Last time, I told you about the adoption devotional I’m creating specifically for adopting moms. Over the next few weeks, I’m going to share a few samples from that project. I’m hoping there might be someone out there who can help me get this thing published, and then get it in the hands of the women it is intended to serve!
Anyway, the book is divided up according to themes. Each theme has five days worth of readings, each of which is intended to require about 5-8 minutes of time. It’s quick enough to be read while the child is eating or sleeping, with the purpose of helping moms reconnect with the Prince of Peace.
The first week is centered around the general theme of adoption. I draw five examples or references from Scripture, to help set the tone for the whole book. Here is Day 5 from that week:
Adoption: Day 5
Pure and genuine religion in the sight of God the Father means caring for orphans and widows in their distress and refusing to let the world corrupt you. –James 1:27 (NLT)
I remember the first time my husband and I first talked about what this verse meant to our family. It happened on our honeymoon (yes, I realize that was probably a silly time for us to finally talk about kids!). Anyway, we both agreed adoption or orphan care would play into our family structure at some point, simply because God commanded it.
Fast forward a decade or so, and we started considering adopting from Nicaragua. During a trip there, we proudly told a missionary about our plans to “save a child.” He shocked us with his response: “You’re not ready for that.”
Excuse me? Did this guy even know me?
He suggested we should first become foster parents in our home community for a while, so we could really get a handle on what caring for orphans without letting the world corrupt you means. Eighteen months later, as we were knee deep in the midst of fostering two previously homeless teenage girls, we finally started to understand.
This caring for orphans business isn’t just about us “saving kids.” Of course many children are saved from physical harm in the process of adoption, but it’s so much more than that.
And that portion about not letting the world corrupt us? Apparently James knew exactly what he was talking about when he included that tidbit.
Caring for other peoples’ children is messy work. After having their world turned upside down – and losing part of their identity – they often aren’t as “appreciative” as we might want. The whole experience can be challenging, frustrating, and exhausting – for both parent and child.
It’s enough to make us bitter, jaded, and maybe even a tiny bit regretful. What was that James said about the world corrupting us?
True religion – the stuff that God wants us to focus on – isn’t merely caring for orphans, but doing it in such a way that we don’t let all of the darkness and sin and frustration of this world break us. It means caring for these children so that they know they are heirs not only to all the blessings of our earthly family, but also to the great inheritance of our heavenly one.
Precious Savior, I am so tempted by the world. Thank you for providing Your Word, to strengthen me so I can better care for each of your children.