Today is National Adoption Day in the United States. Are Christians called to adopt? Our family is blessed by adoption not just within our home but also within my extended family as well. I am the oldest sister of 7 kids. Three are adopted and one is soon to be. In our home, we have been foster parents for almost 10 years and have been blessed to adopt a sweet little boy and as of today we should be adopting a sweet little girl before the end of the year.
Our Story of Adoption
We did not go into fostering so that we could adopt. We already had four biological children and adoption was not on our radar. We wanted to focus on caring for kiddos who needed love and stability for a really hard time in their little lives. We also saw it as a ministry, one where we were able to help families in need while praying for healing and restoration of their families.
Foster to Adopt
Meeting our sweet Easton (formerly known by a different name) changed everything. He was just 2 months old, weighing just over 7 lbs. and he was dying. There is a lot to his and our story that you can read about over at ‘They had better things to do than feed him.’ He was blue and resembled an alien. ‘OF COURSE, we’ll take him!’: Foster parents adopt shaken baby survivor – Love What Matters He stole all of our hearts and there was no way we could not make adopt him.
Yes! We are on track to adopt again by the end of the year. I can’t legally share much about her at this time, but her story is heartbreaking and full of testimony as well. She too stole our hearts, and we can’t wait to finalize her adoption.
Are Christians Called to Adopt?
Here, if you are licensed to foster in our county then you must also license to adopt. So, we had to seriously consider both before moving forward with fostering. The main thing that kept coming to mind was the scripture James 1:27
Pure and undefiled religion before God the Father is this: to look after orphans and widows in their distress and to keep oneself unstained from the world.
During this time in history, widows and orphans were the most needy in society. As we know, orphans are kiddos without parents. Yes, legally speaking foster children have parents but when they are removed, they legally are placed in the custody of the county and thus need foster parents. Then if and when parental rights are severed, they legally become orphans. James is saying that pure religion is caring for those who are in need, and avoiding the sins of the world.
390,000 Children in Foster Care
As of this writing there
There are over 390,000 children in foster care. Not all children are placed with foster families. There is a huge need for foster parents in every state (Child Welfare Information Gateway). The Dave Thomas Foundation for Adoption, states that children in foster care can expect to wait an average of three years to be adopted. According to Kids Available For Adoption | Adoption.com the 390,000 children, there are currently 123,000 children needing a forever family through adoption.
380,000 Churches in America
According to the National Congregational Study Survey, there are approximately 380,000 churches in the United States. I don’t even want to look at how many Christians that is. Hold on, are you sitting down? Not everyone that attends church is a Christian, but many are. So, I am sure that number is enormous.
Adopted into God’s Family
As Christians, we are adopted into the family of God. Amy DiMarcangelo has a great article for Crossway www.crossway.org/articles/how-adoption-mirrors-gods-love-for-the-fatherless/ where she writes,
Adoption only happens because prospective parents initiate it. Adoption never happens by chance—it’s consciously pursued. Adoption also mirrors God’s sacrifice. He gave his only Son so that we could be adopted, a far greater sacrifice than we will ever make.
Was Jesus Adopted?
In that same article, Amy writes,
It’s interesting to consider the role adoption played in Jesus’s own life. Because of the miracle of the immaculate conception, Jesus wasn’t biologically connected to Joseph at all. Even so, Scripture refers to Joseph as Jesus’s father. In Matthew’s Gospel the genealogy of Jesus is linked through Joseph, even though none of Joseph’s blood ran through his veins. Joseph was our Savior’s earthly father, solely through adoption.
Do You Think Christians Are Called to Adopt?
If we do the math from all the statistics above, you can see that if all Christians would choose to foster or adopt there would actually be a waiting list for those willing to do so. Yes, I know there are waiting lists for people to adopt newborns but there are so many other kiddos that need families just the same. Has fostering or adopting ever crossed your mind? Then take the time to pray and consider what the Lord would have you to do about this need, I am sure He will lead you to what He wants for you and your family.
I know many adoptive and foster parents that would love for you to reach out and talk with them about the ins and outs of each for the state and county you are in. Each state is different, but they should also have a website that you can get information from. Maybe your church has a foster and adoption ministry, be sure to take some time and speak with them. You can also ask questions in the comments, and I will do my best to answer them.