Our first adoption journey began in 2007, when our bio daughter was just 2 years old. I had been a missionary in Africa when I was younger, but I can’t say my desire to adopt began them. It truly began when my bio daughter was born. The moment I had a mother’s heart, I was broken, moved, and wrecked for all time toward children! It became my heart’s desire to adopt the rest of my children, however many God would call us to have.
So that’s the first definition of the word passion: a strong, almost uncontrollable emotion. Exciting, powerful, inspirational! We share it: WE ARE ADOPTING! We get a bazillion likes on Facebook. Yay!
But the second definition of passion…this one refers to Jesus on the Cross. It refers to Jesus laying His own life down even unto the worst of deaths, choosing obedience and love, stopping for the one, in a world He didn’t “have” to lower Himself to enter. That kind of passion is also a big part of the adoption process. This is the part that adoptive families tend to keep to themselves or only share with close friends. It’s the day-in day-out what this really looks like part. It’s painful. It’s scary. It can be disappointing. It reveals our fear & control issues, and our faithlessness. It creates a dependence on God and sets us close to the brokenhearted, where He dwells.
Adoption is an unmeasured mountain.
To make it through the years following the “yes” we uttered to Him, we have to expect both forms of this passion and all the while know Who is ultimately in control of how long we will have to endure. Just like Jesus, who knew it was not the Romans’ nails keeping Him on that cross, we look to our Father, not the governments of the countries involved in our adoption, to say when certain seasons can end. I will boldly say to the end: There is no wisdom, no plan, and no insight that can succeed against the Lord. (Proverbs 21:30)
Fellow adoptive parents, or those who want to be, whether you knew it in the beginning or not, you chose a life that would be painted with strokes of joy and grief, and all things out of your well-intended control. You chose to take what was not meant to be, what God never intended for the world–such great loss, such neglect and lack, such pain–and bring it, along with a precious child, right into your living room, your kitchen table, your lap, your mind, and your heart. You chose a suffering you didn’t actually have to choose. You entered in and will never come back out. It was someone else’s heartbreak. And you made it your own.
Let’s not take this lightly. This is a miracle and this is beautiful; but this is hard. Walking in His footsteps will leave behind a trail of blood and tears. But let’s not forget His promise! We are sisters and brothers to Jesus, who went before us, and we have an Abba Father who hears every cry, who gave us this heart in the first place. He promises that those who will share in His suffering will share in His glory.
Right now is the time for crosses.
The time for crowns is coming.