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Thursday, February 28, 2013

Blessed for a Global Purpose

Our Lipscomb Basketball Adoption Rally is just three days away, and we are so excited!  Things are all abuzz around here getting ready for the big day.  I have been amazed at how much work some of our friends have put into this event and am so incredibly thankful to them.   Just some of the things they have organized and put together:  a facebook event page (, a letter that went home to every child at Lipscomb Academy Elementary, save-the-date bracelets for every child at school, numerous emails reminding people about the event, online sign-ups for volunteers to help with the event, school parents hosting entire classes for dinner at their home before the game, collected donations (they won't tell us how much) outside of tickets sales, sponsors, custom bags with our logo, tons of t-shirt sales... the list could go on!  Now you see why we are kind of blown away by all that they have done. My favorite part was that they orchestrated (in one day) the most precious chapel last week at school that was completely focused on adoption.  So many children, parents and teachers at Lipscomb have been touched by adoption in some way, and to see them together and hear them speak was such a beautiful thing!  Truly the Spirit was at work in that gym that day!!  I definitely feel the whole chapel had an impact on the kids and all who were there.  

I have set my alarm on my phone for 8:15 am every day for the last month to pray for this event.  My main prayer has not been that a lot of people would come or that we would get a lot of money, (although sure, that would be helpful!) but that many hearts would be moved to care for the fatherless.  I pray that lives of orphans will be forever changed because of the overwhelming power of the Spirit that was at work that night.  I pray that God will work in such a mighty way that people will know that He is the only one that could have pulled something like that off.  This is not about us.  This is not about any of the nine participating families.  It's about God, and what He wants to do for the over 140,000,000 orphans in the world.  And what He wants us to do for them.  That number is stagering to me.  How can you even make a dent in that number?  How can we make a difference?  Well, you can start with one.  We are trying to do that.  Not for our glory, but for His.  And again, not just for this event, but my prayer for this journey is that hearts will feel the call that we have felt.  That people will realize that with God ALL things are possible.  That people will see that this is doable, and honestly, it should be done a lot more often than it is.  It makes me sad when people tell me that they've thought about adoption many times, but just don't think they can afford it.  Well, that might be the case on our own, but we, as God's people, can afford it!  My friend sent me this from a weekly email devotion that she receives from Max Lucado.  The message is simple: 

Two-thousand years ago the disciples of Jesus started a movement that changed the world. Are we still changing the world? We can. We can be two-thousand times more effective—if we only try!
Here’s an example. There are 145 million orphans worldwide. Nearly 236 million of us living in the U.S. call ourselves Christian. From a purely statistical standpoint, by ourselves, we have the wherewithal to house every orphan in the world. There’s enough food on the planet to feed the hungry! But the storehouse is locked.
God has given our generation everything we need to alter the course of human suffering. Change must start with us! With our transformation! Ours is the wealthiest generation of Christians ever! We can be more effective—if only we try! 

-Max Lucado

We truly can be the change.  We have been blessed abundantly so that we can in turn bless abundantly.  As David Platt puts it, we need to embrace the notion that each of us is blessed by God for a global purpose—to make Christ’s glory known to all the nations!  You don't have to go oversees to make a global impact, you can do it from right here in Nashville, or wherever you live!  

If you are in the Nashville area, we would be honored to have your support on Saturday night.  I am confident that God is going to work in a mighty way at that event.  I'd love for you to be there to see what He has planned.  To order tickets online, follow this link and use the code: ADOPTSHEAHEN.  Or, you can buy tickets at the game.  Just be sure to tell them you're there for the Sheahen Family!  We will have some tables set up in the main lobby, selling our t-shirts and also some of 147 million orphans merchandise, who have been so kind to partner with us for this event!  If you already have one of our t-shirts, please wear it to the game.  If you don't have one and want one, check them out on this link and email me what sizes you need!  We even found out today that a car will be given away to someone at the game on Saturday night!  But that's not why you should come.  (although it is pretty exciting!) :)  

The details are below:
Saturday, March 2nd
Lipscomb Allen Arena
Lady Bisons play at 6 pm
Bisons play at 8:15 pm
We get $10 for every ticket sold in our name



Saturday, February 2, 2013

This is where we are...

Hello!  Wow, I can't believe it's been over two months since my last post.  Well, I actually can believe it since I am HORRIBLE at blogging.  A LOT has happened since I last wrote in November and I'll just hit the highlights since then.  We have been working on our home study since early October and finally got to have our actual home visit with our case worker in early December.  That went great and then we were just waiting on a couple of other clearances and documents to come in for the study to be completed.   While waiting patiently, we spent Thanksgiving at Rosemary Beach with Jonathan's family.  That is a tradition that we started when Silas was a baby and we meet Jonathan's family down there every other year.  The weather was unbelievably gorgeous and we had a wonderful time just relaxing and playing.  Then at Christmas we spent a few days in Georgia with my family.  We had a lot of fun with three of my four siblings and 13 out of the 16 Tant grandkids able to be there.  It's always crazy and I love it!  This year was the first year during both holidays that I was really thinking of our sweet little one and what they would think of it all when they get to be there for the first time.  Can't wait to take her to the beach and see her joy at the sand in her toes and the waves crashing around her.  Can't wait to introduce her to her cousins, aunts and uncles and grandparents.  From nothing to all that.  What a blessing.   

After the holidays and after three months of working and waiting on paperwork, we finally got our completed home study in the mail on January 5th.  I don't think I've ever been so happy to receive anything in the mail in my life!  This was the first of many documents that we'll be waiting on, but just to get this huge thing completed was, well, HUGE!   Our next step was to apply to the US Customs and Immigration Services (USCIS), so I had our application ready to go and sent that off with our home study documents right away.  We just received a letter from them last week with our scheduled fingerprinting appointment, which is next Thursday, so we are excited that things are moving!  I'm not sure how long the approval will take once they get our fingerprints, but hopefully not too long.  After that, we get our dossier together and send everything off to Madagascar to await their approval and finally a referral of a child.  Then more waiting... but we won't talk about that now.  :)  Just so happy that things are progressing!!

In the meantime, we got word last week that we have received a Lipscomb Bisons Basketball grant.  Woohoo!!  We were very excited to learn this because this has the potential to be a huge help to our family in bringing our little sweetie home from Madagascar!  Here's how it works:  On March 2nd, there are two LU home basketball games.  For every person we get to come to the game and buy a general admission ticket, we get $10.  That translates into 100% of the ticket proceeds going to the eight families that have been chosen for this grant.  For each person who buys a ticket, they will be asked which family they are there to support, so we won't be splitting it eight ways, we will actually get $10 for every person that specifically identifies our family when they buy the ticket.  So again, this has great potential and we are confident that God will make it a wonderful night for us and for all the families involved!  We would love for any of you locals to come and to bring as many people with you as you can get there!  We have had some sweet friends volunteer to be our "campaign managers" on this event for the next month, so we will be making a big push to get out the word and fill the arena, all for God's glory!  So thankful for these three Lipscomb moms that are on fire and full of great ideas!  There are plenty of ways that you can help spread the word, so if you are interested in helping out on another level (besides just coming to the game) then please let me know and we can give you a job!  One way to help is to be a "row host".  The rows in the arena seat 20, and "row hosts" will commit to getting at least 20 seats filled.  You can either buy the 20 tickets up front and have people pay you back as they commit to coming, or you can just bring your 20 people to the game and each buy your tickets individually.  Let us know if you would like to sign up to be a row host.  We are working on flyers to hand or mail out and should have those available soon.  I'll be updating the blog with more info as I get it.  

Just imagine, the arena seats around 4000, so between the eight families, if each of us get 500 people there, that would be $5000 toward bringing our little ones home!  That would be awesome!!!  We are so incredibly thankful to LU for their heart to do this.  We went to an informational meeting last week and met the other seven families that we will be sharing this night with. What a blessing to meet so many families in one night who are so willing and ready to answer God's call to care for the fatherless.  I was already in tears in the first two minutes of the meeting, as Brent, the guy in charge of all of this told us that even without getting one person to the game, we were each going to be getting a significant donation because of some people who had already donated to this grant.  People that none of us will know who they are, but that just have that kind of heart for adoption.  Wow.  That blew me away right off the bat.  This day is a big deal to Lipscomb.  They are opening up the arena to any agency or organization that wants to come set up and help educate people on adoption.  They are going to be doing a lot of promotion for the game and are taking none of the proceeds for themselves.  None.  This is the third year that they have done this, and Brent told us he's gotten a lot of calls from other teams and schools that have heard about it and want to know more.  They all seem totally on board with the idea until they ask what portion of the proceeds goes to the families.  When Brent tells them, "all of it" they basically thank him for his time and hang up.  "This is at the heart of who we are," he told us.  I can't tell you how thankful I am to be a part of this school.  Just another example of God working in mighty ways.  I left feeling so pumped and excited to see how God works through all of our families to show His love to the orphans that He has already chosen for each of us.  We are continually amazed at how He is providing everything we need, right when we need it.  He is faithful and we know that He will continue proving that over and over.   Thank you to those of you who have supported us and have been praying for us- we have been so blessed already on this journey.  More than anything else, we would so appreciate your continued prayers for us and for the little one that He is preparing to bring into our family!   

Now to Him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to His power that is at work within us, to Him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, for ever and ever! Ephesians 3:20-21

Here is our life in Instagram over the last couple of months:

So blessed to go to the Show Hope Fundraiser Dinner in November.  Got to hear Francis Chan!!

 Riding horses at the Sullivans farm for my birthday in November 

Thanksgiving lunch with my sweet boys

Thanksgiving with the Sheahens and Koonces at Rosemary Beach

Toby Mac Hits Deep tour with great friends in December

Lipscomb Christmas party

Silas reading Twas the Night Before Christmas at the party

My mom and dad at Grandparents Day

The boys with Santa

in Georgia for Christmas

Enjoying a quiet night at home during the holiday break

Cooper's New Year's resolution.  So sweet.  He's worked hard at it, too!

Eli's "dream"- studying MLK-  "My dream for the world is that the orphans would be adopted."

Church retreat at Cumberland Mountain State Park over MLK weekend