There are so many children in need of loving families in this country alone. If you add together the number of children in the world that need families, the numbers are staggering. But let’s try to look closer and realize that each of those precious children is an individual with individual needs.
Have you ever thought about adoption? Did you ever feel that tug on your heart toward a child that needed a family? If you haven’t already adopted, what was it that stopped you? I often encounter families that say, “We’ve thought about adoption, but…” They finish that statement with several conclusions: it's too expensive, we’re already busy enough, we think 2 children are probably enough (or 3 or 4), an older child probably already has too many problems, or we just never did anything about our thoughts on adoption. These are the most common comments we get about adoption.
I want to address each of the above reasons that are holding people back. First of all, adoption is sometimes very expensive and sometimes it is not. Adopting from the foster care system in the United States is not very expensive, compared to adopting overseas, and there are also significant tax credits for adoptions. Often the states placing the children will even pay the legal fees for adoption. Sometimes, if people look at their budgets closely they find that there are areas that can be reorganized in order to make money available for something of more lasting value than what the money is currently being spent on. There may be money available in a way that you hadn’t considered before if you look at your budget, comparing what you are currently spending money on versus trading that for spending money on adopting a child. But more importantly, if God wishes to place a child in your home, there are no limits on His ability to finance that placement. Pray about it. If God has a child for you, He will provide the funds. Be willing to trust Him for that.
Another major comment revolves around how many children are enough. Well, I would challenge you to consider that the number of children that God would like to bless you with is the correct number. God, being sovereign, knows the perfect number for your family. So I am going to ask a gentle but tough question: Did you pray about adoption? Are you willing to really pray about it and be willing to accept the children God wants to send you, whether by birth or by adoption?
Adoption of an older child (not an infant) presents many challenges as well as many rewards. Any older child who has gotten to the point of needing to have a new family has been through some significant challenges and likely significant pain. Still, an older child can be a huge blessing to a family. The way to prepare for such a placement is to realize that any child coming into your home needs to be given “infant” years. A birth child coming into your home as an infant is going to take approximately three years to be able to “give” to you. An infant does not give love or show gratitude. He is in the years of needing complete care from you and a newly adopted child is in the same situation, whether he is one year old or fifteen. The adopted child needs to be given the same three years. The biggest reason that people find a challenge from having an older child placed in their home is that they expect that the older child will “act their age.” An older “hurt” child will have significant emotional needs. If given the time to be an infant emotionally, healing can take place and the child will be able to develop well.
God is bigger than any of the problems listed above. If God wants to bless you, would you consider receiving that blessing?