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April 12, 2017

Hope on the Horizon: Remembering Dr. Karyn Purvis

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1 year ago today, Dr. Karyn Purvis–internationally renowned child development expert, popular speaker, author, and passionate advocate for vulnerable children–went to be with the Lord. On August 20, 2014, several of foster care’s leading thinkers met in Oklahoma City to share ideas that are making a difference. Dr. Karyn Purvis–with her trademark compassion and her hair cut short from the effects of cancer–shared many thoughts with the group. Here are a few highlights– God has a plan. We serve a God of extravagant love. It’s the God of extravagant love that we see in the Gospels when parents bring their children to Jesus. He scoops them up in His arms and He holds them and He blesses them. And He gives them all that He is. That’s extravagant love. This God that we serve also has an extravagant plan. And even when we don’t think the plan worked, there’s still a plan. This is the God … Continue reading

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April 10, 2017

Come Be Part of the Mission in Haiti!

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You are invited to stay and work with our team in the new Guest House in Bercy, Haiti! We are excited to announce that the new Guest House is available to welcome church groups this summer. Come be part of what God is doing in Haiti!   View a Sample Itinerary The goal of Lifesong Open Arms Haiti is to care for the physical, spiritual, educational, and future employment needs of nearly 300 orphaned and vulnerable children, raising leaders of faith who will impact the nation of Haiti. Additionally, Lifesong Open Arms Haiti joyfully employs indigenous workers in their self-sustaining business initiatives. With the Guest House now open and ready for teams to come and stay, you can see Lifesong Open Arms for yourself and participate in ministry opportunities such as– feeding program kids club soccer program movie night with community evangelism home visits prayer walking in the community   Accommodations for the newly open Guest … Continue reading

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April 7, 2017

Why One Couple Chose to Adopt a Child with Special Needs

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Dear Lifesong, “Conlan, come hooooome!” our 4-year-old son, Lachlan, cried out for months. And now, he is. Conlan made us into a family of four in April 2016 and we are so thankful for the Lord’s provision in our journey to and through adoption. Lachlan was actually one of the catalysts in our pursuit of special needs adoption. Born with a rare brain malformation and muscular dystrophy, his intrinsic value, no matter how long his list of diagnoses grows, is God-breathed, and we are joyful and thankful for his life. We wanted to be family for another child whose needs might be considered daunting, knowing that it’s not by our own strength that we forge through uncharted seas. And while we know the real journey has only begun, we are so grateful that Conlan is finally home. He’s a nurturing, silly, observant 3-year-old who fits so well with our family. … Continue reading

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April 5, 2017

How to Breathe Life into Your Church Adoption Culture

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Adoptive families crave authentic, supportive community, and there should be no better place to find it than in the local church. Plain and simply, when families step into foster care and adoption, they enter the pain and suffering of another human being. In doing so, they often become the brokenhearted. In taking on the burdens once belonging solely to the child in their care, parents become the weary, discouraged, and overwhelmed in need of a timely word or helping hand. The church, by its very definition, exists for hurting people and should be the safest place for families to find the hope that exists in Christ. Here are 3 ways to breathe life into your church’s adoption culture– 1. Encourage truth. The “How are you? —Fine” scenario is cliche in our culture, but it shouldn’t be the pattern in our church family. As foster/adoptive parents bring wounded children into the church assembly–some of whom … Continue reading

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March 31, 2017

The Impact of an Unexpected Meeting

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God’s hand was all over our journey to Hezekiah. I can barely contain the tears of gratefulness when I reflect on any part of it. When my husband and I became aware of this particular situation involving special needs, we had that peace that surpasses understanding. It wasn’t that we didn’t see or understand all of the potential medical problems or developmental challenges; we saw those, but– God’s grace was sufficient in our weakness, just as He promised it would be. When we looked at the $35,000 agency fee and knew we didn’t have enough money, we trusted that God would either provide us the miraculous outpouring of funds or He would give us the self-discipline and wisdom to pay off the debt. An Unexpected Meeting The day we found out his mother wanted us to be his forever family we sent an email to all of our family and friends … Continue reading

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March 29, 2017

Growing Closer: 7 Practical Considerations for Bonding

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A family formed by choice inherently comes with questions, fears, and challenges regarding bonding. Here are 7 things to consider– 1. Keep things simple. “One of the most powerful parenting strategies we have used with the greatest amount of immediate and visible, long lasting healing has also been one of the easiest: Holding. Although we naturally did this with our biological son, we intentionally do this with our adopted children. Holding your adopted child is nurturing and gentle, and it’s powerful, because the holding increases and mobilizes development within a child.” –Amy, adoptive mom and blogger @tinygreenelephants.com 2. Remind yourself that you and your child ultimately want many of the same things–love, acceptance, family, familiarity. It is not you against this child. It is you and this child against this child’s history. –Dr. Karyn Purvis, The Connected Child 3. Acknowledge the loss(es). “Our children want what they have lost, and so do we. They … Continue reading

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March 27, 2017

The Secret to the Great Escape from Poverty | Guatemala Update

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Projects that give life and dignity and replace negative experiences with positive ones–like our recent trip to the beach–are possible because of people like you. One of our teams at Village of Hope sponsored a field trip in February to Montericco Beach, which is about 4 hours away. A Guatemalan Road Trip is much like an American Road Trip! We packed a cooler full of snacks, the kids sang songs and played games, and we even had to take a potty break on the side of the highway for one of the kids. “¿Cuanto tiempo falta?” (How much longer?) was a popular phrase that day. However, there are a few differences: most cars here max out at 40 MPH, we were never more than 5 minutes from hot fresh tortillas, and we had to stop 5 or 6 times on the side of the highway to pour water on the engine of our bus. … Continue reading

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