We are adopting internationally. Sometimes I hear from people in America (most of whom have never given two hoots about orphans) how there are plenty of children in America who need a family (the same argument is made against taking mission’s trips by people who won’t even talk to their neighbor about Jesus :-)).This is true……but let me bring a little perspective to the party.
There are some 397,000 children in the US foster system, but only 101,000 eligible for adoption. The vast majority have not been released by their parental rights to be adopted into any family. Of those eligible, 32% will wait up to three years before finding a family which is tragic and frankly, in the USA, unnecessary. All in all, though, I think the US is doing a pretty good job taking care of parent-less children!
Please read all the way to the end before you cast judgement on this post!!!
Internationally, there are some 153 million children who have lost one or both of their parents. Almost 18 million of them live in orphanages, on the street, or in other sub-par environments – some even criminal. This is even more tragic.
in 2012 (most recent stats I could find) in the whole US of A, only 7,000 children were adopted into families while over 23,000 kids aged out of the US foster care system.
The fact is, the vast majority of American families do little to nothing in a given year to impact these numbers. We might be a little too busy arguing politics on Facebook, keeping up with the Kardashians, or “following” Justin Bieber on twitter and instagram. I don’t say this to throw stones, just as a matter of fact. When only 7,000 of the MILLIONS of orphans around the world find homes in the richest, most affluent nation ever to grace the earth, the implications about what is truly important to us as a society is staggering.
Here’s the brief point. I couldn’t care less about your opinion concerning our adopting of our precious kids from Eastern Europe…….What are YOU doing to help the situation around the world?
Maybe the US foster system or adopting domestically is the right answer for you….maybe it’s adopting from China, or Eastern Europe, or Haiti, or Ethiopia…..for me it doesn’t really matter. Just do something. Don’t throw stones at those of us who are (it’s amazing what people say in ignorance). Decide to do something yourself. Here’s what I can tell you:
You’re NEVER going to be ready.
You’re NEVER going to have all the money you need. Or information. Or complete understanding. Or perfect scenario.
You’re NEVER too old to start (there are age limits to adoption – but regardless of age, you could help fund someone else or become a foster parent)
You’re NEVER going to find the “perfect” child (not sure if you remember your own imperfect biological kids!)
The question is…..will you do something? More than rhetoric? More than thinking about it? More than trying to tell everyone else how to do it? More than even praying about it? More than just throwing money at it?
This Sunday is National Orphan Sunday. I want to encourage you to ask God what He might have you do to love an orphan somewhere in the world (does it really matter, where?) and DEMONSTRATE the love we have all received from the Great Adopter.
Think about it.
What a great post, thank you for sharing! We are in the same situation as yourselves looking to adopt from eastern Europe and already have biological children. I will follow your blog with great interest and wish you all the best in your journey! We have our homestudy in 2 weeks time, maybe see you there :).