Friday, February 27, 2009


Before I had 3 boys of my own, I had 2 little platinum blonde guys as neighbors, one house down, in a huge neighborhood of 3 houses! I adored these little guys and they brought joy to my life at a time when we were struggling with infertility and those desperate feelings and thoughts of: "Will we ever have children of our own to enjoy??" I know their mother often thought they were "bugging" that young couple down the street. But, far from it.

They'd interrupt a moment of tears with a little giggle at the window and I'd join into their laughter. They loved spying on me at my kitchen window and though they were as sneaky as 5 & 6 year olds can be, I'd hear them coming up the dirt road, and, with my back to the window, know just the moment when they'd stick their noses up over the edge of the window sill. With that surprise move that got them every time, I'd wave a sudsy hand at them over my shoulder without ever turning around from my sink full of dirty dishes. Off they'd fly, giggling all the way back home! Their spying mission had been foiled again, but they were sure to get me the next time!!!

These boys were avid soccer players! We were all pretty sure these little guys would go on playing soccer "the rest of their lives" and earn college scholarships based on their soccer skills. However, God had a very different path that He asked them to walk. While their parents had been in music ministry, pre-children, in a very prominent church, they stepped down in order to focus on raising the children God had entrusted to them to serve Him. They did not fully step out of ministry, don't get me wrong, this family is all about serving Him!! They just set their music aside.

Along come Jr. High-ish years and these not-so-little guys start praising God through music. I always thought this was so awesome that God had brought their family full-circle, so to speak.

Those little guys are all grown up now and, along with a few of their friends, they are known as Dizmas. They have been together for 10 years or so, and have served Him in places and shared the Gospel with people that the average person reading this blog, it's author included, could not do. Though they'd been making music together for years and were supported in prayer by us, their style wasn't really what we listen to in our home. Very God honoring and sold out to God just a different musical style than Mom prefers around here. During my time of seeking the LORD's face about orphan rescue, one of their songs, became one of my prayers.

One of my favorite radio stations ( ) was playing this song one day and it immediately struck a chord with me. I heard something about fear and giving it over to the LORD and asking Him to hold my hand through the fear, and remove the overwhelming fear I was dealing with in the thought of doubling the number of our children. And, then the song said, "Take me where you want me, take me 'cause I want to be yours," and that was what I needed to remember. I am His and He will take me nowhere He cannot handle. I told my boys, "Now that is a good song, I wonder who it is??" But the announcer didn't tell us.

So, a couple days later, I hear this announcer talking about an "up and coming band" that we, the listener's, need to be watching for and I'm thinking, "Okay, let us hear the song already..." And, at that same moment he said, "Their name is Dizmas." Another giggle for me, all these years later, since I knew this was not a new band, they'd just celebrated 10 years together. But, imagine my surprise, when the opening line started and it was the VERY song I'd wondered just 2 days earlier who it was!!! So, without further ado, please join me in prayer...


It feels like the sky has never been so blue
But that's not the way it used to be
Because there was a time that I was without you
Before I said that I believe

Ooooh, I need a savior
Ooooh, I need a savior
I want to give this up
I want to hold your hand
Take away this fear that's like an ocean in my head
I want to tell you now, What I couldn't say before
You are everything that I was always looking for

So take me where you want me
Take me 'cause I want to be yours

I've got pride that I still have to break
It's keeping me away from you
And You stay patient while I make mistakes
I'm learning how to trust in you

Ooooh, always a savior

I want to give this up
I want to hold your hand
Take away this fear that's like an ocean in my head
I want to tell you now, What I couldn't say before
You are everything that I was always looking for

So take me where you want me
Take me 'cause I want to be yours

In the good and the bad times
It don't really matter
I want to know you

I want to give this up
I want to hold your hand
Take away this fear that's like an ocean in my head
I want to tell you now, What I couldn't say before
You are everything that I was always looking for

So take me where you want me
Take me 'cause I want to be yours.

I'm not very talented at this computer stuff,
but maybe this link to the video of YOURS will work:

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Lord, Give me your Eyes

During the months that Mark and I were deliberating on whether or not to adopt again, the LORD used many different avenues to speak to my heart. No joke, it was as if every sermon took me back to: Yes! If this (whatever the topic was) was active in your life, you'd be jumping at the chance to serve His children in this manner. For example, my Pastor, Jim DeVore, of Cornerstone Church of Littlerock, is preaching on the purity and sanctity of marriage and my brain goes, "Of course you should rescue the girls, have you seen the statistics? Do you know how miniscule their chance at a pure marriage is if you don't?? Bring them home, set an example of a pure marriage for them...."

Wait, how'd the rest of that sermon go after I got carried off on my rabbit trail??

Mother's Day, 2008, with Mark's Mom at Rainforest Cafe, thus the leopard!

Anyhow, songs were another powerful tool He used to speak to me. There were about three that truly became prayers for me and when I would hear them on the radio, I would take a time out and just stop and pray. My boys started figuring out what I was doing and, if I was on the other end of the house, and one of my "prayers" came on the radio, they'd turn it up for me. I'd like to share the powerful words that stirred my soul, with you, over the next few posts. This first one had me in tears just about every time I heard it! I'd start picturing the homeless men and women down near skid row that we haven't had the time to get back to in the last year. Or the orphanage in Haiti that we supported for years when our boys were toddlers. Or, our little Christian orphanage ( ) in Ensenada that we love so much but haven't been back to in about 3 years because of passport issues with the new rules, and sports schedules with three teen boys around here. Well, I could go on and on but then I'd have you in tears and I really want you to read Brandon Heath's words so no teary-eyes, ya hear??

At the bottom of today's post, I've tried to post the link to his video on YouTube, I do hope it works for you. If not, just search for Brandon Heath's own video of Give Me Your Eyes.

Give Me Your Eyes
by Brandon Heath

Looked down from a broken sky
Traced out by the city lights
My world from a mile high
Best seat in the house tonight
Touched down on the cold black-top
Hold on for the sudden stop
Breathe in the familiar shock
Of confusion and chaos
All those people going somewhere, Why have I never cared?

Chorus: Give me your eyes for just one second
Give me your eyes so I can see
Everything that I keep missing
Give me your love for humanity
Give me your arms for the broken hearted
The ones that are far beyond my reach.
Give me your heart for the ones forgotten
Give me your eyes so I can see
Ye-ah ye-ah ye-ah ye-ah

Step out on a busy street
See a girl and our eyes meet
Does her best to smile at me
To hide what's underneath
There's a man just to her right
Black suit and a bright red tie
Too ashamed to tell his wife
He's out of work, He's buying time
All those people going somewhere, Why have I never cared?

Chorus: Give me your eyes for just one second
Give me your eyes so I can see
Everything that I keep missing
Give me your love for humanity
Give me your arms for the broken hearted
The ones that are far beyond my reach.
Give me your heart for the ones forgotten
Give me your eyes so I can see
Ye-ah ye-ah ye-ah ye-ah

I've been there a million times
A couple of million eyes
Just moving, pass me by
I swear I never thought that I was wrong
Well, I want a second glance
So give me a second chance
To see the way you've seen the people all along

Chorus: Give me your eyes for just one second
Give me your eyes so I can see
Everything that I keep missing
Give me your love for humanity
Give me your arms for the broken hearted
The ones that are far beyond my reach.
Give me your heart for the ones forgotten
Give me your eyes so I can see...

Lord, please give me your heart for the broken-hearted, Penny

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

BOY! This girl needs a sister...

Last night, our five year old is dancing, ballet style, around the house all dressed up in her princess finery blessing everything in sight with the treasured Princess Wand. Prancing on up to her 13 year old brother in the kitchen doing his Cinderella-man dish-duty, she says, "Lean down, I'm going to turn you into a Sugarplum-fairy man."

Trying hard to divert this particular personality choice from attacking his manhood, he suggests, "Nah, just turn me into a carrot."

"A CARROT!!!! There are NO carrots in fairy-tales!!" Princess Charissa informs the poor boy, obviously lacking in fairy tale etiquette.

Just before I started typing this, little Princess woke up and was cuddling on my lap when she spied a picture of President Lincoln here on the desk. "Hey, we met him last week!" Referring to a field trip to Forest Lawn for a presentation that they call A Visit with the Great Presidents. We got to "meet" 3 former presidents. The next words out of her mouth really threw Mom for a loop, "And, the other was a toy-maker!"

Did you figure it out??
We met President Theodore Roosevelt and he was holding a Teddy Bear and explained to us about a toy manufacturer developing the little bear and dubbing it Teddy Bear in honor of him!

Friday, February 13, 2009

Our girls were stolen?!?

As careful as I was last week to explain in a positive light to our five year old that "our girls" had been adopted by another family, it has come to my attention this week that our girls have been stolen!

Aliana, Christiana & Charissa

A few girlfriends have come to me this week to let me know that little Princess Charissa had informed them that someone had stolen her sisters. I have an inkling that I used the word chosen a little too frequently and in the mind of a 5 year old: chosen by someone else translated directly into stolen from her.

Picture this: Two - 5 year olds working hard to earn the last remaining super-coveted-wonderblingie out of the prize box. At last, Dot earns her trip to the prize box, only to discover that "her" wonderblingie has been "stolen!" Meanwhile, on the other side of the room sits a very happy little Darci playing with her recently "chosen" wonderblingie. As adults, we can oversee a scenario like this and completely grasp the fact that Darci earned her trip to the prize box first and thus is the rightful owner of her chosen trinket. On the other hand, we also know that little Dot just needs to look at the prizes set before her in a whole new light. Perhaps an even better prize that she has yet to discover lay before her in that prize box. However, she has to make the decision to reach in and choose it, we cannot force her.

I think sometimes that's the way it is with God watching over us. We get absolutely devastated over things because we cannot see the big picture. While God knows that if we will perservere, He has something better for us waiting on the other side of our mountain or molehill (you choose ;).

What mountain are you facing today? God has all the hiking gear you need in His Word. He loves each & every one of us dearly, but He will not force us to choose this way or that. We are not His puppets, we are His chosen children.

'For I know the plans that I have for you,' declares the LORD,
'plans for welfare and not for calamity to give you a future and a hope.
Then you will call upon Me and come and pray to Me, and I will listen to you. And you will seek Me and find Me, when you search with all your heart.' Jeremiah 29:11-13

As for me and my house, we will press on for the prize that He has waiting for us at the end of this adoption journey. All the while keeping in mind that:

The mind of man plans his way, But the LORD directs his steps. Proverbs 16:9

Thursday, February 12, 2009

While we were...

While reading a friend's blog last night, I found this very touching memorial written by another adoptive mom. Please read, pray, and if able, help one of these precious little ones get home.

While we were eating...
... they were hungry

While we were playing...
... they were restrained

While we were tucking our kids into bed...
... they were alone

While we turned up the heat...
... they laid in the icy cold

While we wrapped our children in blanket sleepers...
... they laid in their own excrement

While we sang songs and listened to music...
... they listened to the screams and cries of those around them

While we rocked our babies...
... they silently rocked themselves

While we hugged our kids...
... they scratched at their own faces and pulled their own hair for stimulation

While we cried over scraped knees...
... they moaned in their loneliness

While we brushed our daughters' beautiful hair...
... they had their heads shaven to stave off the lice

While we fought off the flu with love and nourishment...
... they got the flu and went Home.

No longer suffering... but so many more still are.

In memory of those that have never felt the love of a family, but have passed away alone. Today we learned of the passing of these two girls in Eastern Europe.


For those who have asked, please feel free to share this on your blog. Meredith Cornish

Sunday, February 8, 2009

Carrying On!

Happy Sunday! Many "Thanks" to my Blog-master Brooke for posting my last entry for me while my 'puter was misbehavin'!!
I'm having so many thoughts rumbling around in my brain, I'm having trouble sorting them to place them here in B & W! You'd think with several days off-line, I really could have worked this through, but alas, NO!

The bottom line is that "Our girls" opened up a new dream for us. We had not planned on growing our family any larger until meeting a great group of orphans and spending time with them last summer. We had our "Summer Sister" for 6 weeks and mid-trip did fun group activities with the other host families and their summer children. As a family, we absolutely fell in love with these children from afar that had lost everything including their home, family, friends, and possessions. What to do?????

In looking at what we have to offer, we realized once again how very rich we are. Not necessarily monetarily speaking. But, in so many ways! We have the knowledge of a loving God, our Father in Heaven; His Son, our Savior Jesus Christ; the Holy Spirit, and all that He does for us. We have an intact family, both our own nuclear family here in our own home and our extended family. We have the most amazing church family, which serves truly as our family in a myriad of ways since our extended family is not very near by. We have a snug home that keeps us both warm in the winter and cool in the summer. We have the vehicles we need for both practical and fun times. Our God, has indeed, supplied all of our needs.

So, now that we've been shown afresh, up-close and personal, the needs of the orphans overseas, what are we going to do about it? Our plan is to continue on with our orphan rescue "project" and see where God leads each step of the way. We'll be heading to Ukraine once the home study and all of the other state-side details are completed, with what they call a blind referral. Meaning: it'll be a great surprise to see just who God does have in mind to join the Dayton family.

We would love for you to stay on our team, or join if you haven't already. Please pray, spread the word or give as you feel led to do. We feel strongly that we are to continue, with God's help, to bring an orphan or orphans home, that they will feel the love of a forever family and that very special feeling of being wanted, no longer unwanted. May God bless your day, Penny

Wednesday, February 4, 2009

Best of Times, Worst of Times

Yesterday was the "Best of Times" for a sibling group of four sisters in the Ukraine. They were adopted by a loving Christian family from the Pacific Northwest. Please pray for this family as they are now in the 10 day waiting period before they are allowed to pick up the girls from the orphanage and bring them home. Pray there would be no appeals and all would go smoothly from here on out.

The very miraculous point here is that this sibling group had only been freed for international adoption about eight weeks before becoming chosen children! Highly unusual, though they were so covered in prayer, God's mighty hand moved.

From an earthly perspective, it may seem to be the "Worst of Times" for a certain Southern California family that was hoping and planning to rescue this same sibling group. Yes, friend, "our girls" were adopted yesterday. And, while we feel the loss, this is the way of Ukraine adoptions- there is no reserving children- and it is also the answer to our original prayer that they would be adopted soon by a wonderful Christian family.

Monday, February 2, 2009

Between Then & Now

Is this not PRECIOUS?? We were playing at the beach with Aliana and she'd been enjoying the sun, surfing with Daddy, stacking all the seaweed and kelp she could gather into a huge mountain, chasing down all the crabs in the tide pools and at one point I turn around and she has written "MAMA" in the sand. Now, I've done foster care and know that it is quite common for the new child in the house to use words like "Mom" and "Dad" for those in authority in the home they are living in. This is pure head knowledge. It was my heart that took this pic! For 6 special weeks in our lives, we were Mama and Daddy to this precious child of God! And, oh how very special that time is to us! It has become our hearts' desire to make real that relationship and those names, LORD willing.

So, what has occured between then and now?? Well, our entire hosting group of children returned to their orphanage in the Ukraine on August 31, 2008. And, we returned to our lives. Only it was different now. There were missing parts to our hearts. They'd gone home with the girls. Mark and I were so very uncertain about committing to move forward with adoption plans to add FOUR more precious lives to our family. That's not exactly the type of decision you make quickly, so we didn't. We "sat on it" for several months, three to be exact. And for most of that time as we went back and forth with those: "We must be crazy..." type questions running through our heads, I was nauseous. No joke. Weighing the pros and cons from all angles was unsettling me to my inner core. My dear friend told me I was experiencing adoption morning sickness and it would soon pass. Funny thing about that... It did! At three months! Funny timing. At that point, we committed to move forward and just see what the LORD had in His plan for us and be willing to walk in this path. And, all of my nausea just fell by the wayside. Interesting how those things work in our lives when we choose to TRUST AND OBEY, huh?!?

Trust and Obey
for there's no other way
to be happy in Jesus
but to trust and obey!

So, for now, we are busy trying to get a small house ready to fit a few more people. Think 1950's with 9'x10' or 10'x10' bedrooms. Trying to get those procrastinated projects, of all types, done and caught up on, because we figure it is better to stop procrastinating on them now. Obviously after we have more children, it's not like we'll have more time on our hands. We are constantly thinking: as a group of 10, how would the event, situation, issue, etc. we're in right now look. Whether it's getting ready for church, driving in an 8 seatbelt vehicle, camping, cooking dinner... Whatever it is, I'm constantly re-evaluating how it will be different by necessity. We talk about the adoption ALOT! To everyone we meet. I don't remember if I've said it here or in conversation with a friend, but I feel as if I've taken on a new career. I'm a PR person for older orphans. No, I'm not a potential adoptive mom, not me. I'm in public relations. So, if you happen to end up near me (and we haven't yet had the privelege to meet face to face) just about anywhere, in line or whatever, I'm the one talking Ukrainian adoption. Just humor me and pass me your e-mail address so I can keep you updated on this exciting journey we're taking! And, just maybe, you'll choose to join us down the road in one way or another. Perhaps it'll be helping our specific orphans get home or maybe you'll feel the call to rescue a few of your own!!!
WHEE!!!! NO HANDS!!! Hmmm, what is that song my boys like..... Oh, Jesus take the wheel.

Yes, Jesus, please do. Amen

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