Wednesday, November 19, 2014

Adoption: The Real Hero

So, you're considering adoption.

Wow. You're such an amazing person.
You must have a heart of gold.
You're a real hero.

I won't lie to you - when Heather and I talked about adoption, I had a million romantic ideas about what it would be like. I imagined myself swooping in and saving a half-naked little Ethiopian boy with a bloated belly and flies on his face. I pictured people putting me on their shoulders and chanting my name. I was gonna be a hero.

It didn't take too long in the adoption process for that feeling to disappear. The stacks upon stacks of paperwork, endless amounts of money spent, phone calls, meetings and interviews all added up and quickly made my visions of being a superhero vanish.

Wait... there's more paperwork?
We owe more money?

It all just felt like a hassle. I really had no idea what I had gotten myself into. It sure as heck didn't feel as amazing as I thought it would. All this stuff I had to do and I didn't even have any idea who this kid was.

Is this even gonna be worth it?

I was naive. And that's okay. The idea of even considering adoption can be daunting and terrifying. I think it's absolutely impossible to know what you're getting yourself into. And it can be hard to see an ending to it all. It seems like you'll never actually finish the race. It's a lot of work and it takes so much willpower, way too much money and more emotional strength than you can even muster. It's truly awful.

But, guess what, it's not about you.

On the other end of this journey that you're considering, there is a child; a child who has probably been through a lot more than you or I could ever imagine. There's a little life that has probably seen much worse things than you, including this daunting journey that you're praying about beginning.


Can you imagine? I sure can't.

My son, Arthur, has been home with us for three years next week. He is a beautiful little boy who has changed my life in every single way - from the way my family looks to the things I write about; from the way I think about God to the way I make a living. His giant personality can quickly make a room erupt with laughter. He is a leader. He's brilliant. He's a kind big brother. He's a sweet son to his mama and a best friend to his daddy.

I cry tears of joy every single time I think about Arthur Fuad. He's just the best kid.

I don't know when he will fully grasp his story, but I know he will one day. I don't know how he will take it all in, but I know that it won't be a very happy day. And that absolutely destroys me. I don't ever want my son to have to feel the feelings that he is sure to feel one day. There's nothing I can do about that. But I will do everything in my power to make him know how much he is loved, always.

My son has been through so many transitions. So many losses. So many gut-wrenching situations that I wouldn't even wish upon my greatest enemy. He's so strong and resilient.

He's the real hero in all of this.
Not me or Heather.
He's my hero and always will be.

When you consider beginning the journey of adoption, or foster care, I hope you'll remember that, while the process is unbearable at times, you are working toward something so precious. You are getting to be a part of this journey that is leading you to a treasure beyond comprehension. This is a labor of the deepest kind of love there has ever been. You are receiving the amazing privilege of being a part of a hero's story. That hero isn't you. But that's okay.


The other night, when I was putting Arthur down for bed, we were talking and giggling, as always. He was laying in the bed, all cozy in the covers, with his Simba doll and his (newly-loved) octopus toy. I started singing him a song.

When Arthur gets sleepy, he starts to whisper to himself and try his hardest to keep his eyes open. In the middle of my song, I heard him whisper something to his octopus and hug him tightly.
I stopped singing.

"What did you say to your octopus?"

"Nothing." Obviously embarrassed.

"I'm just curious. I heard you say something."

Trying to turn it into a joke, "I told him he was a pooper!"

"No, you didn't. You don't have to be embarrassed to tell me anything, Arthur. I'm your daddy."

He closed his eyes to hide his embarrassment. "'I'll always be with you."

I immediately start crying. "That's very sweet, bud. You told your octopus that you'll always be with him?"


"And you'll always be with me, too."

Tuesday, November 26, 2013


Sometimes, in the middle of holidays where we celebrate family and friends and count our blessings, tragedy strikes and we are reminded of how much time we have on earth. It can leave my head swirling to think about the great mysteries of life and death.

Reality strikes and Despair comes in like a bully from middle school that I've been trying to avoid, but he just keeps coming back and punching me in the gut.

Life is so short. And Time is constantly counting down for each of us.

Loved ones pass on. And, with each passing, a void is left that it seems can't be filled.

An empty chair at the table.
A distant voice that slowly fades from our memory.

I can't help but hope for a future reunion. Our goodbyes are only temporary, right?
If there's nothing better on the other side then what's it all for? What keeps us hanging on?

Death is this mystery that I will never, ever, ever understand. Until I meet him. And I will one day.
I can fear him, or I can choose to believe that he's just another bully, like Fear and Despair, that doesn't ultimately have the last word. He's just some jerk that looks and acts tougher than he actually is. 
Truth is, he already got his.

So, this holiday season, I'm gonna look those bullies in the eyes and tell 'em to eff off. There's no room for them around here. 
'Cause this season is all about my friend, Hope. 
The friend I choose to believe in.
A friend that steps in when I really need him and creams the bullies that crowd the playground.

This holiday season, I'm gonna celebrate.

Thursday, March 28, 2013

Love Never Looks Like Hate

I won't get into it too much. I just have some questions to consider as we wrestle with the definition of marriage...

Why do Christians believe that the government should operate as an extension of the church? 

Why on earth do we expect everyone else to have the same convictions as us when not everyone believes in the same things? I mean, for crying out loud, Christians don't even all share the same beliefs!

How can we hold so tightly to some of the Biblical examples of marriage, but ignore many of the specific directives given in scripture? (divorce, remarriage/adultery, etc.)

... Maybe Christians shouldn't be demanding or mandating rules on the way EVERYONE should be living just like we don't want the government to do to us. 

If our goal as Christians is to bring the Kingdom of God to earth and to encourage righteous living, we are choosing the wrong ditch to die in. We shouldn't expect legislation to do that. Show me where the love is in that! 

“'Teacher, which is the greatest commandment in the Law?'

Jesus replied: ‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind. This is the first and greatest commandment. And the second is like it: Love your neighbor as yourself. All the Law and the Prophets hang on these two commandments.'”

- Matthew 22:36-40

In my experience, love has never disguised itself as hate.

Monday, June 4, 2012


The last month has been very eventful.

I have released three recording projects!

Here they are (please click on them and go download them):

THERE IS NO ME WITHOUT YOU (Aaron Hale's Friends Cover Aaron Hale) 
* benefiting the giving arm of Life-Equals *

My side project, the Himalayan Adventure League's (debut) concept album, COBWEBS & MOON-TALK

My newest single, HOLD ON LOVE

Saturday, December 31, 2011


10) The War On Drugs - Slave Ambient

9) Childish Gambino - CAMP

8) Ryan Adams - Ashes & Fire

7) Paul Simon - So Beautiful or So What

6) James Vincent McMorrow - Early in the Morning

5) Wye Oak - Civilian

4) Fleet Foxes - Helplessness Blues

3) Coldplay - Mylo Xyloto

2) M83 - Hurry Up, We're Dreaming

1) Bon Iver - Bon Iver


Bombay Bicycle Club - A Different Kind of Fix

The Civil Wars - Barton Hollow

Fullbloods - Perpetual Machine

MY FAVORITE EPs of 2011:

David Ramirez - Strangetown EP

Matt Jackson - EP

Leagues - EP

Thursday, December 15, 2011


Well, Heather and I are beginning our move to Houston this coming week.

As excited as we are about our new adventure in a new town, at a new church, with new friends and a new kid, we are bummed to be leaving.

So, I thought I would make a list of the five things I will miss most about this wonderful town... Kansas City.

5. The Music Scene -
KC has a great music scene... There are lots of great local bands and venues around here.
Just to name a couple of my favorites:

- Record Bar (1020 Westport Road) - I have seen and played many a great show at this place. No matter the day, you're probably gonna see a great show when you walk in. This is where the best indie bands play when they come through KC.

- The Brick (1727 McGee Street) - I'm a little partial to this place because they have been so great to me. Love playing here whenever I get the chance... not to mention, their food is fantastic!

- Fullbloods ( - These guys are so good, it's ridiculous. Sure, they're my friends, but it's just an honor to know them and to have played some shows with them whenever I've gotten the chance. Ross Brown can write a song, boy! Go listen to their tunes right now!

- Atlas ( - Ryan Adams fans will love these guys. If you can, go see them live... you will not be disappointed!

4) The City's Character -
There aren't many towns with as much character as KC. Trust me.
City Market.

The Western Auto sign.

The Nelson-Atkins Museum lawn (complete with the giant shuttlecocks).

The Kauffman Center for the Performing Arts.


Country Club Plaza.

Union Station.

Liberty Memorial.

First Friday art walks.

3) The Food -
Oh man. I'm really gonna miss the food (and drinks) in KC.

Just to name a few of my favorite places...

- Oklahoma Joe's:
It's a proven fact that OKJ's has the BEST BBQ in the world. Get the Z-Man and fries (pictured above).

- Gates BBQ:
Hi, may I help you?

- Blanc Burgers + Bottles:
Best burgers in town... easily.

- Burrito Bros.:
Chipotle and Qdoba got nothing on Burrito Bros.

- Town Topic:
Great 24-hour burger dive. Killer onion rings when you want a late-night snack.

- Boulevard beer:
The beer that got me into beer. Can't go wrong with a nice Boulevard wheat or Pilsner, if you ask me.

- Oddly Correct:
Great coffee from a strange guy! ;)

2) My House -
I'm really gonna miss my house in Brookside (arguably the best neighborhood in KC). It's a small house, but it's just perfect. Plus, I can walk to any place I would ever need to go. The fall in my 'hood is absolutely beautiful. Gonna miss that. A lot.

1) My Friends -
I've got the best friends here. I can't tell you how sad I am to leave them.
Seriously, my friends here are the best people I've ever known and it kills me to say goodbye.
Thank you all for everything... and please come visit me. Texas isn't all that bad. In fact, I'm quite fond of it, as well.

(pictured here are just a few of my favorite people on the globe)

Saturday, October 1, 2011

Thursday, July 21, 2011

Monday, June 27, 2011


I met my son last week.

Heather and I took our first trip to Ethiopia to do our adoption in the court there and we got to meet Arthur for the first time! We spent a lot of time with him - playing, hugging, kissing, feeding, napping. It was the most amazing experience of my life.

We can't post any pictures of him just yet, until everything is squared away in Ethiopia. Sorry.

We also didn't get to bring him home because we have to wait on a lot of things to occur (his passport, Visa, etc.), and it was the hardest thing ever to have to leave him.

Will you pray with us that it will be a quick turnaround and that all things happen quickly so we can get back there and bring him home! I miss him terribly.

In the meantime, here is a teaser video taken right before we met our boy for the first time:

Friday, April 8, 2011


We got THE CALL we've been waiting for on Tuesday!
Our son is so beautiful and I'm such a proud father!
We are rejoicing in the miracle that is our son, but we are saddened by his story...
Please be patient with us as we cannot share all the details just yet...

Thursday, March 31, 2011


After almost 7 months of being on the waiting list for our adoption, we found out yesterday that we are #5 on the list!

(What we are waiting for is a referral, or for the agency to match us with a little baby boy.)

This is BIG NEWS! There have been several referrals in the last few days alone, so we are thinking it won't be long at all until we know who our Arthur is! Needless to say, we are both losing our minds. We have both been dreaming about him and I haven't been able to control my emotions. I've been crying a lot. Haha. Of course.

Now, once we get the referral, we will owe another check to our agency that is about $8,500...

Thanks to you guys, we are close! We have raised and saved about $6,500 in the last few months since our last big payment was due. So, we are ALMOST there!

A mere $2,000 short.

Which brings me back to the puzzle we started...

You guys have been so generous with your giving and we are unbelievably overwhelmed by how much you guys care for us and little Arthur! It is so encouraging.

We have about 50 puzzle pieces accounted for, which means we still have about 290 pieces left to complete the puzzle.

With the $2,000 we lack for the referral fee, with the referral coming up quickly, and then with our travel to Ethiopia twice and a few more little fees in between, we are asking for your help again...

If you can, please donate by clicking the PayPal button on the right side of this page... It would mean the world to us.

And if you can't donate any money, we would still love your prayers. God is way bigger than any amount of money that stands in our way. And your prayers are so powerful in getting our boy home quickly.

Thank you guys again for all you have done and what you are doing. It is amazing to have you along with us on this journey!

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Love Rescued Me (8bit remix by The Fluorescent)

Love Rescued Me (8bit remix by The Fluorescent) by aaronhale

Check out The Fluorescent on their website:

** Update (3/31/11) **
You can now buy "Love Rescued Me (8Bit Remix by The Fluorescent)" on iTunes! CLICK HERE!

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

Aaron Hale & friends - Lenten Hymns Vol. I

The season of Lent is coming up next week (beginning with Ash Wednesday, March 9th) and me and the band have decided to record some of our favorite hymns and release a collection for you (our friends) to have!

During the 40 days of Lent, I will be posting a new hymn every Sunday on my bandcamp site for you to download.

Then, at the end of the season (on Easter Sunday) we will have the entire collection available as a digital downloadable EP for you to own and listen to anytime, at your own leisure, forever!

We hope that these hymns will bring you to a place of penitence and prayer, assisting you in fixing your eyes to the cross of Jesus and leads you to the miracle of Easter, where Love's redeeming work was done and where Christ won the eternal battle over sin and death.

The first hymn will be available on Sunday, March 13th here:

(Lent is the season of preparation - through prayer, penitence and self-denial - for the annual commemoration during Holy Week of the death and resurrection of Jesus. It culminates in Easter, when we celebrate the day that Jesus rose from the grave and conquered death, forgiving all of our sins.)

Thursday, February 24, 2011

Aslan sings Narnia into creation...

“In the darkness something was happening at last. A voice had begun to sing. It was very far away and Digory found it hard to decide from what direction it was coming. Sometimes it seemed to come from all directions at once. Sometimes he almost thought it was coming out of the earth beneath them. Its lower notes were deep enough to be the voice of the earth herself. There were no words. There was hardly even a tune. But it was, beyond comparison, the most beautiful noise he had ever heard. It was so beautiful he could hardly bear it.”

- C.S. Lewis (The Magician's Nephew)

Monday, February 7, 2011

Puzzle Update #1

Well, it's been a little over a week since we started this whole "puzzle sponsorship" thing to raise money for our adoption...

So far we have had 25 people sponsor pieces! That's amazing! Thank you to all of you who have helped so far... Your efforts are helping us inch closer and closer to bringing Arthur home!

We can't wait, but we still have 315 puzzle pieces left! Don't give up now!

*Remember: If you wish to sponsor puzzle pieces for $10 (feel free to give more than $10), you may do so by clicking on the "donate" Paypal button located on the right side of my blog... or you can send it to our home address - email me for directions:

Thursday, January 27, 2011

The Missing Piece? (Adoption Update)

As you know, my wife, Heather, and I are well into the adoption process and, as we progress, your support is appreciated more than you know.

The process is long and SUPER expensive (close to $30,000). That is scary, right?

We are positive that God has called us to this adoption and we trust that He will provide, as He has so faithfully already.

We thank you so much for your prayers and gifts. So many people have been lifting us up in prayer and encouraging us daily as we go through this journey. It's incredible. We could never do this alone, so please don't stop. Pray that God will continue to reveal His plan and perfect will for our family and that He will keep our boy (Arthur) safe and sound as we work so diligently to bring him home.

Perhaps God is calling you to be a part of this with us. Maybe He wants to use you to help us financially. We would welcome that, as well...


In an effort to help us raise the funds we need for the rest of our adoption costs, we bought this 340 piece puzzle...

The title of the puzzle is "Two Friends"... It was designed in 1950 by artist, Adam Styka.

If you know me, you know that I love 1950's cowboy stuff. And, probably to my wife's chagrin, I have been eyeing a lot of it for Arthur's future room.

So, I bought this puzzle... and here's why...

We're inviting you to "sponsor" a piece of the puzzle for $10. With each piece of the puzzle you sponsor, we'll write your name on the back and put that piece of puzzle into place. A permanent reminder of the part you played in our adoption story.

Once all the pieces are "sponsored" and the puzzle is complete, we are going to frame it in double-sided glass and hang it in Arthur's room. It will be a constant reminder for us and Arthur of all those who prayed for and financially supported us on this journey.

As we continue on the road, I will post updates of our puzzle progress on this blog to show how close we are to completing this fundraiser.

God has big plans for us, and for Arthur, and for you. Will you join us as we follow God's calling to give Arthur the home that was always planned for him? Maybe you're the missing piece that God wants to use.

*If you wish to sponsor puzzle pieces (feel free to give more than $10), you may do so by clicking on the "donate" Paypal button located on the right side of my blog... or you can send it to our home address - email me for directions:

Thank you again for your support in all aspects of this story.

**By the way, I got the idea from this blog: