In the book of James we are told that it is our responsibility to care for the widows and the orphans. It doesn’t say that some are to care for orphans it says that all are to care for them. We could all find a reason, excuse or exception if we allowed ourselves to. I thought we could delve into some of the reasons for not adopting an orphan.
The problem is that there are over 147 million orphans in the world. 147 million children who are lonely, hungry, thirsty, and have nothing, but the only thing they really want is a family to be part of. If only 6% of Christians adopted one child then there would no longer be any orphans. So if only 6% of Christians followed the command in James 1:27, then there would not be a need for the other 94% of Christians to adopt. Will you be one of the 6%?
It’s just not something my family is called to do...We are all called to care for the orphan, not some of us, not those of us with money, all of us. Now your family might have another calling to how to provide for the orphan (by supporting adopting families or perhaps foster care), but we are all called to care for them.
We don’t have the means to adopt...Do you have a family? Is there one or more of you who has the means to love another person? Well, then you have the means to adopt. In addition to foster care adoptions - which are free - there are grants, scholarships, no interest loans, tax credits, fundraising programs, and many other ways to come up with the funds for adoption fees. Do you think God would call you to it and then not provide the means? Is your family covered in luxuries? Perhaps you can cut them back to find money for an adoption.
I would rather have my children biologically...Well, I guess it is a good thing Christ extends his love and adoption into his family beyond the Jews and his biological family - or we would all be doomed and fatherless. Your child is your child, whether by bone and blood or by love and miracles. Every child born is a miracle whether God plants the baby in our womb or our heart. Beyond the physical - there are no differences. And go ahead and have biological children - but that shouldn’t stop you from making room for a child without a biological family to care for them.
It’s not the right time...Far be it from me to encourage you to move before God asks you to move. But is the timing a legitimate thing you are waiting on - or is it an excuse to not follow God’s command for us to all care for the orphan? If you are not sure of your answer to that question, you should figure it out, and pray for the right timing.
I have too much going on in my life right now...This goes along with the timing aspect. If you have too much going on in your life right now, you will probably always have too much going on in your life. Are those things that God has called you to, or things that you have busied yourself with to avoid God’s direction in your life? I invite you to rid yourself of the distraction of busyness. Focus on God and rescue His orphans.
My husband would not want to adopt a child...This is one of the most common cries of a woman whose heart is yearning for the orphan. Our husbands love us, and feel the weighty burden of providing for us - whether they are the primary earner or not. They are cautious with their passions and often need God to gonk on their head with a frying pan before they yield to God’s direction for the orphan. In most circumstances that I have seen - the husband comes around often as passionately if not more than the woman. If you want to adopt but your husband doesn’t - pray for him, talk to him, find out his concerns. I read a blog recently addressing this where the author encouraged those women to look within. Is your husband seeing you complain and gripe about your current circumstances and responsibilities? It reminds me of when I was younger and had to prove to my parents that I could handle what was on my plate before they would allow me to add to it. This wasn’t because they were punishing me, it was because they loved me and wanted to make sure I didn’t overwhelm myself. Perhaps in some cases, the husband is hesitant because you already complain about finances or how much work your current children are. If so, he loves you and is trying to protect you and your family. Focus instead on caring for your current responsibilities with joy and peace and praying for an opportunity and the resources to chase God.
My family will think I had lost my mind**Newsflash** - if your family is not Christian - they already do. And if they are Christian - then they probably will be some of your biggest encouragers. Lots of people will think you’re nuts for adopting, especially if you go international. This is not your concern. In fact it should be your goal.
So Why Not?
So - why not adopt? Why not find the country with the most orphans or need and adopt from there? Why not ask God where He would have you adopt from? If you can think of any other reasons not to then post them in the comments so we can talk them out. Feel free to leave us comments with any questions about how to get started.