Wednesday, July 28, 2010


I had an experience today that really touched my heart and it caused me to ask myself if any of you (friends or friendy aquaintainces) are like Pablo.  Since I didn't get permission to use his name, I can't give much detail.  But suffice it to say that I only know Pablo on a professional basis.  He and I can only recall each other's names because we both wear name tags during work and this is where we interact.  We are cordial to each other and have shared breakfast and lunch together a few times, and this occurs in the presence of 20 or so people.  So what makes Pablo different or interesting?  Pablo moves to make a difference in this world.  He understands that we are all in this together and he doesn't just speak with words, he speaks with action.(1John 3:18) 

Let me tell you how he touched my heart today.  Get ready, because it is earth shattering, mind blowing, and phenomenal.  He gave me $10.  You see, I explained my desire to adopt these three children from Haiti.  I showed the picture.  I said that I needed $30,000 to make it happen.  I told him that we didn't have that kind of money, but if 3,000 people would join with us and donate $10, we could make this a reality and we could, together, give three children the chance to hope and dream again.  He reached in his pocket and gave me $10.  Then he hugged me and he said, "We're all in this together."  Amen, Pablo.  We are.  And you, my friend, are an amazing man. Are you like Pablo? 


Monday, July 19, 2010

Think Big... Sounds About Right!

Think big. It seems easier for some of the people I am around everyday. They are dreamers; they shoot for the stars; they can barely shut their minds off at night because they are thinking so much about what they can do next. I am just not wired the same way. Although I do dream. And I think there is a point where you have to stop dreaming and start living. I feel that I am often caught in between the two worlds of dreaming and doing but the deep desire of my heart is to become a do-er. Can you even become a do-er or do you have to be born that way?

I don't know if I would categorize my parents as dreamers, and I think that is why I know that this dream is one worth living out.

My mom called me one afternoon with a tone of disbelief in her voice; as if to say she didn't fully believe what she was about to ask me. "Matt," she said. "I think I am supposed to adopt a kid from Haiti!" I don't really remember my reply, but as she said those words, I thought to myself...."yep, sounds about right!" It was exactly what they were supposed to do. My mom and I were on a team of people that went to Haiti on a mission trip with our church...and on the way back home we talked again. "Matt," she said. "I am supposed to adopt three kids from Haiti!" "Yep, sounds about right," I thought again.

God is funny that way. I can't always explain how I hear Him...I just know when I hear Him and when I am supposed to do something. When you are living inside of His will, it just clicks! I can't really explain it past that. It's the sweet spot of living out your faith; being exactly where you need to be and doing what you need to do in your journey for Christ. So support my parents and my family as they look to put their dream into action.
-Matt Shively

Sunday, July 18, 2010

Meeting the Kids for the First Time

As many of you already know, Nanci, Nick, Maddie and I just returned from Haiti. Nanci had met the kids when she and Matt traveled there in March to help build a dorm for the orphanage, but it was the first trip to Haiti for the rest of us. To say I fell in love with these three kids would be an understatement. Now that we're back in Arizona, I think and worry about them every day. I also pray for them daily, and know that God is in control of everything. He is keeping them safe, and is with us every step of the adoption process.

The entire week we were in Port au Prince, the church next to the orphanage was having an old fashioned Revival. We spent at least three hours each night in church singing, praying, and especially praising. They had a different preacher every night, complete with fire and brimstone preaching and alter calls (all in Creole of course). I got the honor of praying over two new believers on the second night (even though they didn't speak English, I know God does), and Nick played drums in the worship band on the last two nights. When we arrived the first night, the kids were already in church. Michelove and Moise spotted us right away, and waved. I saw Michelove telling Sophonie who we were, and she didn't take her eyes off of us for the rest of the service. When it was over, she was in my arms immediately, and I was "hooked". I would like to briefly share my thoughts on each of the three, so you can get to know them a little, and see why I fell in love so quickly.

Michelove....turned 11 in May. She is tall and thin, and has the biggest eyes. She has started learning English, and was very proud to write and recite her ABC's to me. She also had written a short letter to us before we arrived, and we will cherish it forever. She loves to sing and sang me a song from her Creole hymnal. I didn't understand much, but it was beautiful. She is very protective of her younger brother and sister, and very much understands and is eager about the adoption process.

Moise....turned 9 in June. He also is fairly tall for his age, and has a sweet spirit. One day, I watched him play with two of the younger boys for over an hour. They were trying to ride a tricycle on the rocky driveway, and he pushed each of them over and over, making them take turns and share. He was smiling and enjoying it as much as they were. When we were preparing to leave, he was very quiet and had tears in his eyes, so he too understands what is going on. I can't wait for him to experience the opportunities that await him in America.

Sophonie....will be 3 in September. She has been suffering from Typhoid, so we are understandably the most worried about her. Nanci is sending more medicine down to her this week, but prayers for her health would be greatly appreciated. She is very sweet, and we bonded immediately. The third night we were a little late arriving at church, and were sitting about 4 pews behind the orphans. A few moments later, Nanci and I were startled to feel Sophonie tugging at our legs. She had crawled under the seats and made her way back to us. I held her the rest of the service as she slept on my shoulder.

So those are the highlights of our first visit with our future children. We now are more devoted that ever to getting the adoption process rolling. It can take as long as 2 years to complete international adoptions such as these, and the cost is astronomical. We know that God is in control, and will provide the needed funds and the exact timing He determines.