Monday, July 25, 2011

A Wonderful Story: God's Hand at Work

Our friends had a successful court appearance, but only today did "mom" get a chance to tell us via blog about the details. Their story makes it abundantly clear that God answers prayer, often in ways far more blessed than we dare to hope. I trust you will take this opportunity to read their story and thank God for what He has done in their family and for the little boy who is now part of their family.

They cannot claim their new son until August 3, according to local law. I assume they will be returning to the USA soon thereafter. Be in prayer for their trip and for the inevitable challenges that their new son will bring to their home.

Sunday, July 24, 2011

A Wonderful Story—A Happy Conclusion!

Our friends who were seeking to adopt had their court date on Friday, July 22, and the adoption was granted. I am not sure when they are returning to the USA, but for now, they have posted further details and pictures here and here.

We praise the Lord for working out all the details and making this possible, and we look forward to seeing them sometime after their return.

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

A Wonderful Story, continued

Our friends who are pursuing the adoption of a child from Eastern Europe have departed, with their own two children, to that country to complete the arrangements and bring him home. They have managed to update their blog with two entries: First, this one, and then this one.

We ask your prayers that they are able to complete all the arrangements promptly and successfully. It is not easy staying for an indefinite period of time in such a foreign place, and there is still no certainty that the adoption will be completed. This can, of course, be very stressful; it will be stressful enough moving a preschooler with Down's Syndrome into one's home. So let's pray that everything goes smoothly for them.

Thursday, July 14, 2011

Hocking Hills State Park

Last week my family and many of my wife's relatives vacationed in SE Ohio, in a region called "Hocking Hills." Among the activities in which we engaged was a trip to Hocking Hills State Park.

The state park contains quite a few "things to see and do" (check out the link above), but my family focused on three of the obvious ones: Old Man's Cave, Cedar Falls, and Ash Cave.

Old Man's Cave is not a subterranean cavern, but rather the result of erosion of softer rock beneath harder rock, resulting in very large overhangs above hollowed out areas. This part of the state park has a variety of features and is very picturesque. The stream that moves through the area also flows over multiple waterfalls.

About two miles away on foot is Cedar Falls. This is a large and beautiful waterfall that also features some of the same erosional rock features as the two caves.

At this point our family got adventurous and, instead of driving three miles to Ash Cave, found the Buckeye Trail and hiked there. This was a pretty easy trail to hike, though we were getting weary on the return, mostly uphill, trip. Along the way, there is a fire tower, which I and various others took the opportunity to climb.

Ash Cave is enormous. Its upper lip sticks out roughly 100 feet above the bottom, and a small stream sends a long fall of water into a pond below. It is easy to see why it was a site of Indian encampments, since it provides a great deal of shelter against the elements. Once again, erosion accounts for the unusual rock formation.

If you ever get a chance to visit Hocking Hills State Park, I encourage you to do so.