sometime in the middle of last week i called omar at work after having yet another rather drawn-out and exhausting “discussion” with my two yr old about why yes, he must wear clothes when we go out. i remember saying, “if you ever have a woman call you wanting to pour out her heart and guilt over why she’s not sure she’s really “called” to this whole motherhood thing…send her my way and i’ll commiserate with her.”
in truth i could step back and get a little perspective. we’d been gone for awhile and were having to get back into the swing of things. omar was also gone a lot last week, and oh right, i’m pregnant and struggling with a temper that has reared it’s nasty head like i never knew it could.
so it was like one big joke when i chose to use saturday and some time away to go to an ADOPTION CONFERENCE. seriously, more kids? perhaps i’ll choose to blame my friend laura who alerted me to the conference in the first place. but really, adoption is something both omar and i want to do, and i actually think it was quite humbling and good for me to sit with hundreds of other people and realize that on my own i didn’t really want to be there and that when i try and figure things out on my own and without prayer, i can’t even handle the kids God’s given us already.
i ended up seeing some old friends while there and afterwards one of them mentioned that they didn’t hear anything really new or groundbreaking. i agreed but added that that was good. the situation of orphaned children has and always will be the same – they need families and as christians we are called, all of us in some way, to help the fatherless.
my heart is slowly being chiseled away at. i’ve always wanted to adopt but thought perhaps just an infant, or a “healthy” baby, or at least a young child that wouldn’t mess up our current “birth order”. but lately i realize i don’t have any biblical reasons to back these ideas up (i’m not saying that i don’t think these are ever good things to consider – i’m just speaking of our situation here). i want to want the children that God desires to place in our family, whoever they are and whatever they look like.
the one statistic that i learned about on saturday and keep thinking about is the number of kids in the government system that are cleared for adoption (not all foster kids, just the ones with terminated parental rights) – 125,000. that number struck me as oddly small. oddly “do-able” if all people, particularly christians, would consider taking one or more of them in.
i’m almost finished with russell moore’s adopted for life: the priorty of adoption for christian families and churches, a book i’d recommend to everyone in the church no matter what age or stage in life. this passage seemed fitting for me considering all the new thoughts i’ve been having on what “type” of child would work best in our family.
It’s true that adoption isn’t “natural.” We have adoptions because we live in a world groaning under the curse of sin and death. Fathers abandon mothers. Mothers get pregnant without marriage. Parents are killed. Diseases ravage villages. It was not so from the beginning. The hard questions about adoption – and the easy ones too – are only with us because something’s gone wrong with the world.
Adoption is modeled after the natural family. But the biological family is also modeled after something – the kingdom of God in Christ. King Jesus tells us his reign is hidden from the “wise and understanding” but is revealed to “little children” (Matt. 11:25).
The childlike kingdom we’ve come into is filled with transracial adoptees like you and me. It’s made up of “special-needs” orphans like us. Sometimes adoptions turn out with families that look remarkably similar – almost “natural,” you might say. But let’s not fall for the carnality that values boys over girls, that pits ethnicities against one another, or that is repulsed by physical or emotional weakness. Let’s be the people of Christ, and, like him, let’s teach ourselves to welcome children into our homes, even those our culture tells us we’re not supposed to want. pp 165-166