When thinking about what led us to want to adopt we realized that it was definitely a calling from God. We felt that this was the way that God wanted to grow our family. Our faith was the biggest reason for us to go into the process because we trusted God as to where He was leading us and this was just the next step to His plan for our lives. It is a scary thing but we knew where God was leading and had to lean on him wholeheartedly through the entire process.
Every adoption is going to come with rocky roads. We didn’t expect things to go perfectly. We adopted both of our children internationally so there were a lot of things that happened that we didn’t expect. One really neat unexpected blessing was the lifelong friendships that we have formed with others that were adopting from the same orphanage. It’s amazing how some friendships come from the most unexpected situations but that is something we are always grateful for. One of the hardest things we faced was when we had to leave our children after our first visit. Many international adoptions require 2-3 trips before being able to bring the child home. It was so hard leaving our children behind that first time. You love this sweet child who you are ready to call your own so the first few times leaving them was always hard. The reality is that adoption and fostering are really hard but God does not call us to do it because it’s easy. He calls us to do it because He loves the most vulnerable and we should love them too. There are millions of children who are ready to be loved and thankfully we were able to become part of that adoption process to bring that love into our own family.
There is no right or wrong way to go through this process. It is different for everyone and that is what makes it so special. God writes a different story for every family. There will be struggle and celebrations. A few things I would tell someone who wanted to go through this process whether it be alone or with their family would be, always treat your adopted or foster child as if they were your biological child. Do not make any differences in how you would treat one over the other. The more safe and secure a child feels the more likely that they will respond in a positive way. Be prepared to walk your child through the grieving process as they grieve the loss of their birth family. The Bible is the best instruction book on how to raise children. Be intentional about making time with your child every day especially when they are first home. Make sure that you create time and a space where they feel secure. This is the best way to bond with your child.
God is so mighty, he uses every situation in life as a means for us to learn something from him. We could see God moving through the adoption process and moving in our own hearts and the hearts of our littles. God’s handprints were all over our adoptions. He opened and shut doors and led us to the exact places and children that He had for us. Our adoption stories cannot be told without bringing God into them so it is a great way to share the gospel with others. Adoption and fostering are pictures of how God redeems our brokenness. He opened our hearts to open our home.