Thursday, November 15, 2012

That's My Boy! He is Mine! That's My Girl! She is Mine!

This morning I was in the middle of grading, and I needed a break.  So, I went to check Facebook.  I know this is dangerous, and it really has the potential of disturbing productivity for the is one of the postings that was right at the top of my news feed (thanks Jessica for posting this):

Can you hear God shouting from the heavens, "That's My Boy!  He is Mine!" or  "That's My Girl, She is Mine!" took quite a while to recover from this video and the message therein.

I then read another post a little further down on Facebook that stated, nearly one-third of families in the United States consider adoption, but only two percent actually are willing to see it through and allow a child to have a forever family.  Beyond the strong leading for years from God, this is why Sarah and I are pursuing adoption.  We want to be able to say when our referral comes in the near future, we will also do everything it takes to say "yes, that's my boy, he is mine, welcome to our family!" or "yes, that's my girl, she is mine, welcome to our family!"

One of my favorite quotes is from Hudson Taylor.  He said:
"I have found that there are three stages in every great work of God: first, it is impossible, then it is difficult, then it is done."

Though Sarah and I are the ones specifically being led to say yes to a child or sibling group to joining our family, it will take many of you to help make this happen.  From the Taylor quote above, we are beyond the impossible stage, but we are definitely in the difficult phase.  We are never completely comfortable asking for financial support, but after being missionaries on partial support for over eleven years, we know that the truths of Matthew 7:7 and John 14:13-14 have rung true over and over throughout the years.  State the need, ask, and see how God will use people around the world to respond.  You can see the information in the top right hand corner about our remaining need and how you can support our family.

We are potentially as early as simply weeks away from being in a position to receive a referral from The Good Shepherds Fold in Uganda.  Depending on the timing of the referral, we may be travelling to Uganda within a few months to meet our child(ren) and bring them home.

During this season of giving with Thanksgiving and Christmas, will you give financially to our family to help make this adoption process a reality?  Will you pray for our upcoming homestudy revision process to go smoothly?  Will you pray for the staff at The Good Shepherds Fold for wisdom to know the right match of child or sibling group for our family?

Thank you for your consideration as to how God may use you to meet this need and putting us in a strong position to say yes to a child or sibling group.  May God bless you this holiday season.  Have a wonderful Thanksgiving!

Be blessed,
Joey, Sarah, Zoe, Micah, & Caleb

Friday, November 2, 2012

Life on Pause

Wow, has it really been nearly five months since we updated our blog?  We realize that this is way beyond acceptable, so let’s break the silence and let you know what has been occurring in the Beeson household over the past few months. 

Sarah said it best a couple weeks ago, it has felt like the pause button was hit on our lives since we made the decision in May to move from Mississippi to the Northeast.  So, without trying to bore you too much, here are some brief highlights of the past few months.
  • May: We put our house on the market after Joey accepted a new job to teach at Cairn University (formerly called Philadelphia Biblical University) in PA.
  • June: We started the craziness of packing and moving.
  • July: We started the tough process of saying goodbye to our friends and church in MS.  After a two day journey, with Sarah’s parents there to help, we arrived at their house on July 29.
  • August: Joey started his new job at Cairn, and we found out that all of our children were accepted to be able to go to school in the district where Sarah’s parents live.  This was a major praise for Micah and Caleb so that their speech delay needs would continue to be met. 
  • September: Our kids started school right after Labor Day, and we finally started getting into some good routines while living with Sarah’s parents.  We also started looking more for a new home; we did make an offer on a home in PA, and it was accepted.
  • October: Closing on our new home was set for the end of the month, but then Hurricane Sandy paid a visit to the area.  So, we continued to wait for closing to be rescheduled.  We also had a good update conversation with Good Shepherd Fold (GSF) related to our adoption process, which is further detailed below.

While Joey is thoroughly enjoying his new job at Cairn University, we are ready to begin to make some roots here.  We have enjoyed our time living with Sarah’s parents, and we are extremely grateful for all of their help with this transition so far.  The kids have especially had some invaluable time with their grandparents. 

However, it has been difficult transitioning to this area with the unknown of where we would live, where we would go to church, where the kids would go to school, etc.  Through all of this, God has been faithful and is continuing to teach us to surrender to His will, timing, and plans.  

We do have some great news that occurred on November 1.  We were able to close on a new home, and we will be moving soon to Morrisville, PA.  We will live two blocks away from our kids’ school, and it will only be a 10-15 minute commute for Joey to work.  We will also still be around 30 minutes away from Sarah’s parents.

Not only will this give us the space to begin a new chapter as a family, but it also places us in a position again to be able to restart our adoption process.  A major component of an adoption process is the home study, and because of our move from MS to PA, we will need to specifically revise the section related to our actual house.  We appreciate your prayers that we will find a helpful social worker who will guide us through this process, and then after our home study has been revised, we will need to update our approvals with the various US government offices.  As mentioned above, we had a good conversation with GSF back in October, and it appears that things are moving again with children to be placed, so we are hopeful the timing of us revising things on our end will coincide with processes in Uganda and at GSF. 

Would you commit to praying for the following for our family?
  1. The sale of our home in MS.
  2. A smooth transition into our new home in PA.
  3. That God would lead us to a new church home and a new set of friends, connections, etc.
  4. A smooth transition for our kids into a new school.
  5. A smooth home study revision process and that God would lead the leadership of GSF in making a referral to us in due time.
  6. That God would provide for the financial needs related to our adoption process.  We are open to a single child or a sibling group, and so far God has provided nearly $9,000 toward the estimated need of $15,000.  If we do get a referral for a sibling group, this would increase our financial need. Information for supporting our family can be found on the top right-hand corner of our blog, and do feel free to contact us if you have any questions.

Blessings to you all.  Have a wonderful November!
Joey, Sarah, Zoe, Micah, and Caleb

PS: Here are some fun pictures of our family from the past few months.
Zoe with Annie & Lorena before leaving Mississippi.

Zoe & Micah with their cousin Rhys in Texas.

First day of school in New Jersey.

The boys love riding the bus!

Riding on Thomas in Pennsylvania.

Micah on Thomas.

At homecoming at Cairn University

Post Hurricane Sandy damage at Mimi & Papa's House.

Monday, June 4, 2012

Are You Ready for This?

Okay, sorry to potentially mislead you…we do not have an adoption referral yet; however, we do have some major news and a brief adoption update to share with you later in this posting.  A lot has certainly occurred in the Beeson home since our last post on May 11, and we are excited to be able to share this now with the masses. 

Let’s start with the major news…we will be moving to the Philadelphia, PA area soon.  Yes, you did just read that last sentence correctly…around the end of July, we will be moving. 

Joey was approached by Philadelphia Biblical University ( earlier in the spring about his interest in teaching at the college-level in their school of education.  This has been a dream and vision for some time now, so when they approached him about this opportunity, we initially thought it would be for a part-time, adjunct role.  However, it was very clear in his first interview with the dean of the school of education in late April that this would instead be a full-time, on-campus opportunity.  He expressed his excitement and interest in this potential opportunity, but he was also clear about the concern of timing with needing to move in a matter of months and what this may mean for our adoption process. 

We prayed and sought wise counsel, and we decided to pursue this opportunity and see what would happen.  Joey went through an additional phone interview and then a Skype video interview with the school of education faculty.  He was then given the opportunity to fly up to meet with the leadership of the university in mid-May.  These interviews went well (though on May 16, he was in interviews from 8:30am to 4:30pm – what an arduous day).  Within a week, he received an offer, and we made the decision to accept it.  He will serve as an assistant professor in the school of education.  He will teach full-time as well as work with the supervision of student teachers and academic advising for education students.  He should also have the opportunity to start a doctorate soon, which would also expand his teaching opportunities.

Yes, we are no doubt excited about this new transition, but it is bittersweet too.  When we left Indonesia, we knew that we needed to a community that would help us rest, reenergize, and establish a new base for launch into future ministry opportunities.   We also had the sense that when we returned to the States that God would have us in Mississippi for three to five years.  It has now already been four years.  We have made some new wonderful friends, have been a part of a great small group, and it has been a privilege to get involved in various ministries at our church and in this community.

God has blessed us in so many ways in Mississippi that it is going to be difficult to leave.  Leaving the physical offices of NICS and NorthStar, our home/neighborhood, our church, and most of all our friends are not things we are looking forward to over the couple months.  We have already placed our house on the market (less than a week ago), and we are already beginning to obtain quotes for moving. 

We are not leaving NICS and both of us will still be serving at NorthStar Academy.  The beauty of an online school is that you can serve wherever you can be online.  Joey will continue to serve as principal, with a pared-down job description, and God has already provided others “in-house” to take care of these needs.  Sarah will continue to teach physical education and health courses too.

Now to a quick adoption update: A few weeks ago, we told our social worker here and the leadership at Good Shepherd’s Fold in Uganda about this potential transition.  The GSF staff continue to hit road blocks and dead ends on children already at the orphanage.  Multiple times they have shared with us that they were not convinced that our child(ren) were at the orphanage yet.  New children have recently come into the orphanage, but the lawyer for the orphanage has recommended that a minimum of six months be given to working through these new children’s cases before moving to try to make referrals.  So, not only will this transition/move not negatively affect our adoption process, but we even have some “extra” time to get settled in the Philadelphia area and update our paperwork before GSF is able to move forward on potential referrals. 

Would you pray for this transition for our family?  Here are some specific prayer requests:
  • That we would leave well and that the process of saying our goodbyes would be sweet.
  • That our house would sell quickly (we have already had two showings).
  • That we would be able to find the right home in the right school district.
  • That we would be able to find the right preschool situation for Micah and his needs.
  • That Joey would start off well in his new role at PBU.
  • That God would quickly provide us with a new church home and network of friends (and that we would be able to connect with “old” friends too).
  • That we would have a great time living close to family for the first time ever (Sarah’s parents only live 30 minutes from the university).
  •  That God would continue to direct the staff at GSF with children to be referred for adoption.

We will be leaving around the end of July, and we will be staying with Sarah’s parents for the foreseeable future, while we do house hunting and get our children started in school.  Though Joey starts his new role on July 1, he does not have to be on campus until mid-August.  Thanks again for your prayers!  

Blessings to you all!
Joey, Sarah, Zoe, Micah, and Caleb

Friday, May 11, 2012

Something in the Heavenlies, Maybe?

Hello everyone.  It is nearly the middle of May, and our wait continues for a child or sibling group from Uganda.  Social workers and the staff at Good Shepherd Fold continue their investigations, and we continue on the journey of faith here in the USA.  God is up to something, we can be sure of that; the when is still to be determined...  As we wait it leads me to pray, think, and ponder, what is happening in the heavenlies?  I share two song lyrics today on this issue.

Whatever you're doing inside of me
It feels like chaos somehow there's peace
It's hard to surrender to what I can't see
but I'm giving in to something heavenly.
Whatever You're Doing, by Sanctus Real

Surrender, whew that's a tough one, but it is exactly where God wants us to be with absolutely everything in our lives...On a lighter note, but certainly not one that includes less emotion, I often listen to Pandora at work, and this past week, I found a new station, "Broadway Showtunes" (I know what some of you are thinking, so get over it).  It has been fun to listen to many familiar tunes, many of which I have been able to see on stage at some point.  Then this morning I heard the familiar song "Maybe" from Annie.

I continue to wonder what our child or sibling group in Uganda is up to today.  Maybe they are already at GSF.  Maybe not.  Either way, do you think they are pondering some of the lyrics below?

Maybe far away
Or maybe real nearby
He may be pouring her coffee
She may be straighting his tie!
Maybe in a house
All hidden on a hill
She's sitting playing piano
He's sitting paying a bill!
Betcha they're young
Betcha they're smart
Bet they collect things
Like ashtrays, and art!
...So maybe now it's time
And maybe when I wake
They'll be there calling me "Baby"
Betcha he reads
Betcha she sews
Maybe she's made me
A closet of clothes!
Maybe they're strict
As straight as a line
Don't really care as long as they're mine!
So maybe now this prayer's
The last one of its kind
Won't you please come get your "Baby"

We are ready God to come get our baby, babies, toddler, toddlers, young kid, young kids, whatever you have in store for adding to the Beesons.

Thanks again for your prayers and support of our family as we continue on this journey - May God receive the glory in this process as we continue to wait on His timing!

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

In the Meantime...

Good afternoon everyone!  We know it has been a couple weeks since our last post.  I must admit how I feel when I follow a blog with a long wait time between updates, and we don't want to be one of those. :)

Our wait continues as our friends and the social workers at the Good Shepherd's Fold continue their investigations and paperwork on children who are both eligible for adoption and who are the right match for our family.

As the title of this post goes, as we wait, "In the Meantime..."

  • We wanted to share a page from our friends who work at GSF, specifically of a video that was recently posted on their blog.  Click here to watch the video:  It is so hard to fathom that one of the kids featured in this video could be a Beeson at some point.  Or, maybe our child(ren) are not yet at GSF.  Thank you God that you are sovereign over all of this.  Enjoy this video - it speaks volumes of the ministry that occurs everyday at GSF!
  • We wanted to let you know that the third revision of our homestudy is still in process and should be complete and received by the end of the week.  This will allow us to ensure that our I-600A paperwork gets updated.  Working with the Department of Homeland Security has been challenging, but we are thankful that we have been assigned a helpful officer for our I-600A!  We received a letter in the mail yesterday that our paperwork is already being forwarded to the U.S. Embassy in Kampala.  
  • While on the issue of DHS, I must share a funny story from a couple weeks ago.  I was trying to get in contact with our officer, and I was talking with the receptionist.  I asked her when I could call back (since leaving messages seemed to get me nowhere).  She said I could call back during business hours.  So I asked her, "when are you open."  She says, "let me check."  She then told me the time after placing me on hold.  Then I said, "what time zone are you in?"  She said, "I don't know, hold please."  She then got back on the call and said, "Central I think."  I thought to myself that I better hold my tongue though the situation was ripe for comment...and as my tax dollars are paying her salary. :)
  • We wanted to let you know that God has used friends, family, and churches to support our family on this adoption journey.  We nearly have 50% of our need met.  Would you consider a donation to helping our family provide a forever home for one or more of these children at GSF?  Information on how you can support our family is found on the right side of the page.  We know that God will provide our needs - does this include Him using you?
Thanks again to everyone for your prayers for this process - blessings to you all!

Friday, March 30, 2012

So, Where Is and What Is The Good Shepherds' Fold?

Ok, be honest, before we get into answering the title of this post, do you really know where Uganda is?  Joey has always enjoyed geography, so he certainly knew before Sarah. :)

The safe answer of course is that Uganda is in Africa, but really, where in Africa is Uganda?  See the map below:
Uganda is bordered by Lake Victoria, where the Nile River begins, Kenya, South Sudan, the Democratic Republic of Congo, Rwanda, and Tanzania.  Over the past few weeks, you may have heard about KONY 2012.  Regardless of your thoughts about the organization behind this project, it has certainly received a lot of attention - right now it has over 86 million hits on YouTube ( - and it does capture a lot of the truth about the continued devastation and crisis in this part of our world.

Uganda is the "Pearl of Africa" where the East African savanna meets the West African jungle, and The Lonely Planet has voted it as the #1 Best Destination for Travelers in 2012 (  But we digress, we are here not to sell travel packages but instead to give you some information about the orphanage where our adoption process is occurring.

Here are some statistics from the Good Shepherds' Fold (GSF) regarding children in Uganda:

  1. One out of every four households in Uganda have at least one orphan.
  2. 57% of Uganda's population are children below the age of 18.
  3. More than 3 million children in Uganda live below the poverty line.
  4. In 2007 there were over 2.3 million orphans in Uganda.
The Good Shepherds' Fold was established in 1994 with the purpose and primary vision of evangelizing orphan and destitute children of Uganda with the good news of Jesus Christ, while also providing for their physical, spiritual, educational, and medical needs.  GSF is located approximately 15 miles west of Jinja in the small village of Buundo.  Currently several missionary families work alongside over 60 Ugandan staff each day in the ministries of GSF.  In addition to providing a home for more than 90 children (newborns to 18 years old), GSF offers a Christ-centered education to more than 300 children each day in its primary school.  These school children also receive breakfast, lunch, medical care, and a great deal of love each day.  Here's an aerial image of their property.

The statistics about the number of orphans both domestically and overseas are mind-boggling, and if we are not careful these mere statistics can make us numb to the reality that every child matters, regardless of these statistics, regardless of their race, regardless of their socioeconomic situations, regardless of geographic location.  You may remember the old church song from childhood - "Jesus loves the little children.  All the children of the world.  Red, and yellow, black, and white, they are precious in His sight."

If you have not done so already, would you consider joining us on this journey to making a difference and allowing our family to provide a forever family to a child or sibling group?  Would you consider giving toward the needs of our family to make this journey and process become a reality in 2012?  God has already provided 45% of our need, and we trust in His faithfulness and provision to meet our needs for the remaining 55%.

Blessings to you all!

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Waiting, Waiting, Waiting

We have definitely learned firsthand over the past few months that the adoption journey oscillates between “busy stages” and “waiting stages”.  It seems at times we are so busy with applications and paperwork, and then at times we sit and wait and wait and wait.

We currently find ourselves in a “waiting stage” as we are the next family at the Good Shepherd's Fold (GSF) to receive a referral – this could come today, next week, next month… we certainly appreciate your prayers for the wonderful folks at GSF and that the right match will be made for our family in the Lord's timing.

Based on what we know at this point, here is the simplified path that lies ahead for our family:
  • GSF Application: We completed this step in October! J
  • Home Study: We completed this step in December - many thanks to Lauren Johnson at the Harden House!). J
  • GSF Consideration: Our family was approved in January! J
  • Immigration Paperwork: We have started this process with the Department of Homeland Security (USCIS); we are still waiting on final approval for our I-600A.
  • GSF Referral: We are waiting for this to come.  On our application, we indicated that we were open to a single child or sibling group of either gender (though we prefer a girl) at or below the ages of our current children (six or younger).
  • Acceptance of Referral
  • Court Proceedings in Uganda: Both Joey & Sarah would have to be in country for around two weeks to appear twice before the Ugandan High Court in order to receive legal guardianship of the child(ren).; one of us would then need to stay an additional three weeks or so in order to completed the required immigration and departure paperwork with the U.S. Embassy for entry into the U.S.
  • Adoption: Once we return from Uganda, we would begin the legal process of formal adoption in the U.S.

 Thank you again for your continued prayers and support of our family.

Monday, March 19, 2012

Why Adoption, Why Uganda, and How You Can Help Our Family

We have briefly provided the context in our decision to adopt, the connection to Uganda, and how you can be a part of this journey with our family. Much of the information below is from our Fall 2011 Edition of The Beesons Blurbs.  

God’s heart is both for our nearby neighbors but also for the nations, and specifically over the past year or so, we have sensed God moving us to consider international adoption.  We investigated both domestic and international options, and we continually felt moved to consider overseas options, especially with our previous international experience.  Toward the end of August 2011, Joey had a meeting with one of our pastors, and the issue of adoption was discussed.  He encouraged us to start with the connections that God had already placed in our lives.  One of these connections was with a family who ministered at NICS.  Around the time that we returned from Indonesia to the States, Mark and Amy Gwartney left the States to work at a children’s and baby’s home in Uganda, called the Good Shepherd’s Fold (GSF).  We are now on the journey to adopt from GSF!  This is a faith venture for sure on many levels, but we rest in the fact that we know that God will provide the needed direction, wisdom, and resources for this process.  For more information you can visit GSF’s website at

We are actively moving forward with the process of legal guardianship and private adoption through the Good Shepherd Fold (GSF) in Uganda.  There are a lot of unknowns and challenges potentially with this process.  However, we are moving forward while the door remains open.  What better way to take care of an orphan than to make them a part of our family?  We are excited about the chance to allow a child or sibling group to have a loving, caring home and family. 

We understand that this will take personal sacrifice.  As full-time missionaries, we continue to rely on the support of friends, family, and churches as we continue to serve with the Network of International Christian Schools.  We also understand that not everyone is in a position or feels called to adopt.  You can be involved in a tangible way by directly supporting our family with both your prayers and your financial support.  Fortunately, NICS is a non-profit organization, which allows our family to raise additional support if/when needed.  Therefore, we can accept donations through NICS.  This allows you to financially contribute to our family as well as receive a tax deduction with your gift.  

Your support of our family places us in a more solid position to be able to provide a loving home to a child or sibling group who would otherwise not have one

If you desire to financially support our family, you may:
  • Send a check made out to “NICS” with our project number #01401 in the memo section to the Network of International Christian Schools, 3790 Goodman Road East, Southaven, MS 38672 USA.
  • Or, you can donate online at  Select “Missionary Support” and enter our family’s name or project number (#01401).  Other helpful information for giving tax-deductible donations to us through NICS can also be found on this website.

 We look forward to hearing from you soon, and if you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact us.  We would love to hear from you!  Thanks and take care!

Joey, Sarah, Zoe, Micah, and Caleb

What Is The Beeson Blurbs?

Ok, so what exactly is The Beeson Blurbs?

Many people have been following and supporting our family and ministry, since we first launched The Beeson Blurbs back in 2003.  Simply stated, The Beeson Blurbs is our family ministry newsletter.  Our family has finally moved to the 21st century, and we have now launched The Beeson Blurbs blog.

We hope you enjoy it!