The Next Phase in Our Adoption Journey

I’ve been waiting to make this announcement until we were certain this was the route we were going, and I’m finally ready to make it official…

After quite a bit of thought and prayer, Travis and I have decided to pursue foster-to-adopt to adopt a baby. Foster-to-adopt is an option for adoption that means we will be licensed as foster parents, but we will only foster babies who are either fully free for adoption or considered ‘legal risk’ which means they are likely to be adoptable but not guaranteed. In pursuing this route for adoption, there is a chance that the baby we have in our home may have to return to a family member, but we both decided this is a risk we are willing to take. The way we see it, even if a baby in our home has to return to family, at least we were able to love on them and minister to them in the meantime. Our home is baby ready, and there are babies who need homes {even if they’re temporary homes}, so we should be a good match.

For one thing, our hearts couldn’t handle much more rejection. Time and time again, we were rejected by birthmoms because our home didn’t look fancy enough, they didn’t like our pets, they worried about our race, etc. etc. etc. It just got to be too much. Our hearts couldn’t handle much more rejection. Add to that our financial situation, which was growing tighter and tighter every month. We also had a growing desire in our hearts to do more. We have always wanted adoption to be a ministry for us, and private adoption wasn’t feeling like the right path for us. We started praying to God, “What now?”

Father’s Day landed five days after our first failed match. I didn’t want to go to church, but I went anyway because I know that when you least desire to go, that’s usually when God wants you there the most. Our pastor was gone and had asked a pastor friend of his to fill in for the sermon. When he got up to the pulpit, he started talking about adoption. I wanted to run. I’ve heard sermons before by people who have no concept of adoption. They blissfully describe how we’re all adopted into “God’s family,” and how easy it is to get in.

However, adoption is not easy. Nor was the atonement Christ made for our sins. It is a narrow and difficult road to build your family by way of adoption, and so is the righteous life of those who choose to follow Jesus Christ. In a nutshell, I really dislike those sermons that paint a happy pretty picture of how “easily” our salvation was bought, and thus how “easy” it is for us to be “adopted” into the family of Christ. Yes, all you must do is ask for forgiveness and confess to Jesus that you are a sinner and you believe he died and rose again to buy your salvation. That part is simple enough. But truly following Christ? That’s the hard part. And the sacrifice he made by dying on the cross under the burden of every sin of every human being who ever lived? I can’t imagine that was easy. Suffice it to say, I was not in the mood to listen to his sermon.

But then he changed his tone.

He said, “You see, adoption is not easy…”

I perked up.

On the screen at the front of sanctuary, a picture of two smiling beautiful little girls popped up.

“These are my daughters. Please allow me to share with you how they came to my family…”

And he shared his personal, sometimes heartbreaking story of how he and his wife adopted their little girls. They were licensed as foster to adopt parents, took them each when they were just a few weeks old, and had the privilege of adopting them forever. My heart softened as I heard his story and listened carefully as he connected the rough road of adoption to the rough road for Christ that brought us salvation. It was a beautiful sermon.

I should also say that morning as we were getting ready to head off to church, there was an article in our local paper about a young couple serving {with Buckner’s} as foster parents to babies. I read the article and felt a tugging on my heart and even jokingly said to Travis, “Maybe this is what God wants us to do… Those babies are really in need…” We headed out the door without much further discussion about it.

After the pastor’s sermon, the former music minister’s wife turned around and said to me {through her own tears}, “I am not sure what you got from that sermon, but I’m certain that was intended for you!” I couldn’t deny it. I knew I was meant to hear that sermon. I just wasn’t sure what the next step was. I felt the Lord was whispering to my heart. “Talk to him.” I passed Travis a note scrawled on our morning program, “We need to visit with him.” He nodded. I cried huge boo-hoo tears through his entire sermon, then waited quietly in my pew for him to shake hands with people afterward. I waited and waited as people came up and thanked him for filling in for our pastor and welcomed him back to our congregation. After a while, I got up the courage to approach him. I asked him, “Could you please tell me about how you came to adopt your daughters? The process you went through?”

He responded, “Sure! Are you just curious about adoption or considering it for your family or what?” I laughed and said, “Well, I guess we should start with our story…” His heart broke for us, and before he continued, he insisted we also meet his wife {because, as he said, she knew more about the foster to adopt world than he did}. We met her and they both sat down with us while their beautiful children {some adopted, some biological} ran around and played with Buggy. They gave us so much information and so much encouragement. We decided to at least look into this whole foster to adopt thing.

On Monday {yes, the very next day}, I made a call to Buckner’s Children’s Home. Buckner’s is a private Christian agency that specializes in foster care and group children homes for the thousands of children in foster care in America. The man on the phone was very helpful and encouraging and offered to meet with us the next week to further discuss our options.

From there, the rest, as they say, is history. We prayed and prayed about this decision and decided that God was leading us {perhaps all along} to open our home up as a mission field for his youngest and most impressionable children. We realize there are risks associated with foster care, but we feel that if God has called us to this ministry, then he will equip us to handle whatever comes our way. Nothing worth doing is easy anyway. We have always wanted our adoption story to be a ministry to a child. We have always hoped that adoption for us would not only save us and bring us the large family we have always dreamed of, but might also save a child in need of a loving family. This is the way to do that.

I hope that soon we have a baby in our home, even if he or she is not our forever baby. We are more than ready. My heart actually aches for a baby to care for. We will be licensed for babies age 0 to 2. I’m excited and anxious to move forward, and I couldn’t wait to tell you all about our decision.

I will say that we have nothing but wonderful things to say about the private agency we were working with. If anyone is considering adoption, I would highly recommend Children’s Connections, Inc. They have offices all over Texas and also work with families all over the country. They’ve recently had a HUGE baby boom and are in particular need right now for families desiring to adopt African American babies. If you need or want any information about them, please feel free to ask! They are wonderful, compassionate people.

I would also love to offer information about foster to adopt as an option to grow your family, if you’re curious. We should be licensed soon, and I will certainly keep you informed in the next stage of our journey. We are so excited and anxious to start welcoming babies into our home. Thank you for always being there to listen every step of the way!




1 Comment

Filed under Adoption Agencies, Adoption General, Faith and Adoption, Personal Posts

One response to “The Next Phase in Our Adoption Journey

  1. I am really looking forward to an update.

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