I was honored to witness a miraculous thing this evening. The Esther's Hope Ministry at Mission Community Church of Gilbert, AZ hosted a celebration for families who are fostering, have adopted, or are interested in either. http://www.mission68.org/ Everything but the food was completely free including bounce houses, face painting, balloons, cotton candy, petting zoo, pony rides, a picture booth, and live music. The miracle was getting to see so many happy, smiling kids of all sizes and colors. When I think about the conditions that my two adopted children were in years ago, I am simply speechless at the metamorphosis that has occurred before my very eyes. See, children don't just need their basic needs to be met, although that is certainly important, they also need the love and security of a family. The amazing thing is, that not only have they changed, so have I. For as many sacrifices that I have made, financially, emotionally, physically; the joy and abundance of love that I have received back from my children is ten fold. When Pat Robertson made his comments about adopted children being "weird", he was clearly very misinformed. We are all weird in our own way, and the vast majority of the most self-centered, poorly motivated youth that I have worked with were not adopted children. Has our path in international adoption been easy? Definitely it has not. With each of our children, we have had to work through different losses, histories, and memories that haunt them even if they cannot remember. We gave everything we had for Vanessa and we did not end up being the best fit to be her forever family. But in the process we did witness and facilitate incredible change and growth, change that helped prepare her for the family that was meant for her.
And so today on Orphan Sunday, I challenge you to answer the call that has been given. How can you make a difference to the 147 million orphans on this earth? It could be adoption, or foster care. But it could also be to sponsor a child internationally, to volunteer or mentor locally, or to support another family who you know who may be wanting to adopt or foster but are faced with the financial roadblock. It only takes one to make a difference one child at a time.