This blog “Unto Him We Live” was brought to my attention again this week by my daughter. This family has 12 children. They are also in the process of adopting 4 more from Russia. They have mostly adopted from Russia, but they also have a set of birth twins and one domestic adoption from the USA. Their posts are a humbling example of people who have given themselves to a cause bigger than themselves in the name of Jesus. They have adopted younger children and older teenagers. It is truly a remarkable family. Read their blog here.
About ten days ago, my wife and I stood in a courtroom holding our two-year old son. The court clerk asked us to swear that what we were about to say was the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth so help us God…just like you see on TV. We said yes. Then we sat down and the judge asked us a series of six questions. I honestly don’t remember the exact wording of any of them. I was too choked up and unprepared for the situation. In our previous adoption, a judge from another county just brought us in and had us sign on the dotted line, posed for a few pictures with us and handed our girls a teddy bear each. But this time it was different. The judge in this case wanted to impress upon us the seriousness of what we were doing, and he did, in a big way. We left the courtroom feeling like we had just been involved in a marriage ceremony. We swore to be faithful to our little son Jacobi. We swore we would protect him and allow him to enter into the inheritance of our family and the full rights of what it means to be adopted. Having already had him for six months, we knew we were ready to enter in to this covenant. Since Jacobi is so little, I don’t think he will remember that day. But it was very important for him too. It changed the cycle of everything his past generations have been involved in and created a new path by which he will be allowed to walk in freedom and truth. For me, It was one of the most meaningful days of my entire life. My wife and I were joyful AND exhausted after it was over. And the Tague family now has one more member. Jacobi Ellis Tague.
And then I thought about God. How He adopted us with a solemn oath, with a covenant written in blood and with the sacrifice of his own son. How he allowed us to enter into his own family through freely giving to us a member of his real family, Jesus Christ the righteous one. That is what Christmas really is. The giving of one person, Jesus, for the adoption of many sons and daughters. Christmas is the day we remember what has been given, so that we can receive.
There are many diverse callings for us to be involved in as Christians. In our modern world, we are aware of needs through modern media that we would not even have known about in former ages. One of the needs that the Christian Church is beginning to address is the overwhelming need of orphans in our own country and around the world. In Psalm 68:5-6 God is called “The Father to the fatherless and the defender of widows. This is God whose dwelling is holy. God places the lonely in families;” Having adopted three children, I can personally attest to the life changing ministry that adoption provides to children who need parents. Over the last two years, as my family has grown from three to six children, my wife and I have experienced all the ups and downs of joys and struggles imaginable. We have been stretched beyond our limits and also known the joy of literally changing the lives of kids who were destined for a different life without our intervention. It is still very difficult for me to put into words. My wife Kelli and I try our best to describe it like this: We say that there have been three events that have drastically altered our lives: 1) Getting saved. 2) Our decision to home school our children. 3) Adopting children.
In adopting kids, we have learned how drastically a family environment in Christ can change the life of a child. We have also learned how drastically a child needing love can upset the regular balance of a normal family. I don’t say these things to scare you off. But I am very serious about the reality of adoption. It is a life changing calling, much like becoming a missionary to a foreign culture would be a life changing calling. You should not enter into it without much prayer, thought and counsel from those who have already adopted. But before I scare you away from adoption, let me say this: God drastically gave up everything for us in Christ. Jesus came to the earth and became one of us so that we could come to know God. Through Christ, we have been adopted into God’s own family. I believe that God will call many Christian families to adopt children in order to picture the life altering benefit we have received in Jesus. There are many different types of adoption and many different experiences of adoption. There is international adoption, relinquishment and adoption from the foster care system, to name just a few. Each type of adoption has its own joys and challenges. In thinking about whether adoption is right for you, consider the following suggestions:
-Do you have a strong walk with Christ?
-Do you have a healthy marriage?
-If you have children, do you love parenting?
If you can’t answer yes to those questions, you may want to re-consider adoption. Not everyone is called to adopt children, but some are. Are you called? In my own personal experience, adopting my three younger children was the fulfillment of a dream that God gave to my family and the cause for tremendous spiritual growth. It has also caused three young children to come into the kingdom of God.
If you would like more information about adoption, please visit the Orphan Sunday web site.
Or, email me at Matt@ranchodelreychurch.org, I would love to talk with you about it.
(This blog is from the upcoming Rancho del Rey Church email newsletter, Fall 2011)
This is a short video from David Platt’s church on what God is doing in the hearts of families that are choosing to adopt and foster children. God loves Adoption. http://www.brookhills.org/local/adults/care-for-children.html