One thing I have overheard in the past year from lots of people as they watched our family adopt say is, “We would love to adopt ONE day, BUT we want to have our ‘own’ kids first.” The funny thing about our family is that Richard and I actually started our marriage wanting to adopt first. For us–it just made sense. And for many other couples throughout the world–it DOES make perfect sense. The time and energy of the paper chase…the extra effort to help an older baby or child adjust to a new family, culture and home…for us it has been twice the work as a newborn as a 1 year old doesn’t quite sleep as much as a newborn. But just after 6 months of marriage, we found out we were going to have a baby…which he falls in the 1% as we were trying to wait to “have our own” just yet (that phrase makes me cringe now!). As I rock our 1 year old who has only been home for 6 weeks, it is such an amazing thing…quite a miracle…as our hearts are bound and truly HE IS OUR OWN. Because adopting first was a desire and dream I have had since a teen and although God had different plans for our family, I continue to just be so encouraged by more and more families who are CHOOSING to ADOPT FIRST.
Jason and Britney felt the Lord leading them to adopt FIRST–and they actually started out persuing an adoption to Haiti. HOWEVER…they didn’t fit the criteria because they have only been married for a few years. Now that they have a few years of marriage under their belt, they are ready to grow their family–and their first child will be born of their hearts…straight from Ethiopia. While Jason and Britney knew they would have friends and family probably scratching their heads wondering why they wouldn’t have biological children first, Jason wrote this to explain WHY it just made perfect sense for their family:
We have always talked about adopting, but we just assumed it would be after having biological children. We long greatly to have biological children and Good Lord willing that will happen for our family sometime in the not-so-distant future. For now however, that is not exactly what the Lord has placed on our hearts. It is easy to sit and dream of a day when it will be more convenient to reach out to a child in need and provide a loving forever home for that child. It is another thing all together to actually put the rubber to the road and take steps in the direction of adopting a child. We have simply decided, with a little spiritual prodding, that the time for us to adopt is now. For the logical thinkers out there we have compiled a list below of several factors that have also coaxed us in the direction of seeing this process through at this particular time in our lives.
1. Financing – As some of you may already know, international adoptions cost, on average, somewhere between $20,000 and $30,000. With both of us having steady full time jobs (Thank God!) and not having other children to provide for currently, we feel that now seems like a better time than ever to pursue an international adoption. We can save, fund raise, and run around like the crazy people we will have to be in order to complete the adoption. If we already had children, it would make these things more difficult… definitely NOT impossible, but just a little tougher with time and finances.
2. Traveling – International adoptions can require the adoptive parents to visit the country on a couple of occasions, once for a court date and again to pick up your child. This will be much easier to do while only thinking about our travel arrangements, whereas if we already had children, we would have to make plans for them as well.
3. The World’s Perspective on Adoption – So often, adoption is seen as a last resort or even a burden when instead it should be seen as an amazing opportunity!! God commands us to love and care for Widows AND Orphans, he calls us to love our neighbors as ourselves, and he commands all of this only AFTER having done just that for all of those who are in Christ!! We have all been orphans outside the mercy of the Lord God Almighty, but He adopted us through the life and death of his Son Jesus Christ. Christ’s adoption of us cost Him greatly, but the reward far outweighed the sacrifice. We see the adoption of a child for our family having a similar reward. We want the world to see how our love for an adopted child, in some small way, mirrors the love that Christ has for each of us every day of our lives. While we can never love as perfectly as Christ, we sure can give it a shot.
We are so excited that God has placed adoption on our hearts as a way of growing our family; and, although we have a long wait ahead of us before we even get a glimpse of our first child’s face, we can already say that we will NEVER regret taking this journey. Our decision to adopt first has not been easy for everyone in our lives to understand, but God doesn’t call us to live lives that are easy, comfortable, or understandable. We just pray that God can use us and our adoption to glorify Him.
AMAZING! And what amazing love they already have for their soon-to-be child. Sit back…and watch with me as the Lord receives the glory as they follow Him in adopting first at: http://itsnotapassion.blogspot.com While you are there, check out their family’s new fundraiser t-shirt. Consider helping them bring home their first child by buying one!!!
ANOTHER family that I have connected with that is in the midst of waiting are Richard and Brantley. They ALSO feel called to adopt first–and they are adopting domestically and waiting on a referral. You can follow their journey at http://richardandbrantley.blogspot.com
If you know other families called to adopt first…maybe YOU are one of those–please feel free to leave the blog address in the comment section so other readers can be encouraged by their/your journey!!! Maybe you are newly married—and you know you’ve always WANTED to adopt…ONE day; maybe you have struggled with infertility…and you feel God opening Your heart to a different plan through adoption…OR maybe for SOME reason you just haven’t felt ready to try to have children biologically YET…and you have wondered way. OR maybe there are even some of you out there that consider yourself DONE having babies as you have a house full of teenagers!!! (Maybe my NEXT post should introduce you to some families that chose to START OVER as soon as they only had teens or kids in college in the house…and grew their family all over again through adoption!!!) Be encouraged by families like these—who are following the Lord by growing their family FIRST through adoption and being BLESSED as they follow in so many ways.
I can’t wait to sit back, watch and cheer them on! And it’ll be like waiting for our referral all over again as I wait to see pictures of their first child’s faces!!!