Friday, December 26, 2008
Last year...well I didn't do a Christmas card because I was so excited to send out birth announcements and I am cheap so I didn't want to spend the money on postage for Christmas cards AND Birth Announcements...well I did the same this year! Friends are probably wondering...but I AM SAVING MY POSTAGE FOR BIRTH ANNOUNCEMENTS! So weird...but I just can't put "The Gerdes Family" on the Christmas Card...we are missing someone for the picture. I cant wait for that day...can you even imagine that sweet little coco love bug next to the sweet little vanilla 4 year old we already have. What an adorable picture that will be!!!
All I wanted for Christmas was a healthy baby...maybe my Christmas will come later!!!
Thursday, December 4, 2008
Our meeting went wonderfully...Jason and I had so many light bulb moments sitting in Cindy's office. We were there for several hours and when we left we felt more educated in the area of adoption and we knew we were making the right decision by using New Life.
I remember leaving the agency and crying, my heart already yearning to receive a child. Little did I know...I wasn't ready to receive a child then. God has had to do a lot of breaking and molding on my heart, that's why the "wait" is such a learning experience. But I wouldn't trade it for the world.
After our meeting with the agency we began ALL of our paper work...I worked so hard to get all of it done REALLY FAST.
And well....we are done with everything we need to be done with...and we are just waiting on the call. A call that will forever change our lives. A call that will tell us we have been chosen.
So, today marks ONE YEAR.
Wednesday, December 3, 2008
I am on a roller coaster ride...it was SO fun at the beginning but I am getting a little sick to my stomach now. Don't get me wrong, I am still learning every day, still trusting everyday....but I am ready to get off the roller coaster ride and then look back and go...WOW that was FUN...and I want to do it again.
Jackson and I went to Target tonight and he totally cracked me up about how he thought all the baby stuff was "SO CUTE." He wants his baby brother or sister...or both....to be the best dressed child EVER. He told me last night, "Mom, I am really ready to be a big brother." And he is thrilled.
Jason is ready to be a daddy...again. I know that when he sees our precious treasure he will be filled with so many emotions. I can't wait for him to hold our gift in his arms, that will be one of the most wonderful moments for me. I love the way he looks when he is holding a baby...something totally dreamy about him.
I am getting ready to be a mommy again...the emotions I have are so deep and so strong, I sometimes want to break out in a song and do a little jig. I can't even believe that God loves me so much that he is going to give us another child. Children really are a reward!!!
My family is ready for this precious baby. Mom and I almost couldn't help ourselves the day after Thanksgiving...we wanted to shop for a baby so bad. I showed her outfits that she HAD to get once we find out if we are getting a boy or girl...they were MUST HAVES...I'm serious!
My friends...oh how precious they are. They have literally GOTTEN ON THE ROLLER COASTER with me!!! I am forever thankful for how they have been devoted to pray for our family, our baby, and our birthmom.
My heart aches daily for our birthmom, we don't know her yet, but I can't wait to talk to her. My dear, sweet, precious, really hottt, best friend....told me tonight..."Linds I wish you could do a phone interview with the birthmom's that are looking at your profile." I know why she said that....when I start talking about our birthmom, my heart is OVERFLOWING with JOY. I CAN NOT WAIT TO MEET THIS WOMAN...I can not wait to see her face, touch her skin, love on her, pray over her, touch her belly (okay so maybe not all of these things will happen...she is going to think I am crazy). I just simply cant wait to express LOVE and GRATITUDE to her. She is BRAVE, COURAGEOUS, SPECIAL, and if she chooses...she will ALWAYS be a part of our family.
This morning I felt the Lord telling me..."Linds, your family's time is coming." I hope I heard that right and that it wasn't my imagination.
Oh my heart is leaping with pure excitement...I cant wait to change diapers, get up in the middle of the night to do feedings (uh...Jason...help), I cant wait to hear that precious cry, I cant wait to have a baby in the house again....oh help me Jesus. I am going to remind myself of this post....at 3:30am when sweet baby ISN'T SLEEPING.
Lord, you hear me...you know my hearts desire. You know that I wanted to adopt from early on in my life and its been a journey to get me HERE...and I love you MORE today than I ever thought possible. Bring our child home, please. I pray for your protection over the baby, the health of the baby and the health of the birthmom. I give you all the glory!!! Thank you for adoption. Thank you for adopting me, thank you for making me your own, thank you for letting me be your chosen treasure. I owe my life to you!
Tuesday, November 18, 2008
I'm totally there right now. I had it all figured out in my HEAD how our whole entire adoption journey was going to be played out. But God is doing something new and fresh in me...I'm scared to death but I love that HE KNOWS what I can handle.
November is Adoption Awareness Month. I have been challenged this month in my thinking about adoption...James 1:27 is SO clear...look after orphans and widows in their DISTRESS. It doesn't say...look after orphans and widows who are perfect, have it all together, healthy, look like you, smell like you, act like you, same color as you...NO...it says in their DISTRESS care for them. Haven't we all been in distress at some point...and haven't we all desired to be cared for.
I am challenging myself and my heart (and brain) to be more concerned with the orphans and widows than "what I want my family to look like." What will you do...will you care for orphans and widows? What if they are in distress?? Will you still care??
***Obviously I want our child to be healthy...I'm not saying I am not going to continue to pray for our baby to be a healthy child...I just want us to think about the DISTRESS part of that verse.
Monday, October 27, 2008
Please pray that the cluster headaches DON'T come back....they can be reoccurring. Also, please keep praying for the strength to continue on this adoption journey. It is emotionally draining...I need an extra dose of Gods grace, mercy, and strength!
Friday, October 17, 2008
Last Thursday I began having really bad headaches that continued until Monday morning and I couldn't take it anymore so Jason took me to the doctor. The doctor diagnosed me with Cluster Headaches. Its a severe debilitating headache behind my eye and temple and the pain shoots down into my neck and shoulder. They did blood work on Tuesday and an MRI on Wednesday. We have been trying to find something that would relieve the pressure and pain and I think, after 4 different meds, that we have finally found something...but its been a whole week with severe blinding pain. We hope to get the results back from the blood work and MRI on Monday. These cluster headaches are worse then anything I have ever experienced. Please be praying that we get good results on Monday, that the meds will continue to work, and that my blurry vision in my right eye would clear up! My mom flew here and is helping Jason with Jackson, please pray for Jason as he is doing all of the jobs I normally do along with everything else he has on his plate.
Also, please continue to pray for the adoption. God is so amazing at his timing and we are trusting in HIS amazing truths! God's been teaching me this last week, while I have been laying on my back, about how faithful he is! I want to share some of those things but that will have to be another post!!!
By the way...the best thing that happened this week is that my blog got a NEW LOOK!!! I love it!
Love you all
Wednesday, October 15, 2008
Monday, October 6, 2008
(I took this picture the other day in Kohl's...baby fever!)
When we first started our adoption journey we wanted a little boy and we were going to name him Nathan. But we quickly realized with our agency that we couldn't pick the gender of our child, we couldn't specify a boy or a girl. At first I was so upset and confused because I really thought we were being called to bring another little boy into our family through adoption. I remember sitting at my kitchen table, reading a letter from New Life, informing me that we couldn't pick the gender of our child. Floods of emotions ran over me.
"Okay God, I thought you wanted us to adopt a boy...and I know you want us to use New Life...so WHATS UP." I threw myself a quick pitty party and then just sat there with my head on the table...what was the Lord up to??
Here is where the lesson has been learned. God KNEW that Jackson Gray Gerdes was going to be born to US...Jason and Lindsey. He knew that before Jason and I even conceived that little bundle of joy. We didn't care if we had a boy or girl, we just wanted a HEALTHY, sleep through night, loves people, full of joy, world changer BABY!!! And praise you LORD...even though he is only 4, he changes my world every day and brings JOY to people. God knew.
So with our adoption underway I am trusting, knowing that God still KNOWS!!! Its weird going to Target or cute baby boutiques and really wanting to buy baby stuff and not knowing if I should buy girl or boy clothes. I bet God gets a kick out of me in those stores...."Linds, I know what you will hold." Makes me want to shout for JOY (side note: God if you could just give us a glimpse of what is ours or should I say YOURS).
There aren't any FOR sures when having children biologically or adopting. I couldn't PICK what gender I was going to have...God chose Jackson to be in our family. Just as he has chosen our next baby. Jackson FITS us in every way. I know Nathan and Natalie will FIT as well.
Lord, I Love you! I praise you for adoption. Its such a glorious mystery yet you have it planned out...detail by detail! I am sure you have color coded the WHOLE thing (for those of you who don't know I am an organizational freak). Thank you for being my adoption planner, thank you that I really don't have to wonder...you have it all under control. You know if we will have a NATHAN or a NATALIE...or BOTH (I mean really at this point...go ahead...give us 2). I LOVE YOU! I mean I really love you! Thank you Jesus! Oh yeah by the way...if you give us 2 will you give us a Nanny as well :)
Sunday, October 5, 2008
August 2005: We weren't sure if we were going to do international or domestic. International adoption has always been what I thought we would do. But then one day I came home from a meeting and Jason was sitting at the computer, he had been researching adoption, he said "What do you think about adopting from America and adopting either a bi-racial or African American child." I thought about if for a brief moment and said "YES." We started researching adoption agencies at that moment! Through research we did research international adoption...we still feel called to adopt internationally at some point but know for right now we need to focus on domestic adoption.
Okay so this is where is gets blurry,
from August 2005-August 2007: We were with two different agencies and things just didn't feel right. I cant really explain the the uneasiness but we both knew God had something else.
Finally in September 2007: God opened our eyes to NEW LIFE ADOPTION AGENCY!!!! It was amazing how it happened. We were telling our Pastor that we were really having a hard time find an adoption agency that we felt secure with and passionate about. He told us about New Life, he actually grew up at the church that started New Life. So we gave them a call and they sent us a packet.
October 26th and 27th, 2007: Our wonderful friends put on a Adoption Garage Sale...and we raised $2,700, I was so amazed!
November 29th, 2007: Had our first meeting with New Life. It was amazing! We fell in love with Cindy and she gave us so much encouragement! AND SO MUCH PAPER WORK!!!
January 2008: We went back to New Life for another meeting. This time we met with Sara Black, the director of New Life. This meeting was mainly for Sara to ask us EVERY question you could possibly think of. The women of New Life really get to know the adoptive family, we love this about them.
February 13th, 2008: We completed our Home Study. Sara drove to Corpus and spent some time with Jackson and also spent time looking around our home. I was so nervous...I mean I was freaking out on the inside. But it went great! Our family LOVES Sara and Cindy! These women have really been amazing...its worth using New Life just to get to know them. They are incredible women who love Jesus, love birth moms, love babies, and love adoptive families...and they both have adopted so THEY GET IT!!!!
From January 20078- March 2008: We were doing LOTS of paper work, having our house inspected, reading lots of books and doing reports, getting check ups from our doctor, TB test, working on our profile, and working on picture pages of ourselves for our birth mom to look at. And PRAYING!!!! (still doing that)
May 3rd, 2008: Adoption Training at New Life
August 21st, 2008: We had another visit by Sara Black. Every 6 months until the adoption in finalized our agency comes for a visit!
September 2008 and October 2008: Waiting!!!! But God is at work and he is bringing people into my "world" with a passion for adoption. The people I am getting to connect with are amazing and its really helping during this time of waiting!!!
*I am going to look through my calendar and make sure I didn't forget anything!!!
Thursday, October 2, 2008
Okay so I emailed our adoption agency last week and said "UH why isn't this happening faster." Our wonderful adoption director, Cindy, asked if she could give my email address to another family that has recently adopted from New Life...so the wife could encourage me. Obviously I said YES.
I received an email from Heather, the encourager, just several days later. It was so nice to have someone "get" my feelings and not think I am totally crazy. Adoption is hard and it hurts! Its like nothing I have ever experienced. In our case its been SLOW.
But something I have been reminded of over the last several days....from Jason, Heather, and my wonderful BIBLE (oh yes this is the book for me) is that God IS working! We don't always see it but he IS working! I can rest in HIM knowing that he has EVERYTHING under his wings! I CAN have faith in the unseen and I don't have to fear the unknown.
I wonder what he is getting us prepared for? I wonder what its going to be like that precious day we hold our CHOSEN treasure.
God is working in me. God is working in Jason. God is working in our marriage. God is working in our family. God is working in our ministry. God is working in US so he can do something through US. He is working...and I trust he is working on bringing our child or children home to us (SOON???).
Several scriptures that I read today were specifically written for me to read at this very moment in time:
Psalm 127:3 "Children are a gift from the Lord; they are a reward from him."
John 15:4-5 "Remain in me, and I will remain in you. For a branch cannot produce fruit if it is severed from the vine, and you cannot be fruitful unless you remain in me. Yes, I am the vine; you are the branches. Those who remain in me, and I in them, will produce much fruit. For apart from me you can do nothing."
I am going to REMAIN in HIM and know he will bear fruit in my life...I just have to REMAIN in him...the REWARD will come...I must REMAIN to RECEIVE my REWARD!!!
I praise you Jesus, I praise you that you desire for me to produce fruit. I will remain in you...all the reward I need is to know you love me but I know you have promised EVEN more! I wait upon the fruit, the reward! I give you glory in advance...for this fruit that you will produce...OH ITS YOURS!!! Thank you for being my resting place. Thank you for being SO ON TIME!!! Thank you for working even though I can't see! I trust you Jesus!
Tuesday, July 8, 2008
I spoke to our wonderful adoption agency today...still the same news, but I am encouraged. I have a prayer request...Please be praying that birthmom's would find out about our agency and actually have the courage to go to them for help. I am trusting like never before, our birthmom is out there, she just needs to KNOW about NEW LIFE Adoption Agency. Obviously God is going to lead her there eventually...hopefully soon. So that's my prayer request for today.
Lord, please lead our birthmom to New Life. Where ever she might be RIGHT now I pray Lord that she would some how find out about New Life and CONTACT them right away. What a glorious day it will be when I meet her face to face. Lord, if she feels ashamed or guilty for what has happened...please Jesus give her peace and mercy and the courage to come in and get help. Lord she will never be too far gone...YOU WILL RESTORE!!! Praise you Lord that Nathan or Natalie are NOT a mistake...THEY ARE NOT A MISTAKE...they were planned from the moment you created the universe!
I love you Jesus...I'm not enjoying this waiting time but I am enjoying learning from you.
Monday, June 30, 2008
I really want this # to appear and then to hear Sarah or Cindy say "Lindsey, yall have been chosen." I might pass out! I am not joking, hopefully I will be with Jason when it happens so he can catch me before I fall. Its like taking a pregnancy test and waiting to see if it gives the + sign...I jumped and acted like a crazy person...along with shaking and freaking out! I can't wait to have that feeling again.
Please Lord...let something amazing happen this week! Give us some flicker of light in this adoption tunnel we are in. Thank you Lord that you already have this ALL figured out.
Monday, June 23, 2008
Is it the constant waiting? The endless hours of paperwork? The comments from people who just have NO idea what adoption is about? Is it the pain I feel every time in my heart knowing that the child God created for me is NOT yet in my arms?
What is it? The Hardest Part??
Is it seeing children around town...my eyes have never been so drawn to bi-racial children. And for some reason I see their wonderful faces more and more with each passing day.
Each day we wait I love our baby more. Each day we wait...it gets harder. If I pause long enough during my day to think about it...well the water works begin to flow.
Is the hardest part knowing that my life, our life, will drastically change when our baby is given to us? Will the baby bond to us? Will Jackson freak out? Heck, will I freak out??
I think the hardest part is just not knowing...but PRAISE YOU LORD that you know EVERY detail.
God we are yours...we say YES...even to the HARDEST PART.
Saturday, May 31, 2008
Well! Guess what...we are STILL waiting. UHHHH!!! Its a little frustrating but I do know that my GOD is SO in control. If you all could please be praying for our baby to come home to us soon...we would really appreciate it. We are waiting on a birthmom to pick us and once that happens we will have a little more information on when we will have our precious child. BUT WHEW...we could totally use your prayers.
Love you all
Monday, May 5, 2008
- Lord, I know you are knitting Nat(i)e in their birth mother's womb. Thank you Lord for creating their inmost being. Keep Nat(i)e in your perfect hands...knit away God!!!
5. For I know the plans I have for you," declares the LORD, "plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future. Jeremiah 29:11
- Thank you Lord for the peace in knowing that you already have Nat(i)e's life all planned out. You created plans to give him/her a hope and a future, Lord you WANT him/her to prosper and to not be harmed.
6. You have not handed me over to the enemy but have set my feet in a spacious place. Psalm 31:8
- Thank you Lord that this precious child is coming into this world with their feet set upon a spacious place. Even in the tough days to come we praise you that Nat(i)e's feet are upon a spacious, solid ROCK!!! This child wasn't handed over to the enemy but HELD by our Savior!!!
1.Even before he made the world, God loved us and chose us in Christ to be holy and without fault in his eyes. Eph 1:4
- Oh Lord, please reveal to Nat(i)e early on that you chose them, they are not a mistake but chosen by you to be Holy and without fault in your eyes. May they feel your LOVE...for you loved them even before you created the world.
- Thank you Lord that you adopted Nat(i)e into your family, praise you Lord that you KNEW in advance. Thank you Lord that your adopted child brings you great pleasure.
- Even though Nat(i)e will not be genetically mine, he/she will be genetically YOURS...and since I am genetically yours as well...I have the freedom to know that Nat(i)e and I are bonded genetically together through you.
- Lord I can trust in you, knowing that Nat(i)e will receive an inheritance from you and that you will work everything out in Nat(i)e's life according to your plan. Thank you Father for choosing this child IN ADVANCE.
Every time we meet with our agency it makes us want Nathan or Natalie even more, the wait is really hard. Sometimes I find myself waking up several times in the night just longing to have our baby here with us. I KNOW its God's timing, but I still desire for it to be SOON!!! Every morning when I wake up I think, "today could be the day that our birthmom chooses us." What an awesome day that will be when we get that call.
I cant even explain the emotions that I have experienced on this journey. Some days I am fearful, some days I am overcome with joy, some days I feel so burdened for our birthmom, some days I have a huge sense of peace, some days I weep and then laugh, some days I wonder if we are doing the right thing, some days I wonder if our baby will love us and appreciate us...basically EVERY day I feel some emotion that either makes my heart ache or jump for joy. The main thing is that Jason and I are faithful to this calling of adoption. This is a ministry for us, yes this baby will be our family, but we are preparing for a spiritual battle...just like how we prepare for ministry. We know there will be challenges and rewards to this journey, Oh Lord go before us and hem us in.
***For us to get chosen by a birthmom!!!
1. Healthy Baby
2.Strength for our birthmom, she is so courageous, I can't imagine the range of emotions she will be having! That she is making healthy, wise decisions. For her support system, please Lord put people around her that love her and can encourage her.
3. For the birthfather to relinquish rights and for him to not cause any drama!
4. For the relationship that we will have with the birthmom and birthfather! I know people don't understand open adoption, but wow its a beautiful thing if handled correctly! Thank goodness our agency is amazing at communicating to the birthfamily and the adoptive family. (sorry to those of you who feel uncomfortable with open adoption, but this is what we are choosing for our family.)
5.For attachment with our sweet baby. We will be doing different techniques to help this process along, but ultimately we just need Jesus to be our attachment expert and help this baby attach to his mommy and daddy. THIS IS HUGE!!!!
6.For Jackson and the baby to attach fast...I hope and pray that Jackson falls in love with our new baby and that he will blossom even more into the little man that God has created him to be.
7. The stigma of adoption, especially since our child will be a different color than us. But HELLO, its just a color...and our Creator created every color...so get over it!!! Not to sound harsh, I know this will be a hard reality for many...oh but what a privilege we have to love this baby, this baby was predestined FOR US (Eph 1). I want people to see our baby the way God sees our baby. A gift, a treasure, a glorious expression of God's love for us and for life, a miracle, NOT a mistake...but a child with a purpose. (Jason told me tonight at supper that he was going to jack anyone who thought otherwise...obviously he probably wont pounce on someone...but this our baby, our child, MY CHILD...I am protective of my babies.)
8.For our families...mom and dad...I know you are taking on my dreams when it comes to adoption. I know that Jason and I are called to do this, I know it doesn't always make sense...but thanks for being supportive. I know you didn't have to take this calling on as your own...just remember that this baby is just as much your grandchild as Jackson is. This baby was predestined to be loved by his gg and poppy and what an amazing set of grandparents he/she is getting.
9.Nate or Natie's purpose...OH LORD...We give you this gift right back, he/she is YOURS...use Nat(i)e for your glory, your honor, your desires. I pray that many people will be changed by the life they lead. I want nothing more than for Nat(i)e to follow you, seek you, serve you, desire you, long for you, worship you...I pray that we will see fruit Jesus!!!
Well I know there are many other aspects that we have to be praying for...JESUS COVER THIS SITUATION!!! I can't tell you how many times I lay this child at God's feet, only to pick them up the next day. I do the same with Jackson, I give him over everyday but then feel like I am more capable than my Heavenly Father...Thank you for my children, but I know they are yours. I pray you will look at me Lord, and say Well Done, MY GOOD AND FAITHFUL SERVANT...and if that means me giving up all rights, and just seeking you daily...then I GIVE UP!!! This life is yours...mine, Jason's, Jacks, Nat(i)e...and any other life you choose to bless us with!
I love you Jesus!! I love that you have called us to this point, continue to comfort me and show me your truths.
I love you family...you have blessed us with your love and support...we need YOU!
Happy Fall Y’allWe hope this fall season is going great for you and your family. Our family loves fall and all the change of colors it brings. As we start our journey this season we can’t wait to share something with you God has put deep within our hearts.
Over the last several years God has put a desire within our family to “add” to the Gerdes clan. Through prayer we realized this “addition” would not be a biological birth but a birth from the heart. YES…we are adopting and we are so thrilled we can barely contain ourselves!
We are so thankful for this opportunity and we can’t wait to see God bless this desire. We are asking our friends and family to come alongside us during this adoption journey and pray for the process and the child that God has hand-picked for us! I have chills just thinking that God already knows the exact child who will be placed with us! I love God’s creative conception…don’t you?
Here are some areas that we would love for you to pray over:
1. The financial side of the adoption. We are trusting God to provide in this area! ***God provided in this area before we even had our 2nd visit with the adoption agency!
2. We are hoping to adopt a bi-racial little boy or girl. Nathan (boy) or Natalie (girl)
3. For Nat(i)e's birth mother. That she would be taking care of herself during her pregnancy.
4. For Nat(i)e to be born healthy and continue to be healthy.
5. For the adoption process to go smoothly.
6. For our agency, New Life Adoption Agency. That they would place us with the child that God has designed for us.
7. For the transition once we bring Nat(i)e home.
8. For Jackson! To be the greatest big brother ever!
9. For Jason and I as we learn to parent two children and provide for them!
10. For Nat(i)e’s spiritual journey! That God would use him/her in an amazing way to reach the lost!
We count it a joy to have friends and family who are passionate about following Christ! We truly believe we are following after the purpose God has set forth for us. Please join with us as we travel on this adoption journey! There will be ups and downs, and we are trying to prepare ourselves, but I know that if you join us in prayer and petition this journey will be filled with miracles and joyful moments!
Thank You so much and we love you dearly!
Jason, Lindsey, and Jackson Gerdes
***Keep coming back to my blog for updates!
Our journey began 2 1/2 years ago, God put a huge burden in our hearts and we went forward with this calling. We worked with two adoption agencies and through the process saw many red flags. Now we are working with the best agency ever, NEW LIFE ADOPTION AGENCY. They are passionate about adoption and we are so thankful for the love they have for our family.
The Blog is called "A Chosen Treasure" because God has chosen this child (Eph 1:4, 11)...and we know that he/she will be a treasure. Our baby's name will either be Nathan (boy) or Natalie (girl). I will refer to them as Nat(i)e...thanks for joining in on our journey of adoption!