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Latest News Tag: Parenting

May 17, 2017

What a Birth Mother Needs You to Know

birth mother

I often told my son’s adoptive mother how much I loved her and was thankful she was a part of my life. But, like many things I’ve told her over the years, Kathy would already know. Back in 1985 I chose open adoption for my son. Being a birthmother has changed my life forever, and I know that becoming an adoptive parent changed Kathy’s, too. We’ve traveled the road of adoption together, with respect and honesty. We’ve shared our hopes, our fears, and our dreams for the boy we both love. However, often adoptive parents do not get the chance to build this type of relationship with their child’s birthmother. While most domestic adoptions are open, most children adopted from other countries are not. This disconnect from a child’s beginnings can make it difficult for adoptive parents to provide answers their child will need as they grow and explore the … Continue reading

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May 12, 2017

What Every (Adoptive) Mom Wants to Hear This Mother’s Day

mothers-day

Let’s be honest. Motherhood is a tough job … harder than anyone ever warned us it would be. Ever notice how your fellow mom friends strategically failed to communicate the realities of sleepless nights, potty training, or mom brain? And let’s not even start with mom guilt. It’s motherhood’s best-kept secret. As an adoptive mom, I’ll just say it: From the moment you sign the dotted line on those adoption papers, your life changed. But 5 years out, I also have good news: It’s worth it. 3 thoughts to consider this Mother’s Day (courtesy of my mom friends who finally started talking)– 1. Motherhood is forever, but the seasons are temporary. Ecclesiastes 3 begins with the words, “For everything there is a season, and a time for every matter under heaven.” So, too, there are seasons of motherhood, and specifically seasons for the mom who adopted. You may wrestle with a season of guilt over raising … Continue reading

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May 10, 2017

5 Quick Thoughts for the Weary

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In the midst of another long week? Here are 5 quick thoughts to consider when you are weary– 1. God delights to use dust. “God loves to take the dust of our shattered places and do something miraculous with it.” –Lysa TerKeurst, Proverbs 31 Ministries 2. God desires to draw you close. “Stay close to the heart of the Father; that is what the world needs most from you.” –Jedd Medefind, author and president of Christian Alliance for Orphans 3. God loves you perfectly. “Christ’s love compels us. It is inexhaustible.” –Steven Curtis Chapman, singer, song writer, and founder of Show Hope 4. God is enough.  “Do not make yourself the center of your story. Let others see Jesus at the center.” — Peter Greer, president and CEO of HOPE International 5. God gives grace. “But he said to me, ‘My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.’ Therefore I will … Continue reading

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April 26, 2017

Life Touching Life: How to Create a Culture of Commitment

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The statistics are sobering. 75% of foster parents no longer foster after their first placement, and as many as 1 out of 4 adoptions dissolve or disrupt. Fostering and adopting is hard work, plain and simply. But our relational God made us to be relational, and created a way for families to be encouraged while doing the hard, daily work of loving the fatherless and vulnerable. His solution?–the Church. When a church family wholeheartedly commits to its fostering and adoptive families for the long haul, children are best positioned to succeed. But it often begins with an organized, committed adoption/foster care ministry within the church. Here are 3 specific guidelines for creating a culture of commitment in your adoption/foster care ministry– 1. Connect. Foster and adoptive parents cannot thrive in isolation. Goal: Create an environment where families feel connected–connected to the adoption/foster care ministry, yes, but more importantly, connected to each other. The only thing that grows well in the dark … Continue reading

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April 19, 2017

We Needed Our Church | Mission Moment

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  Andy and Abby Huette know first-hand the powerful impact of being loved and supported by their church family during and after an adoption. In 2008 the couple joined a short-term mission team to Lifesong School in Zambia where God broke their hearts for the orphan. Leaving the children of Zambia to return home was hard, and Andy and Abby felt confident they would someday pursue adoption. How It All Began Abby was ready to start the adoption process when their only child was 9 months old. And while Andy–a pastor–felt it was critically important to lead his church family by example to love the fatherless, he thought maybe adoption was something they should pursue later–when they didn’t already have a new baby in the home. But God had different plans. While sitting at a McDonald’s one morning, Andy began reading in Deuteronomy while listening to music through his earbuds. He arrived at Deuteronomy 6:6-7: And these words that I command you today shall be on your heart. You shall … 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 29, 2017

Growing Closer: 7 Practical Considerations for Bonding

growing-closer

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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