A Time To Celebrate Adoption
Lord, may we be a nation that celebrates adoption.
Celebrating adoption is a good fit for November. It’s a time when we are prompted by the calendar to remember the ways that we as individuals and communities are blessed — a time we are encouraged to give thanks to God and to share with our neighbors. Also, as we ready ourselves for the season of Advent, the importance of family shines extra bright in our music, stories, and hearts.
Adoption carries with it with elements of hope, joy, love, and thanksgiving central to the season before us. It is by no means an easy process for adoptive parents or children yearning for their own forever homes. But adoption is beautiful, and I believe it is close to our Lord’s heart. After all, He benefitted from an adoptive earthly father and He is the Way to the Father who wants to adopt us all.
So it is fitting that November is National Adoption Month. Adoption is deserving of celebration and prayerful attention as we seek to bolster it in our society. And the need is great in the United States and abroad. In America’s foster care system alone are hundreds of thousands of kids with more than 120,000 waiting to be adopted.
President Ronald Reagan, a key leader in this decades-long effort, knew adoption honored both a culture of life and society built on strong families. Declaring the first National Adoption Week in 1984, Reagan said:
Families have always stood at the center of our society, preserving good and worthy traditions from our past and entrusting those traditions to our children, our greatest hope for the future. At a time when many fear that the family is in decline, it is fitting that we give special recognition to those who are rebuilding families by promoting adoption.
Sadly, we know that some activists have targeted adoption providers for the sake of their own agendas. In fact, despite the rebuke to them in this year’s Fulton v. City of Philadelphia Supreme Court victory for religious freedom, a number continue to trouble faith-based adoption and foster care agencies at the expense of children in need of safe and nurturing homes.
But thankfully support for adoption generally remains nonpartisan. As it should, even in our hyper-polarized society.
Actually, in recent days a bipartisan group of senators introduced legislation to honor National Adoption Month and to call attention to ways we might further strengthen this good in our society. One of the key authors of that bill, Senator Roy Blunt (R-Mo.) said, “Every child deserves a stable, loving home and the foundation for a successful future that it provides.”
Blunt noted that he himself is an adoptive parent and said he hoped his resolution “will encourage more Americans to consider expanding their families through the gift of adoption”
Sen. Amy Klobuchar (D-Minn.), Blunt’s co-chair on the Congressional Coalition on Adoption, emphasize the goal of improving the adoption process for children and prospective parents. “I’ll keep working to increase awareness about the importance of adoption and honor the dedication and commitment of adoptive families,” she said.
One way we can support adoptive parents, children, and the churches and communities around them is through prayer. Focus on the Family has produced a helpful prayer guide for just this purpose. For example, one suggested prayer for children waiting for their forever family is, “Pray that God will place a song of joy in their hearts. Pray for their healing and restoration as God keeps His eye on them.”
Amen. Adoption is close to God’s heart and a key to His plan. How will you pray today to support this beautiful value and those pursuing and buttressing it?
Aaron Mercer is a Contributing Writer with two decades of experience in Washington, D.C.’s public policy arena. (Photo by Unsplash.)
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