Thursday, April 30, 2009

Wednesday, April 29, 2009

New Pictures of Asher

One of our students just got back from Uganda where she was able to meet Asher. Even though she didn't get to spend a lot of time with him, she was able to get a picture. Doesn't he look older than in any of the other pictures?

We also received an email from the U.S. foster coordinator for Amani who gave us a specific prayer request. I'm not sure I understand all the legal jargon, but I certainly appreciate any prayers that you all might lift on our and Asher's behalf, so here it is: please pray for the probation officer and a "clear moment on the docket to get [the custody papers] signed." We had received these papers early in the month and mailed them back to Uganda immediately. I have to confess that I thought the result would be quick and that we would have a court date in Uganda within the month. I am beginning to realize how ignorant I am of how the whole process runs and how the adoption may take longer than I originally thought. I can't tell you how much this hurts my soul. I really wanted to have Asher home at the beginning of the summer so that we could all get acclimated before school/work started back in the fall. It looks like it might take longer than that. Please pray for God's timing, no delays, and as Mary said, a "clear moment on the docket." I know that with God all things are possible and that nothing is too small. May He be glorified through the working out of these details! Your prayers and words of encouragement are so appreciated...and needed!

Sunday, April 26, 2009

Take Me Out to the Ball Game!

Our family spent the entire weekend at the ball park...not playing, but working! Shelly and Bruce Francis, another couple from our school and church who are adopting, coordinate the local ball park's concession stand. They offered to let us work one of the stands as a fund raising opportunity, and we jumped at the chance! The kids love hanging out at the park, seeing their friends, and eating snickers! Thank you to Bruce and Shelly for thinking of us!

We have two other fund raisers coming up the weekend of May 2. Our small group from church came up with the idea of a garage sale, and they--along with other friends--have donated some great furniture, appliances, and accessories. Sylvie is planning on adding a lemonade/cookie stand to go with it! That same night (May 2) we are hosting a Parents' Night Out at the church for kids in K-5th grade. These are the last major fundraisers that we have planned, and we pray that God will multiply our efforts. So many people have helped us on this journey to bring Asher home. We stand in awe of what the Lord is doing! If you get the chance, come on over to the garage sale or the Parents' Night Out. We'd love to see you!

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Things That Last

Jim Elliot once said, "He is no fool who gives up that which he cannot keep to gain that which he cannot lose." I was thinking tonight about the only things that will not be "lost": the Word of God and the souls of men. May God give me the grace and strength to invest in these two things, above all others, with reckless abandonment.

Saturday, April 18, 2009

Asher's Picture Book

We know a young girl, Curry James (, who just left for Uganda to help Katie Davis at Amazima Ministries. While she is in Uganda, she will visit Asher's orphanage. Soooo...we put together a picture book for Curry to take to Asher while she is there. On the inside cover was this inscription:

This book belongs to
Samuel Asher Keck
Love, Mommy and Daddy

Inside the book was a group of pictures of each of us, our house, our dog, and Asher's room. While I wasn't able to get pictures of the book itself, I thought I would include a few of the pictures and the notes that each of us wrote to go inside.

Dear Asher,
I know I haven't met you yet, but I love you already! And I pray for you every night! We can't wait for you to come home. We have your room all ready for you!

Dear Asher,
We have been praying for you for a long time. I can't wait to play with you!

Hey, Asher!
I am your oldest brother. I have been praying for you. I can't wait to meet you!

Hey, Asher!
I am excited to meet you! I hope you like your new room! I can't wait to have lots of fun with you.
Love your brother,

I cannot wait until I meet you.
I love you,

As soon as Asher finds out that he has a forever family, they will give him his book. I cannot tell you how excited we are for him to find out. While we have been going through this adoption process, this thought has come to mind several times: I wonder if this is how God feels about us. He longs for us to know Him, and yet we go through our day sometimes barely aware of His presence, let alone spending quality time with Him. And I know how much I want to shower Asher with love and affection. It's humbling to think that my Heavenly Father feels that same way about me. And while I can't possibly understand it all this side of Heaven, I am beginning to feel His longing for a child that doesn't know Him. This whole adoption process has helped me understand my own orphaned state before God drew me to Himself. And as much as I want Asher to meet his forever mommy and daddy, I can't wait to introduce him to his Heavenly Father!

Saturday, April 11, 2009

Games and Parties and Hunts, Oh My!

Today was a busy day for the Keck family! We had two soccer games, one birthday party, and an Easter egg hunt extraordinaire! While I didn't get any pictures of the soccer games (sorry, Owen!), I did get a few shots of the rest of the activities!

First stop: Andrea's house to pick up some Pampered Chef goodies. Sweet Andrea had a goody bag all ready for Sylvie!

Second stop: Sarah's birthday party...the theme? Bunnies, of course!

Third stop: Myers' Easter Egg Hunt! There was something for every "bunny"!

Food and friends...

Basketball for the big kids...

Dying eggs for the little kids...

Even bunnies...

And they're off!

We had a blast!

And now we're off to get ready for bed in anticipation of the greatest day of our Christian faith. Christ is risen indeed! Happy Resurrection Day!

Friday, April 10, 2009

Post From Owen

This morning Philip invited me to his house. When he came to pick me up, he had a surprise for our family. His mom explained that an incident happened to Philip’s dad and they got some spare money, and Philip chose to give it to us to help bring Asher home. When I saw the envelope, I felt shocked and excited that he would take the money that he could spend on anything and choose to support Asher with it instead. I am glad that my friends care about Asher.


Monday, April 6, 2009

A Picture of God's Provision

Well, I went to pick up the check from our Chick-Fil-A night with the Francises, and the manager said that it was the highest-grossing Spirit Night they have ever had...and did I mention that we spent the entire evening under a tornado warning? Friends who braved the storm to come by Chick-Fil-A told us of two 18-wheelers that were overturned on the interstate just down the road. Now that is some serious support going on! Thank you again to ALL of you who came by. There is NO family like the CPA/CPC family. We could not have done it without you!

Many of you have asked how much money we raised that night. If we add up the receipts from eating, the donating bucket, and general donations that were made by friends and family, Danny and I raised 3,160! Can you believe it? This was just enough money to pay our next fee to the orphanage as well as to finish paying for our I600A. I am reminded that God promises to meet our DAILY needs, not our weekly or monthly, and I am learning what it means to rely on Him on a day-to-day basis. We do not know what the future holds for us on this journey, but we are learning to wait on the Lord. Not only that, but we are EXCITED to see what the Lord has in store for us and for Asher. He has already changed our hearts so much; He has already brought a "great cloud of witnesses" to walk with us and support us.

Asher is truly blessed to be coming home to this group of people. His homecoming is everyone's homecoming. I envision sitting in church that first Sunday home with Asher and looking around at all the people who helped bring him home, and I think that this is what Heaven is going to be like when we get there: a cloud of witnesses standing on the road and cheering us on! It's a beautiful picture, isn't it?

Sunday, April 5, 2009


Sitting in church this morning and listening to the choir sing "Blessed is He Who Comes in the Name of the Lord," I watched as our children's choir processed in waving palm branches. Members of the congregation were craning to get a glimpse of these precious children walking by, and their parents were beaming with pride. I even saw one of the grown-up helpers squatting as he processed in so that he would be the same height as the little ones. I have always loved watching the children sing and worship in church, but this Sunday in particular, I just wept. I could feel and see how much our church family loved these children; the love filled the room. And my mind went to Asher and his friends at the orphanage. They have no forever family to shower them with love this morning. They do not know what it feels like to have a community pledge to help raise them in the nurture and admonition of the Lord. Oh, how I wanted to have Asher with me and to hug him close. Oh, how I long for him to have his forever family!

If you are reading this, will you please pray with me for the children at Amani this morning? Will you please pray that just as God used His power to raise Jesus from the dead, He will use His spirit to comfort and build up these children? That He will put a hedge of protection around them? That He will give the workers at Amani a double portion of His blessing today? My heart aches for these children who are alone, but not as much their Father's heart.

"I will not leave you as orphans; I will come to you." (John 14:18)

Thursday, April 2, 2009

What a Night!

Wow! What a night! Danny and I were worried with the tornado warnings that we would be the only ones eating "mor chikin," but boy, were we wrong! Thank you, friends and family, for coming out tonight in the terrible weather and helping us bring Asher home. You all were amazing! Chick-Fil-A said it was the largest Spirit Night that they can remember. I don't know about that; I just know that I have never felt so much love and support in my life. Danny and I are humbled and taken aback by all those who came by. Our words just cannot thank you enough! We still don't know the total yet, but we know the bottom line: we are lucky to live in this community with this group of friends for such a time as this. We cannot wait to share with Asher how all of you loved and supported him. We are thankful beyond words. Here's just a glimpse of the love we felt tonight:

"Great is the Lord and most worthy of praise; his greatness no one can fathom." (Psalm 145:3)

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

This One's My Favorite!

I think I've mentioned this, but every day I get more and more pictures of Asher from sweet people who have volunteered at Amani in the past. This is the latest picture...and my personal favorite!

P.S. Let me also mention that teaching middle schoolers on April Fools Day can be quite husband's room was turned into a sculpture of desks that had been saran wrapped and duck taped together...I found my stapler in a mold of congealed jello (yep! Just like The Office!)...Let me tell you, 8th graders know how to play a practical joke! And we love them! (the 8th graders, not the jokes)