Current Child Count

  • HOGAR DE AMOR I: 11 babies
  • HOGAR DE AMOR II: 6 boys
  • HOGAR DE AMOR III: 8 girls

Friday, August 14, 2009

dreams, passions, longings

I was just checking in on Beth Moore & daughters’ blog and enjoyed reminiscing after seeing this post “dreams” by Melissa.

My Mom has often pointed out the following about us girls and our passions:

Heather (24) begged to play the violin starting at age 4 (is that right, H?) and a few years later was taking lessons. Till this day violin has been a daily part of her life as she teaches and plays, and even now pursues more training and a full time music career. (She was my kid's first violin teacher, and has played in the Cochabamba Symphony Orchestra, Italy, Austria, and many other countries!)

Emma (10) loves all things outdoor, adventure, exciting, dangerous, military, involving animals, etc., etc. Mom groans to find out what SHE will pursue!

And then me….. Well, to use the words I wrote for another organization's newsletter as we initially started the project of “Casa de Amor Baby Home”:

As long as I can remember, it has been a deep desire of my heart to help hurting children in some lasting way. For a time I thought I would fulfill this desire by becoming a nurse or doctor, but neither seemed to fit. [I remember setting up my dolls in rows, either in an orphanage or hospital.] Most of all I hope to someday be a wife and mother, but how could I serve others in the meantime?

The picture for my years of single service to the Lord began unfolding in 1999 as my family embarked on the journey to bring the newest member of our family home from an orphanage in Russia. Although we did not get to see any other orphans that time, I was hooked—as was every member of my family—and I knew that helping the kids we left behind could easily become my life.

After six more trips to Russia, I began to visit other countries (as long as orphanages were on the itinerary!) with my parent’s blessing to get another perspective on the care of needy children. Everywhere I went I kept my heart open to what God might be telling me to do. My parents assured me that I needn’t worry about it, God would make it absolutely clear where I was to go and what I was to do. The people of Bolivia touched my heart, but little did I realize how my life was about to be woven with theirs. When Mike called with the question that would change our lives again, it might as well have been God speaking right into our hearts. Would my family join the work God is doing in Bolivia by building a children’s home alongside the hospital? After a resounding “YES” we began a journey that challenges us and yet is an exciting adventure.

I often marvel at how God has combined my early longings of helping children in need, street children, and mothers in crisis, with my natural strengths of organization, leadership, administration, and languages, and my interest in the medical field to found and direct this work.

Now back to the "dreams" post on Living Proof Ministries: so far it's garnered 402 comments and I do not possess the patience or time to read through all, but I did read through a portion of them and quickly spotted a pattern. Like this:

When I was a teenager I wanted to be a missionary, pioneering away in a foreign place, loving on some international people, eating non-American food, saving orphans, and living one adventure after the other.

But before any of that could take place....she married. Some women say they even planned to stay single but marriage just snuck up on them! (HA, talk about the opposite of MY story!)

After a hard week of battling rotten feelings of isolation and loneliness, it was an interesting way to feel a tap on the shoulder and the Lord saying "See? If you had married as early as you planned, would you be sitting in your room with your heart full after a joyful afternoon with 20 rescued babies?"

So even though my heart's desire to be a mother to children who will ALWAYS be mine beats stronger than ever, I just had a neat tiny glimpse tonight that God was pretty involved to have set me apart to be right here, right now, no matter how much it pains me to feel my other lifelong dream of a dozen children of my own slipping away. Cuz I'm here, living "one adventure right after the other".

Although there's always adoption to help make up for "lost" time, ~wink~

What about your childhood dreams? Has God brought them to fruition or did He lead you elsewhere?

Yet who knows whether you have come to the kingdom for such a time as this? Esther 4:14

Now that this very full, intense, non-stop week is done (I can hope, right?), I should have time to wrap up the giveaway contest and will also post pictures from the very fun double birthday party today. Wait until you see the cakes!!

Happy Birthday to my Dad, too!


Shonni said...

This was great to read. And reminds me to watch for the LORD's desire for my children.
I always wanted to do what you are doing...ha-ha, and now I am the mother of 10 (and counting). However, those same desires that I had then are being used here in my home and in my country. God always knows if we follow His leading. What an adventure!

Laurel said...

Don't let go of your dreams of being a Mama of Many. God can still fulfill them in mighty ways.

My dear daughter in Argentina KNEW she was called there, but didn't know how that would play out for her desire to be married and raise a family. In the past few months a wonderful young Argentine man has begun pursuing her. He, too, has a passion for missions and a passion for children, and has been on YWAM staff for the past 6 years. We are excited to see if this young man will become a part of our family.

Keep doing the Lord's work and He will fulfill the desires of your heart.

mama of 13

Heather said...

well... I think it was 5 years old, but we may have to check with Mom to completely accurate! What did I know then?!! God has continued to guide... thank you Lord for unanswered prayers!

Kaylene said...

Thanks for this post, Jennifer. I'm anticipating seeing the Lord tie my interests together in service for Him. I have been interested in the medical field for the same reasons. Yet He has not led me to go to nursing school as I had thought I would when I was younger. Thanks for giving us younger folks the advantage of "hindsight" through your testimony of God's orchestration and your decision to trust Him.