Saturday, March 28, 2009

Adoption-a burden?

"A religion that is pure and stainless according to God the Father is this: to take care of orphans and widows who are suffering, and to keep oneself unstained by the world." - James 1:27

I love what Courtney has written in her latest post called "Blessed with a Burden", you can read it here . 143 million. Yes, 143 million children remain orphaned in this world. Today. Today there are babies lying out in the cold somewhere that haven't even been found yet. Today there are orphaned children of all ages roaming the streets looking for food, eating trash, and being abused. Today there are orphanages full of children, and only a few workers to tend to their needs. There are babies rocking themselves to sleep, screaming, crying for the warm arms of a mother to scoop them up. Today there are teens all over the world staring out of a window of the building that keeps them semi warm, as the walls crumble away around them. They have not known the love of a parent. Today there are children in orphanages who know nothing more than the abuse they are enduring at the hands of the people who are supposed to be keeping them safe. Today. Yes, today, all these things and more are happening at any given moment.

I too have been "blessed with a burden". A burden for the orphans of the world. I'm not exactly sure when I became aware of this blessing, but I do know it was sometime in my 20's, before I had any children. I remember looking in a mirror one day, and knowing somehow that my calling was to care for orphans, and go wherever that may lead. Not long after, I found myself living in an orphanage in russia. It was there that my burden became solid. I experienced everything I had hoped for, but saw and experienced much more than I ever really wanted to know. Or, I guess really wanted to face. The reality. I was broken. Seeing the reality of small children never knowing real love from a mommy and daddy hits you hard. The reality of the psychological damage that does was obvious. The reality of what a teenager brought up in an orphanage looks like. Hopeless. Empty. Sadness beyond explanation.

The truth is, as christians we are all called to care for orphans, as the scripture I have written above clearly states. If you don't feel you can actually care for one by adopting one, there are many ways you can help care for them. There are ways to help by sponsoring orphans, helping to support a missionary living in another country, or supporting a ministry, or by going there and helping in some way yourself. Here in the US, there is the foster care system, which can always use help. I have also heard that if every christian would adopt just one, they would all have homes. Pray, pray and ask that God would show you how you can help the orphans in our world. If each one of us did just one thing, the suffering of millions of children really would decrease!

I am burdened. But it truly is a blessing. Like Courtney, I still lie awake at night thinking of them, wondering how, how can it be done? I am praying and seeking the Lord with what I should do next-will it be through mission work-or will we foster-adopt? Will we be sent out again to bring home a child from a land far away? Or will a situation present itself and we will just know it is right? With God, all things are possible, and you just never know what He has planned next. I just hope we know soon...the children are waiting.

Adoption is a blessing, but also takes a lot of research and preparation, and work. It takes a willingness to help that child through difficulties and questions they will have. It takes patience, and love. I thank God that he has adopted me as His child, and is so patient and loving to me. I only hope I can be more and more like Him as I love and care for some of the children he has allowed me to parent and pray that he will entrust me with even more.

Children are a gift from God, they are his reward. Psalms 127:3

9 comments:

Calico Sky said...

I am so glad you wrote this as I need to read it again and again. Here in the UK VERY FEW Christians adopt, most don't know anyone who has adopted or know 1 or 2 horror stories. I'm trying to educate in a gentle way both about adoption in general and adoption as Christians within my Church. I've been discouraged by the last three conversations I've had - and I know that means I need to turn to scripture!!

Wendi said...

Great post! I would love to open my home to more children. For several reason international adoption won't be an option for us again. I just asked hubby tonight what he thought of fostering. I don't think we are quite ready, but someday.

day by day said...

Wonderful post, Michelle!!! This is a burden that has also been placed on my heart...thanks so much for sharing!

Have a great week!

Dalyn (AKA The Queen of Quite Alot) said...

reat Post Michelle! ALso, we need to think about the abortion issue in this country and the fact that Obama is getting ready to get rid of the conscience clause which protects medical staff and doctors from being forced to perform abortions.

The Passionate Housewife said...

Beautiful words, I can just feel your heart in this post...

You are right, there is so much we can do. People use money as an excuse, but God sees how we frivously use our money. Every little bit we can donate to the cause of orphans counts!

We can train up our children to take on the plight, to feel the burden of the fatherless and raise them up to embark on Gods call for them.
Should we be raising them to look for success according to the worlds standards or should we be impressing upon them the less popular, die to oneself, life of service for the kingdom.

Helping them to see, feel, hurt, weep over the many lost and broken children will stir in them a desire to go out and do something about it.

I can think of no greater calling as a mama...

Thanks for the inspiration for an upcoming blog post! :)

Meegan said...

Very nice writing. My hubby and I completed the adoptions of our three children from foster care last September. We feel very blessed to have them in our lives. Now we are trying to determine if God wants us to adopt more or not.

art said...

What a wonderful post. I can't imagine my life without my burden. I would love to have more!

Adreanna

Calico Sky said...

Thanks to this post, I'm still plugging away at Church & with Christians!

Kenny said...

Michelle,

I had to respond to this post. I also felt the pull to adopt long before Kenny and I decided to start a family. Adoption can be very difficult, before and after you get your child home. But the blessings do so outweigh any of that. It still troubles me tremendously when I think of all the children in the world without a family. Hopefully your post will encourage others to consider adopting or contributing in some way to help those kids left in orphanages.

So grateful you and I were blessed with our burdens!!!!

Lori Ann