"How can there be too many children? It's like saying there are too many flowers." Mother Theresa

Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Sunday, December 26, 2010

The difference a year makes

One year ago yesterday Grace and Manny came home! Today I am reflecting on this past year together. It hasn't always been easy, but it has always been worth it.
One year ago....
They had no running water
They had no change of clothes
They had no bed save a palate on the the floor
They had no parents
They went without food often
They had no tv
They had no computer
They spoke no English
They had no one to tuck them in at night
Manny did not know Christ Jesus
Grace lived in fear

They are now living with all their basic needs met. They are loved. They are thriving. Manny knows the Lord. Little by little Grace is grasping the meaning of her name and learning to live.
I am thankful for the difference this year has made, in their lives and mine.

Monday, December 20, 2010

My favorite Christmas song...


Not only do I love this song, it is so fun to look at the guys in video that I was crushing on back in the day;)

Thursday, December 16, 2010

Tips on raising a large family

Someone emailed me and asked me to give some tips on raising a large family. So here goes!
So the pictures have nothing to do with raising a large family! I just love the pictures and thought I'd show you one of the most important things about raising a large family: Having Fun!
Most people like to ask me about the laundry. Our system is this: The kids bring the laundry down to me each morning (it is on a chore list). I wash the laundry and put it in baskets, one basket for each bedroom. The kids are then called to get their basket and they put away their own laundry. If you want the laundry put away properly then make sure each item of clothing has a clear and precise place to put it.
The second most popular question I get asked is about food! First, never skimp on nutrition. You are your child's teacher about health and wellness. Make the most of that. When going to the grocery make a list. I find that I save money if I use recipes and don't just make a list from my mind. I double all recipes. Plan your snacks and put those too on the list. We also are part of a CSA. For those who don't know what that is, it stands for community supported agriculture. We pay a set amount and then go weekly or biweekly depending on the season and pick up our goods. The farm is organic and close to our home. It is a very good value and I have found it to be beneficial to wait to pick up our veggies and then plan next weeks menu. What we don't buy: We NEVER buy candy, gummies or other such junk. I will on special occasions pick up a 2liter of soda, but I only do this on special occasions. People often too ask me about picky eaters...I have one picky eater. I do not cater to him. He eats what I serve. He must have one bite of everything, but then he is free to eat what he likes.
Clothing.....thrift stores, hand me downs, and clearance racks. Nuff said on that!
Christmas presents- two each and a stocking. The first year we did this I thought the kids would be disappointed. They didn't even notice. Children truly do most value their time with you. Which lead me to another FAQ....
How do you spend enough time with everyone? First of all, if you are homeschooling than you spend all day with your kids! We have tried different methods with this. We have had planned dates with the kids. We have tried special days of the week (where they pick dinner and get a fuss made over them). Though we have tried various things, it truly seems that the children's need for attention makes itself known without any planning. For example, sometimes you can tell by a child's behavior that they need some qt. After some time passes certain kids will like to do certain things with you that other kids do not and you will find that you are meeting their needs that way. I have one child who always goes shopping with me. I have one who enjoys going to library and so on an so forth.
Chores. We have tried various methods for this as well, but our current method is working the best. We have 7 children full-time so when Lauren is here then we alter the list the a bit. One child is responsible for cleaning the family room. This is all day, not a one time clean. They are manager of the area and keep everyone in check on picking up their shoes etc...No surprise, my son who is nicknamed The General is the family room cleaner. :) My teen daughter cleans the dishes at supper and cleans the kitchen daily. Manny cleans the bathrooms everyday. Beniam walks the dogs. Noah takes out the trash. Adam cleans the guest room and the computer room. Mercy is in chart of the entry way and the kitchen table. If you know Mercy she tries to be in charge of much more than that! :)
Activities. Many families I've talked to allow their children only one sport or activity. I think this is extremely wise, but we let our children play two sports each. Our kids mostly all play baseball and soccer. Activities can quickly become overwhelming. If I had known this a few years ago, we would be allowing one each as well.
Bible reading: This has changed a few times over the years. Right now though, I read the word with the homeschoolers and my husband reads the word to the 4 boys he drives to middle school each day. While they are waiting in line they read and pray together. Did I tell you how much I love my husband? ;) We have had regular reading times with dinner, at bedtime and in the morning. Our current system seems to work the most.
I am finding homeschooling to be so rewarding. It actually makes life a lot less hectic and quite a bit easier. I know that sounds crazy, but it is true. I wish and hope and PRAY that I'll eventually have all the kids here with me.
I hope I've addressed most of what my friend wanted to know. Feel free to chime in and give your tips! It takes a village afterall!

Sunday, December 12, 2010


Happy X-mas! ;)

Blessed are the entitled?


Ever witness a kid digress into complete meltdown mode after his parents refused to buy him that new video game?

“But I want it! It’s mine! Give it to me!”

Entitlement can get ugly, especially around Christmastime.

And the only thing more embarrassing than watching a little kid throw a fit is watching a grownup throw one.

“If you don’t play religious music at your store, we’ll boycott it!”

“We demand that manger scenes be placed in front of all government buildings!”

“How dare you say ‘happy holidays’ to me? I want to speak with the manager!”

“I want it! It’s mine! Give it to me!”

I’m not sure when or why it happened, but in some circles, entitlement has been declared December's Christian virtue. Suddenly it’s not enough that Americans spend millions of dollars each year marking the birth of Jesus. Now we’ve got to have a “Merry Christmas” banner in front of every parade and an inflatable manger scene outside of every courthouse... or else we’ll make a big stink about it in the name of Jesus. Having opened the gift of the incarnation—of God with us—we’ve peered inside and shrieked, “This is not enough! Where are the accessories? We want more!”

This is a strange way to honor Jesus, “who, being in very nature God, did not consider equality with God something to be grasped…but made himself nothing by taking the very nature of a servant.” (Philippians 2:8)

Jesus didn’t arrive with a parade. He arrived in a barn.

Jesus wasn’t embraced by the government. He was crucified by it.

Jesus didn’t demand that his face be etched into coins or his cross be carried like a banner into war. He asked that those who follow him be willing to humble themselves to the point of death, to serve rather than be served, to give rather than receive.

What a tragedy that history’s greatest act of humility is being marked by petty acts of entitlement and pride.

Don't tell anyone, but sometimes I wonder if the best thing that could happen to this country is for Christ to be taken out of Christmas—for Advent to be made distinct from all the consumerism of the holidays and for the name of Christ to be invoked in the context of shocking forgiveness, radical hospitality, and logic-defying love. The Incarnation survived the Roman Empire, not because it was common but because it was strange, not because it was forced on people but because it captivated people.

Let’s celebrate the holidays, of course, but let’s live the incarnation. Let’s advocate for the poor, the forgotten, the lonely, and the lost. Let’s wage war against hunger and oppression and modern-day slavery. Let’s be the kind of people who get worked up on behalf of others rather than ourselves.

Friday, December 10, 2010

Anniversary dates

All our adoption anniversaries are close together. Mercy is November, Grace and Manny December, and Simon and Beniam January. Mercy just had her two year anniversary. Wow, how time flies. She is such a light. She has the most infectious giggle and the biggest eyes. Everyone loves her. I am so thankful to God for moving me to adopt her, our little girl. I can't imagine our lives without her and I can't imagine what her life would have become without us.
Shhhhh....she and I want a little baby girl in the house.

Thursday, December 9, 2010

The story of US

We are watching the History channels America the Story of Us. I was told it is derived from Susan Wise Bauer's curriculum used by many home school families. It is really a great series. We finished one history book and half of another and I decided to change our pace with this series. The kids love it, though much of it is over their heads. I do a lot of narrating.
As we watched this morning, (from bed :) I began to wonder. So much is wrong with our history. Not just the US, but humankind. I used to read the Old Testament and wonder..."Are they just stupid? How can they not follow a God who works miracles right in front of them?" I watch our US history and see what we did to the Natives, the Chinese (during the building of the railroad), the Africans and again I wonder..."Were they just crazy? I mean, how could they not see what they were doing was not of God?" Look at our world today....the AIDs pandemic, human trafficking, orphans...what will they say of us? I know what they'll say. "What were they thinking? Why were they building bigger homes and driving bigger cars, and building bigger church buildings and spending millions on themselves, while Gods children are dying, are starving, are being sold."
I pray our generation gets busy reversing history.

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Another kind of orphan

Every wonder what happens to adult with disabilities after their parents die? They are often left alone and helpless. Join me as I pray about our family becoming a family home provider for one of these precious folks.

Saturday, December 4, 2010

"For it is in giving that we receive." St Francis of Assisi

My small group organized a Christmas party for women in the housing project in our town. The kids helped me fix 30 of the 50 gift bags we would distribute. We passed out a few hundred dollars in gift cards (our church gave us a generous donation) Our grand prize was a new Certa mattress and box springs. The lady who won it did NOT have a bed. She began crying instantly, which set of a chain reaction and the whole room was weeping. God presence was made known to everyone there.

We are quickly approaching the one year anniversary of my being a stay at home mom. I can say without any hesitation that it has been the best year of my life. I love being home and wish that life could always be as it is now, but things happen. Being that I'm an RN going back to work is only a phone call away and the pay is good. It's hard not to just run back to work when hard times come our way but I believe God wants us to wait out the storm. My flesh says go back to work but the spirit is strongly saying wait. Meanwhile the kids are expecting Christmas....God has always shown himself providential in our lives, yet sometimes I still fear.

Sunday, November 28, 2010

Monday, November 22, 2010

Feeding a large family

This week the menu was simple! Grace is cooking Ethiopian food for 30ish guests we will be having for dinner tomorrow. Since my kitchen is occupied I am just picking up some take out. Then Thursday it's off to my Momma's for Thanksgiving dinner. But lately it seems I've becomed bored with what I'm cooking. I'd love to hear some your favorite recipes. My kids favorite is a simple pasta dish. I use whole wheat pasta (any kind really). Then I put tomatoes, garlic, onion (and basil in the summer when it's growing in the backyard!) in the food processor. I toss it in the pasta and there you have a delicious dinner. Can you share some of your favorite cheap and easy dishes?

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Been a while....

Ok, I've slacked on the blog. I intend to do better and I'm gonna start by posting someone elses blog that greatly touched me.


It’s Orphan Awareness Month. Again.

Another month set aside for the church to show orphan related videos, hear testimonies relevant to adoption and orphan care, and an opportunity to listen to sermons where orphans are [possibly] mentioned.

I must confess. Many times I ask myself, “What’s the point of it?” “Is having another time set aside to create an awareness of the orphan crisis even worth the effort?” Is it? Will it make a profound difference?

Perhaps I have become somewhat cynical, or weary of the battle that rages for the lives of millions of children, or frustrated that help seems so slow to come, or desperate to see more and more who are willing to go. I don’t know. I only know the sinking feeling that I feel each time I look into the faces of our four adopted children and remember the millions that are left behind. The ones who are literally without hope, without life.

We’re the Christians doggonit! We’re God’s beloved church. His beautiful bride. We’re the ones He has already commanded to take care of the orphans.

Yet sadly, we wait.

We wait for God to speak to us in an audible voice, telling us to “GO!”—sometimes He does that audible voice thing, you know.

We wait for the perfect job to come along—orphan care demands a whole lot of money.

We wait for the bills to be paid—can’t be taking on more than we can handle.

We wait for the larger house—because adding children requires a large house.

We wait for a few kids to leave the nest before we add more—can’t be having too many children in the home.

We wait for confirmation with the perfect scripture to drop into our spirits as a sign that we need to act now.

We wait...for someone else to go.

We wait, we wait, we wait.

And while we wait—they perish. The statistics are staggering. I can’t even look anymore.

This is the horrendous reality...


Why do we find every reason under heaven and earth why we should not go? The Bible is as clear as daylight—“care for the widows and the orphans.”

It’s a lot like missions. My heart aches when I see how many churches don’t have a fabulous missions program. God’s Word says to “Go into ALL the world and make disciples of all men.” It’s a command! It’s non- negotiable. Taking care of the orphans is a command too. We’re commanded in His word to care for them—however that may look.

But still we wait for “the call” to come. Kind of like, “I am SO glad Mrs. Jenkins is called to lead children’s church, because that is DEFINITELY NOT my calling.


God hardly ever calls us to do things for Him when everything in our lives is just grand. He never calls us to walk on the water when our circumstances are sweet. When I look in the Bible, I see people doing things for the Lord in the midst of impossible circumstances. Tougher than what my circumstances have ever been in my entire life. Yet, they did it. In obedience. The Lord commanded them--and they went. They accepted the tough task that lay before them—come what may. They never asked the Lord for a re-commission.

So why in the world do we? What makes us so different to the people God gave us to learn from in the Bible?

Why are there so many uncared for orphans in the world when we’re commanded to care for them?

We would be wealthy if someone paid us every time we have been told that we were “called by God” to adopt our four children who have special needs. Or for the many people who have told us that “There is no way we could do what you do.”

I disagree.

You know what that does? It diminishes God’s sovereign power to do the impossible through each one of us, His people. Comments like that tell the Father, “Sorry God, but you don’t have enough power to give me the ability to parent a child who struggles in life.” “So sorry, God. Just go and call someone else.” “Oh God, and that mission field thing? There is no way I could ever do that!”

That’s perilous ground to walk on.

God’s power is absolutely made perfect in our weakness. When He commands us to do something, He equips us with everything we need to fulfill the calling with excellence. Even people like us--ordinary sinners saved by grace who are just average Joes. He does it for His glory! To make Himself famous in the earth. It has absolutely nothing to do with us. Everything God does is for His glory, not ours.

I believe with all my heart that God is raising up an army of crazy people to do the ridiculous. Many believe we are living in the end times. We agree! We sense that more than ever God is looking for those who are willing to do the impossible. Just WILLING! God is seeking out those who will serve Him with reckless abandonment, no matter where that takes them or what He tells them to do in this life.

Reckless abandon for the sake of His orphans...simply because they so desperately need US. Come what may.

copied from: http://www.nogreaterjoymom.com/2010/11/reckless-abandon.html

Now my soap box: Why are we as a Christian community still serving ourselves? Why do we think we have to have a big spread to eat each time we come together in small groups? Why do we throw parties and invite each other only? Why? Why? We are the rich and there are beggars right outside our gates and still we serve ourselves. We are making our selves demi Gods. Now I am not saying Christians shouldn't encourage one another. We should. That is biblical. But we should be using our resources to feed and clothe the hungry and naked. We should be using our resources to finance the spread of the gospel around the world. We should be using our resources to help the widow and the orphan. WE should be using our resources to friend the foreign in our land. We should not use our resources for the glory of ourselves.
Off the soap box. I have a lot to learn I realize, both about what this means in my own life and how to speak it with a gentle tongue.
Until then...;)

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

I'm with the band

Noah and Adam are in the middle school band now at our church. Our middle school worship center is called the Firehouse, hence they are in the Firehouse band. Noah is singing and Adam is drumming. I'm proud of this accomplishment. They will be singing praises to The King in front of their peers. They also will be filling their minds with more and more praise songs!
... Aren't they too cute?

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Onions make me cry

One of my motivations for homeschool was Beniam. He never really attached to me. I do not want to minimize the pain of those dealing with RAD. We were never dealing with RAD. He has always been sweet, easy to love and respectful. There was just always something missing. Our only real issue with him was his picky eating habits. Though we did not cater to them, at times we would scold him for not eating the healthier option during meal time. After a few months of his being our son, we eased up a bit on the pressure for him to eat everything. At that point it became obvious to us that this was not about food, it was about something much deeper. I have to back up and point out that he began sitting in my lap on occasion since we started homeschool. Big progress. Well Sunday we hit another monumental achievement for him. We went to a local buffet after church. One of the other children exclaimed "Look at Beniam's plate!" I looked up expected to see a pile of fried chicken and there it was....a small salad!!! He had a huge smile on his face, just for me I believe and he said "I'm gonna try to eat a little." Yesterday we ended up in our neighbor city with an hour to kill before an appointment so we went out for lunch. He wanted a meatball grinder. I ordered it and it was filled with onion and peppers. Always in the past he would gag, literally, at the sight of onions and peppers. He'd gag, his eyes would water and he'd look like he'd been injured. This time he looked up at me with a big smile and said "I'm going to eat the onions and peppers this time. He took slow bites and then as we all sat in hushed silence he said "I think I like onions and peppers. I think I'll start putting some onions on my food!" I cried, for real. I knew deeper what this meant. Beniam, also being very shy would never sing in front of anyone. We'd catch him singing and dancing in a room alone but the minute we'd walk in he'd stop. Guess what? Yes! He is also singing and dancing. And so am I.

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Homeschool bliss and other stuff...

We started homeschooling when our other kids went back to school. Today is the 4 week anniversary. For those of you who aren't in on the history, we have 4 in public middle school, 3 at home and my step-daughter is out of state. This is my first year of homeschooling. So far..... I LOVE IT! I love it for many reasons. To name a few: NO homework to help them with. NO notes that their lunch account is over drawn. NO list of supplies the teachers need. NO projects! NO permission slips! OK so that is just the "NO's" that I love. I also love: sleeping later. The kids having healthier breakfast and lunch. Getting to spend my day with some of my favorite people. My new homeschool friends. Getting to learn things again with my children. Beniam sitting on my lap. (That's my favorite. He would never sit on my lap before. Though he has always been easy to love and be with he never really seemed to attach to me, until now.) Field trip Fridays with Dad. Reading. Praying together more often. Enjoying good weather days. My house is cleaner. Yes, I said cleaner. :-)
As you can tell by my blogging, my grammar is very lacking! LOL. Hopefully you'll see it improve as I help the kids with their lessons.
Another thing going on around the Bond household is a focus on nutrition. We have many documentaries on eating well. The kids are enjoying them and participating in cooking healthier foods. We have decided to give God our stomaches. Sounds strange? It really shouldn't be. We give him our time and talents, we give him our hearts, why shouldn't we also give him our stomachs? He provided us food to eat, we should enjoy that food. Only that food. Our culture has gotten so far away from the teachings of scripture and the life abundance that Christ came to offer us. We have perverted his idea of family. We have perverted the physical world around us. We have perverted sex and dare I say it....We have perverted food. He gave us all we need for sustenance and we have added addictive substances to it. We have devitalized the soil. We have turned agricultue into capitalism. So I have decided I am giving God my stomach. If anyone is interested on the resources I am reading or watching please email me at: afrosandtiaras@yahoo.com.
Peas and Love ;)

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Since we last "talked"

School started for my middle schoolers. Hopefully I'll home school more than three next year. Happy was perched ready to ride to school too as she has these last several years. I love that little aggravater.
Noah celebrated his 12th birthday. Adam celebrated his 13th!
Lauren went back home last week. We miss her and look forward to seeing her on fall break.
Our biggest news so far is that Adam, my step-son is living with us now! It is a dream come true for us. We realize that it is going to be difficult but we have coined a family slogan here: "Do hard stuff." We are ready! The night before school started after our family devotions we went around the table and did our highs and lows for the Summer. Everyone said their high was having Adam here. I could tell how that filled him up. We are so thankful.

We turned our guest room into a school room! I can't believe how excited I am about homeschooling! We start......TODAY! Right after Jazzercise;) First things first.

We sold our microfiber sectional, as I was tired of having it cleaned, and bought a used leather sectional. It fits all of us, until the kids grow! What it didn't fit was our family room! Ha. Next time I'll measure. We also had hard wood put in our downstairs. We don't have a large house for our family size. Our home is 2100 square feet and 9 of us live here full time. I think it's plenty big enough, but often folks come over and say "You need a bigger house." I hate this comment really, because my kids lived in one room before coming to America. One room. We have five bedrooms. We can make due.

My garden is doing pretty good. I am an amateur gardener. (Which is likely evident by the photos:). We have two 7 layer above ground organic beds. This is our second year. I LOVE it! I also started a Dahlia garden, my favorite flower. It's looking a little sickly right now but I have high hopes for the next few years as the plants roots mature. (Much like us really!) We have been watching many food documentaries with the kids. They seem to enjoy learning about what they should eat and where it should come from. Though these films are not Christian in nature it is beautiful and tragic to see what God intended for our land and where capitalism has taken it. The children seem to like hearing what they should eat from a film rather than hearing what they shouldn't eat from their Mom! Go figure!

Wednesday, July 21, 2010


Last week we enjoyed a family vacation at St George Island. It was a short 12 hour drive in a 15 passenger van:-) We spent the week soaking up the water and the rays with my parents, my in-laws and my brothers family. Grace and Manny got to experience the beach for the first time. We also celebrated Mercy's birthday...with a lot of chocolate!

Friday, July 9, 2010

Let me tell you something....

So today I went to visit with a sweet little old lady. As she was sharing about her life she asked me "How many children do you have?" I said "8". She said "Wow! Everyone thought I was crazy for having 4." I told her "5 of mine are adopted." She says to me: "You must be a very good person. Its disgusts me all these people going to other countries to adopt children when there are perfectly good children here." I said nothing in response. I'm somewhat used to this at this point. But you know what I really wanted to say: "You find find it disgusting that an orphaned child gets a home? You somehow deem American children superior to other children in the world? You think we are to turn a blind eye to the millions of children in the world who have no parents because they don't live in the US? Really? I am Christian. I do not identify myself as an American. Christ follower is the only title I will ever need."

Thursday, June 24, 2010

So happy!

I get to be Auntie Lisa again and one more orphan has a home!

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

Summer Break!!!!

Today was the last day of school! Ryan and I visited the kids for their awards ceremonies. Mercy earned the "friendly" award, no surprise to us as she's always greeting people with a happy face. Ben earned the "citizenship" award and Math award! His teacher said someday he'll be president! :-) Simon earned a Math award. Noah earned 6 or so awards including the Presidential award. Grace and Manny win an award from me for being such good troopers, this their first semester of school in America.
Adam and Lauren will be here before we know it to spend the summer. I have made our family schedule with our meal plan, game times, tv times, chores, homework and reading time, devotional time.....think that's all that's on the schedule. What's not on it is all our visits to the water park and the baseball park! We can get a summer pass to our water park for 200$ That's pretty great for 10 of us, unlimited access to the pools!
We are soon getting hardwood put in our downstairs. Why oh why did I not do that to begin with? Next up a leather couch, so I'm not paying to have this one cleaned.
I am planning my first home school year! Mercy, Beniam and Grace will be my first students. I'm praying the Teabow bill passes (allowing home school students to play sports in public school) then I'll be homeschooling the rest. (Unless of course I totally flop at this first attempt!) Any encouragement would be much appreciated.

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Merry Merry Month of May

We have been really busy having fun this month. We have celebrated Mercy's completing kindergarten, attended a middle school choral concert, went hiking with grandparents, played a lot of baseball, went to a church picnic, celebrated birthdays (Ryan, me and my Dad), visited Kings Island, and celebrated Mothers Day.
Enjoy a few photos!
Now I am preparing for the kids to be home for summer, making our calendar and menu. Can't wait to have the kids home!

Have I mentioned how beautiful I think all of my kids are;-)

Friday, May 28, 2010


7 years ago I had one child. I was a single Mother, divorced from my sons Ethiopian father. I was codependent, bitter and far from God. One Sunday morning I watched Southland Christian Church on TV and was blown away. I had never heard such practical teaching. I visited that night. Shortly later I'd surrender my life to Christ. MY soul looked like one of those houses on hoarders. It would take a long time to clean up one of those houses and it would take years to clean me up as well. Occasionally there's a box or two in my house still. :-)
6 years ago I remarried. We would grow in Christ together. With my new husband came two more children. So, 6 years ago I became the mother to three.
After being married a year, I went through the curriculum by Neil Anderson, Victory over the Darkness. Through that study I learned of my identity in Christ. My adoption into God's family, and God's desire for his children.
4 years ago, sitting in Church watching a video about Ethiopian orphans, God spoke to me.
3 years ago in January, I became the mother of 5.
Not long after being home, we found that our new son had left behind some siblings. He particularly grieved for the little sister he had left behind. We went to Southland and they prayed over us that she would be found. One orphan in 3 million. She was found three days later.
Less than two years ago, I became the mother of 6.
While we were in Ethiopia, our son asked if we would find his older brother and sister and give them the money he had in his bank account.
This December I became the mother to 8.
Ain't God great?

Today I sit in my air conditioned house, food in the refrigerator, flowers blooming outside, kids at school, and I am feeling a mix of blessing and distress. Why do I get to live this blessed existence? Why have I been given AND forgiven so much?
Someday I hope to tell my WHOLE story. I AM a miracle.
Listen, far-flung islands,
pay attention, faraway people:
God put me to work from the day I was born.
The moment I entered the world He named me.
He made me His straight arrow and hid me in His quiver.
He said to me, "You're my dear servant, through whom I'll shine."
Yes, God took me in the hand from the moment of birth to be His servant,
to bring His people back home to Him.
What an honor for me in God's eyes!
And now He says, "But that's not a big enough job for my servant-
just to recover your own family, merely to round up
the strays of your own people.
I'm setting you up as a light for the nations
so that my salvation becomes global!"
-Paraphrased from Isaiah 49:1-6 MSG as published in One Million Arrows.