Family Life

Where will a teenager go when she becomes pregnant outside marriage? To her parents or to her friends? To the pregnancy care center or to Planned Parenthood? To her church or to the abortion clinic?

Death is certain. It’s good to prepare for eternity, and to give at least one day to prepare for your last days here on earth.

In 2007, Carolyn Cavanaugh shared the story of how she and her husband adopted their son from Korea. It was a tale of joy and of learning forgiveness. As we'll see in the following update, the legacy that began in 1924 when her father was adopted has not yet ended.

About four years ago, the phone rang. It was our son, asking if we still had any of his old toys. He and his wife had become foster parents for four young children. 

We said yes, and planned a quick trip from Michigan to Tennessee to deliver the them and meet our foster grandchildren. 

This was not their first time as foster parents. Some experiences were very brief, some ended in the children being adopted by other families. We didn't always get updates on the children, but we prayed they were thriving in good homes.

The path to becoming a foster parent is very rigorous, about the same as for adoption. It's not easy to handle children who've been in less-than-ideal situations. I admire foster parents so much because they try to help troubled kids. 

We arrived at their home at suppertime. Our son introduced us to the children between bites of pizza. The youngest was a six-month old baby. Her brother and sisters were two, four, and six years old -- all eager for us to play with them.

After eating, my son asked me to wash the four-year-old's hands. We went into the bathroom, I turned on the water, and she looked up at me with big, innocent eyes and asked, “Are you Grandma?” 

Oh my! I gulped and tried to think of an answer, since we weren’t yet officially Grandpa and Grandma, only FOSTER Grandpa and Grandma. I evaded the issue until I could talk to our son. 

He said they'd been telling the kids, "Grandpa and Grandma are coming," so yes, I was a Grandma. Wow! The thought overwhelmed me. I’m suddenly a Grandma four times over!

The next morning they were all up early, ready to play. Soon all four were bouncing and crawling around on our bed. What a hoot! This Grandpa and Grandma gig could be fun!

Too soon, it was time to head home. A bigger piece of our hearts was left in Tennessee, and we began to seriously consider moving there. 

The old saying, “Man plans, God laughs,” became very apparent to us. Not long after our trip, my husband learned he was being laid off. But then, a couple days later, he was offered a position with the same company . . . in Nashville!

From our new vantage point we were able to follow first-hand the court proceedings for our son and daughter-in-law to adopt the children. There were many ups and downs, with progress being made by fits and starts. 

In November of 2012, my husband and I watched the kids for a week while Mommy and Daddy took a trip. Being over the Thanksgiving holiday, this kept Grandpa and Grandma busy!

While still "recovering" from this adventure, a text message arrived on the following Tuesday saying, “Congratulations, Grandma! The adoptions are finalized!” 

Was the wait really over? Were they finally and forever part of the family? It was so hard to believe, but our praises ascended to God. 

Christmas that year was certainly extra special. Since then, the grandkids have really settled in. Three out of four are now in school. They've all come a long way, and we're so proud of them.

It's been amazing to see the hand of God at work, even when it has required patience and looking back with a clearer eye than when you're in the midst of the situation. 

Thus continues the story of building a family through love, acceptance, and adoption. A number of cousins, great-nieces and nephews, and others have joined my family through adoption. It all began with the adoption of my father as a very young infant by a young couple, Alex and Edwina Wingeier, ninety years ago.

Who knows what the Lord has in store for our family as the years go on? Stay tuned! God is not finished with us yet.

For the most part, our mailbox at the Post Office contains checks, bills, and advertisements, but very little personal correspondence. That's why a pink, hand-written envelope stood out this week. Inside was a thank-you card. What had we ever done for Crystal in West Virginia?

Turns out she wanted to express gratitude to us "for defending our unborn neighbors," and to share her testimony. She wrote:

I am a birthmother in open adoption. I placed my only child with a wonderful adoptive family I chose for him at the time of his birth 11 years ago.

Since then we have formed a loving, open relationship. We stay in touch by email and snail mail, telephone, and visits a few times a year. They consider me a part of their extended family. He knows the "whole" story and calls me by my first name. He won't have to wonder who he is biologically, or suffer the "primal wound" symptoms that those in the closed adoption system endure.

I chose adoption for his life because I have no family here. . . . He is safe, loved, and has a beautiful stable family that love me too.

I saw the hand of God move during my crisis pregnancy and my prayers are for every unborn child and person in a crisis pregnancy on this earth.

I pray that our story will move others by giving them an option of life and still being able to show love to their child.

I thank God my son is safe.

We thank God too! What a wonderful testimony of the blessing of adoption. As she noted from Deuteronomy 30:19, "Choose life so that you and your children may live."

The good news: being pro-life is no longer the number-one reason Christians are disliked. The bad news: that ranking has been replaced by another of our dearly held beliefs -- the sanctity of marriage. Throw in our "anti-science" viewpoints -- doubt over evolution and man-made climate change -- and it certainly looks as though we're going to continue to be "on the wrong side of history" (according to opinion shapers) and unlikely to win future popularity contests.

That isn't such a bad thing.

Consider how the ancient Egyptians felt about God's chosen people. Twice in Genesis (a major source for our troublesome worldview) Hebrews were said to be "loathsome" to the dominant culture (NASV). Even though they were linked by blood to a national hero, Gen. 43:32 basically says Egyptians detested the thought of eating with Hebrews. 

Their occupation was another strike against them. Gen. 46:34 says, "every shepherd is an abomination to the Egyptians" (NKJV). Note that every shepherd was repulsive, no matter the nationality and no matter how agreeable or well-connected the individual might be. Too bad shepherding happened to be the Hebrews' main livelihood.

The third strike against the Hebrews is found in Exodus 8:26, where Moses acknowledged to Pharaoh that their worship practices would also be abhorrent to Egyptians.

How did it feel knowing your very existence was an offense to polite society? That you were considered lowest of the low, disgusting, and even revolting? We may be about to find out.

That could be a good thing. In the case of Israel, prejudice kept them separate and distinct from the surrounding culture. Jacob's family was already predisposed against intermarriage, but even if they'd chosen to assimilate, the Egyptians' disdain would have kept it from happening. 

The result? Somehow, the Hebrews found a way to thrive amid the contempt. Allowed to live apart in their own little corner of the country, they were able to increase in number and grow strong -- so much so that an eventual ruler would become severely alarmed. 

Success brought its own persecution. Oh that this would be the reason American Christians are ill-treated. 

May what was said of them be true of us: "The more [the Egyptians] afflicted them, the more [the people of God] multiplied and spread out." (Exodus 1:12)

How much do you know about President Obama's Health Care package? Does it really include what some are calling a "Death Panel" designed to refuse medical care to those who need it most? Will this cost control work?

These are questions that Howard Dean (former Democratic Presidential Candidate) addressed on Monday. Dean authored an Op-Ed Article in the Wall Street Journal sharing his concerns regarding the law. 

As Obamacare launches, all citizens should ask the following questions: 

  • Who will serve on this committee? Currently the "Death Panel" or IPAB (Independent Panel Advisory Board) will be appointed by the President. In the words of Representative Paul Ryan, the members are "15 unelected, unaccountable bureaucrats in charge of Medicare...”
  • How will it affect the lives of our elderly? Dean claims, “By setting doctor reimbursement rates for Medicare and determining which procedures and drugs will be covered and at what price, the IPAB will be able to stop certain treatments its members do not favor by simply setting rates to levels where no doctor or hospital will perform them."

BUT WHAT CAN YOU DO? 

  1. Become informed. Spend 2 minutes reviewing Dean's article! It will provide the information you need.
  2. Pray. "pray continually," 1 Thessalonians 5:17
  3. Vote. "Rescue those being lead away to death; hold back those staggering towards slaughter. If you say, "We knew nothing about this," does not HE who weighs the heart perceive it? Proverbs 24:!1-12a
  4. Support programs that value the end of life. Do you know about LIFTLIFT is a ministry of compassionate care to people with chronic or terminal illnesses. It includes their loved ones, who are facing extraordinary pressures that can be physically, emotionally, and spiritually draining. 


We worship a God who values all life. Let us committee, together, to follow his lead.

"In their hearts humans plan their course, but the LORD establishes their steps." 

Proverbs 16:9

Each of us make our plans. We diligently pursue what we perceive to be the "perfect path" for our life. We have hopes. We have dreams. We have goals. This is part of what makes us human. 

But what do you do when those "perfect dreams" just don't happen? What do you do when God has another path for you to walk?

This is the story of one man whose "perfect plan" included the birth of a "perfect child". One to match his seemingly "perfect life". A child that would fit within his "picture perfect future". But God knew better. HE knew that this couple didn't need what the world would consider a "perfect child". Instead, they needed the "perfect child for them". A child who would draw them closer to HIMSELF. Making one man more like Christ and less like the world. And how could HIS plan not be "perfect"?

This 15 minute story will make you smile as you cry. It will make you see "perfect love" in the midst of dashed hopes and altered dreams. You won't regret watching. 

"Train a child in the way he should go; even when he is old, he will not depart from it."

Proverbs 22:6

Tonight, as I listen to the neighborhood children playing ball on the street, I am reminded that the Bible commands us to teach them...

Teach them to love the Lord. 

Teach them to fear the Lord.

With fear and love comes obedience and service.

We must share our knowledge, so that they can know HIM. 

Powered by God is a tool that our community can use to share this knowledge with those very children. Visit this website to see this program in action! 

http://www.poweredbygod.org/

Know someone we should talk to that fits one of the following descriptions? 

  • Parent of a 4th-6th grader
  • Grandparent of a middle schooler
  • Teacher
  • Principal
  • Curriculum Director
  • Mentor to young children
  • Media Specialist- Involved in Radio, TV or Web Content
  • Pastor/Youth Minister
  • Counselor
  • Sunday School Volunteer
  • Home School Activist
  • Church Elder or Deacon

Contact Life Matters Worldwide at staff@lifemattersww.org to share the details of who we should be talking to. 

Do Your Kids Like Video Games?

Announcing the amazing, the magnificent, the incredible...Powered by God! 

Are you teaching your children the biblical worldview regarding the sanctity of human life and sexual purity? Do you need tools to help? 

Life Matters Worldwide is pleased to announce Powered by God, a new "tutorial and online game" designed just for you!

Come along and meet 4 characters, who together travel through 13 powerful lessons. Enjoy fun and interactive experiences. Compete with other players. Learn Bible verses and more! 

It is our hope that the Biblical message shared through will be burned into your child's heart and mind.  

The website is free for anyone to use, but several options are available for purchasing downloadable lessons:

$14.95- Per family, in a home-school setting, daily personal devotions, or individuals engaged in discipling a small group of up to five (5) children.

$49.95- Per church or school classroom of 6-35 students.

$74.95- Per single church or school with multiple classrooms and unlimited students.

Click here to learn more

"Hear, O Israel: The Lord our God, the Lord is one. Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength. These commandments that I give you today are to be on your hearts. Impress them on your children. Talk about them when you sit at home and when you walk along the road, when you lie down and when you get up. Tie them as symbols on your hands and bind them on your foreheads. Write them on the door frames of your houses and on your gates."

Deuteronomy 6:4-9

Close you eyes and imagine the following for a moment:

You are a pastor in a foreign country. 

You see needs in the lives of the many people who surround you. 

They face fear, poverty, cultural estrangement and uncertainty due to unwanted  and unexpected pregnancies.

Child are dying everyday.

What do you do?

Western advisers may discuss traditional outreach methods like pregnancy care centers, abstinence programs and education needed for you area. But how do you locate those unwanted children now before it is too late? Before infanticide occurs?

Human ingenuity came to the rescue for one South Korean pastor. With little money and few resources, he installed a "Baby Drop Box" in his church. Click here to read this amazing story!

"Never tell people how to do things. Tell them what to do and they will surprise you with their ingenuity." 

~George S. Patton

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