We have just finished making our 500 piece puzzle of Natasha and Maxim and we are selling each piece for $5 each! Once a piece is purchased, we will write the name of the sponsor on the back and join it together with the others in hopes to complete it entirely, all while raising a crucial $2500 to help finish all the documentation needed to file for our court date. This is a great opportunity to sew into the lives of two orphaned children for less than the price of a value meal at McDonald's! Once we complete the puzzle we will display it in a two sided glass frame in our house so that Natasha and Maxim can see all the people God used to bring them home! To purchase, simply click the "donate" button on the right hand side of this blog and continue through paypal. Please write in the notes field "Puzzle Fundraiser" and be sure to list the name you would like listed on the piece. Thank you in advance!
Another fundraiser we would like to introduce at the same time is Patches of Hope. A dear friend is going to make a beautiful, unique quilt for each child. Upon each purchased square the donor can either have their name, scripture or message sewn onto their square and when complete will provide a blanket of love, hope and faith in Jesus to Natasha and Maxim to wrap themselves in. Each square is $25 and can be purchased through the same "Donate" button. Just be sure to write in the notes field "Quilt Fundraiser" and list what you would like to have sewn into the patch. This too will provide the crucial funds needed to help us complete our paperwork and prepare for travel and attorney expenses that are soon to come.
Thank you again for all your prayers, encouragement and support as our family steps out of the boat and onto the raging sea. $30,000 can seem like an unreachable mountain that can shadow our dreams of our completed family. BUT our faith in Jesus and His promises to finish what He has started continue to shine a light into this unknown darkness and will lead us to Natasha and Maxim. Please prayerfully consider how you can help. Feel free to share our blog with you friends and family.
Love and Blessings,
Friday, March 25, 2011
Sunday, March 20, 2011
Thursday, March 17, 2011
Natasha and Maxim live in an orphanage in Ukraine. They have been there, as far as we know, about 5 or 6 years. They were raised by a single mom that died while they were young but not so young that they don't remember. They had no other family and so they were sent to the orphanage. They have an older sister who has already aged out of the orphanage. Usually, this is at age 16, but if you have a younger sibling they will allow you to stay until you finish the 9th grade. Natasha is in the 8th grade, therefore would only get to live there one more year. We could tell that Natasha was just like a mother to Maxim. We couldn't imagine what would happen to him after she left. He looks to her for everything. As these children are forced out of the orphanage at such a young age, they do what they have to do to survive. We have been told that people are entering their orphanages, getting to know the girls that are getting ready to leave, enticing them, slipping drugs to them and getting them hooked on them so they will have to do bad things to make money when they leave. Some may get to attend a trade school only to get out and never to be able to get a job because they are an "orphan". They are looked down upon like it is their fault that their life has turned out that way. We believe that the Lord has given us the opportunity to give them a chance at life. Natasha and Maxim were both very sweet children while they visited with us this past Christmas. We were told by their orphanage director that they were both very sweet and helpful children. Natasha was very quiet. You could tell that her heart has been broken and it took about the entire time they were here to gain her trust. We did see so much hope for her life. We can't wait to see how God's plan unfolds for them both. Maxim opened up quicker but still seemed scared. We have to think how hard it must be to come to a foreign country as a child and not be able to understand anyone, but like I was told one day, love is a universal language, and it was. But as time went by he had a big smile on his face as he laughed all the time. They both brought much joy into our home. We can't wait for them to get to know everyone and for everyone to get to know them. I know they will be so blessed as well as you. Much love to you all!
Sunday, March 13, 2011
I am so excited to finally get to share the journey God has led us on. In the beginning the Lord first touched Brad's heart in a big way for these children who had no family to love and care for them. Me, I honestly was scared to death to even think about being able to give one of these children all they would possibly need. I've always felt like I could hardly give my own children what they needed much less anyone else. I fought it for awhile then realized truly how God could change my life if I just stepped out of my comfort zone. This is where I finally allowed the Lord to step in and take over. I will never forget the words of our youth minister one night say, "If you are out of your comfort zone, your probably right where God wants you to be." Well as uncomfortable as I was, going through this, I was so excited to know that I must be where God wants me. And as hard as this has been for me, my life has already been changed forever. I never want to turn back and miss all God wants to do in my family's life and all involved. Every fear that could possibly surface in me has, but how exciting it has been to see my Lord have victory in them. People would say," What will this do to your children?" Well we have found that this is part of God's plan in making them the man and lady of God he wants them to be. We already see how God is changing their lives also. He is molding us all to put put our minds on others and not ourselves. We have been praying for the Lord to give us new hearts like His. We are literally seeing our prayer answered right before our eyes. How awesome it is to be a part of God's amazing plan to change two children's lives and realize that our lives are being changed just as much if not more! How AWESOME our God truly is!!!!