Abundantly More…

This past Saturday was our Yard Sale Fundraiser…

I had set a personal goal of $300, and after weeks of preparation and organizing I woke up Saturday morning and asked God to show up.

First of all I want to thank ALL of the sweet people who donated their items to our yard sale! We had SOOOO much stuff and it was awesome!

Next I want to thank everyone who took time out of their Saturday to come help set up, sell, and clean up afterward… we seriously could NOT have done this without your help. Shout-outs to: My parents, grandparents, sister, brother-in-law, Walter Tollison, Karen Neal, Justin & Simone Carroll, Kirk & Jen Morris (and Bekah), Lauren Fincher, Brittany Bridwell, Josh Hellums, Andrea Addington, Tiffany Vatakis, Tami & Mackenzie Peterman.

I also want to thank each person who came out to support our yard sale! It was awesome to see so many friends and family members who wanted to help us bring home our baby!

At one point I remember looking around and fighting tears just because of how many of my dear friends showed up to shop our yard sale and how determined they were to come help us out. God taught me so much on Saturday and one of those reminders was simply… you can’t do life alone, and with Jesus it’s pretty much impossible. He continues to send us old friends and new friends to love on us and encourage us daily… these people (you know who you are) have become family… and our child is already blessed to have you in his/her life.

Throughout the day my incredible sister would come empty the cash drawer so that we didn’t have too much at any one point in the day. Around lunchtime we were blown away by how much we had already removed. At that point I decided we would stop counting… I wanted us to wait until the end to count everything out together.

All in all I was floored by the outpouring of love, support, and encouragement shown by our community on Saturday. God pressed into my heart all day that Chip and I are NOT alone in this journey and that the best is yet to come!

After the crowd died down (around 4pm) we decided to take all of the money inside and start counting… so Jessica, Lauren, Simone, and I went inside and began to count. Jessica kept track of the totals—and was the only one who knew the final number. We went back outside to make the big announcement and were surprised when we saw about 5 cars of people STILL shopping. God was not done…

Finally once everyone left we gathered everyone around to hear the totals and to take some pictures… Jessica announced the donations first… which were $325 alone! God provided my personal goal in JUST donations! Then… he opened the floodgates! Our yard sale put us at over $5000 total in our Adoption Fund! I’ll just say that God knows EXACTLY what He is doing and that He already knows how and when He will provide the remaining $10,000.

Ya’ll in just a little over a month we have raised over $5,000! That is PHENOMENAL!! Keep praying, keep sharing our story, and if God lays it on your heart… keep giving. He IS a promise maker AND a promise keeper, and we are humbled that He is giving us front row seats to watch Him work miracles in our life!

This weekend is Easter—the ultimate picture of hope. As believers we know that Jesus conquered death and with it He also conquered every single difficult season we will ever encounter in our lives. Trust Him and He will never let you down!

I’ll close with a note from my journal that I wrote the morning before the yard sale… “In His suffering He thought of me, in my suffering, if I look to Him… He’s all I need.” We love each and every one of you SO SO much and are so excited to see what’s to come!

Again, if you would like to donate you can at http://www.mycaring.com/babyb and if you would like a t-shirt please shoot us an email and we will get your size info and address.

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Mommy To Be

The last few weeks I have sat down to write and just couldn’t find words to put down… I knew that God would stir my heart when the timing was right and give me the words to say, so I stepped away for a little while and waited. Days went by and still nothing… I just couldn’t figure out how to express what I was feeling…until today—and it’s still pretty messy… but I’m going to write it anyway.

I’m scared to death… and have so many feelings going through my mind about this whole “becoming a mother thing.” I know that God is preparing me little by little but so many questions overwhelm me every time I think about the ticking clock getting closer and closer to me becoming a mom.

I cannot describe to you how badly I want to be a mother. It’s so close to real physical heartache sometimes that I have to get my mind off of thinking about our baby. I’ll find myself dreaming about what he/she is going to look like and longing to the baby noises. But in the midst of all of the excitement I also experience real fear about my inadequacies in becoming a mother. I have been so abundantly blessed to grow up with such an incredible example of what a godly mother should look like. My mom was the BEST mom, hands down! Maybe that’s why I am so terrified… I mean how do I just all of a sudden take on all of those traits that she exemplified? Being patient, gentle, kind, loving, creative, fun—while teaching me right from wrong… how do I do that?

I know the “right” answer is that I will grow into that role and that God will give me everything I need to be the mother He wants me to be… but that doesn’t make it any less scary. For me this is like telling someone that they will be sailing a ship soon… could be a month or it could be a year before it happens, but not to worry that when the time comes they will have everything they need in order to be a successful captain. Ok, so it’s not exactly the same thing… but that’s what it feels like to me.

So I’ve started being really blunt in my prayers with Jesus lately… I’m asking Him to make me a mom that will glorify Him. And instead of asking Him to take away my pain/heartache/fear, I’ve asked, “Jesus, let me see you.” Here’s an excerpt from a book I’ve been reading written by our pastor that has really encouraged me in this area, over the last few days…

Every time I’ve walked through the fire, He has allowed me to do so in order for me to see Him more clearly and follow Him more closely. How would we know He’s a healer if we didn’t experience times when we needed to be healed? How would we know He’s a Savior if we didn’t experience things we needed to be saved from? How would we know He’s a provider if we didn’t experience times when we thought we weren’t going to make it? If you feel like you’re walking in a fire that is seven times hotter than you’ve ever experienced, my challenge to you is to pray this bold prayer: “Jesus let me see You. Teach me who You are in this fire.” – Overwhelmed by Perry Noble

I try and stay in touch with my readers on a personal level through social media. Share this post to pass it on, and then click here to find me on Facebook.