Thursday, February 11, 2010

Adoptive Families Needed For African American Children

I am on a bit of my soapbox for a bit....

I am completely blown away by the fact that there is a need for adoptive families for FULL African American infants in not one agency, but two, here in the United States....and I'm sure more than that, that I am not aware of. There are inner city women who make the brave choice to not abort but to choose life. They choose a better life for their children than what they are able to provide. They go through the emotions associated with choosing life, carrying life, and then being willing to hand that life over to another out of an ultimate sacrifice of love. AND YET......they show up to these agencies ready to make the ultimate sacrifice but there are NO files for them to look through. There are NO families standing ready, waiting to be chosen as the adoptive parents . There are NO families waiting in line to adopt their FULL African American children. I have heard many say that they will adopt a mixed child, and that is wonderful. But why not a FULL blooded, African American child? There are some that won't even consider that, yet they consider a mixed child. I don't know....does it come down to how dark a child is? If so....WHY? I was at a party the other day and there was a picture being passed around of a waiting child and someone actually said " he is just too dark". "My other kids are mixed and he wouldn't fit in." Well, I seriously doubt the mixed kids look like their white adoptive momma, either. Maybe they do, maybe they don't. But the fact is....when it comes to a child needing love, needing a home, needing a family, it does not matter how dark or light or half African or full African or half American or full American the child is. The child needs a family and God looks to us as Christians to step up and be His hands and feet. Thank God that He does not choose us by our color, by our shade, by how light or dark we are as to whether or not we can enter His family. He chooses us as members of His family based on His unconditional love......and yet
WE are made in HIS image....aren't we??? We should have unconditional love toward another who is made in the image of Christ....shouldn't we??

I must admit for some it is nothing more than just ignorance. When I say ignorance, I don't mean stupidity....I just mean, not knowing, not having been enlightened yet. We lived in that bliss ignorance ourselves when we first started our adoption journey. We thought the perfect child to fit into our family of 7 would be a 2 yr old girl from Ukraine. Our youngest child was a 4 yr old boy so we thought "how perfect a 2 yr old blond from Ukraine would fit into our family just fine." We had considered Africa early on as that country is what made me sit and sob my eyes out after seeing an Oprah special on orphans.....but quickly ruled it out because we thought in our little minds that one child in a family of 8 that didn't look like the rest of us would make
him feel awkward. It would put "too much pressure on him as the different child". So we pushed it aside and applied to Ukraine. Well, the country shut its doors to adoption and we waited for two years for them to open. They didn't open back up so we decided to switch countries. We didn't know which one....we were "praying" about it. Funny how lots of time to wait does something to YOUR plans, and the picture YOU had in your mind for so long. You start to become open to "other options....whatever God wants". Then you are stretched out of your comfort zone. We got a call out of the blue while we were "praying" about it by someone who suggested Africa to us.They were leaving to go work in an orphanage in Africa the next day. On a whim I just said "email me when you get there and let me know what you find." Mind you, this is almost three years into the process and we were tired of waiting and ready to get something moving. She immediately found a boy in Nigeria that we tried to adopt and supported for one year. Well, we are in the beginning of year #4 in the adoption process now and the country regulations in Nigeria put an end to that adoption. We were devastated again. Back to square one but this time our hearts were now not only wrapped around that little boy....but wrapped around Africa. For one year we envisioned this child joining our family and we couldn't imagine it any other way. So after wanting to give up all together and much prayer again we pressed on and then, one last time, applied to an agency for a 4 year old boy... and got a referral in two weeks. After the long drawn out journey, he was home with us within 5 months of when we applied. When it is time....God moves! We then realized that the very month God laid adoption on our hearts and we decided to adopt our perfect little girl from Ukraine, was when our son, Nathan, was born. Two years later when we got the most random call ever asking us if we had ever thought about Africa was the very month when Nathan was placed in the orphanage. That year that God used the other little boy to turn our hearts toward Africa was the year that our son sat waiting in the orphanage to be picked. The whole time we thought God was taking too long....He was actually working on our hearts and preparing us for what was to come. THEN, at the perfect time....for us....and for Nathan....God brought us all together. Our hearts were where they needed to be, finally, in order for God to add to our family the way He intended.....not us. How funny that we thought we had it all figured out. But let me tell you that our 2 year old little blond girl from Ukraine was actually a 4 year old very dark boy from Africa. And we could not have hand picked him any more perfectly to fit into our family. He was our missing piece and and the perfect match for our family. I love the fact that we spread God's message about adoption every time someone looks at our family without ever having to say a word. I LOVE his dark skin....I now think the darker the better because it is just one glimpse of what we will all look like once we get to heaven. Every tribe and every nation, and all one family....But you know what? We all bleed the same color. And it is what's on the inside that counts. I thank God that our eyes were opened and that we stuck it out and let God lead us...even in our bliss ignorance. There are children in every tribe and every nation that need to be adopted. Some God has chosen and they will look like you, but some He has chosen and they may not. Just be careful not to quickly rule it out if they happen to not. God wants to use us more than we could ever imagine. It is so much more than what we think. It is His message of unconditional love that He is trying to spread across the nation.....no matter what it looks like :-) I'd say God's view is perfect.

Now....on to the agencies. These agencies have both said they have urgent needs for adoptive families interested in Full African American infants. Let's take care of the children in our own country as well as abroad. Where are you called to adopt?

http://www.adoptionassociates.net/ this has the urgent need listed on their site. This agency is in Michigan. I have a reference contact if you would like it.

The other one, I believe, is a crisis pregnancy center that aids in adoptions and has an urgent need right now for adoptive families.
http://www.covenantcareadoptions.com/ This is out of Macon, Georgia.

Blessings in your adoption journey :-)

16 comments:

  1. Amen Sister. Another beautifully written post. Love hearing you from your soapbox!
    Praying for hearts to be stirred and families to step out in faith for the blessings that ALWAYS follow obedience!
    Love & Blessings from Hong Kong,
    Kim

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  2. Can I get an AMEN? My prayer is that everyone who is stirred by reading this post will NOT forget it and move on with their day. I pray they actually MOVE on it and act. If every Christian family adopted one child....there would not be an orphan crisis. OH....I think that soap box is contagious...ha.

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  3. Thanks for sharing! You are so right! Every color is beautiful and I tell people that I want our family to look like heaven. Alittle bit of every color! Well God Bless, Heidi

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  4. I guess if we cannot connect by phone, God will connect us however needed. As I re-read your story with Nathan, you encourage me all the more to press toward my goal. You amaze me always and I love you.

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  5. I love this post. The need came to my attention recently and I am praying about direction. And also for my husband to come fully around to this need.

    I can't imagine these precious brave women who want to give their babies a chance at life, only to be told no one wants their children. Breaks my heart.

    Thank you for bringing this to our attention.

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  6. Oh, beautifully done, and a beautiful story to back up your soapbox! I have no beautiful story to back up my soapbox (the same one, btw), but i am nearly 100% certain that we will adopt a DARK-SKINNED child of advanced age when we are ready to adopt (waiting on dh). I care not what his native country, i care not whether he has developmental delay or behavioral issues... God will provide our home with a child who needs us AS MUCH AS WE NEED HIM. Of that i am convinced.

    May God bless you for using this avenue to educate others, and may He richly bless your family for being... His servants.

    Angie

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  7. Thank you so much for posting this to your blog. I am the one that shared the need at Adoption Associates with Kristi. I am so grateful that you posted it to your blog as well. I am the adoptive mom of three precious African American children. And when my husband and I see them, we do not see their color, we see a gift from God. I actually had someone say to me that they could not adopt an African American girl because they could do her hair. Well I was not born knowing how, but I am learning. The excuses that are given for not following God's command blows my mind some days.

    Please continue your work advocating for the orphan. We need more people like you obeying the call of God.

    Wanda Monroe
    Bangor, Maine

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  8. You don't need to approve this comment...I just received word that the organizations do NOT do outside of the country...so sad as we were willing to adopt again. Thank you for sharing this post with everyone....I pray families in the US step up to the plate.

    Blessings,
    Connie in Canada

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  9. Kelly!
    Thank you!!!!! Beautifully written! Hey, do you know if you have to be from those states to adopt through those agencies? We have looked into adopting a fully African American child in Washington State and were told there was at least a two year wait before we could even talk to someone about it. Since then we have adopted Georgia from China but would be open to praying about adopting again. I will contact the agencies too.
    Thanks again!
    Shannon

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  10. Your passion is so evident and propelling! Thank you for sharing of this need. I am on staff with Covenant Care Services (www.CovenantCareAdoptions.com) - the Christian licensed adoption agency in Georgia you mentioned. Although we are not a crisis pregnancy center, we eagerly partner with CPCs throughout the state of Georgia.

    Our eagerness to serve our clients well motivates us to find the families with a heart like yours. Thank you for sharing your heart so transparently!

    Be encouraged that your blog is bearing fruit. We have gotten a number of calls from potential adoptive families who read your blog! Thank you!

    Sincerely,
    Loren Rae Easterling
    Covenant Care Services

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  11. Thank you for such an amazing post that spoke directly to my heart. Blessings,
    Polly

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  12. Thank you so much for this post. I was coming from Krist's blog to read about your courage in what happened on that horrible night 20 years ago and I happened upon this post. I have been struggling with wanting to adopt and I just had Ethiopia on my heart after reading about everyone else's experiences, but this post really made me realize there is a need here too. I will keep praying for God to lead me in the right direction. It breaks my heart to know that there are women who are choosing life for their babies and that families are not stepping up.

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  13. If we are Pro-life.....we must also be Pro-adoption!!!! The church as a whole is pro-life....but not pro-adoption!!! In fact we had some negative comments (from church people) about our first adoption:( This really needs to change!!! We need to give these moms a reason to carry their babies full term!!! Every life matters!! Your blog is truly making a difference!!
    Michelle
    www.mfamilyblog.blogspot.com

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  14. So well-said, and similiar to my story, as God changed my heart about loving a child of different color/race. I no longer even see color, and have to remind myself that other people are still back where I was a few years ago, and I must give them time and space for God to change their hearts. And if HE wants to use me and my child to accomplish this, I am thrilled!!

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  15. We were so excited to hear that these agencies are needing adoptive parents. The only problem is that it is for US citizens only. If they were accepting Canadians, I know of several families who would be waiting in line!! Too bad it's closed to US only.
    Jackie
    CANADA

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