There are things that adoption brings to your attention that you just really don't want to know. Before we started this, the world was a better place. In my happy ignorance, I could just worry about my kids. 3 is easy. I could focus on dishes and dinner and occasionally read magazines about all the pretty ways to decorate my home.
My favorite YouTube videos were funny and had nothing to do with Third World Countries, Trash Dumps, or HIV.
I didn't know about the things that come up when you go through an international adoption.
I didn't know about Reece's Rainbow. I have spoken about them before. They are a wonderful organization that advocates for children with down syndrome, HIV, and other special needs in Russia and other Eastern European countries.
But more than just advocating for these children, they also raise funds to get them adopted(called grants, which attach to individual kids) and help potential families understand how to take care of their needs.
And when they don't make it to their families, they grieve.
In these countries where RR works, children who have Down Syndrome are treated like trash. Thrown away, abandoned, mistreated, abused, starved.
Children with HIV are treated just the same. Their society doesn't know what we know about HIV and AIDS. Children with HIV may go to the institution, or will age out at about 13, which means they will be put on the street. They will have no one to support them, and will not be able to get a job because of laws that mandate that employees not be HIV+. They will live, and die, on the street.
There are stories from RR Adoptive Families that would break your heart. Absolutely crush it. Stories of twins born in a hospital, but only the healthy one went home with the parents, because they didn't want the one with Down syndrome.
Stories of children who weigh only 11 pounds at 3 years old because no one saw the point in feeding a child who was called worthless by her society.
Stories of children that are drugged twice a day by their "caretakers" who can't be bothered with feeding, changing diapers, playing with, exercising or bathing them.
Stories of children who are only 5 years old being transfered to a mental institution for adults because they are not perfectly healthy, where most of them will die within 2 years because they cannot handle the abuse and neglect. Some of them have Down Syndrome, some have HIV, some are unable to walk but are perfectly healthy otherwise.
All just need a family to rescue them and love them. Feed them. Show them that they aren't worthless.
While most people who are considering adoption want to wait for a sign from God about whether or not He is calling them, whether now is the right time, whether they should save up the money first, these kids are spending their days hoping that TODAY is the day, that money will not stop someone from loving them NOW.
While we are weighing the pros and cons of adoption, how much it will cost, what it will do to our social circle, our children, our vacation opportunities, our retirement, these kids wait for someone to just help them survive.
I want to tell you, I am not a voice for God. I don't have any special insight to His will for your life, but I do have a Bible. And it tells us exactly what to do.
And I'm guessing that if you are reading this blog, you know what it says too.
I believe that God grieves for these kids. His heart breaks because He loves them more than an of us ever could. He made them with a purpose and without flaw. Only we put labels and stipulations on them. Only we make them out to be imperfect and undesirable.
There are some people who have no business adopting. I understand that.
But what if God gave us all our talents, our income, our creativity, our location, our church family,our particular job, our ability to stay at home, our resources, so that we could use them for the purpose of rescuing a child from certain death?
Isn't that more worthwhile than a new car, expensive clothes, or a cush retirement?
"Do not withhold good from those who deserve it, when it is in your power to act. Do not say to your neighbor, "Come back later, I'll give it tomorrow"-when you now have it with you."
"Once our eyes are opened, we cannot pretend we do not know what to do. God, who weighs our hearts and keeps our souls knows that we know, and holds us responsible to act."