Archives for posts with tag: Adoption

Grammy 80th Birthday photo McMinn Family with Grammy, PoppyAfter taking a year and a half hiatus, I am back to blogging about Christian adoption success! Life gets in the way of our dreams and desires, and the Lord teaches us things while we take a break from our activities. What I have learned in almost 18 months of not writing on this blog, is that Orphan Care is still very important to me and my husband, and we want to be encouragers to Christians who feel God’s call to provide foster care and/or to adopt.

This year I am homeschooling only my adopted children, with the departure to college of my youngest biological child.  Although I miss her and our other grown children who live and work on their own, I must say that things have settled down nicely and my adopted kids are all at really wonderful points in their lives – which means they are easier to parent, and a blessing to be with.  The ups and downs and hard-work of the last 11 years have been tiring, and sometimes terrifying, BUT God is good and He has brought all of us to a great place.  Each of our 5 adopted kids profess faith in our Saviour and Lord Jesus Christ, are bonded strongly to our family, are doing well in school, and most important, have developed love, joy, and character.  There are a few things we are all still working on, but I can say I look forward to getting up in the morning to be with my kids all day long.  This is a tremendous encouragement to me, my husband, and all those folks we try to encourage regarding adoption.

Our good friends have taken in a 2 year old boy and we are tickled with his progress. Of course it has been a huge change for their family, very tiring, and at times chaotic, but when I see that little guy, I know the Lord is doing an amazing thing for him and his new forever family.

I have also become friends with a woman who does foster care. She inspires me that at our age, we can still make a difference in the lives of kids, whether for a short time, or on a permanent basis.

Cary, my husband, and I have decided to start a local support group for orphan care providers, that will be based on Christian principles. God has orchestrated all of the details, and our first monthly meeting will be in May. We have a facility, have received some grants we applied for, and have promotional materials we designed and had printed. We have been sharing them with adoptive, foster and kinship families, and are excited to be used by the Lord in this way.

At the end of this month, I will be giving a presentation at a local gathering of child care providers, including foster, adoptive, and kinship parents, regarding our new support group.  I have put together a powerpoint as an outline, and will upload it onto this blog for interested readers.

We had the opportunity to host 7 South Africans for one overnight last month here on the farm. They are singing/dancing ambassadors for Horizon International, a Christian organzation sponsoring AIDS orphans. It was a treat to get to know these humble young men whom Christ has redeemed from the devastation of the pandemic that is killing millions of Africans. Again, God uses every opportunity to help those He loves, died for, and was resurrected to save.

I’ll end today’s post by recommending several excellent books that I have recently enjoyed reading, all promoting the cause of orphan care.

I Beat the Odds, by Michael Oher. The subject of The Blindside tells of his childhood of neglect, his joining the Tuohy family, and his acension into the world of professional football after earning a college degree. Told in a truthful, poignant, yet private personal way, this book is full of the reasons that Christians should do the right thing and provide orphan care, and also excellent improvements that could and should be made in the foster care system. Mr. Oher is a gentlemen through and through as this is not a celebrity ‘tell all’, but a revelation of his life, and what he is now doing to help others in similar situations. Excellent for orphan care providers to understand where their kids might have come from, and for social workers to learn some things to do, and not to do, when trying to help kids.

Kisses from Katie, by Katie Davis. Wow! This is an inspiring book and not just for young women. How far should Christians be willing to go in order to obey James 1:27?  Katie traveled across the world, but also left a comfortable life in order to adopt a van load of girls, change a whole community, and love the unlovely because she loves Jesus Christ!  At 55, I was encouraged to fight the good fight and never stop. I was also reminded that just loving my kids every day is the most important thing I can do.
Living by a Leap of Faith; Tom and Debra Ritter. Real life account of a real life family doing real life things on a super-sized level. Precious, precious, precious is all I can say. I wish I had read this years ago before I started adopting. This family is living proof that God provides for those He calls to follow Him. Written in an easy to read style, with many practical suggestions and ideas, this will encourage every Christian family to consider adopting, not just one child, but many.  An absolute treasure, and I wish they were my neighbors.

Adopted for Life; Russell D. Moore. A Southern Baptist Seminary professor, Moore speaks about his adoption journey, and encourages the Church to be more engaged in orphan care. This is a must read for church leaders, and men will appreciate a Dad’s point of view and heart. Scripturally based, the book challenges Christians to follow God’s call to vist orphans in their distress – to walk the walk, not just talk the talk.

All of these books are worth purchasing for yourself, your local library, and especially for a friend or family member whom you want to encourage to begin, or continue on, their adoption journey.

PS:  One of the many things I did on my hiatus, was to develop two websites, with blogs, for two of our family businesses.  Please feel free to stop by!

http://www.blessedcreekfarm.com

www.expandinghorizonsmedia.com

Advertisements

There are many well run Christian orphanages in the world.  One in particular, Casa de Fe in Shell, Ecuador, is close to my heart.  We have supported their work and receive their newsletter, ‘Fingerprints of Faith’.  Patti Sue Arnold is the founder and director.  She started caring for outcast children a few years back, and now the orphanage is home to more than 50 unwanted Ecuadorian children of various ages.  Many have minor birth defects, the reason they were unwanted.  If you have extra funds or time,  contribute in any way you can to this ministry.  Then, consider adopting one of it’s children, or helping another family to do so.   lacasadefe.org

Orphanages are not forever families.  Orphanages, even the best, are simply substitute institutional care for kids who do not have a mom and dad to love and provide for them.  Orphanages should be a transitional safe place, like foster care should be, until permanent placement with a family is arranged.  Sadly, many orphans age out of these institutions because the Christian church is not doing its job of adoption.  The Christian church is seemingly content to support orphanages, but does not want to advance to the next stage of orphancare:  placing these children with Christian families.

Why should placement in a Christian home be top priority for orphans, versus the children remaining in a well-run orphanage?  Well,  Christian families are God’s plan for growing His Kingdom.   An institution can never provide what God had in mind for the family, His families.  Dad, happily married in loving life-long covenant to Mom, produce offspring through procreation, or adoption.  Within this marriage, Dad shepherds, disciples, provides for, and protects the family.  Mom is helpmeet to Dad, nurturing and teaching the children.  Through the ups and downs of family life,  parents and children forge lifelong bonds that help transition the children out of the home to marry, produce, and parent the next generation. The cycle is repeated.  If one parent is missing, half of the work and bonding doesn’t get done.  If both parents are missing, nothing gets done.  What happens to the subsequent generations?

We Christian families have an opportunity to change the life of orphans, one or more at a time.  We simply need to begin by helping each other adopt the orphans of our nation and the world.  Whether from an orphanage, or foster care, orphans need a forever father and mother to show them the way to the next successful generation.  And to God be the glory.

Welcome to what is probably the most challenging, yet rewarding family experience there is!  Having been there, done that, still doing it, I hope to share some humor and wisdom to encourage you with new postings at least once a week, shooting for 300 words or less! Jesus Christ is my Lord and Savior, and I seek to bring glory and honor to Him through my blogging about adoptive parenting.

Today’s topic: Accountability

Just as we adults need to be accountable to our higher authorities, and ultimately the Lord, our kids need to learn this in our home. Adopted children often struggle with this issue even more so than our biological children.  Their birth parents likely did not understand the importance of accountability, and thus the circumstances of their lives involved having their children adopted out.  We must help our kids understand the importance of being accountable to their parents, so they will joyfully be accountable as an adult. 

 This morning my 7 y.o. daughter learned a lesson about being accountable to her dad.  While feeding rabbits, she wandered off on our large farm to feed the ducks instead, and manipulated her older brother and sister into following her.  It wasn’t safe, or the right thing to do to accomplish the task at hand.  Her dad became quite frustrated with the situation as he then had to spend time he didn’t have, doing the chores she was supposed to do, then redoing the chores she did wrong which she wasn’t supposed to do!

After they all came inside, my dear husband held his temper while taking the time to patiently admonish the offenders.  All repented, and forgiveness was dispensed before breakfast. 

That is what successful adoption in the Christian home is all about:  teaching God’s word (in this case, obeying the 5th Commandment by honoring one’s father), and modeling the love of Christ when sin happens.

%d bloggers like this: