The Paradox Church

The Bond of Adoption

Before Michael and I got married, we never talked about adoption. It was never our plan to adopt. Then, four months into what turned out to be a long battle with infertility, Ryan Keeney preached on adoption and I just couldn’t stop thinking about it. I knew then that we were being called to adopt but I didn’t know how I was going to get Michael on board. I prayed and prayed about it and talked to him a week later. His response was, “No way.” I was crushed but I felt like God was just leading us towards this and I knew that if God was calling us, He would do the work in Michael, so I began praying for him. I didn’t bring it up very often to him but every time I did I could see God working in his heart.

Parallel to the adoption journey, we were also battling the hard road of infertility. I wanted so badly to be pregnant again, to nurse again, even to go through hard labor again. I think for Michael it may have been a bit confusing to see me wanting to adopt and to have a biological child. I was confused by my heart’s desires. But adopting doesn’t fix infertility.

The grief and suffering through that drew me closer and closer to Christ. Through redemption groups, close gospel-centered friendships, and Jesus’ pursuit to never stop loving me, I finally believed that He alone satisfies my soul. I remember running one morning after my quiet time and I was listening to worship music and I became overwhelmed by His love mercy and grace. I stopped running and fell on my face before the Lord because I finally realized that my soul was satisfied in him alone. That by submitting my will to His, my desires become His desires. I was putting my hope in my family and I was finally able to fully put my hope in Jesus.

When I think of our adoption story I think of the beginning. Before we adopted, I looked at getting our baby as the end of the journey. But now I’m realizing that it’s just the beginning.

 

Adoption is hard.

It’s been so hard to bring a two-year-old into our home. A two-year-old from a different culture, different language. When he pitches fits and throws things and yells at us it’s hard to gently pick him up and love him over and over and over.

It’s hard laying in bed wondering, “Will we ever be able to have the same bond with him that we have with our four year old?”

It pulls us back to Jesus every minute of every day. Because we know His love for us. We know that the answer to those questions apart from knowing Christ’s love would be “No you won’t”. It’s not in your human nature.

But God makes all things new, He makes wars cease to the end of the earth, He breaks the bow and shatters the spear, He burns the chariots with fire. We have been given new life. He adopted us from our wretched state, He loves us and forgives us over and over again. He forgives us when we doubt His plan, He forgives us when we sin against our spouse, He forgives us when we sin against our boys.

I don’t think I’ve ever been so aware of my sin, and sometimes I can let that guilt and shame overcome me. But more so, I’ve been accepting and understanding my depraved state and resting in His wholeness, His righteousness, His forgiveness and that His forgiveness is love. This conflict revealed that our family is under is His mercy for our growth sanctification. He delights in showing mercy and mercy triumphs over judgment.

We have His promises hidden in our hearts. We know that no plans of His can be thwarted, that He who began a good work in you will bring it to completion on the day of Christ.  

We know that He is writing our story and He is our sovereign God. The God who loves us and gives us love. So I believe 100 percent that yes, we will share the same bond with our adopted son that we share with our biological son. Why? Because of the love He lavishes on us.

 

Bonnie Elliot
Partner at The Paradox Church