Thursday, July 29, 2010

Isaiah, Our Good, His Glory

Isaiah, a spokesman for God had an overwhelming job to do! What a period of history to proclaim the precepts of our Lord! But he did! Over and over he preached to kings and people that would not do what was right in the sight of God! Instead they worshipped idols and planned wars of greed to acquire more and more territories! Why did Isaiah keep on keeping on? Why preserve under these terrible circumstances? Good question! I believe he knew that, “From moon to new moon and from Sabbath to Sabbath all flesh shall come to worship before me, declares the Lord!” (Isaiah 66:23) Are we as determined as this major prophet to honor the declarations of God Almighty?

Now we know that God is sovereign and He reigns over all, but is our main purpose in life to share this gospel with every people group on the planet? “But the Lord will arise upon you and His glory will be seen upon you. And nations shall come to you light.” (Isaiah 60:2-3) In my lifetime I am ever so thankful that our Heavenly Father has allowed me to see adults and children glorifying God in the lives they live here on our Creator’s Earth! I love the name of our ministry, Lifeline! What a joy to see parents living out this name! Life is God’s breath in us and with a direct Line to the throne of grace! Thus Lifeline! One of my favorite moments of knowing God was in seeing a glimpse of Jesus in the face of an orphan in Eatern Europe. My heart soared and the confirmation of His power and love is hard to describe as I realized from this experience what Lifeline really means! The words of the prophet Isaiah speak loud and clear, “You are my servant, I have chosen you and not cast you off. Fear not, for I am with you, be not dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you with my righteous right hand.” (Isaiah 41:9-10) Certainly God has chosen Lifeline!

Thank you, Lifeline servants for adopting and giving foster care to the farthest corners of the earth. Never be dismayed for God will be with you and strengthen you each step of the adoption journey! I love the picture of our Savior and Lord holding us with His righteous right hand! What security and protection! Your faithfulness is like Isaiah’s when he said, “Here am I, send me.” Each day at Lifeline another call comes in that says. “Here am I send me. Help me to go!” Only through this willingness to adopt will children come to know the love and saving mercy of the cross and the parents who value eternity!

All praise and glory to our Lord for His great love and the saving of a remnant of people and for Isaiah as he preached to this generation and to us as we read the Word! “The grass withers, and the flowers fade, but the word of the Lord stands forever.” (Isaiah 40:8) Because of this prophet, we are better, we are good! Bringing God glory is our reason for being a Lifeline to precious children!

Donna Houston
Adoption Specialist

Wednesday, July 28, 2010


Father, we long for your glory. It is only through you, we are able to do the work of your hands.


God you are magnificent,
Your truth ever sufficient.
Your glory reigns over all the lands,
Spreading your love through the work of your hands.

How can I express the grace on which I stand?
My words are few and my tears, unplanned.
Your honor is my hope, my purpose, my all.
Teach me to walk with urgency, towards the glory of your call.

The world needs You, Your spirit, Your son,
Show me to live as this sacrificial One.
Called to live a life pointing to You,
Undeserving of your attention, yet participating in what You do.

Your very spirit within me, directs my heart and soul,
Living a life for you, of which I want no control.
Place in me a love for the ones you love,
And break my heart for what breaks Yours above.

For His glory,
Lifeline Staff

Thursday, July 22, 2010

A Living, Breathing Gospel Track

"We know that the whole creation has been groaning as in the pains of childbirth right up to the present time. Not only so, but we ourselves, who have the firstfruits of the Spirit, groan inwardly as we wait eagerly for our adoption as sons, the redemption of our bodies."--Romans 8:22-23

I love going door to door with our son Jonathan, and telling folks about Jesus. He has become the perfect living breathing gospel track right there in my arms. Jonathan is such a people person. When he gets fussy we grab the car keys and go make some visits.

Adoption is the perfect ice breaker to lead into a gospel presentation. We love to spring board from Romans 8. It is one of the most cherished passages for adopting families. And worthy of repeating. Verse 15 says, "He has given us the Spirit of Adoption (or sonship)," and verse 23 says, "...we wait eagerly for our adoption as sons, the redemption of our bodies." These two verses mean that God has adopted us into His family to be His children. What a display of amazing grace. Praise the Lord!

Here in North Alabama, there are churches everywhere. And thousands of people who say they "know God" are "spiritual" and some even pray. But our communities do not show the fruit or lifestyle of the Children of God. Therefore, when we go door to door, we want to be clear when we share the Gospel. When you tell others about Jesus, include that God is holy, man is sinful, and Jesus is the reconciler. Then ask the person "Who are you in God's eyes? An object of wrath or a child of blessing."

Here's how to find out. Verses 5-8 list characteristics of Christians and non-christians, and verse 14 (an uncommon question in gospel tracks today) goes straight to the heart: "because those who are led by the Spirit of God are sons of God." Who controls you?

I pray the Lord will prepare your heart to use the one in your arms to tell others about our Heavenly Father who has adopted His children.

Jennifer Daniel
North Alabama Case Worker

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Lifeline of Georgia and You

Lifeline Children’s Services has now been in Georgia for over a year and half. We have thoroughly enjoyed working with the families of Georgia, and God is doing a great work here. We are steadily growing and have strategically placed workers throughout the state to better serve you. We have workers and partners in Atlanta, Augusta, Columbus, Rome, Savannah, Tyrone, and Valdosta. However, even with the addition of many workers throughout the state there are plenty of opportunities to volunteer and serve.

Lifeline, as much as we are an adoption agency, we are a ministry that focuses on serving and loving birth mothers. In Georgia, we need counselors and mentors who have a heart for loving, listening to, caring for, and serving women in crisis situations. If you have a little time and love to give and feel called to serve women in need, we have opportunities for you.

We also have volunteer opportunities for those who do not feel called to client services. For those of you who have worked in offices, you know how valuable volunteers can be. If you live near the Columbus area and would like to serve, there is plenty of work to be done to further the kingdom, and bring children home to their forever families. We would love to have you serve with us.

Although we have grown a lot in a little over a year, we need to grow more. We have numerous families adopting, but the orphan population is still estimated to be between 143,000,000 to 210,000,000 orphans. We want to get the message out to Christian families in every city in Georgia that Lifeline Children’s Services is here in Georgia, and we are passionate about impacting the lives of orphans here in Georgia and abroad. We can achieve this goal with your help. We need you to be a point person within your church and community. You can help by partnering with us to hold a presentation or informational meeting in your church or local business. We have all the tools, and we will conduct the meeting; but we need you as the local representative to steer the heart of your friends and family to the anguish of the orphan, to make your co-workers and community members aware of the severity of the orphan situation, and to inform everyone you know of the impact that they can make in the life of a little boy or girl who wants nothing more than for them to be their mommy and daddy.

And if you do not have the time to volunteer, we have other opportunities for you to change the plight of the orphaned worldwide. We are now helping children in the U.S. and ten international countries find mommies and daddies, but there are children in many other countries that we will be able to rescue if you will partner with us. There are orphans in nine additional countries that we striving to rescue in the near future, and your donations can bring them home. The fees that our families pay do not cover the entirety of the adoption cost; your gift enables them to bring children into their home where the children experience the love of a mommy and daddy, and you experience the blessing of playing an essential role in helping us make that happen.

But most importantly, the orphans worldwide need your prayers. Every day 5,760 more children become orphans. Every 15 seconds, another child in Africa becomes an AIDS orphan. Approximately 250,000 children are adopted annually, but, each year 14,505,000 children grow up as orphans and age out of the system by age sixteen. Each day 38,493 orphans age out with no family to belong to and no place to call home. In Russia and the Ukraine, studies have shown that 10%-15% of these children commit suicide before they reach age eighteen. These studies also show that 60% of the girls become prostitutes and 70% of the boys become hardened criminals (2008). Keep these children in your prayers. Ask for the Lord’s provision in their lives, and ask how He wants you to be a part of their provision.

As you pray for the children, also keep our workers in your prayers. Our workers work tireless, long hours fighting for the lives of fatherless and motherless children. Pray for their endurance and for their families.

In conclusion, thank you for all the support that you have given Lifeline as we have grown in Georgia. Pray sincerely about how you can impact the lives of orphaned children in Georgia and worldwide. I am eager to partner with you as we change the lives of orphaned children forever. If you are interested in serving or partnering with us, you can reach me directly at 706-571-3346 or at God bless you and thank you for your prayers.

Daniel Taylor
Georgia State Director

The Concept of Divine Control

The following is the July 16th entry in Oswald Chamber's Devotional:

“…how much more will your Father who is in Heaven give good things to those who ask Him!” Matthew 7:11

Jesus is laying down the rules of conduct in this passage for those people who have His Spirit. He urges us to keep our minds filled with the concept of God’s control over everything, which means that a disciple must maintain an attitude of perfect trust and an eagerness to ask and to seek.

Fill your mind with the thought that God is there. And once your mind is truly filled with that thought, when you experience difficulties it will be as easy as breathing for you to remember, “My Heavenly Father know all about this!” This will be no effort at all, but will be a natural thing for you when difficulties and uncertainties arise. Before you formed this concept of divine control so powerfully in your mind, you used to go from person to person seeking help, but now you go to God about it. Jesus is laying down the rules of conduct for those people who have His Spirit, and it works on the following principle--God is my Father, He loves me, and I will never think of anything that he will forget, so why should I worry?

Jesus said there are times when God cannot lift the darkness from you, but you should trust Him. At times God will appear like an unkind friend, but He is not; he will appear like an unnatural father, but He is not; He will appear like an unjust judge, but He is not. Keep the thought that the mind of God is behind all things strong and growing. Not even the smallest detail of life happens unless God’s will is behind it. Therefore, you can rest in perfect confidence in Him. Prayer is not only asking, but is an attitude of the mind which produces the atmosphere in which asking is perfectly natural. “Ask, and it will be given to you…”

I wanted to share this devotional with you because the Lord spoke directly to my worries about our adoption of Christina and all that must be done to bring her home! I just want to love her and hold her, but for now I have a stack of paperwork--seriously--almost 6 inches thick that must be done for us to finally bring her home! I woke up thinking about all the things that needed to get done today and decided I better get out of bed and spend time with the Lord! I opened up my Oswald Chambers Devotions long before the sun was up and the first words I read were – “The Concept of Divine Control”. I just wept tears of amazement of how much our Heavenly Father loves me and loves our little girl, Christina! He cares about what we care about and He desires to give us good gifts but we need to completely abandon ourselves to His perfect timing and plan and He can give us His perfect Peace. May this devotional from Oswald Chambers fill you a deep sense of the Lord’s control in your life what ever the circumstance.

In Christ Jesus,
Stephanie Carpenter
International Adoption Specialist

Friday, July 16, 2010

Minister to the Hurting

A merry heart does good, like medicine, but a broken spirit dries the bones. Proverbs 17:22

Many of the young ladies that come to Lifeline Village have been broken by life circumstances and let down by those they love. Fortunately God is able to speak life and restore all that has been broken and lost. He is able to rain down from above and let the skies pour down righteousness (Isaiah 45:8). The opportunity to serve a God who looks down and only sees the best in each individual whom He created in His own image should never be taken for granted. Take every opportunity to serve God by ministering to those who are lost and hurting. The staff at Lifeline Village has learned to count every young lady as an opportunity to share God's love and word.

Kesha Franklin
Lifeline Village Coordinator

"No matter what good we do, God knows our motivation for doing it. God judges our motives, not simply our actions."

Thursday, July 15, 2010

Waiting Children Taiwan

Jeremiah 14:22 “We set our hope on you, for you do all these things.”

Visit Lifeline’s Taiwan Waiting Children page as you consider how you can defend the cause of the fatherless. Pray over these precious children, that they would know the love of Christ and experience adoption both spiritually and physically. Also, join with us in praising God for this new opportunity we have to facilitate adoption from Taiwan. You can help: Pray, visit, defend, invest, or adopt as the need is vast.

If you are interested in viewing these children and their special needs, contact Lifeline at to obtain the password.

To learn more about adoption from Taiwan contact:
Stephanie Carpenter

She Looks Like Me

When I was 5 years old, I got on a plane and flew half way around the world with my parents to get my new brother and sister. Even as a little girl, I remember the anticipation and overwhelming excitement that I felt as their foster mothers brought them into the room and I was able to meet them for the first time. My parents had talked at length with me about what it would mean to have siblings from another country. They would have dark skin and hair and eyes--they would not look like me, but I would love them just the same. That did not stop them from being the baby brother and sister that I had asked God for every night at bedtime. They were mine and I loved them from the moment I saw them!

I still remember the time my basketball teammate said to me “That must be your sister over there, she looks just like you.” I was shocked at this statement and proceeded to tell her that my sister was adopted. I have since learned to embrace this statement and take it as the highest compliment. It is a sweet reminder that God built my family. Nicole was always meant to be my sister. Even if she did not look like me, she would be my sister just the same. God did not have to make her look like me; but He did. And it makes my heart smile every time someone tells me that my sweet little sister looks like me!

Mallory Blackmon, LGSW
South Alabama Case Worker

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

The Other Boy

Two boys play in an orphanage half way around the world. Although there is much sadness in their lives and the conditions they live in are pitiful, they are comforted by their close friendship which has extended for most of their lives. As these boys play they are unaware that both of their worlds are getting ready to radically change.

A Christian family from the United States is boarding an airplane and coming to this distant land to fulfill their dream of rescuing an orphan and growing their family. The family is exceptional in every way, and with much grace and patience they have negotiated the long, expensive, and difficult journey of International Adoption. The family has been matched with one of the two boys. For several months the family has looked with wonder at the cute picture of their boy to be. They have consistently prayed for him and often closed their eyes and imagined how wonderful it will be when he is home playing in their backyard.

No one is coming for the other boy. No eager family has held his picture, prayed for him by name, and imagined with joy a hope and a future for him. You see, for at least one of several potential reasons, the other boy is unadoptable.

Both boys see the strange yet friendly faces of the adoptive parents on the day they arrive at the orphanage. Although this first contact feels a bit unsettling for both, one of the boys quickly adjust, as one amazing never before seen toy is pulled from a large bag. These peculiar sounding adults huddle around one boy smiling, talking, touching, loving. The bonding process that will lead to a successful adoption has began.

The other boy, unknowing, is relieved when the strange people finally leave and things seem to get back to normal. But for next several days the strangers return and interrupt his time with his best friend. Oh how the other boy wishes they would leave and never come back! Then one day it appears his dream has come true, the strangers don’t return. They are finally gone for good. He excitedly goes to play with his buddy, but slowly, sadly, he discovers that he is gone too. He is gone forever!

The boy flying home to America will be celebrated at the airport. He will be known by his parent’s name. He will grow up in a great home, having all the same legal rights as their biological daughter. He will attend a great school and an excellent church.. and he will learn about Jesus and most likely one day become a devoted follower of Christ.

On Orphan Sunday, James 1:27 is preached and when the pastor declares that we are called to rescue orphans in their distress, several families look over at the adoptive family and their new son and smile. The proud parents, almost instinctively put their arm around their sweet boy and give him a squeeze.

The other boy will never be celebrated at an airport or anywhere else. The other boy never knew his parents... He will never know how it feels to have a mommy clean and kiss a skinned up knee and put a “Disney” band-aid over it. No one will sing him a song and hold his hand til tummy ache goes away. The other boy will never hear the voice of a daddy say, “I’m so proud of you son!” He will grow up with little focus or attention on him. The other boy’s personality, his hopes and dreams, his hurts and fears will basically go unknown. He will not be taught, and will not believe, that there is a God and that “other boys” are immeasurably loved by Him. One day he will “age out” of a miserable orphanage, be given a few dollars and perhaps a coat, and sent to the unkind streets without a hint of life or job skills.

He is an orphan in distress! Waiting for him, just steps from the curb of the orphanage, is a pimp who will offer him food, shelter, and a job.. He will have to sell his body to the most disgusting low-life’s in his city just to keep a little food in his stomach. The other boy, who emotionally is still a little child, is full of unspeakable fear. There isn’t a mentor to offer any guidance. There isn’t any hope of a future. He now understands in this stark and terrifying reality why so many orphans have decided to take their own lives.

The Orphan Sunday service has just concluded, there is plenty of glad handing as families make their way to the car. I hear the adoptive parents ask their new son where he’d like to go for dinner. He smiles and shouts, “McDonalds!”

I smile too, In fact I almost laugh. I am so happy for this precious boy and his godly parents! But today, I just don’t feel like eating at McDonald’s or anywhere else. It seems I have lost my appetite because I just can’t get my mind off of the other boy!

Unadopted was launched in early 2010 to go love, share the Gospel, educate in life and job skills, and mentor the other boy. There are a 143 million other boys and girls in our world and the number keeps growing. Less than 1% of these precious children will ever be adopted. Unadopted believes our call from God is to care for ALL orphans in distress. Will you join us in that call?

Dave Wood
International Director

Thursday, July 8, 2010

Our Relief Well

Our staff has been reading through the books of I and II Kings and I and II Chronicles recently. A recurring theme in I and II Kings is how often the king in authority at any particular time is either following God “doing what is right in the eyes of the Lord” or is evil and continues to commit all the sins his father before him had done. In I Kings 15:11, we read that Asa did what was right in the eyes of the Lord, as his father David had done, and yet he did not remove the high places [of idol worship]. He cleared the land of male shrine prostitutes and the idols and even deposed his grandmother because she had made a repulsive Asherah pole, and then destroyed it. Verse 14 says that "Although he did not remove the high places, Asa’s heart was fully committed to the Lord all his life." We know that some high places were previously used for pagan worship, so the Israelites were forbidden to use them.

So why does someone who is fully committed to the Lord continue to allow little areas of disobedience to exist? Why would a king, who has all authority over his people, not just “man up” and do the right thing? Especially one who was fully committed to the Lord all his life? Here was a king who had an opportunity to set things right again. Don’t we elect Godly people into political office expecting the same thing? But then I look into my own life and I see my personal high places to.

Most of our readers are aware of the disaster in the Gulf of Mexico that has affected our state, Louisiana, Mississippi, Florida and now Texas. Devastating may not even fully describe it. The trickle down effect of the oil spill reaches our economy, our property values, our water, our wild life and the food chain. Not just a domino effect, but more like endless bags of marbles that are continually dropped down a staircase and scatter everywhere.

Michael Kunzelman of The Associated Press recently wrote in The Birmingham News that “The relief well is considered the best hope of halting the crude that has been gushing since April 20 in the biggest offshore oil spill in U.S. History.” Well, I think that crude is a good word here to compare to the behaviors, decisions and choices in our life that keep us from not only living an abundant life in Christ, but create havoc on future generations as well. Whether they are a result of accidents, mishaps, bad judgment, laziness, deceit, evil, anger, pride, or whatever, the “crude” results rarely only affect us individually, but also those around us and future generations.

The good news is that we have our very own relief well. His name is Jesus Christ. John 14:6 tells us that Jesus is the way, and the truth and the life; that no one comes to the Father except through Him. It is through Him that we find refuge, peace, strength, love, compassion, forgiveness, deliverance, grace, among other things. If we revisit the verse, and focus on the word “Although” we are comforted that this King who was fully committed to the Lord, was not perfect, yet his life was a blessing. Ah...grace...that abundant grace, that He provides us.

It’s the desire of my heart to live in such a way that my behavior does not negatively impact others but instead bears much fruit, showing myself to be His disciple. I pray that my own descendants remember me as a woman after God’s own heart and that they will desire to act justly, love mercy, and walk humbly with our God, no matter what “crude effects” come their way.

II Chronicles 7:14 says it best: “If my people, who are called by my name, will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and return from their wicked ways, then will I hear from heaven and will forgive their sin and will heal their land.”

Karen Ely
Domestic Social Worker

Friday, July 2, 2010

A Picture of Hope

I rose today with such great anticipation. For what the Lord allowed me to celebrate in person last week, I will experience the same joy today. Last week, I watched with an overwhelmed heart, my first adoption take place at Lifeline.

As the new parents walked down the hall to greet their tiny new gift, God gave me yet another glimpse of his majesty and grace. I cannot think of a more perfect picture of the hope we have found in being one of His, than the act of adoption.

As I rejoice with the family who will welcome their sweet son or daughter into their loving arms today, I lift up even greater praise for the eternal arms you and I have been embraced by as sons and daughters of our Father. Amazingly, we are able to experience this love right here, right now.

I praise God for the gift of adoption here on earth, anticipating the events of today, and for the love he extends to us through Christ and the eternal communion we have with Him as our Father forever.

“Make a joyful noise to the LORD, all the earth!
Serve the LORD with gladness!
Come into his presence with singing!
Know that the LORD, he is God!
It is he who made us, and we are his;
we are his people, and the sheep of his pasture.

Enter his gates with thanksgiving,
and his courts with praise!
Give thanks to him; bless his name!

For the LORD is good;
his steadfast love endures forever,
and his faithfulness to all generations.”
Psalm 100

Krisha Yanko
Development and Marketing Coordinator