Thursday, March 16, 2017

Chapin Casa

Well hello!
Welcome to our Chapin Casa :)

Yep, we have been in our new house for 1 week today.
We have prayed about this house for over a year. Well, maybe not this house but the house we would call home and begin to build our family in. We prayed that each room would be filled with joy and love, that the dining room would be large so we could host many and that the bedrooms would be cozy and welcoming.

We thought we knew the home we prayed for. I even walked countless circles as I prayed over each room around that home we thought God was giving us. God just kept closing doors. First it was the ranch, then it was York, then it was one house after another in Chapin. I just couldn't understand what was "wrong" with those homes, those plans we made. They were good!

Well it turns out that God had a better plan. I know - I "knew" that. We believed it, which is why we were willing to move from a place we loved for the unknown. But I don't think I really  understood what that could mean. What did better than what I wanted look like.

Well let me tell you! Better than my plans looks like a home built in 1944, remodeled in 2013 but kept the original floors, doors and all the fabulous molding. Oh yeah and did I mention it also sits on an acre of land less than 10 minutes from the highway?

So basically, I was settling for what I thought was "doable" and "good". But thankfully we have a father that works MIRACLES and expects GREAT! This home is better than we could have hoped for. Which makes me now truly understand Ephesians 3:20
Now to him who is able to do immeasurable more than all we ask or imagine...

Photo credit to the wonderful Lydia McCaulley Photography

PS. You are about to see lots of house related posts!
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Tuesday, February 28, 2017

10 days from an answered prayer

Tomorrow we will be 10 days away from closing on our new home. 

10 days away from God fulfilling a promise He made us when we got married. 
10 days away from something prayed for for over a year. 
10 days away from moving out of our storage unit life style we had for 3 months. 

10 days. 

I want to remember the days that I prayed for this day to come. 
I want to remember how faithful God was even when I felt like He wasn't listening. 
I want to remember all the circles I made thinking I knew the right direction. 
I want to remember how God saw us through a time we had no idea which way to go. 

10 days from having a miracle home. 

I hope this home is filled with Gods love. 
I hope the beds are never empty, the table is always full & the living room is never silent. 

Reed and I prayed for this home. We asked God over a year ago to provide a home that was us. That would have enough space to host many friends, to allow us to pursue our passions and to help us bring home our Nica Nugget. 

10 days we can start that again. 

10 days we can pick up our journey towards our family. 
10 days a long almost 6 month journey of uncertainty will become a long journey of establishing roots and producing good fruit! 

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Tuesday, February 7, 2017


Every valley shall be lifted up, every mountain and hill be made low; the uneven ground shall become level, and the rough places a plain. And the glory of the Lord shall be revealed!
Isaiah 40:4-5

My heart and mind has been heavy with words recently. Weighed down with things I'm not too sure how to share, or if I even want to share. For most of December I was in denial that our life was being changed forever. I had prayed really hard for things that were good, for us to remain in a community that was an obvious blessing from God. Reed and I had also prayed that we would live a life so full of faith that no one could deny the Lords work. 

Well, you know that saying "Be careful what you pray for"? Well it's true :) haha 
God answers prayers, and boy did he answer our prayers, just not how we thought he would. 

God is showing us the truth in his promises. The verse above, Isaiah 40:4-5, talks about how God will make the valleys and mountains flat and the path smooth. He hasn't taken out all of the obstacles but we are seeing how the valleys and mountains we had to go through are becoming an answer that we had been looking for. 

Settling in Columbia, both of us have new jobs. Jobs that are bringing us more income. Income that is allowing us to purchase a home that we can grow our family in. God is good and is making the rough ground even for us to carry home our little Nugget. 

We can not wait to see the next steps. To get in our next home, to find a rhythm again. To finish our paperwork, get on the match list, and meet our little precious nugget! We can see how God answered our prayer of living a life of faith and our quest to find a home for our family, we just didn't know it would be in a different city. We hope he continues to reveal himself to us, to give us wisdom as we move forward and to guide our steps on this crazy journey of faith!

I did a quick little update on our fundraising page. Feel free to check it out!

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Tuesday, November 15, 2016

I was living an "it's all gonna be okay" gospel

Yesterday was hard. I was angry, hurt, confused, and just flat out annoyed that we still don't have answers to some pretty big issues. I was on my way home from work feeling sorry for myself, wondering why the heck is this all happening, why hasn't it started to get better yet?! Honestly, I felt like Reed and I had taken some big steps of faith. We have listened well and been bold in our faith, so like we passed the test! We already checked those boxes. It is now time for things to start falling in to place.

I basically thought I understood God, that I knew if I did A B and C that He would respond with D E and F. Nope. Thankfully I am surrounded with friends, that don't just let me wallow in my own thoughts. When I voiced these feelings I got this response back:
"Living by faith does not automatically mean we get what we want. The true test of faith, is living it even when we can't see an end in site". 
Dang it.

Why does that have to be true, wouldn't it just be easy to live an "it's all gonna be okay" gospel? Thats what we preach isn't it! Live by faith, then God will make it all better again!

This isn't totally true.

This morning I read the story of the false prophet Hananiah, the people of Judah had just experienced ruin, their homes, everything they knew was destroyed they were in exile. Hananiah declared, "two years! Everything will be fine in two years, God told me!" Meanwhile, the people are hurting and homeless and everything is not okay.
The people had a problem that needed to be addressed, they had work to do, and they needed to LIVE OUT not merely proclaim their faith.

This is us.
The Lathrop family does not need a truthless pep talk to get through this difficult time. We need to live a life that calls peoples hearts to the gospel, that reveals a God who listens, pursues, engages and rescues. Our God isn't going to simply replace what we have lost, He is pursing our hearts, drawing us closer to him, revealing himself to us and promising restoration in His time.

Reed and I will continue to live a life of faith, to call out to our God and search for Him with all our heart, to know that restoration will come, and when it comes it will come in a way we can not deny it is from our God.

There is faith to be lived out not merely proclaimed.
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Tuesday, November 8, 2016

November: a time for change.

This November we are finally seeing the seasons change to cooler temperatures and beautiful leaves change color, we are also electing a new President, but the biggest change happening in our family doesn't involve politicians or the weather.
Reed and I made the decision back in the Spring to pursue adoption. With this new pursuit to grow our family we sought out wise counsel and decided we needed to make a few changes to prepare our family and home for our new addition. Those changes involved Reed job hunting and us house hunting all at the same time, and taking one giant leap of faith that God will provide exactly what we need.

It is funny to look back and see how much our life has changed in less than 12 months. Change is hard, but it is necessary. God tells us to not worry about the change that is ahead of us, because if we are seeking Him then He will provide all of our needs. During this time of change Reed and I have clung to the promises of God. The promise to provide for our family, the affirmation we received that we are called to adoption. These are things that God has promised us, we know that with out a doubt.

Doesn't matter what I feel
Doesn't matter what I see
My hope will always be
In Your promises to me
Now I'm casting out all fear
For Your love has set me free
My hope will always be
In Your promises to me 
As I walk into the days to come
I will not forget what You have done
For you have supplied my every need
And Your presence is enough for me
- Your Promises, Elevation Worship

This song by Elevation Worship has been my anthem. It doesn't matter what I feel or what I see because God has promised us he will provide, we will have a job and a house and bring home our baby. We have constantly prayed for wisdom, discernment, peace and clarity. God has given us great clarity and peace in the decisions we have made.

We have taken a step of faith. We can not see what lies ahead of us, but we are confident that God has called us to move forward. Our time at Flying King Ranch was a blessing and something we will forever be grateful for. I'm going to miss being married to a "rancher", checking cows, watching the sunset over the pastures. When we get a new house for our growing family I am going to miss the days I could sit in bed and talk to Reed no matter what other room he was in, I am going to miss our magical backyard paradise, and our precious neighbors.

But I could not be more excited about what lies ahead of us. A new home with room to grow, a new job to grow and stretch us.This attitude of excitement has not come easy, we have lived lives in constant prayer, we have become closer in our walk with Jesus and our marriage has strengthened as we learned to support one another with steadfast faith.

That second verse of the song "As I walk in to the days to come I will not forget what you have done" this is our daily prayer. That each day, if we wake up excited for the future or worried because we don't know what that looks like, we will not forget what has already been done for us. This will continue to be our anthem, something we remind each other of constantly. And when we finally know the answer to our job and house search, that we will count it as another blessing from our ever present and all powerful God!

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Thursday, October 13, 2016

Why It Is So Hard to Write a Thank You

Well dang y'all.
I had every intention of blogging my mind away through this adoption, but honestly it has been heavier than I thought. My mind is so full that trying to figure out what to share when was just another "thing" I didn't need to add to my life. BUT this morning I was sitting here for about the 30 millionth day in a row saying "tonight I'm going to write thank you notes", but spoiler alert I'm probably not going to write a single thank you tonight and here is why.


That is the short of it. Adoption is hard, it seems like a beautiful God calling that shows you His provision (and it does) but it is also the heaviest thing we have ever done. We sit here thinking every day, morning in my quiet time, every free minute, about what life will be like when we bring our nugget home. We have been preparing for 6 months now, but there is still no "sign" of a little one, just more paperwork to put together, more questions to answer... more waiting.

So while we are unbelievably grateful for the gifts, the encouragement, the financial blessings, it is just a little hard to write a genuine thank you right now. And we believe whole heartedly that those that have been involved need a genuine thank you, not a "thank you for your gift, what a perfect blessing! Follow my blog for more updates!". We want to find the words to express how much it means that because of what they have given we are able to confidently follow a difficult path to a family that we are more certain of than anything in our lives. That each dollar, gift, encouraging word has been affirmation that we are going the right way.

Right now I don't want to sit at the kitchen table and craft a thank you note. I want to get our nugget home. I want to have a phone call that we are on the list, that we have been matched, and that they are ready for us to come meet this already unbelievably loved little one.

If you have given to our family and not heard a response, we are sorry. Our southern families are probably cringing that it has been 6 months with no thank you sent. But trust me, your gift means more than we can put in to words. We WILL write you a note, and it will be a note from the heart and most likely stained with tears of joy.

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