Six Months HOME!

I cannot believe our sweet boys have been home for HALF A YEAR!!!

In some ways it seems like the fastest six months of our lives.

October 19, 2019 changed our lives forever. The boys arriving home made us a family of four and Reid and I became parents to two little boys, Frank age 5 and Blaise age 4.

There is no question that those first days were HARD. Our boys lives had been radically changed and everything they knew before was completely different half a world away.

We could not communicate in speech due to different languages spoken but oh, how we could communicate in LOVE-a universal language.

The first couple of months we worked on bonding and building the boys trust to know that we will forever take care and provide for their every need. In January, we entered a new season of having a child in Kindergarten and one in Pre-K.

The boys have truly adjusted better than we ever could have imagined. If you have met them, or honestly, just seen a picture of them- you know their joy is palpable. They are so happy. They radiate joy and are FUN to be around.

Seeing their eyes light up with each new experience and get so excited to tell us about new things they see or do is magical. It often times feels like Christmas morning again and again.

As much joy as there has been there has also been hard moments too.

Many times people will say, “Those boys are so lucky” Referring to them being lucky that they were adopted into our family.

You see, the boys are not lucky. There is nothing lucky about being an orphan, enduring trauma, and being placed into a new family. That is not the way I wish their story was written. In a perfect world, there would be no need for adoption.

And then I am reminded of the gospel. In a perfect world, we would not have brokenness to endure. Praise the Lord for adoption and God adopting us into his family in the midst of our broken world. What a gift.

So, no, our boys are not lucky, but their story will always reflect the love of our heavenly Father. Their presence in our family leads to questions and those questions ultimately lead to Jesus. And that is more than we could ever ask for!

We have learned that new normals aren’t always as scary as they seem from a distance. As humans, we naturally worship our own comfort. It would have been so easy to stay in the comfort of life of just Reid and I. But, if we would have continued to worship our own comfort and be scared of the thought of adoption…we would have missed the greatest gift ever granted to us. The honor of raising Frank and Blaise and teaching them about the greatest love story- the story of the Gospel and the love their Heavenly Father has for them.

Friends, adoption is scary. There is so many unknowns. I get that. But if adoption has been laid on your heart- Go for it. Go for it scared knowing that God is in every detail.

Adoption is a gift that we get to open everyday. A gift that we will never take lightly. A gift that brings us so many unknowns but so much joy as we navigate this new life together. Hand in hand and trusting God with every step we take. He makes all things beautiful!

Thank you for your love and support of our family. You all have blessed us in ways we will never be able to repay but we have learned much from your generosity and vow to pass that on to others.

ALL OUR LOVE!
Team Barker Party of FOUR

THIRTY TWO

What a blessing it is to see another year. I have always LOVED birthdays and celebrating life. That love only magnified after my life-saving liver transplant in 2014.

I have seen many people post that birthdays during quarantine were not what they expected. Isn’t that life always? Six years ago when I was 25 years old anticipating turning 26… I would have never expected to be a liver transplant recipient and in transplant clinic learning about what would be my new life at age 26. I never expected having a hysterectomy at 28 and this year I never would have expected to be the Mama of two beautiful boys from Burundi, Africa at age 32.

Life is full of the unexpected. Life is full of struggles and valleys. Life is full of joy and mountaintops.

One thing that we will always be guaranteed in this life is trials. Not one of us is immune to the suffering and trials that this life can bring.

When I have been blessed to have the opportunity to share our testimony, I love sharing 1 Peter 5:10-11

  • And after you have suffered a little while, the God of all grace, who has called you to his eternal glory in Christ, will himself restore, confirm, strengthen, and establish you. 11 To him be the dominion forever and ever. Amen.

After you have suffered a little while, that little while means a lifetime. We are guaranteed suffering in this life. And we WILL have suffering, until Christ returns.

But the God of ALL grace, promises us that he will restore, strengthen, and confirm us on firm foundation in eternity.

Our sufferings ultimately lead us towards an unimaginable Glory that is awaiting us.

We must believe these promises as we go into the suffering that He has called us into because they will sustain us through the hardest of times.

We are promised, that through our sufferings, we can carry HOPE because of the miracle of Christ. The miracle that we celebrate as we are walking into Holy Week this week of Easter…Christ dying on the cross to forgive us of our sins and make a way for an eternity with Him. The miracle we have all been given to accept freely. A promise that as Christians, allows us to suffer differently.

A promise that we will see that loved one again, we will not loose the health battle anymore, we will no longer be weak from our sufferings taking away our strength.

So, in your suffering, remember the miracle of our salvation. Trusting and knowing the beauty of the miracle of eternity that is awaiting us. We must LIVE EXPECTANT OF THIS MIRACLE!

During this season, may we find peace in knowing that our richest fellowship with Jesus is not in our days of comfort. In these days of suffering is when we can feel God’s presence the greatest.

Yes, these days and celebrations may not be what we expected but what a GIFT to be able to carry HOPE and celebrate the greatest gift that will ever be given to us.

As I turn 32, my daily prayer is that I remember…

His past faithfulness demands my present trust.

He is sovereign and the HOPE that I can carry in the midst of my sufferings daily is the most beautiful gift!

Praying for you today and during this season!

Love, Lisa