Thanks to everyone who has signed up to pray this week. I am going to keep this post updated everyday with the prayers of the people. 

Tuesday's Prayers

Lord, As I've prayed this week and as I've heard each piece of discouraging news coming from Africa, I couldn't help but think about Abraham and Sarah and the obstacles they faced in trusting You for their child. I mean, their age alone makes the hurdles with MOWA seem small as far as obstacles go! And I thought about how Sarah even got to the point of laughing - just finding it utterly silly that You could still give her a child. I feel like Tori and Derek have been there this week, overwhelmed with the ridiculousness of the the hurdles, even to the point of laughter. And I know that whether for Sarah, or for Derek and Tori, laughter only comes after your eyes have cried all the tears they can cry and only after your heart is hanging by one shred, just hoping not to sever into two pieces. 
I also know that just as You were faithful to Sarah in those very moments, You are being faithful to Tori and Derek even now. Again we ask You to make the way straight. To deliver the letter to the right hands. To give the child to her parents. You've long been in the business of giving children to parents who begged You for them. And now we are begging You to give Zoe to Tori and Derek. We know that You are able. We love You, and we are choosing to trust You. Amen.

Good morning Lord,
How good it is to know that as we sit and wait for word about court today, You are already there.  You already know the outcome.  You hold all the answers.  How comforting to know that not only today is in Your hands, but all of life…all of Zoe’s life.  You, the creator of the universe, hold Zoe’s future in Your hands.  You know every emotion she will ever feel.  You know who her best friends will be and where she will go to school and who she will marry.  You know the exact moement in time when she will open her heart to You and commit her life to You.  You know the struggles she will have in life as well as the victories and joy she will experience.  You know the number of hairs on her head.  Thank You that we can trust You with the outcome of today because You are an all-knowing, all-seeing, ever-present, faithful and loving God.  Thank You for the faith and confidence that You have given Derek and Tori as they wait on You…a confidence that goes beyond whatever has happened in the past or what may come to pass in the future.  A confidence that comes from trusting in You alone. As they wait to hear if they passed court today, please put a song of hope and joy in their hearts.  Help them to keep their minds fixed on You.

God, Your Word tells us that “Every good gift and perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of lights with whom there is no variation or shadow due to change” (James 1:17).  That sweet little girl is a good and perfect gift from You to Derek and Tori.  Please, Father, please…let them pass court today so that this gift from You will soon be home with them.  God, You have heard the cries of our heart concerning Zoe.  Now, we pray that today would be the very day that You answer them.  May today be the day that we see our deepest longing fulfilled concerning this precious child whom You love so much. We wait on You.  Amen

“God answered their prayers because they trusted in him.”  (1 Chronicles 5:20)
“You will know the I am the LORD.  Anyone who trusts in me will not be disappointed.” (Isaiah 49:23)
Be still, and know that I am God.” (Psalm 46:10)

Derek & Tori – stay encouraged.  Do not fear.  Do not lose hope.  He is with you and for you.  He is with Zoe and for Zoe!  Rest in Him and Him alone. 

Father, hear our prayer. We trust You and know You alone control this but we are asking for a sweet miracle and that the final paperwork come through to pass court to bring our precious Zoe HOME! Please wrap your arms around Derek and Tori and lift them up with Your strength! We are crying out to You for this and Trust YOU! Looking to give You all the glory! Please give Zoe a sense of overwhelming comfort and help her to know how much her forever mommy and daddy love her and are moving heaven and earth through prayer to get her home to them. We love You Lord and pray all of this in your name. Amen

Monday's Prayers
As I began my prayer time this morning for Zoe, I felt led to open up the devotional book that was on the top of my stack of books.  Here is what it said:

Pray Believing
This morning, what is the main thing you pray for - the desire that you most hope to receive? It may seem far away and impossible.  However, when you pray with faith, you acknowledge that God can solve any dilemma and that you fully trust him to help you. 

As he answers, you follow his instructions with a humble spirit of hope.  If your request is God’s will, he will provide it.  If it is not, he will change your desires to something better.

So pray expectantly, knowing that God loves to answer you.  His response may not happen immediately, but be certain that he is moving mountains for you.

“Whatever you ask for in prayer, believe (trust and be confident) that it is granted to you, and you will (get it).”  Mark 11:24 AMP
“If you have faith in God and don’t doubt, you can tell this mountain to get up and jump into the sea, and it will.” Mark 11:23 CEV

Dear God,
I praise You for answering my prayers.  I believe that you will either grant my request or provide something infinitely better.  More than anything else, I ask that all the paperwork necessary to pass court tomorrow, is already in place.  If it is not, I pray that you move (or remove) mountains (obstacles) that may be standing in the way.  Would you please do this today?  Please bring Zoe home soon.  Nothing is impossible for You. I know that you can solve any dilemma and I fully trust in You.  Father there is no One else that has the power and influence that You do and so we place all our trust in You to move this adoption to a close and bring this sweet little girl home very soon.  God we place all of our hope in You and ask that You align our hearts with Yours so that we desire what You desire.  Thank You for Your goodness and love.  Soak Derek and Tori in Your comfort and love today as they continue waiting on You.

Sunday's Prayers
Dear Zoe-
I think about you all the time. I see your face everywhere and I hear your sweet voice in the silence of my days. You have already been one of the greatest blessings of my life and I can hardly wait for you to be here with me and your mommy forever. You are one of the most loved little girls this world will ever know. People who haven't met you, me or your mommy are praying for the three of us everyday. I know that God has a huge plan for your life. I can't imagine in my wildest dreams what He has in store for you. Your mommy and I have loved you from the moment God prepared our hearts to adopt you. This was long before we saw your picture or held you in our arms. Your name is Zoe Renae, which means a life reborn. I already feel that my life has been reborn as we travelled this journey to bring you home. I have gone to experience a whole new culture, I've had to be strong for your mommy and I am still learning to wait patiently on God and trust Him no matter what. I know everyday that passes without you here is not just one less day without you, but one day closer to having you forever. The days I got to spend with you were such a blessing. You were so full of life, joy and wonder. I loved seeing your smiling face, hearing your sweet laugh and watching you dance around the room. Your confidence was amazing. I pray all the time that God protects your confident, joyful spirit as you wait for the day that we return to bring you home. I don't know why things aren't working out like we planned, but I do know that God has the plan and He hasn't failed me yet. Soon you will be here with us and we will praise God for bringing us together!
Dear God-
I praise you for the life You have given me and for the journey that has brought me to this point. Thank you for bringing Tori and I together and leading us on this journey to adopt Zoe. I praise You for creating her to be part of our family since before she was born. I pray that You will mold me into the Daddy that Zoe deserves. I pray that I will lead our family in service to You. Make me aware of what my wife and daughter need from me and help me to act on it. I pray that I will follow Your example of a loving Father in such a way that it draws Zoe to You. I pray that her life will be filled with Your love and Your Word. I pray that the day is not far that she will come to know You as her Father, Savior and Friend forever. Be my strength where I am weak so that my girls feel safety, love, freedom, peace and joy. I pray the days still to come that Tori and I spend apart from our sweet Zoe will feel like the blink of an eye to the three of us. I pray that You continue to keep Zoe safe, healthy and well cared for until we can bring her home.
God, I pray that you will blow our minds with a huge miracle this week. This letter from MOWA may seem insignificant, but right now it is our salvation from a firey furnace, the closing of hungry lions mouths, the defeat of a giant with one stone, the giving of sight to blind eyes and the calming of a raging storm. You are the God of miracles. We admit that we have absolutely no control over our situation in Ethiopia right now. We've had no control over the entire journey we've been on to adopt Zoe. So, no honor or glory can come to us, but only to You. I pray that You direct the actions of the Ethiopian government and allow our paperwork to be complete tomorrow in court. This is the mountain we are asking You to move. God I have faith that You can do it. It may be that of a mustard seed, but I have faith that You can move this mountain. There is no reason to believe we will pass court tomorrow without You intervening and providing a miracle. A miracle that only our mighty, awesome, living God can do. All of our trust is in You. All the honor and praise goes to You for the miraculous work we are anxiously expecting from You tomorrow. I praise You for the peace You give and for the family and friends You have abundantly surrounded us with and the countless prayers they've prayed on our behalf. I am a man blessed beyond measure, far beyond what I deserve. I thank you for your unending love and grace.

Thinking of all my grandchildren tonight Lord and spending time in the children's Jesus Calling. I really do not have any words that haven't been spoken to you by me asking favor from you regarding Zoe. So I am going to Be Still, Know you are God and pray scripture from Jesus Calling. For March 13, John 16: 22, " Now you are sad. But I will see you again and you will be happy. And no one will take away your joy." Thank you Lord for caring about the way we feel. Thank you for reminding me that joy is coming. This joy is from a well that does not run dry.  March 14, Ephesians 3:18," And I pray that you and all God's holy people will have the power to understand the greatness of Christ's love. I pray that you can understand how wide and how long and how high and how deep that love is." Thank you Lord for loving me and allowing me to be one of your children. Thank you for giving me the chance to share your love with Sophie, Will, Zoe, and Lillie. May I take every opportunity to share the gift of your love with them. March 15, Zephaniah 3:17 "The Lord your God is with you...he will rejoice over you with singing." This scripture reminds me to thank you for my children Carrie, Tori and Hope. I gave Tori Scripture jewelry when she graduated from high school that said in Hebrew,' I am with you'." Thanks for being with her now and then. Thank you for your word; its wisdom, promises, and power. March 16, Proverbs 17:22, "A happy heart is like good medicine. But a broken spirit drains your strength."  Thank you Lord for this encouragement. You know that I want to have a happy heart because you give us Zoe without any more waiting. But I am asking you to remind me that you are the reason that I should always have a happy heart. This devotional goes on to say that God created laughter and that we can look at some of your creation like monkeys, giraffes, zebras and camels. Thank you for that reference to zebras. It makes me feel special because you have created all that there is and yet the zebra has significance regarding Zoe. It is the little things things that so often speak to me. May I be aware of you in all things. I come to you as a little child asking for your will regarding Zoe, totally trusting you to do the best thing for Tori, Derek,Zoe and our family. I ask that I will be both the parent and grandparent to each child that you allow me to invest in. I love you. 

My Sweet Zoe-
In just 24 short hours the courts in Ethiopia will open and our case will once again come before the judge. We are waiting on one letter before we can say you are legally ours forever. I cannot begin to describe all the thoughts and emotions I feel right  at this moment. In all of my emotions, I know one thing for sure. It is one of the greatest lessons I have learned (sometimes the hard way) and am still learning everyday. No matter what season of life I walk in, God is still God and he is worthy to be praised. It is one of the greatest lessons you will learn in life as well. I pray that as your mom I can be an example to you of praising God in every season of life. I have been listening to this song for 4 days straight and it is truly my prayer tonight.

The Desert Song
This is my prayer in the desert
When all that's within me feels dry
This is my prayer in the hunger in me
My God is a God who provides

And this is my prayer in the fire
In weakness or trial or pain
There is a faith proved
Of more worth than gold
So refine me Lord through the flames

And I will bring praise
I will bring praise
No weapon forged against me shall remain

I will rejoice
I will declare
God is my victory and He is here

And this is my prayer in the battle
When triumph is still on it's way
I am a conqueror and co-heir with Christ
So firm on His promise I'll stand

All of my life
In every season
You are still God
I have a reason to sing
I have a reason to worship

This is my prayer in the harvest
When favor and providence flow
I know I'm filled to be empited again
The seed I've recieved I will sow

There is so little time left before court! Please keep Tori and Derek surrounded by Your peace! I pray that Zoe's heart is also filled with Your peace! Please take away any of her fears. Please let her be surrounded with love each moment until Tori and Derek can get to her. May her American life as Zoe Jones start very soon! We are so ready for the moment that the three of them come through the Nashville airport. I pray for the excitement of that very moment to carry each of them through the rest of their separation! Lord, please let the MOWA office deliver the needed letter so that this process is seamless and precious Zoe is brought home soon! Amen!

Dear Zoe
Let me introduce myself. I am Rick, one of your grandfathers. You will probably call me Tato like your other cousins. Your Aunt Hope who is also adopted gave me that name years ago. Both of your grandfathers are pastors. Also your dad and uncle. That's all a little weird but you will come to understand that later in life. You have been a part of our family for months now even though we have never held you in our arms. I have lots of pictures of you and pray for your arrival every day.
You are a special little girl and believe me this family knows about little girls. Today at lunch we all laughed as we thought about you and what life would look like for all of us in a few months. You are blessed with a new mama and daddy that love you more than you will ever know. They have been getting everything ready for your new room. It is going to be really cool and I can hardly wait for you to see it. The best thing about your new room, house, mom and dad, and family is love. We are going to give you all the love we possibly can. You will soon learn that we are not really the source of all this love but your Heavenly Father, who loves you most in the world, is the source of our love for you.
Tonight is Sunday, March 13, 2011. We are expecting to hear the official news about your adoption in about 24 hours. I am really praying and asking God to make that happen soon. Be sure of one thing, you are already in our hearts, you are part of this family, and we will bring you home as soon as we possibly can. I love you  and can hardly wait to give you hugs and kisses. I believe that God has a special plan for your life and I am so happy just to be a little part of it. I am so excited to see what He is going to do with your life. I will see you soon.
Love, kisses, and prayers,

Dear Lord,
Thank you for bringing Tori into my life. Thank you for bringing Derek into her life. Thank you for bringing Zoe into their lives. You had a plan from the very beginning of time for the Jones Family  and who am I to question it? Their are so many questions in my mind that you already know the answers to. I pray a calming Peace for Tori, Derek and Zoe.  Show Tori and Derek and Zoe a sign of comfort that everything is going according to your plan because You are the BOSS and NOTHING slips by YOU.  Let Tori and Derek feel Your Presents like never before. You were, You are and You will always be. I like the saying, Let Go and Let God. Their is absolutely Nothing I can do, so I pray and wait and remember, Jeremiah 29:11, "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." You are Faithful to complete what You have started. Phillipians 1:6.  Its in Your Name I pray, Amen.

Saturday's Prayers
Trust in the Lord. Do not lean on your own understanding. Always acknowledge him and he will direct your path. I am trusting. I do not understand. I praise you and give you the glory for every good and perfect gift. I am asking that you give Zoe to Tori and Derek. I accept your perfect timing. I hope that all the waiting is for your greater purpose so that other and many children get to be part of a family. I sing in my heart many times a day. Jesus loves the little children. All the children of the world. Red and yellow, black and white. They are precious in his sight. Jesus loves the little children of the world. Thank you Lord for all the children that you have allowed me to invest in. Spending time with a friend of 30 years, I was reminded that this kid from our first youth group, who knew us for 90 days, came to live in our home in another state. Thanks for that experience. I was reminded that I never understood why, how, or who you allowed in my life, yet there was always a purpose that I understood later. Thank you for giving me some of the answers before heaven. I thank you for all the problems in my life ( even though I am very blessed) because I got to see that you could solve them. Again I ask you tonight (at 3 in the morning) that you protect and prepare Tori, Derek, and Zoe for your perfect plan. The desire of my heart is for Zoe to be in America with them and so I delight myself in you by saying your name, noticing your creation, accepting your provision, and learning from your correction. You are the Father and I know that you love Zoe more than I can comprehend, so I wait and I hope.  I love you.  

Dear Father,
  I come to you tonight with a hopeful heart! I pray that your plan for Zoe, Tori, and Derek is to be together soon. Please make the rest of their journey smooth. I pray that you will work out all kinks, slow ups or problems. Please give them peace and confidence in You. I also thank You that during this difficult time Tori and Derek's love for You has been shown for all to see! I am so thankful they have turned to their family of believers just as You want them to. I thank You for their hearts and the amazing work you are doing in them both! I know that every bit of the strength and determination they are gaining will assist them in raising Zoe. In Your most holy name I pray. Amen

Friday's Prayers
Dear lord,
I come to you tonight to praise your name! Thank you for all you have done in this adoption process so far, and all you are going to do! Please help Derek and Tori to pass court in march 15! Please give them peace and comfort during their wait! Thank you for them and for Zoe! In Jesus' name, amen!

Derek and Tori,
But you, oh Lord, are a compassionate and gracious God, slow to anger, abounding in love and faithfulness. Psalm 86:15
Praying for God's love to surround you all until He brings this process to completion, and that you find rest in His faithfulness and perfect timing.

Thursday's Prayers
     Today as I lift up Zoe to you, I picture her precious face, a face You know so well. And while I know that there is no face exactly like sweet Zoe's, there are thousands of faces of children in Ethiopia who are waiting just like Zoe is. Lord, I know that You love families. You created them. You intended for children to be brought up in them. Lord, please make the path straight for the thousands of children in Ethiopia who need families. 
     Lord, please make the path straight for the one child waiting to join our family. I pray that You will guide and direct all that is going on Ethiopia politically regarding MOWA and adoptions. I don't even pretend to understand all that is involved, but I know that You fully understand every piece and part. I'm not even sure how to pray intelligently, but I know that You care about these children and that Your design is for children to be in loving families. Lord, please bring these little waiting ones to their mamas and daddies quickly. 
     Surround Tori, Derek, and Zoe with Your love tonight. Calm their anxious hearts with peace that passes all understanding. Help them, help all of us, to rest in You. Amen.

    Today we bring Tori, Derek, and Zoe before you once again, and ask you to make the path straight for them to be united as a family. We ask You specifically to get the letter from MOWA into the proper hands on March 15. Lord, remind Tori and Derek that though you are giving Zoe to them to love and care for, she is, has been, and will always be Your child. You love her more than we can imagine. You shaped her before she was born; You made her in a wonderful way. You know her inside and out - every bone in her body! You know exactly how she was made, how she was sculpted from nothing to something! You've watched her grow each and every day of her life, and You know every stage she's been through and every stage she will go through. Even though, Tori and Derek may not know all the details about Zoe's first few years, You do. She was not unseen. You knew her, loved her, and watched over her, each of those days. And You've already prepared the day that she will join her mama and daddy as a permanent part of the Jones family! Lord, we ask you to bring that day about quickly, and we ask You to sustain Tori, Derek, and Zoe with Your love until that precious day. Amen.

Dear Father,
I pray that you will grant peace and hope to Derek and Tori. As they wait and pray for their child, hold them in Your arms as Your children. Let them know that Your plans are best, Your timing is perfect, and You have the power to do anything! I know that nothing is impossible for You! Please put Your hand in this situation. Let the court date go smoothly. Thank you for people like Derek and Tori who have such a passion for helping children! I know you did not give them this passion and love for Zoe for no reason. Please guide her safely home to them!

I’ve kept my feet on the ground,
I’ve cultivated a quiet heart.
Like a baby content in its mother’s arms, my soul is a baby content.
Wait, Israel, for God. Wait with hope.
Hope now; hope always!
Psalm 131:2-3

Dear, sweet, beautiful Zoe -
You have two amazing parents and one big church that love you SO much! Even before any of us knew you, we prayed for you! You are a precious child of Jesus! He has a wonderful plan for your life!

Derek & Tori,
As I fasted and prayed for the three of you on Monday I had an overwhelming feeling that God wants and needs for you to know that He is in total control. I felt like you guys already know that but He kept putting it on my heart so I wanted to let you know!
I continue to pray for peace for the 2 of you while you wait and peace and protection for Zoe until you are all together. I pray that your paperwork will all be in order, on time, and that you will pass court on Tuesday (which happens to also be the date we are due to close on our new home.) May God's love and peace be with you!

God, please be with Zoe today. Give her sweet little heart great joy! I thank you that children are made so strong and resilient and I pray this time of waiting seems like the blink of an eye to sweet Zoe. I pray that she is surrounded with friends and laughter and feels your presence always. I also pray for Derek and Tori. Please God, give them rest in the midst of this storm. Help their minds to stay focused on you. Help them to find comfort in your great arms. I pray they feel that connection to Zoe, knowing that you are holding all 3 of them tight. We praise you for what you are going to do in the life of this new family of 3!

Dear God, Please be with Derek and Tori during there adoption for Zoe. I know you have a plan for them and all things will happen when they’re supposed to. Give them the strength, courage, and perseverance to continue this journey. I know they’ll be great parents. I pray all these things in Jesus name. Amen.

Wednesday's Prayers
Dear God,
Thank you so much for all of your blessings. Thank you for the desire you have placed in Derek and Tori's heart to adopt Zoe. Lord I ask that you please open every single door on this path for them, so that everything will go so smoothly in the adoption process from this point forward. I ask that you please allow their paperwork to pass court on March 15! God I know you have plans for the Jones family, and these plans include Zoe! I know that you are going to work all of this out for good. I praise you for all you are going to do through this situation! Please be with Derek and Tori and comfort them as they wait for this week to go by. Help them to sleep well at night, and feel your peace during the day. I ask you to also be with Zoe. Help her to feel Derek and Tori's love even though she is so far away! In Jesus' Name I pray, Amen!

Dear Zoë,
My name is Linda Lamb and today I had the great pleasure to pray for you.  Your parents ask for people to pray for you, they set times for people to sign up.  I told them I would pray for you early every morning this week.  I was given today, this morning to pray for you.  I have to admit, I was a bit bummed that I only got to pray for you today and not every morning.  But I think this made the time I had praying for you today more special.

I had several times during the night when I semi woke up and realized you were on my mind and I was talking with God.  My thoughts were of asking him to be with you.  I asked God to be with your parents-to-be and to be with your birth mother.  I wondered just how I could pray for you.  Would I possibly know every need you might be having. No I could not, but I could understand a parent’s ache in their hearts that is so deep you think you cannot breathe another breath.  Then I knew, God knew every need you have.  He has created you and he has called you His.  He would know, if I just simply asked Him to lead me to feel your heart.

When day broke early this morning.  I had hoped to see a beautiful sunrise and greet the daylight and glorious splendor.  I would ask God to bless you and keep you. I would feel the sunbeams on my face.  But today, we had a rainy and cold morning. Then I realized.  This was another moment I had you all to myself…no beautiful spring sunrise to steal any of my thoughts of you, simply a quiet house where everyone here at my house was tucked warm in bed.  All I had was my bible and thoughts of you.

I had several thoughts on my heart to talk with God about today concerning you and your adoptive parents.  I wanted to honor your birth mother as well.  Asking God to give her health, courage that I knew she already had more than I might ever realize, and to give her safety for each day.

I had several thoughts for your new parents.  Thoughts of how their hearts must hurt right now.  How loving you so much and yet being apart from you must make them feel that their hearts would actually break.  I asked God to give them peace and rest while they continue to go thru these days that must seem unbearable and never ending.  I asked God to continue to protect them and guide them each day.  To watch over their health at this time as well.   I thanked God for the family and friends they have to hold their hands and to catch every tear they cry.  To give them a moment of hope when they feel there is none.  I asked God to allow you arrive safe in their arms and be tucked tightly in your bed here in the home that they want so much to share with you.  I know someday, all they have gone thru will be worth the journey they are currently on.  But as for now, is just plain hard.

I had prayed for the people who will always be nameless in this journey.  The people who are actually working on all of the paperwork and documents of your adoption.  I have prayed that your file and your paperwork would make it to the top of the stack.  I pray that before March 15th,  your application is completed.  That all paperwork will be 100% complete and there be no error or omissions.  I have prayed that these office personnel can work at their top performance levels and even comment among themselves, how productive and how much they have been able to accomplish during this week.

I have prayed for you, Zoë.  I have prayed that each day you have with your birth mother will be enough to bless you with memories that will last your lifetime. That your health be guarded and your strength stay strong.  I have prayed that thru this experience of waiting to be adopted and arrive in the United States of America, and to Franklin Tennessee, that God will some how, some day use this to be a glory to Him.

As I said earlier, I have felt I had you all to myself today and treasured each moment of the day thinking of you. Wondering what you might look like. What the sound of your laughter would be like.  Today is Ash Wednesday, the day of repentance and remembering, starting the Lenten season and the 40 days leading up to Easter.  Very fitting I think for remembering you.  I was blessed to be able to go the Historic First United Methodist Church here in Franklin at lunch for a special service of reflection, placing of ashes on your forehead and personal prayer time at the alter.  Again, my life was blessed being able to talk with God and again, ask for your health, to ask for strong and focused workers and for God to be so present to your adoptive parents that they can feel him with every breath they take.

Good night dear sweet Zoë.  Thank you for the wonderful privilege of praying for you today and even getting to know you just a bit.  Even though my time with you was this morning. I have a feeling I will not be able to get you off of my mind till someday we meet face to face and my life is blessed to gaze into your eyes and say Hello face to face.  May God hold you close in His arms each and every day.

As your sister in Christ,
Linda Lamb

Father I praise you for who you are! I thank you that you are my Father, that I can come to you with anything, great or small. I thank you for knowing me and allowing me to know you. I praise you for allowing me to cry out to you. Lord I believe that every good and perfect gift comes from you and you alone. I thank you for the gift of Zoe. I thank you for the privilege of getting to be her mom. I thank you for the time that I have spent with her. I thank you for her eyes that favor her dad, her cheeks that look like mine and her smile that can light up a room. I thank you for her adventurous spirit. I thank you for allowing me to see the wonder in her eyes as she spent her first days with Derek and me. I thank you for the loud moments when we all danced and sang together. I thank you for the quiet moments when we all laid together and I watched she and Derek sleep. I thank you for the moments that she cried out to me her mama. I thank you for all of these very special moments- moments that you provided- gave to us as gifts. I thank you that right now today you are watching over my sweet Zoe. You are aware of her every need. You are there when she is happy; there when she is scared, there when she is sleeping, you are always there. I pray that as she grows up that she will recognize and remember that you have always been there for her. That you are her ultimate Provider.

Lord, I thank you for the people you have surrounded Derek and I with in these waiting days. I thank you that you have provided them the words to say and pray when I could not form words at all.
Lord I ask that you make the path for Zoë’s homecoming straight. I ask that our letter from MOWA be at court on the 15th. I pray that there will be no glitches. I ask that March 15th mark the day of this process of adoption starting to come to an end.
Lord, I thank you that “you’ve got this”. There is no need for me to be fearful. Nothing that has or will happened is a surprise or a crisis to you.
More than anything Lord, I praise you. I praise you for being my Father, my maker, and my teacher, my Lord. I know that regardless of the outcome on the 15th that you are the same great God- You were and are and will be forever. I know that if we don’t pass court that that is you saying No not now. God I want to be someone who walks this journey with grace and gratefulness- regardless of outcome. I want my life to say, I trust my Father! I know he knows what is best. Most of all I want to remember in all things to praise you. I will praise you! I will praise you!! I will praise you!

Create in me a clean heart oh God. I come before you forgiven by you and forgiving because of you as I boldly ask you to bring Zoe to our family. I praise you and give you glory for the desire to adopt and the completion of the process. I thank you for young people who choose to change the world one child at a time.
I understand that Tori and Derek have avoided calling attention to themselves and have followed every legal rule and obligation. Yet they are in a position now that allows you to be the only source that can bring Zoe home. May we shout from the mountains and give you praise as the provider of this good and perfect gift. I ask you in your name that you protect Zoe and put angels all around her. I ask that her stomach be full, her clothes be clean and comfortable, her physical body be healthy, and that she remember that she is loved. I ask in your name that Tori and Derek choose to make right choices regardless of temptation to make things happen in their own power. I ask that you give them both the confidence that they are equipped to be first time parents to Zoe. Lord God the Father, put your arms of comfort around T and D and give them strength to change the things they can, accept the things they can't change, and the wisdom to know the difference. Lord I ask that Zoe be incorporated into both our physical family and our family of faith. May she know that she came to T and D because you gave her to them. I ask that she bond with all our family members and that she is able to grow up with cousins and siblings knowing that it is our desire to leave a legacy of loving all the children of the world. I pray that Zoe will desire to love others as she has been loved. Lord, I want to clothe the naked, feed the poor, and take in those in need that you bring into my life because you tell me in Scripture that when I have served the least of these, I have served you. Thank you for the heritage and the legacy passed from my grandma, Carrie Vickers, to my mom, Olga James, to me, and now to my girls, and then to their girls. I love you. 

Father, your word says to “Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding.  In all your ways acknowledge Him and he will direct your path.”  Proverbs 3:5-6.  God, this is something we just don’t understand, but God we are trusting you every step.  I pray that March 15th, will be another step closer to bringing Zoe home.  We praise you in the waiting time and trust in your perfect timing. 

Father, I bring before you a cry of many of our hearts. We are asking that you make a way and provide for all the details for little Zoe to come home to Derek and Tori soon. I know you are bigger than this, and capable of more than I can imagine. Please guide and direct the actions and steps of those in Ethiopia to get that paperwork completed and turned in with no more delay.

As we wait for March 15 to come, I pray you would give Zoe good days. Surround her with people who make her feel loved and cared for. Would you give her sweet memories of her Mommy and Daddy visiting her, and would you give her a hopeful and secure heart as she looks forward to seeing them again.

God, I ask you to please do the same for Derek and Tori. I pray that you would surround them with people to love and care for them well. When their minds and hearts become overcome with fear or doubt, I pray you would replace that with hopeful expectations and sweet memories of their sweet little girl. I pray their hearts would be comforted as only your Spirit can, and that this time of waiting would also be a time of joy and growth. I pray you would strengthen their relationship with each other through this, protect them as a couple and prepare them as parents.

We love you God, and trust you with the story of Zoe coming home.

“The steadfast love of the Lord never ceases, His mercies never come to an end: they are new every morning: great is your faithfulness.”  Lamentations 3:22-23

The Lord our God is with Tori and Derek in TN, and with Zoe in Ethiopia.  He is mighty to save you from disappointment and despair and bureacracy.  You are his children and  He takes great delight in you.  He will quiet your anxiety over this situation with his great love and, regardless of outcome, He will continue to rejoice over you and Zoe with singing.  
Praying that even in your most anxious, desperate moments His mighty love will quiet you and give you strength to persevere through each day. 

Lord, we praise You in the waiting. You are just as intentional about what You do not reveal to us as You are about what You do reveal.  Even when we have no answers, we can be sure that You know what You are doing and can be trusted to let us know or not know certain things. We trust You because of Your character and depend on You to do what is right all the time. You sit enthroned above the earth. Your eyes are on Ethiopia and Tennessee. You have chosen to give Zoe to Derek and Tori and You will complete what You have started. So we praise You in the waiting, knowing You always do what is best. We pray for strength and peace for Derek and Tori and for protection and provision for Zoe. We ask that the necessary paperwork be prepared, signed, and in court on March 15th. We ask not only for ourselves but so the world will acknowledge that we serve a mighty God. Our God is able….and He will!! So we will praise you in the waiting.

Tuesday's Prayers
  We ask you to straighten the path that will bring Zoe home to her mama and daddy. We know that children are a gift from You, and that You love to give us good gifts, so we boldly ask You to give Zoe to her family quickly. We specifically pray that the letter from MOWA will be in the right hands at the right time. We trust in Your timing, knowing that while You are rarely early, You are never ever late. We are so thankful that You have the whole world in Your hands, and we ask You even now to let Tori, Derek, and Zoe feel the peace and security that can only come from being held by You. We love You and thank You for Your gifts, for Your timing, and for Your strength.

Dear Heavenly Father,

I am coming to you on behalf of Derek and Tori and their sweet daughter, Zoe.  I thank you and praise you for bringing this family together.  I praise you for planting the idea within Derek and Tori to seek adoption and then for leading them to Ethiopia.  You knew the child that would be the perfect match for them. You made all the arrangements and then allowed them to meet Zoe!  You are the giver of every perfect gift and you bless us with good things that we cannot even imagine!

Father, now Derek and Tori are having to wait.  Because you made us Father, you understand how hard waiting is for us.  The enemy can really do a work on us during these times.  I pray that you will continue to guard Derek and Tori's hearts as they wait for your perfect timing.  I pray that they will better understand trusting in you and knowing that you are sovereign.  I pray that they can rest in the fact that you are so much bigger than any official in Ethiopia or any regulations that the Ethiopian government can come up with.  I pray that they will learn to know you in a way that they would not have understood without walking through this time of uncertainty.

And now Father, I ask that you would cause all of the pieces to fall into place for this week's court date.  I pray that the form that is needed is already complete and waiting to be presented this week in court.  I pray that the enemy would have no influence over creating another delay for this family.  I ask that you would allow them to receive the good news that they can now book the tickets to go and pick up their sweet Zoe!    Please grant this blessing to them this week!

Father, we will continue to give you the glory for bringing together another family who will bring glory and honor to your name!  Thank you for the future blessings that this child will bring to her new family and to the greater church family.  Thank you for the blessings that this child will receive as she is brought home and shown the love that will be bestowed on her.  Thank you for providing a chance for her to know and understand the love of a Mother and Father.  Oh Father, we are so anxious for Zoe to come home!!  Thank you for loving us and caring so much about the things that matter most to us.  Let Derek and Tori and Zoe experience your peace and we ask you for a miracle on their behalf  in court this week!
How we love you Father!

Dear God, I pray for your hand to be all over Tori and Derek's adoption process for sweet Zoe.  I pray for wisdom, comfort, and peace. I pray for their court date on the 15th to go great and all of the needed paper work to be there so they can bring their daughter home as soon as possible. Dear God we know you are faithful and thank you so much for that! Allow Tori and Derek to feel your love so overwhelmingly! It is in your Son's Name We Pray!  Amen

Dear Lord, you know Derek and Tori’s heart to provide a wonderful home for sweet little Zoe, so we ask you right now to intercede to make the necessary man-made hurdles dissipate to where only you can get the glory.  We can’t wait to meet this sweet thing!

Almighty God,
You are an awesome God. You are all-knowing, all seeing, and all powerful. You are our anchor and hope. You are the answerer of prayer, the author and perfector of our faith. You are the only One able to save. You are our All in all. And in this moment, as we draw one day closer to Zoe’s court date, we are counting on You to orchestrate all the circumstances necessary to get that letter issued and in place in Zoe’s file so that next Tuesday everything will be in order and her adoption will be finalized. God, we are asking You to be her Advocate. God, we cry out to You – El Elyon – the God Most High, knowing that You are an ever present help in time of trouble. We are counting on You and You alone to be Zoe’s Deliverer and Defender. We know You are dependable and we trust You as our faithful God. We trust that Your timing is perfect and we take comfort in knowing that we can take You at Your Word. You are able to do exceedingly abundantly above all that we could ever ask or imagine so we begin another day asking You to awe us as You move heaven and earth to get this sweet little girl home. Fill her parents with hope and give them peace as they wait and lean fully on You. Amen.

Monday's Prayers
Heavenly Father, I thank you that you are the creator of life.  I praise you that Zoe is fearfully and wonderfully made.  You created her in her mother's womb and your eyes saw her unformed body before she was born.  She is your precious one!  We praise you for this sweet miracle that was born 3 years ago.  God, I know you have great plans for her.  Jeremiah 29:11 says, "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 a hope and a future."  Father, I lift up March 15th to you.  We cry out to you and plead that Derek and Tori would pass court on that day.  I pray that the waiting time will go as quickly as possible.  Fill them with your peace as they wait.  I ask that Zoe will be in her home by Easter Sunday with her Mommy and Daddy!!  I pray that you will watch over Zoe and keep her safe while they are apart.  Just like your eyes saw her unformed body in the womb, your eyes can see her now.  I pray for your protection and that she would sense your presence.  I pray for those that are caring for her now.  I pray that they are providing the love and care that she needs.  I pray that you would give Derek and Tori rest and that they would cling to you.  Thank you, Jesus.  In Jesus' Name We pray, Amen!  

Good morning Father,
Thank you for the gift of a new day. Thank You that your mercies are new every morning. How reassuring it is, to know that when we draw near to You, You draw near to us. You never slumber nor sleep and you invite us to come boldly before Your throne of grace. Oh God, in this next week, we long to see Your grace and Your mercy and Your power demonstrated, as You move mountains to get the needed paperwork processed and in the proper hands so that Zoe’s adoption can be finalized and she can
come home to her parents soon. Father, nothing is too hard for You. Nothing. You are a water walking, mountain moving, universe making God. You flung the stars in the sky and you tell the oceans how far they can go. You know the number of hairs on our head and your thoughts toward us are more than the grains of sand. So we know that you can move in the mind and heart of the person responsible for writing “the letter” and have them write that letter today. Would You please do that? Would you please put Zoe’s file at the top of their list today? Father, with the same power that You used to raise Your Son from the dead, would You please raise that letter from that man or woman’s desk today? Lord, we long to see that sweet child here in her new home with her family. We are asking that You move heaven and earth today to orchestrate the circumstances surrounding the final paperwork, so that it will be written and delivered to court this week. God we are trusting in You and You alone. And while Derek and Tori wait out this week, would You please give them Peace with a capital “P”? Would You wrap Your arms around them so tightly that they continually feel the supernatural comfort that comes only from Your Presence…the comfort that human words could never describe? Father, thank You that You love them so much that You picked them out of all the parents in this entire world…to be Zoe’s mom and dad. Keep them encouraged - infuse hope in them - as they wait for their daughter to come home. In the Mighty Name of Jesus. Amen.

“Being confident of this, that He who began a good work in you will carry it on to completion…” Philippians 1:6

Dear Zoe,
We pray to our all-knowing, incredible God that your adoption letter request will be moved to the top of the pile and that it will be completed quickly and thoroughly.  We pray that all legal requirements are finalized before your March 15th court date.  May you come home with your new parents, Derek and Tori, immediately after your court date to live a wonderful life in the United States, where you will become a passionate follower of Jesus Christ. 

Oh Father, I come to You asking that you please allow all the paperwork to be in order before the March 15th court date. I ask you to bless little Zoe as she waits to join the family You have put together. Please hold Derek and Tori close and give them Your peace as they await their daughters arrival. I praise You for the gift of Zoe, for this beautiful little girl who will soon be a part of so many lives. I ask You to bind satan and cast away everything that might stand in the way of a successful court date resulting in the wonderful completion of this family. Thank You God for Derek, Tori and Zoe. Thank You for their witness, for their love and for all they do for Your Kingdom. We love You Lord and thank You that You are answering our prayers even as we speak them. In Jesus Name I pray, Amen

Dear Lord,
I thank you so much for precious Zoe. I also thank you so much for her mommy and daddy, Derek and Tori. Thank you so much for allowing Zoe to already be such a part of their lives. God, I ask you to please be with sweet Zoe right now. Help her feel surrounded by your love and peace during this time where she waits for Derek and Tori to bring her home. Lord, I also ask you to please be with Derek and Tori as well. I know they are having a hard time worrying and wondering about Zoe, and I ask you to please take any trace of fear and anxiety from them. You say to "Cast all your anxiety on Him, for he cares for you!" 1 Peter 5:7. I pray they will be able to do this as they wait. Lord, I also ask you to please allow their letter to go through, so they will be able to pass court on March 15. Thank you for your grace and your mercy, and thank you for all you are going to do through this situation. Thank you so much for all of your blessings. In Jesus name I pray, Amen!

1 Comment

  1. Tara on March 8, 2011 at 10:46 PM



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