Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Open Adoption + Faith: A Recipe for Success

I often hear from adoptive families who are paralyzed at the thought of an open adoption. As they consider opening their hearts to a baby, they find the thought of opening their arms to the baby's mother somewhat confusing and frankly terrifying. The "what if's" overwhelm these families:
  • What if the birthmother wants her child back in a few years?
  • What if the child wants to go live with his birthmother instead of us?
  • What if the birthmother stalks us or our child?
  • What if...
The reality is that most birthparents are entering into adoption because they are choosing a life for their child that they cannot provide. Open adoption is about the birthmother's choices, and believe it or not, a birthmother will choose you.

When I work with these families, I ask them about their faith. Typically, families who have a strong foundation and rely heavily on their beliefs, will have an easier time pursuing these situations where many things remain unknown.

Proverbs 3:5-6 tells us, "Trust in the Lord with all your heart, and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways acknowledge Him, and He shall direct your paths."

As a Christian, I know that I am called upon to do what God asks of me, and then, with His guidance, move forward in faith. He will not give me more than I can handle, and He will provide for my needs.

In adoption, this means that after considering a birthmother situation, take it to the Lord. Give Him the chance to provide you with guidance and soften your heart to your child-to-be, and also to your child's birthmother. Take it as a given that you will not have answers to all your questions, you will not know fully what expectations your child's birthmother will have, but with faith you can forge ahead with the knowledge that as you follow God's plan, He will provide the love and trust you need to embrace your child and his birthfamily.

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