Mac's, THIS CHRISTMAS...
We know an orphan who Jesus visited as he waited for his family...this is a precious, true song...I can't wait to experience a "first family Christmas" with our two new older children in our home this year...pure joy!!

Please click the play button on the bar at the base of the box--not on the picture to play without errors...

Have a Fun and Blessed Friday!!
Love, Gillian

Woman: Joy to the world
Let heaven and nature sing
Let heaven and nature sing

Toby Mac:Now Johny never got his wish on December 25
That's what he said when he left the orphanage
9 years old, but Johny was an old soul
Gonna spend his first Christmas in a real home
Showed me a picture that he drew the night before
Was a picture of a man standin' outside a door
I asked him who it was and he said someone I only
see in dreams
Comforts me when I cry myself to sleep

Woman:Father of the fatherless
Be with your sons and daughters this Christmas
This Christmas

Toby Mac:Believe in angels?
Johny asked me starin' at the sky
I said I do and saw a sparkle in his eye
Big brother for the weekend respondin' to the season
Took the chance that givin's better than recievin'
Two nights, a new family, some holiday cheer
We laughed and sang
Came on a midnight clear
We gave, recieved, and as we headed to close
We looked to the heavens and it started to snow
Down blessings

Woman: Father of the fatherless
Be with your sons and daughters this Christmas
(Toby Mac:You ain't livin' til you choose to give love and joy and
peace to one of His)
Father let us not forget
The children who are all alone this Christmas
(Toby Mac:You ain't livin' til you choose to give, you ain't livin' til
You choose to give)

(James 1:27)
Little Boy: Religion that God our Father
Accepts as pure and faultless is this
To look after orphans and widows in their distress
Merry Christmas everyone

Woman:Joy to the world
The Lord is come
Let heaven and nature sing
Let heaven and nature sing
Let heaven and nature sing
Let heaven and nature sing

Toby Mac:Believe in angels Jonnie asked me starin' at the sky
I said I do and saw a sparkle in his eye
9 years old, but Jonnie was an old soul
Gonna spend is next Christmas in a real home

Woman: Father of the fatherless
Be with your sons and daughters this Christmas
(Toby Mac:You ain't livin' til you choose to give love and joy and
peace to one of His)
Father let us not forget
The children who are all alone this Christmas
(Toby Mac:You ain't livin' til you choose to give, you ain't livin' til
You choose to give)
Father of the fatherless
Be with your sons and daughters this Christmas
Let Heaven and nature sing
Let Heaven and nature sing
Father let us not forget
The children who are all alone this Christmas
(Toby Mac:You ain't livin' til you choose to give, you ain't livin' til
You choose to give)

Toby Mac: You ain't livin'
You ain't livin'
You ain't livin'

Woman: Let Heaven and Nature sing
Let Heaven and nature sing
(Toby Mac:You ain't livin' til you choose to give, you ain't livin' til
You choose to give)
Don't leave me all alone
This Christmas

Little Boy: Merry Christmas Everyone

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

All We Want for Christmas

All we want for to encounter Jesus.

Lately we have been well-fed by the Ministry of The International House of Prayer in Kansas City, MO. and wanted to share this resource with you. They have an incredible vision for raising up a passion for Christ in this generation--here in our nation and in the world. Their love for Christ is also poured out in movements for justice in arenas such as the human trafficking epidemic and a vision to have one million babies adopted into Christian families instead of aborted. Ten years ago they were called to raise up 24/7 prayer,worship, and intercession on thier campus and it has continued daily from that point! To add power and confirmation to their search after God's heart, God brought revival to their bible University campus on Nov. 11th and has continued a special outpouring ever since that is spreading to other university campuses. Historically in America and England many of the great awakenings in our nations have been sparked on college campuses. We have been blessed by God's work at the International House of Prayer via the web stream--it has been a vital,real touch of His Spirit that has been splashing on us "older folk" as well. :) We will be bringing our kiddos to the One Thing Conference in Kansas City, MO --we invite you to join us via web cast for a time to soak up God's Word, live worship of our Saviour and inspired, biblical teaching--the registration is free!

Now that's a present we ALL can afford!!

Love, Gillian

Saturday, December 5, 2009

Tucker Turkeys

Some Thankgiving Love.

You go, Ashley!!

Graham, the oldest boy of our "Tribe"

Anderson waiting for his turn.

We were glad when the Hot Cocoa was brought out!!

Jack and Bruik's baby warriors!! :)

Thanksgiving "Eve" the kids being silly making up "pirate eyes" and "hats"
Glad we captured this cause someone is up to something like this all day at our house!!

You are sure to find silly puppets at Grandmommy Griffith's house. The kids like to make up plays with them.

Richard Reading to Ava Thanksgiving Morning

Hey! As promised here are a couple photos from our Thanksgiving day. A Family Tradition on my side of the family is to have a "Turkey Shoot" the day of Thanksgiving. My parents set up an array of targets and we test our skill with bow and arrow and a BB gun--the targets are creative and fun and SOMETIMES there are bits of prize or even money inside (not this year but one can always hope!) I love this game because everyone gets a chance to shine and to be cheered over. And you never know who's skills might really rise to the top in a given year--one year my 75 year old grandmother won the whole thing!!...This year it was Ashley who amazed us with her "markwomanship". In the olden days Ashley would have been a great asset to our "tribe/people group" either the Colonists or the Indians--her skill with the bow would have brought in the game!:) Excuse us if we look fierce--I promise we are a tender family who also spent the day giving MUCH thanks to our Father God for the glory of His presence and for the song that He sings over us. At our table, we were reminded by our friend, Ron, that God has a destiny in His Kingdom for each of the children at the table--our newest daughter brought out and read Psalm 100 to us, and Dad blessed us by speaking a blessing over us and then by leading us to Zephaniah where he spoke of God's loving heart over us:
"The LORD your God is with you. He is a hero who saves you. He happily rejoices over you, renews you with his love, and celebrates over you with shouts of joy."
Zephaniah 3:17 --This Word was not only an encouragement to our family but was prophetic--the next day our newest daughter gave her life to Christ, her hero!!

Mom had to cook TWO turkeys to feed us all and to send us home with wonderful leftovers. Graham had spent all of Wednesday baking pies--he made apple crumble, 2 pumpkin,and a pecan--on his own!!--am I a blessed mother or what!! We definately had stuffed tummies--I think many people went back for THIRDS!! What a feast day it was!!

And then the kids played games and did Turkey shooting for the afternoon (NO electronics except for some football on T.V.--Yeay!!)--silly,creative, and fun fellowship!--the headbands are via my mom who has a gift for teaching children and for making life joyful --she has such a nack for keeping things on the silly side ;).

Blessings to you in the love of the Savior who is our Life, our Bread, our daily Hero :).

Love, Gillian

P.S. We have specific children not photographed here due to State requirements--but I so wish you could see thier beautiful faces and the joy on them these days!!

Saturday, November 28, 2009

First Thanksgiving then SHOUTS of Praise!!

FIRST we are so Thankful for THIS:
A member of our household accepted Jesus as her Savior yesterday--it was Glorious!! Thank you Jesus!! The first "fish" I have ever seen who just "jumped into the boat"! We give God noisy,joyful praise and thanksgiving for saving this soul He brought into our midst this August--Wow--the ultimate of privileges to watch Him bring lambs into His fold--(Ezekial 34) THAT's WHY we adopt and foster--THAT's IT!!!The reason for laying our life down for kids--lives saved from the inside out--its just not about beds or filling up bellies--we have done this--but it is so superseded by the eternal reward and glory of real salvation in an endlessly loving Father God who has searched for these precious hearts, made in His image--searched all over His world to find them--then He carries them home--through our home--On His shoulders shouting, "Come, celebrate with me!! I have found one who is my own!!" Oh, what a party we had yesterday in our kitchen, just jumping up and down with this precious girl who wants to be a Bride of the coming Christ!--She now has FOREVER family--from fostering to adopted into THE KINGs family--WOW--I'm just undone. And that we are now true family with this beautiful one is the gift of gifts--that God can do that in a moment and keep it into eternity--words can't express what a miracle Salvation is!! Thanksgiving for the Savior's eternal gift of His presence and salvation--WOW!!

Our second thanksgiving is a very speedy answer to our request for transportation for the Tucker Ten. In less than a week God showered His care on us via the Edge community--our foster children's home church. We were blown away by a generous offering that they took up for the ministry God has gotten going here in our home. In addition, a loving family member placed another generous gift in Richard's hand this week--we were able to not only fix the Suburban's transmission but have more to apply to other family needs--What an incredible blessing--we praise our sweet Abba-- His care comes right on time -- EVERY TIME--that's why we consider it so important to praise Him even before we see the answers to our prayers and needs--He doesn't need to prove His goodness to us but we sure are thankful for it!!!!!!

So thankful to be God's kids! There's no other place to live. We bless our sweet Daddy's name!!!!!

Enter into his gates with thanksgiving, and into his courts with praise: be thankful to him, and bless his name.

I'll send our silly photos of Thanksgiving times tomorrow but for today a mighty SHOUT of thanks was in order!!

Much Love, Gillian

Sunday, November 22, 2009

Its Just a Matter of Time...Tucker Car Need :)

We are blogging to give you front seats to a miracle! I have just received a phone call from Richard saying that our Suburban just "died" in Mount Eagle, TN on the way back from going to a family wedding in Atlanta. This is hitting me with such joy--yes, I said joy!! A year ago both of our cars died at the same time and we had none for a week until God stepped in and provided for 2 cars for our family. He's about to provide again!! I can't wait to see what He's up to.

Being a missionary-type family these days we are finding out OVER and OVER how God brings in what we need RIGHT ON TIME. Just this week He has already shown up at our home with a car load and 2 laundry baskets full of food on the very day we wondered how we would fill our pantry this month--then He showered on more suprise blessings on Richard in Atlanta, SURELY this car situation is not a problem that is beyond His incredible scope!! He is aware and loves the fact that we now need to lean on Him for our transportation needs as well.

We already have been stretching it --not fitting into our mini van and even the Suburban with the 8 kids now and have been praying for God to provide a 12-15 passenger van for our famiy--perhaps this is not lack we are experiencing but a movement of grace to receive more of what we need.

I'm writing now because this takes a measure of Faith in Him to declare that I truly believe He is loving us largly in this moment and that He has this all under control--we are not alarmed or depressed--He has taken too good of care of us in the past for that type of anxiety--I do believe that we will have a miracle report to share with you all this week--whether that is that He provides for the Suburban to be fixed or provides another vehicle. Please pray for us as we wait on God to provide for us. He loves us just as much now with one car for 10 people as He did when we had 2 cars--He's a loving provider.

If God may be prompting you as you read this to be hands that He uses to provide a vehicle or funding towards it, please contact Richard at or 615-545-2265.

We believe the Bible when it says, "Call unto me and I will answer you and show you great and mighty things that you do not know of yet."

And as God is so GOOD to do, He is strongly pressing this song on my heart and lips right now--please receive it as a gift from my full heart today.

Love, Gillian

Like a rushing river am I
Like a raging torrent inside
I find that I'm full of knowing nothing
I find that I hunger for the fullness of Christ

Like a rushing river am I
Like a raging torrent inside
I find that I"m free-falling again
I'm letting go of the mountain view
Letting go, but what into?

Like a rushing river am I
Like a raging torrent inside
I find that I'm full of knowing nothing
I find that I'm hungry for the fullness of Christ

Like a rushing river am I
Like a raging torrent inside
I find that I"m free-falling again
I'm letting go of the mountain view
Letting go, but what into?

I've been crucified with Christ
I've been crucified with Christ
I've been crucified with Christ
Yet not I, but one thing I know

You make all things beautiful
You make all things beautiful
You make all things beautiful
Just in time
Just in time

You make all things beautiful
You make all things beautiful
You make all things beautiful
Just in time
It's just a matter of time, time
It's just a matter of time

So into Your hands
Into Your hands I fall
Into Your hands
Into Your hands I fall
Into Your hands
So into Your hands I fall

For You make all things beautiful
You make all things beautiful
You make all things beautiful
Just in time
It's just a matter of time, time, time
It's just a matter of time, time, time

On You I wait
On You I wait
On You I wait
All of my days

And on You I wait
On You I wait always
On You I wait
All of my days
All of my days

No one who waits on You will ever be ashamed
No one who waits will ever be disappointed
It's just a matter of time
It's just a matter of time

So calm down, my soul
Calm down and know
So calm down, my soul
Calm down and know

His yoke is easy
His burden is light
It simply costs everything
But it's not too mysterious
It's not for the wise in their own eyes
It's not for the mighty of the rich
But He has saved Himself for me
But He has saved Himself for me

So calm down, my soul
Just calm down and know
Just calm down, my soul
Just calm down and know

No one who waits on the Lord will ever be ashamed
For wisdom will be justified
In just a matter of time, time, time
It's just a matter of time, time, time

And You make all things beautiful
You make all things beautiful
You make all things beautiful
Just in time
It's just a matter of time
It's just a matter of time

Calm down, my soul
Be quiet within me
And put your trust in God
From where your help comes from
From where your help comes from
Just calm down, my soul, and wait
It's just a matter of time
It's just a matter of time

Saturday, November 21, 2009

BIIIG Shirt and Smiley Thanks

Smiles from you today :)
Posting some thankfulness as we head into Thanksgiving week.
These photos are from Father's Day 2008 but they are so precious just had to share them today.
The children are wearing Daddy's shirt.

Reminds me of what we must look like to Jesus as we are growing up clothed in His Righteousness,approval, delight, and compassion. And this is what we are most thankful for--to be in His family!!

Thankful for times like last night when my Mom came to babysit while my Dad and I went out on a "date" how sweet is that?! You never grow too old to adore being with your Dad! Again, thanksgiving...

Thankful for the provision for our big crew.
We are living off of and in His miracles every day. I would'nt have it any other way!
Thankful for all the laughter and Life God is bringing to our home --
Thankful that He has brought the mission field literally to our door

The M. children are FREE!!!!!!
Thank you for your prayers for them.
And PLEASE continue to pray them home.
Thier rescue was powerful and miraculous--so the hand of God.
We can't wait to love on them!!!!!!!!!
See Tracy's blog, Unveiled Faces, on the side bar to the right of this post!
Oh, how thankful we are in the amazing rescuing hand of our Father!!!!
Thankful, Thankful, Thankful!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Monday, November 16, 2009

Go Buy Oil

Misty Edwards--Matthew 25 Song (11.37 minutes)

This message burns on my heart and defines my time and my ways these days...loving entreaty from a loving Savior from Jesus' living Words of Matthew 25:1-13

But the busy shining their lamps...forgot to get the oil.

...And the 5 who were wise will say to the foolish:

Go Buy Oil

For Yourself.

You have to

Take the Time


Know Him for Yourself.

They say,

Go Buy Oil

I counsel you.

Buy it Now.

Go Buy Oil...

Before it is Too Late.

I counsel you Now

Buy GOLD Refined

in the Fire.

Take the Time

From the Inside Out

Take the Time to Be Aquainted

with the Holy Spirit and the Word

Before it is Too Late...

Cultivating the Oil of Intimacy
(Mike Bickle--One Thing Conference 09)


Saturday, November 14, 2009

Living Water 4 U

May I Pray for You?

Lately, God has been pressing on my heart that some of you have the need for someone to lift you up in prayer. If you have any prayer needs large or small please feel free to email me personally at a new email account I have just created for intercession. I will personally and seriously take your request before God and will pray over you through using God's Word (the Bible) as well. Any requests would be held in strict confidentiality.

Love and Grace,

Let my prayer come to you, O Lord; give ear to my requests for your grace; keep faith with me, and give me an answer in your righteousness...

Psalm 143:1

Monday, November 9, 2009

Richard's BIG day!!

SOMEBODY just had a BIG birthday!! Entrance into a new decade :)! Happy Birthday to a Godly, Tender, Courageous, Joyful, Hard-Workin' man. We honor my Husband, our Dad, and , "Mr. Richard" this -- you are God's blessing to us!! Love you, Hon!!

Affectionate Father

Hero and Champion!!

Hands-on Dad

Man of Faith--Passing Truth to a New Generation

Ever the Awesome Coach

Love, Gillian

Sunday, November 8, 2009

The Glue in You

All Things Hold Together in Christ

Be Encouraged today, precious people,

For by Him all things were created: things in heaven and on earth, visible and invisible,whether thrones or powers or rulers or authorities; all things were created by him and for him.
He is before all things and in Him all things hold together. (Colossians 1:16:17)

Now Let's Worship Him!--How can we not?

Blessings in our Amazing Jesus,


Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Our Family's Theme Song--Please be Blessed With this Video!

This is our family's theme song these days--can you see why?
Our God can be downright obvious/even humorous when He wants to get our attention!!
The night we made the decision to take in our 2 new foster children, Richard went to a gala hosted by our Adoption Agency, AWAA. Brit Nicole was the featured guest that night. Late that evening Richard called home, I could hear this song in the background. "Gillian," he whispered in a voice choked by tears,"do you hear that, Gill? Lets go get em."

Ever since, in almost EVERY instance where we have rejoiced over the miracle of these children or needed to be encouraged to keep going, THIS song has played--either over Christian radio--or floating in from my children's IPODs or just in "random" places--coming on RIGHT as we pile in the car from a family hike or starting just as Richard and I drive off to complete a tough task for DCS requirements, playing in the house as we deliberate on tough issues or wipe tears away in discouragement. "Stand Back UP, Sweet Children--the Lost Get Found--I'm not giving up on them. I'm not giving up on you..." we hear the Spirit tell us. Often its RIGHT in the middle of a crisis or an amazing victory--
By now the intent of encouragement from the hand of the Lord with this song is SO obvious that our preschoolers and our new foster children are cheering as they hear it come on!! Truly a family fav.!! :)
The Lost Get Found--for sure!!

AND He is so faithful to Keep saving us EVERY day--
He just won't let us give up on plans that He has started
cause what he wills He completes--

making sure we are enduring to the end--

that the found STAY found.

Nothing can snatch them from the Savior's hands!!

And for that, I am so grateful.

If you find yourself Lost, Know HE is searching to FIND you today,

And if you are blessed to be of the number of the FOUND,

Thank Him,

Reach out to His Lost Ones,

For you are held SO tightly--He does anything to keep you near and strengthened --even if that may include singing to you from the radio every day :)!! Listen for how He may be speaking to you.

Much Love today to the Lost and Found,



Lyrics to The Lost Get Found by Brit Nicole

Hello my friend
I remember when you were
So alive with your wide eyes
Then the light that you had in your heart was stolen
Now you say that it ain't worth stayin'
You wanna run but you're hesitatin'
I'm talkin' to me

Don't let your lights go down
Don't let your fire burn out
'Cause somewhere, somebody needs a reason to believe
Why don't you rise up now?
Don't be afraid to stand out
That's how the lost get found
The lost get found

So when you get the chance
Are you gonna take it?
There's a really big world at your fingertips
And you know you have the chance to change it
There's a girl on the streets, she's cryin'
There's a man whose faith is dyin'
Love is calling you

Don't let your lights go down
Don't let your fire burn out
'Cause somewhere, somebody needs a reason to believe
Why don't you rise up now?
Don't be afraid to stand out
That's how the lost get found
The lost get found

Why do we go with the flow
Or take an easier road?
Why are we playin' it safe?
Love came to show us the way
Love is a chance we should take
I'm movin' out of the way

Don't let your lights go down
Don't let your fire burn out
'Cause somewhere, somebody needs a reason to believe
(Stand out)
Don't let your lights go down
Don't let your fire burn out
(Stand out)
'Cause somewhere, somebody needs a reason to believe
Why don't you rise up now?
Don't be afraid to stand out
That's how the lost get found
The lost get found

So when you get the chance
Are you gonna take it?
There's a really big world at your fingertips
And you know you have the chance to change it


Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Fullness at His Feet

Play the triangle at the bottom of this frame to hear the song...

Servant Of All - Misty Edwards from Forerunner Music on Vimeo.

Servant of All by Misty Edwards

I wanna be with You
where You are
You're the Servant of all

I'm in love with a King
who became a slave
And I'm love with a God
who is humble
And you gotta go down
if you wanna go up
And you've got to go lower
if you want to go higher and higher
And you've got to hide and do it in secret
if you wanna be seen by God

Cos' it's the inside, outside, upside down kingdom
where you lose to gain and you die to live

I wanna be Your lover
so show me how to go how to go lower
For in the depths I will find You
where You're serving my brothers


It's not easy laying it down every day.
Its sooo hard...

Choosing to go into or to stay in places where pain or the woundedness of the world is found... Many times recently I have wanted to shake off the yucky places of this world and just walk on by--maybe sprint back to the comfortable places where I know life "worked so well".

A daily challenge.

I need this reminder and God has been speaking it so clearly to me in the past months:

"If anyone would come after me, he must deny himself and take up his cross and follow me. For whoever wants to save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for me will find it. What good will it be for a man if he gains the whole world,yet forfeits his soul? Or what can a man give in exchange for his soul?" Matthew 16:24-26

One thing I have and I am currently experiencing however is, the "finding" of Life (in surrender or service that lays "me" aside) is so much greater than the losing. Real satisfaction, true JOY, amazing fellowship with a living God bubbles up here--that living water Jesus talked about.

I was just reminded today that life through/in Christ is like a river that rushes to the lowest place.

The lower the place,
the fuller it will become with His living water
(the fullness of His presence)
as His river of living water rushes in.
That's where I want to choose to be...

May we make conscious decisions to go to the lower place
--instead of
the shining place,
or maybe the pleasurable place,
the place of escape,
the prominent place,
the place at the top of that social ladder,
the place of revelling in our own giftings,
or, perhaps,a place of savouring past hurts and wounds,
perhaps a place that only may contain our own desires and wants

--the list could go on and on--

and yet--

there's a different destination than what our culture and time, "the world" has to offer--

but where we'll find the sweetness of our His feet...

pouring out our lives

like water...

and finding that



in the Deep Waters there...



Thursday, October 29, 2009

Daisy, Daisy, Ava Aday -- We love you!

We picked this cheery flower for you today :).

It is the Aday flower--

the Ethiopian version of the American Daisy.

Aday flowers grow on the high plains of Ethiopia in April--
the month we went to pick up our precious children.

I have shared recently about how we "picked" out--
how God picked out
Bruik's name.

Ava's name story is just as special.

Often as we prayed for Ava and gazed at her referral photo in the months between our referral and when we traveled, I would talk with God about a name for her.

Over and over my heart was impressed that our family needed the delicacy and tender beauty of this fragile "flower" before me in our little photo.

We desired much out of a name!! For both children, we wanted to have a name that reflected their unique identity--what kind of a gift they were from God, a family name from our heritage, and an Ethiopian name to celebrate their beautiful culture and heritage.

Ava's original Ethiopian name meant "one who cries out loudly" and while that makes me smile now cause she really IS a loud one :)--this name was not going to do for it was given by her nannies at the orphanage and was related to how she was found on the streets of Addis Ababa.

Instead, she was named, Ava, meaning, "Breath of Life", and she would share my middle name, Leigh--NOW for the ET. name,--not just any name would do,--I searched high and low for Ethiopian flower names and found the beautiful flower above--a tiny yellow daisy that blooms only in the month we were to pick her up and bring her into our arms--perfect!

Ava Aday-Leigh... so many international children could use some extra spaces on name forms, right, adoptive parents?

But here's where our story takes on the fingerprints of God...

What a JOY it was to meet our little Aday flower--she was as beautiful and bright and tender as a little wildflower for sure.

As we brought Bruik and Ava onto the plane--into all the newness of a first sight of a plane, first ride on an elevator, first experience in close spaces with so many pale faces :),first tastes, sights, smells...the children did remarkably well. They joyfully bounced up and down in their seats as Bruik sang this specific song we assumed from the orphanage over and over. Over and over he sang to Ava to make her smile and to calm her down. The song worked every time and went something like,

"Aw wah et
Lah Lem" (repeat)

Throughout our first year, whenever the children needed a special connection --they would speak toddler speak in Amharic (their language) and jump up and down Ethiopian-style and sing this happy little song. Its a song that can go on and on but that remains sounding really sweet--especially watching the sweet bond --Bruik protecting and enjoying--and Ava trusting and giggling.

About a year and a half later, on my birthday, we went to our favorite Ethiopian restaurant in town, Abay. We had become friends with the manager and on occasion had tried singing this little song to him to find out what it was. It never registered--we thought it was something cute the children had made up or a toddlerized version of another song.

On this night, however, a new waitress came to our table and after some conversation we asked this young Ethiopian girl if we could sing her our little song. She laughed, we attempted and pretty much embarrassed ourselves in front of a roomful of Ethiopian nationals enjoying their dinners. BUT our new friend's eyes immediately lit up and she began to sing WITH us--she filled in all the gaps of our little song with Amharic words and song. We stopped singing and listened to the completion of what we had only heard in snippets. It was a gorgeous song!

"OOOOOHHHH..." she smiled at us
"That is the song that little Ethiopian girls sing. Each year they sing this song as they go from house to house bringing flowers at our new year. They first go out into the fields and pick ADAY flowers and then they carry them from house to house singing this song about the ADAY flower."

I jumped up and down and clapped my hands in delight--I must have looked like my little children in their joy as they sung this song so often!

The song Bruik had been singing to comfort Ava all those months was HER NAME!!
What confirmation for us that God had chosen that name (and I thought I was being so clever/creative when I first found it :)-ha!)

As we tend to and delight in the Aday flower in the colorful array of our family bouquet we are so humbled to see that it was truly God's hand that reached out and picked her for us.

God's hands are always busy tending to what He loves most. The orphaned, the lost, the wounded, the lonely, those in distress, the widowed, the forgotten... I just am thrilled to hear stories like this one ALL THE TIME from those who are choosing to walk in places alongside of those who particularly touch His heart. We currently are experiencing stories like this one almost every day with our new foster children. Just storing them up--one day perhaps we'll have the permission to share them--until then (keep praying us along please!!) we live so amazed at the power and LOVE of a loving FATHER God who is ALL about transformation -- hope and a future for each of our lives.



American Black-Eyed Susan Flowers

P.S. A Shout out to the REDINGTON family--see their link on the side of my blog to their blog "Journey of Hope". They have JUST brought their little girl, Wylie, home to her forever family!! They have gone through fire to bring her home--this is a day of rejoicing!! We celebrate with you, dear Redingtons!!

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

What's in your Brownies?

A modern day parable...

Hey, kids!! Your'e home! Hey, come on back to the kitchen--we're making browinies today! You get the mix out...O.K. let's see ...what do we need next...
a little sugar {yum, sugar! who doesn't love it?!!}
some eggs {watch out! They are fragile--they might break!}
salt {make sure its the salty kind--we can't use it if it loses its flavor--taste it, test it to make sure--is it salty? a little goes such a long way! great!! you kids are GREAT bakers!!}
What else do we need...Oh, yes!! OIL {It holds EVERYTHING in the receipe together} Let's pour in the oil and mix it ALL through our receipe

Hmmmmn, kids you know what? These brownies are going to taste terrific? Can't wait to eat em huh? Let me JUST slip in ONE more thing before we bake and eat them up--I saw alot of my friends putting this into their brownies recently. Yeah, it doesn't smell so great's brown isn't it? Yes, it looks kinda gross but we're just putting in SUCH a LITTLE bit and maybe JUST this week we will add in this extra ingredient and then we'll go back to making our brownies the way we usually do. O.K. Let's mix this in--this is going to be FUN--does everyone want a turn stirring? Good JOB. Hey, I know, let's share some of these brownies with the neighborhood kids too--so that we all can try em. GREAT! This is fun--now let's pop them in the oven...setting the timer...

Hey, hand me that bowl over there--wow, it really is stinky, huh? But I sure wouldn't want our friends to not like us if we didn't make brownies like this, this week. We might miss out on some great fellowship--I heard they are even bringing brownies like this to church fellowship groups and celebrations this week in addition to all the brownie parties in the neighborhoods and schools this week. You, know if its being brought to church--it MUST be O.K., right?

DING, DING, DING--Oh, that's the oven buzzer let's take out our treat. Who wants a glass of milk with our brownies today? YUM!! FUN!! Oh, you're welcome!! :)
Yummy, soooo good! Should we pack some up and hand them out now? Great?--Yes, honey, what did you say?--Oh, what was the special ingredient? Is that what you asked? Well I just added in what everyone is adding into baked goods this week...

Dog Poop...

Oh, don't look so horrified!:) was only a little bit...
Now...who wants some more?

A little break down of our receipe and why I'm telling this story this week:

Brownie Receipe is what we are pouring into our children's lives and hearts.
Mix is God's best, His Truth for them, the foundation of God's Word

Sugar--the pleasure this world has to offer can be a gift from God and also a distraction for our hearts

Egg--a reminder that their hearts are fragile. As parents we are the guardians of our children's hearts--our wellspring of Life flows up from well-tended hearts.

Salt--Our value to the Lord and our influence for His Kingdom in our World. Just a little of our influence shines SUCH a long way.

Oil--The abiding presence of the Holy Spirit in us. We are to stay in step with Him. Choosing ways that are not of Him actually brings grief to Him. Every bit of us should be "mixed" with God's holiness--His presence--His anointing--His anointing is light and cannot mix with darkness.

And the mystery ingredient? GROSS!! you say! Yes!! Totally Gross!! But a picture of what so many believers in Christ do every Halloween week. Taking just LITTLE bits from a demonic celebration and injesting them--mixing them into their lives--feeding these elements to their children with much festivity!!

You may have not heard, and if not, you need to know that Halloween is not just about candy, good times, costumes, and acting. NO, the origins of Halloween are downright creepy. As my kids would tell you, I'm sure there are no Halloween celebrations going on in heaven this week and so there will be none at our home either!
Halloween has pagan origins. There is much more history that would be helpful to know but simply, the people worshipped dark spirits and were afraid of the undead who walked on the earth once a year on this night. They would leave treats outside of their door so that demons would not carry them off to Hell--some "trick"!--and the costumes were to hide from the evil spirits as well. Even without knowing this, there are obvious signs that this celebration glorifies death, fear, and witchcraft--

-all things that Christ died on the cross to get VICTORY over!!

There just is NO fellowship light with darkness.
In fact--when light appears--the dark must run away!

Many, many cool and nice people--really likable people that I know celebrate Halloween--some only in measure. But PLEASE remember the brownies--even a little bit -- is dangerous. If I am now not "likeable" for writing this post to you, that's really o.k. with me for although I like you very much, I love you so much more and needed to share truth with you today.

"This is the message, we heard from Jesus and now declare to you: God is light, and there is no darkness in Him at all. So we are lying if we say we have fellowship with God but go on living in Spiritual darkness; we are not practicing the truth. But if we are living in the light, as God is in the llight, then we have fellowship with each other, and the blood of Jesus, His Son, cleanses us from all sin. If we claim we have no sin, we are only fooling ourselves and not living in the truth. But if we confess our sins to Him, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all wickedness. If we claim we have not sinned, we are calling God a liar andshowing that His word has no place in our hearts." I John 1:5-10 "And this world is fading away, along with everything that people crave. But anyone who does what pleases God will live forever." I John 2:17

"Wake up, for our salvation is nearer now than when we first believed. The night is almost gone; the day of salvation will soon be here. So remove your dark deeds like dirty clothes, and put on the shining armor of right living...clothe yourself with the presence of the Lord Jesus Christ..." Romans 13:11-14

Children of Light--don't eat the brownies!!

Love, Gillian