In the way that our heavenly Father loves us and made us sons, He asks us to do the same in His name. Isaiah asks us to bring justice to the fatherless (Isa. 1:17). And James instructs us that pure religion requires us to visit orphans in their affliction (James 1:27).
This command is obeyed in many ways by Christ’s followers. Some encourage others to know and love Christ by bringing them into their church, and in doing so they reflect God’s welcome to outsiders. Others display God’s love by caring for the needy.
Caring for orphans is one important part of our concern for the materially and spiritually needy. But, how do you know if you’re called specifically to adoption?
Here are 4 practical aspects to consider as you determine if adoption is God’s will for you:
The first thing to consider is unity in your marriage: both of you should agree that adoption is the right path for your family. We encourage you to pray together and to seek wisdom from Scripture. Adopting won’t fix what you feel is missing in your marriage. Without a strong foundation, the adoption might actually make your relationship worse.
This isn’t to say that your marriage has to be perfect (no one’s is!) However, your marriage must be able to weather the ups and downs of adding a child to your home. If your spouse isn’t ready to adopt, try praying for God to change his or her heart. No amount of nagging will be worth it—you want true, God-ordained unity here.
2. Adoption Awareness
Both of you should have an understanding of what adoption involves. Before concluding that you’re called to adopt, make sure to attend adoption webinars, follow adoption blogs, read several books, and seek connections with adoptive families. You’ll also need to know what is going to be required of you to adopt in your state. Research adoption professionals online before you speak with them on the phone.
With today’s open adoptions, it’s also important that you understand adoption from a birth parent’s point-of-view. When they decide to place their child for adoption, many will experience grief and trauma.
3. Practical Concerns
It’s vital to consider some practical matters, such as finances and resources. Are you financially stable? Do you have space in your home? Can you provide a child with the medical, educational, and developmental support they need? Do you have a clean record? If you have children already, how would they be affected by an adoption? Consider if there are needs or pressures in your home that would make adoption unwise right now.
Adoption is a journey that requires great faith before your child even comes home. Adoptive parents who do well have fully surrendered to the Lord. They realize that they can’t do this alone, but with Christ, they can.
No matter how educated you are, how prepared you are, and how much love you have, your family will still need Jesus. Having a humble heart that clings to Christ is a must.
If God calls you to adopt, it’s a profoundly joy-filled calling. Seize the opportunity to abide in the Lord, and a chance to live out the gospel of love in your own home.