Sunday, November 13, 2016

National Adoption Month: Orphan Sunday


The more I walk this adoption journey, the deeper I understand that this calling is so much more about God's heart & purposes than it is about my hopes & dreams for my family. The more we understand the Father's heart & surrender our plans to Him, the more open we become...more open to loving without limits, without specifications, without our own agendas getting in the way. The more we embrace HIS heart for orphans, for birth moms, for kids in foster care, for infants exposed to drugs in the womb or diagnosed with disabilities, the more adoption becomes less about us seeking our "perfect family" & more about us laying down our lives so His love can transform hearts, lives, families & the world! The more we understand God's heart for adoption, the more willing we are to sacrifice it ALL for the sake of the Gospel & His precious children. After all, as Christians we know what it's like to be spiritual orphans who are adopted with open arms by a Father who lavishes us with His love & promises us an eternal inheritance. 


 As the Church, we are mandated to care for orphans: "Religion that God our Father accepts as pure and faultless is this: to look after orphans and widows in their distress and to keep oneself from being polluted by the world." ~James 1:27 


 There are SO many ways to be involved in orphan care & adoption. You can adopt, foster, donate, serve, educate, pray & the list goes on! Last year I wrote a post giving some tips on loving & serving adoptive families well. You can find it by clicking here: The 93% Giving Support

 As Christians we need to be on our knees in prayer for children without a family, giving financially to orphan care & adoptive families, loving birth moms unconditionally in their brokenness & pain, mentoring foster kids, supporting foster families in practical ways, educating & challenging those around us (including our own churches) to do more & give more in this important area. We are all called to step up, answer the call & love without limits. This will look different for everyone who gets involved…We all have a role to play!

 We have personally answered this call by adopting, loving our childrens' birth families through open adoption, advocating for the voiceless through social media, donating to organizations that support orphan care & adoption, donating to families who are adopting, learning more about other avenues of adoption & being open to them, & constantly praying for guidance on what's next as we continue to grow our family. 



Orphan Sunday challenges me every year to reevaluate how my family can do more, give more & be more involved with all types of adoption. I hope you're personally challenged as well. I hope churches are convicted & challenged to better educate parishioners on the call to care for orphans & to better support adoptive families (emotionally, financially & practically). 



We've been able to adopt twice in two years because we have the most incredibly supportive family, friends & community standing with us. Thank you from the bottom of our hearts to each & every person who has blessed us in thoughtful, generous & amazing ways throughout our adoption adventures! Your prayers, support, donations, meals, gifts & your LOVE has literally changed our lives. We are deeply moved & appreciative! It truly takes a village to bring home a child through adoption...we are so thankful for our village! 

I'm going to close this post by sharing with you this POWERFUL message I read today. I hope it moves you & inspires you to action!

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"I'll take anyone."
Those were the words Davion Only spoke over a crowd at a Florida church just weeks ago. Davion Only, a 15 year old orphan pleading his case.... for a family.
"I'll take anyone. Old or young, dad or mom, black, white, purple. I don't care. And I would be really appreciative. The best I could be."
This young man's story went viral, not only in the adoption community, but across the entire nation. Thousands of people called inquiring about this young man. Thousands.
And all I could think is, this couldn't be more backwards.
Yes, backwards.
The Christian adoption community went haywire over a young man asking for a family. The big news...he'll take anyone. Now here is my question, why aren't we as Christians saying the same thing about orphans? All orphans. Here, there, yon. Black, white, purple, typical, challenged, exceptional... you name it. Why aren't we lining up saying the same thing Davion Only was brave enough to say, "We'll take anyone." How amazing would this world be if more people were like this young man?
I don't care who you are, you are a family and I need a family. Now turn this message around. I don't care who you are, what country you are from, what your challenges are, you need a family and I am here. Can I be your family? 
The world oohed and ahhed over Davion's words.
I'll take anyone.

Turn it around, people.

TURN IT AROUND.

I have a family.

I have the one thing an orphan needs.

Why in the WORLD wouldn't I offer that to him or her?

How can I not???

I'll take anyone.  Any one.

Church.

People who call themselves the church, say it... I'll take anyone. Any orphan. Any child that does not have a mom or dad. Any child who lives a tortured life thinking God has forgotten them and they are not worthy of a family. Church, say it, I'll take anyone. Any orphan who has lived in pain, suffering, has cried out only to have no one answer their screams. I'll take anyone. I'LL TAKE ANYONE.

Any orphan. It doesn't matter. They have no one. All they want is someone to care ABOUT THEM. I'll take anyone.  Any orphan. I will not live my life knowing I can do something. Church, say it!! The ORPHAN SHOULD NOT BE THE ONE SAYING I'LL TAKE ANYONE.

YOU SHOULD.

Matthew 11:28-30 
Come to me,
all you who are weary and burdened,
and I will give you rest. 
Take my yoke upon you
and learn from me,
for I am gentle
and humble in heart,
and you will find rest for your souls.
For my yoke is easy
and my burden is light.”

I'LL TAKE ANYONE.

It's Orphan Sunday. 

Do something.

Help an adopting family.

Consider adoption.

DO SOMETHING.

-Renee Tam 

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With love,
Tyler

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