Recently I had a conversation with some friends about adoption.
It is something I have been passionate about since high school. Even when Spencer and I had our first real conversation I brought up adoption and how he felt about it.
Taking care of orphans is part of the Christian’s calling. Adoption is so intricately woven in the gospel; they cannot be separated. Believers have been adopted in the family of God. We were lost, helpless, alone. We needed the Father’s love, discipline, grace.
Spencer and I get so excited when we talk about adoption. Whenever we are able to start the adoption process it will be a joyous day. Even as we are about a month away from welcoming our first daughter into the world, we can’t help but anticipate the other children that will join our family.
So recently as I talked with a couple friends about adoption, it was encouraging to hear others share their hearts for orphans and hope to adopt. A young girl was around us as we discussed this, and she was quick to say, “Wait, so you can’t have kids?” We tried to explain that there are millions of children around the world who need families, but she didn’t quite understand why we would want to adopt if we can have “our own kids.” It reminded me of a time last year when Spencer and I were discussing adoption with some people. Someone asked, “So you don’t want kids of your own?”
Those words hurt my heart. When you are adopted into a family you belong there. You were made to be there. You are the parents own. I loved how a friend from church said he explained to his son that he was adopted. He said that even though he was in a different woman’s tummy, he was meant to be part of their family, to be their son. He came from someone else’s tummy, but he is theirs. Completely.
As much as adoption is just a sweet thought to many, foster care seems to be even more of a distant thought. Believers need to be in the foster care system. Desperately. This article from the NY Times yesterday shares that 30 percent of the homeless in America were once in foster care: http://www.nytimes.com/2013/09/01/fashion/Just-Holding-On-Through-the-Curves-modern-love.html?_r=0 There is a huge need with children and teenagers here in America. Christians need to step up and be willing to step outside of their comfort zones and open their homes and hearts to this group that desperately needs love, discipline, training, hope, families.
As much as I believe Christians should be at the forefront of orphan care, the reality is so many have distorted views on it and so many still don’t even think about it. Hopefully Spencer and I can share our heart for orphans with those in our life and help others realize the need to care for the least of these. I absolutely love seeing churches have orphan care ministries. It encourages my heart so much. And I love reading others’ hearts about this topic. My friend has a wonderful blog that I encourage you to read and let it challenge you: http://waitingonaword.blogspot.com
I can’t wait to see how the Lord grows our family. I know it will be a long process, filled with joy and heartache, hope and longing. But I pray our growing little family will point others to Christ and expand His Kingdom. May our hearts beat for the needs of the orphans.