God tells us that if our faith is even the size of a mustard seed (1 to 2 millimeters!!) that we can move mountains.
A lot of times this is hard to imagine- the power of faith. The eminent influence "Faith" can have on the physical happenings of this world around us. God tells us it only has to be the size of a mustard seed, that's all.
So many times in my life I have doubted. From God's goodness, His plans, to answered prayers, or even myself. Doubt is such an ugly thing. It sneaks in and taints the soil where we need to plant those mustard seeds. Doubt is toxic to our wellbeing, dangerous to our fruitfulness, and poisonous to our faith.
I doubted I would ever have children. I doubted Alex would ever be able to be a dad. I doubted that God cared about the desires of my heart- but He himself put them there.
Today I was telling Alex, quite frantic, how we need to raise this money and I needed to make a plan. I began to stress over the financial support we must receive in order to go and all the things that have to come together in order for this adventure to work. I pushed God aside and let fear have its ugly way. A little doubt here, a little stress there- doubt fueled the chaos. However, God has me studying Faith this month. He has equipped my heart with His word and He reminded me about mustard seeds, about asking for wisdom, and trusting Him.
"What is faith? It is the confident assurance that what we hope for will happen. It is the evidence of things we cannot yet see." Hebrews 11:1
"For we live by faith and not by sight." 2 Corinthians 5:7
Today during my anxiety- I was reminded where my faith needs to be. Alex grabbed the mail and of course... we received our first donation today! God probably giggled I'm sure.
A very generous person donated $1,000 which in turn will help us to secure the house we are looking to rent for the next year. God showed me He is the source of my faith and I need to be purposeful and not wavering in Him.
Friends- wherever you need faith today, plant those mustard seeds and ask God to get rid of the weed known as doubt!
We are so thankful for any amount of support people are willing to give. Please consider partnering with us in prayer and financially as we move forward to bring love to orphans in Haiti.
Abide in Love. Abide in Him.
So you might find yourself thinking.... "How in the world did the Bradshaw's come to this place in their lives?!"
Honestly, I can tell you its not as hard as you think.
We experienced the worst year of our life last year. We were so fed up with life continuously giving us "lemons" and everybody trying to tell us how they make THEIR lemonade. It was just too cliche.
The heartache we experienced from wanting to be a mom and a dad had become unbearable. Accepting that I was almost four years barren was devastating, but it was fact.
I was hopeless. I believed so many lies about myself, our struggle, and more importantly the goodness of our God. I often felt unequipped to live the life I had been given because I felt unworthy of being trusted with a baby. I had put not only my identity in being a mommy, but I had put my hope there too.
The bible has much to say about hope. The beginning of this year the Lord told me to "Get up". It was a stern, yet loving, redirection of my behavior and thought patterns. God had no intention of letting me continue to sulk and pout in that state of despair. Often times I refer my preschoolers to the phrase, "You get what you get and you don't throw a fit..." God was reminding me He has plans and ways that are not mine; His, in fact, are higher. God orchestrated the bible study I am now doing where I spend time each month focusing on one word. Of course this started January 1st and my first word was HOPE. God had a lot to teach me and is relentlessly pursuing my hope and my dreams. One of the key verses God used to teach me about hope was this:
"Hope deferred makes the heart sick but when dreams come true there is life and joy." Proverbs 13:12.
I was literally heartsick- a condition in which hopelessness has full control of every aspect of your life.
God also reminded me time and time again through my study that my hope must be in Him. He is never fading, He is full of abiding love, and He is the constant one. Every circumstance and person will wither so when scripture also tells us "hope is the anchor to our soul" we must be diligent to only have our anchor firmly grounded in God. For me, I had my hope in becoming a parent and when God was trying to get me to move forward in His plans, I became stuck and my hope died. I was anchored to a dead dream.
But God is in the restoration business. He didn't leave me behind, rather, He came back for me and revived my dream in a whole new way. He has blessed us with EXCEEDINGLY AND ABUNDANTLY MORE THAN WE DARE TO ASK, THINK, OR IMAGINE (Ephesians 3:20). We went from never being able to imagine being a mom or a dad to having twelve kids of our own. God had left His fingerprints all over this situation and is firmly establishing the roots we need.
When we arrive in Haiti we will be reunited with children ages four to eighteen, all who have a need that only Love can fulfill. When we arrive in Haiti we get to Abide in Love and in turn get to be Love to twelve children who have needed us this whole time.
God is good my friends. God has plans for you. Wherever you're at in this life, put your hope in Him. Be anchored in Him. Abide in Him, Abide in Love.
"For I know the plans I have for you, declares the Lord, plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you HOPE and a future." Jeremiah 29:11
Kristen & Alex Bradshaw