At this point in my life, this is how the term adoption makes me feel. Not because I am adopting, but because I am adopted. Being in the family of Christ is something that we do not deserve yet receive. It is something that has been so good to me that I could never turn my back on it. When I think of adoption I think of the love of the Father. I have never been more thankful to be adopted than I am now.
This feeling, however, has come in stages. I haven’t always been so thankful. Not because I wasn’t, just because my eyes had not been open to it fully. A few years ago, the word adoption was something that was really cool that people could do for the world. It was usually those super godly people. You know the ones - you think, “Well yeah, they can adopt. They’ve got it all together.” My husband and I had talked about it a time or two but never took it seriously, and usually ended the conversation too scared to do anything. Then almost exactly three years ago, my husband heard a sermon that changed all of that.
I was at home on a Sunday morning with our daughter who was sick, and my husband came home from church and said, “I think we need to adopt. I think we need to do it now. And I think we should go to Africa to do it.”
Ok. It was at this point that he realized that as Christians, we are all adopted. And for our family, adoption was the next natural step for us to pursue. For us at this point the word adoption meant obedience. We immediately started the process, not wanting to lose momentum. It’s a good thing too, because there were about a million things that came up that tried to hinder us - the cost of international adoption; the number of people telling us it was a mistake to have a multi-racial family; the scariness of the reality of what we were doing. We almost talked ourselves out of it many times. However, in that chaos, we started to receive affirmation here and there. There would be a moment where everyone we knew was telling us we were crazy, and then we would meet a new family that had already adopted, and they would give great encouragement. Another moment when we would start to really question where the money was going to come from, and out of nowhere a family we don’t even know makes a donation to our adoption fund. It happened again, and again, and again. There was no question where these gifts of affirmation were coming from, and we no longer questioned whether or not we were on the right path.
Adoption continued to mean obedience as we waited and waited. Our country has had one slow down after another. We have been on the waiting list for 26 months. For some time it was fine. We were busy, looking to move, changing jobs, and watching our daughter grow up.
More recently though, the wait has become more difficult. This is because our son, Abe, from Ethiopia, who will be around age 3, has a place in our family. We long for him. We talk about what life will be like when he gets home. We can not wait for the day that we get to hug him, and our daughter can not wait to have a buddy to share her room with. We love him so much it hurts.
This is how I got to my current status of associating pure love with adoption. It is these feelings that make me realize how God desires us into his family. The love that I have for my son that I do not yet know is more than I can describe, but the love our Father has for his children is so much greater. It is heartbreaking, but it is true love, it is love unending and it is love in abundance.
Hannah and her husband John are close friends of some of us at Restoration Hope and share a passion for Christ and being obedient to how God is calling them to care for the orphans. If you ever get a chance to be around these two, do it! You'll rarely find two people who are so much fun and keep you laughing the entire time. We can't wait to see how God continues to impact others through their answering God's call of becoming a forever family.
Please keep them in your prayers as they are 26 months into the process of adopting Abe from Ethiopia. For more information or adoption updates on the Wallace family, please visit Hannah’s blog at www.inmystationwagon.blogspot.com.