Its funny to me as we start to explore this adoption journey, how much we have to explain ourselves and our decisions through the process. I suppose sort of a natural curiousness...I also know that many people are asking because they are sincerely praying for us, which is greatly appreciated. Either way, for my sake and peace of mind, I need to blog it out. Here are the top things we've been asked, and hopefully the answers will help make sense of our decisions:
Why not just have another baby of your own?
First of all, we are. We're just choosing to do it another way than most. My personal health problems taken into account, we feel like this is the wisest way for us to build our family at this point. There's all that...AND the fact that we both feel like God is calling us to build our family through adoption.
Why do you want to adopt?
Adoption has been a call on my life for the last 11 years...and J has felt God pulling him in line with that over the last few years. Its been a miraculous thing. There are 143 million orphans in the world...and the Bible says very specifically that it is the responsibility of believers to look after them. We feel that our family has been called in this direction and we will continue to pursue it.
Why do you want to adopt internationally?
Because I have been fortunate enough to travel fairly extensively with missions, I have always had a heart for the world, and have seen real need in many countries. It just feels like a natural fit with God's heart.
Why don't you just adopt domestically?
We did look into it. Unfortunately, the cost is about the same as international adoption...but the unknowns and the ability of birth mothers to change their minds (up to a year after giving up parental rights) was too much for us to want to emotionally handle.
What does Caleb think about this?
Caleb. My sweet little boy...I don't think that we could have been blessed with a more sensitive, sweet-spirited son. He is smart, and self-aware, and has such a neat perspective on the world. When I went to Cambodia in 2007, he would pray for the children there at night. When our church began the Clear Blue Water project, he wanted to take home a bottle to put coins in, because he can't understand someone not being able to have water when they want it. When he learned about the earthquake in Haiti, he asks continuous questions about them. When we talked with him about God choosing a brother or sister for him through adoption, he had questions, and we did our best to answer them. He's excited about the entire process...and could care less if they look like him, because he loves them already.
Where are you now in the process?
Right now, we are looking into a new agency that comes very highly recommended...and they have a lot of other programs aside from just adoption that sit well with my spirit. They support orphan care year-round, have several sponsorship programs, and a missions program that runs continuously. We are currently seeking God for direction on 2 specific countries, and won't say much more until we feel His confirmation. A lot depends on timing, work situations (my job doesn't have adoption/parental leave....well, it does....but its not good), finances, etc. Either way, we believe in a big God that has big plans for our family...and we trust Him entirely with that. Will some question our decisions? Probably. And that will probably always be the case, but we stand firm knowing the promises that God has called us to, and we will be as faithful to this calling as possible.
There. I feel better. :-) Will I have to answer these questions again? Maybe. But I think that covers the basics for now. I hope that as you read that, you didn't read it with a critical spirit, for that certainly wasn't my intent. For the most part, everyone we know has been supportive and prayerful with and for us. I just know that as we choose to do something considered a bit outside the box...people will have questions. I just hope those answers are good enough, because they are all I have! Feel free to email me and ask more!!