Tuesday, October 7, 2008

Adoption: AFA Journal

This months issue of the AFA Journal had an article about adoption entitled, Like Father, Like Son, which included many informative links.

A quote from the article:
“A large number of Christians – at some point in their journey – consider adopting, but they don’t know where to go or who to trust in that process,” Sandberg said. “I always say to them: ‘Of course you would consider adopting. You’re just like your Father because He adopted you. If you’re a child of God, naturally you would want to reflect Him.’” Encountering the Father and becoming a true reflection of His glory is what it’s all about for His children.

I thought that was so neat. As we grow more in knowledge of and relationship to God, we want to reflect Him. Adoption is one way that people are called to reflect Him.

Sandberg also states:
“Adoption isn’t ministry,” Sandberg said. “Adoption is choosing to parent and choosing to love and calling a child my own, as God calls me His own. “So if you’re looking for a ministry, you shouldn’t adopt,” she added. “You should … care for orphans … [in some way].”

This statement is true in some ways, but in one specific way I disagree. Adoption is choosing to love and parent a child that is not biologically yours. It is treating that child like they are biologically yours in every way without being blind to their needs to discuss their adoption. In an adoption court hearing you swear to treat them "as if your own" including promising them their share of inheritance. Cool, huh? Adoption is not rescuing a child. It is not treating them like you are their great blessing or with an "if it weren't for me" attitude. But, it certainly can be a ministry. God has led our family to adopt through the foster care system. Children from the system have varied backgrounds and suffer huge, sometimes life-long, consequences due to other peoples behavior. But why do children get into the system in the first place? It is not typically due to their birth parents "choosing an adoption plan" for their kids. They are taken from their parents, usually due to their parents negative behavior (drugs, various abuse, neglect, homelessness, not protecting them from others). Due to the backgrounds of some of the children from the system I think it can be a ministry. However, it must be balanced. An adoptive parent must make sure they are loving, nurturing, disciplining, caring for, feeding, teaching and discipling their children. You can't spend each day looking at your child as a ministry, but some days certainly can feel that way. Each day must be loving them completely in order to bring them to complete healing through Christ. I can do nothing apart from Him. I can't even love my children completely but for Christ.


Anonymous said...

I love when I am reminded that first and foremost, my children belong to my Heavenly Father, and He has entrusted them to my husband and I for our time on this earth. What a gift it is to be a parent! Every child is fearfully and wonderfully made, and whether they were created from my biological components or not, God created every one, and they will bless me, love me, challenge me and inspire me in a different way- TRUSTing that our Heavenly Father creates our family sure does help as we agonize over fertility, placements, timing, government agencies, etc. I love hearing from you so often this week! xoxokristi

Anonymous said...

Kristen, I received an email with the urgent prayer request. We are praying for you. I have posted it on my weight watcher Christian Moms board also.

Pray that my daughter's heart will be softened and she will see that God has plans for her baby and can use adoption to put it in the family that God has prepared for it.