All day Friday and half of Saturday my wife and I were seated, with other couples, before many who presented much information on adoption. We're in our second process having finalized the adoption of our daughter in September 2008. I appreciated much of what was said and am sure it will prove helpful to all who listened. One important aspect regarding adoption that I did not hear concerns adoption as acceptance. Bringing an orphan into your home for keeps is not only about his/her having no other parents, though it is about that. It's not mostly about our own inability to conceive. It's not the last option after infertility treatments have failed. It's not about our need to parent. Adoption is worship. To adopt in Jesus' name is to glorify the God who Himself takes in spiritual strays and orphans; not strays and orphans because we have been abandoned by others; but strays and orphans because we have abandoned our Maker and Father. We all, like sheep, have gone astray; each of us has turned to his own way. . .Is 53:6.
Adoption is a way to worship this God by accepting the fatherless into our families. And it is redemptive. Who but God in Jesus Christ could take two tragically broken situations - a parentless child and, in many cases, a childless couple, and bring from them the beauty and glory of adoption?
Adoption is not an end in itself. It is a means by which we make much of the ways of God, from whom His children have received a spirit of adoption as sons by which we cry out, "Abba Father!" (Ro 8:15)
To any in the adoption process reading this: Adoption is not your life. God is. Having been through the process I realize you can easily come to feel as though all hope for completion and happiness are riding on this process. It is not. God forbid we make an idol of parenthood. Remember, God is out to sanctify us by purging us of our idols so that we may image Him in His world. (2 Co 3:18) No other thing I have ever experienced, with the possible exception of marriage, has been more used by Father to grind to powder my golden calves, mix them with repentance, and pour them down my throat (Ex 32:20). This is a great mercy.
My daughter was an orphan. My cat was a stray. Both remind me daily of God's grace.