I'm alone today. Can you believe it?
I'm watching a Lisa Lang special on child sex trafficking - in the United States, and I'm crying.
I'm crying because one 14-year-old girl was orphaned when her mother died of cancer. She bought into what she thought was her only way of survival.
And then, a family heard of how they could be the hands and feet of Jesus at their church and care for children in crisis. They went through the GPS classes in Washington D.C. and hoped for a young infant who would be in a need of adoption.
Instead, they said yes to the one the world looks at as dirty, damaged, and finished. They committed to the one who would run, return to that lifestyle, and fight them every step of the way. They shared with Lisa Lang how they wondered what they had done, but they knew they were called to this moment, this child, this purpose. They did this while man after man took advantage of this same child - the professional, the established, the father, the husband, the one searching.
I think of a man named Hosea. I think of his wife Gomer.
I think of his God who told Hosea to take a wife. I wonder what innocent vision Hosea had in his mind when he dreamed of a lifelong partner. Instead, God said Gomer, the whore, the prostitute, the one who returned to the source of her death, even though life awaited her.
But Hosea took her in. He took her to his bed. He committed and pursued. He loved the damaged.
I grew up with the Christian Broadcasting Network on 24/7 in the background of my home, and I respect many of their initiatives and kingdom desires. I'm grateful for them.
But, Pat Robertson's most recent comments regarding adoption, once again entered the danger zone. I say "once again" because CBN has been required to edit his comments regarding this issue a number of times before.
~ (Now, I also believe it was quite wrong for the partnering anchor to refer to men who do not feel called to date mothers with adopted children as "dogs.") ~
I do respect his caution. There is an adoption and orphan care movement across the Christian body. Praise God! However, adoption or foster care out of emotion, rather than commitment is a deathly motivation. We've cared for the results in our home.
When you marry, you say for better or for worse. You marry the past and the present, and all the things that individual has been.
Adoption is no different. When you say yes to that child, you are adopting their past of trauma as well as their future with you, and you have no idea how their past will one day impact their future. It is dark at times. I know. It doesn't matter their age or their race or where they are from. Orphan care is born out of brokenness, so the journey is broken. And every journey the Father calls you to is cast in the reality that His goal is to make you look like His Son, and I'm pretty sure none of us completely look like His son, so these journeys we're on are not comfortable.
I appreciate that one of Robertson's underlying motivations seems to be caution against emotionally-motivated action because feelings will not carry you when you are being slapped and kicked, and hearing that you are hated.
But, his extreme language that we are not called to take these children in because they are "damaged" is out of line, and honestly, I believe, unbiblical. We are not all called to take orphans into our homes, though I believe many more of us are than do, yet we are all called to orphan care and to hold up the arms of those who are directly loving them.
I do believe that when the option is able, the restoration and redemption of a biological family together is the most beautiful fulfillment of this brokenness, but that is not a reality all the time, across the world or our nation.
We fear what we do not know and what we do not understand. In our suburb homes of tidiness and order, we do not understand the drugs, the neglect, the trafficking, the cycle, so our thoughts scream WARNING. We often look on the ones doing it and the children involved with pitiful wonder, rather than Christ-like love.
I've reached the end of the show. The young girl taken in is graduating from high school. She stands and thanks her foster parents, who took in a stranger who fought them and ran from them. She thanks them for teaching her of One who loves her eternally and offered her life, when she tried to keep returning to death.
It may not be for every Christian to care for an orphan in their home, but I will tell you that because of the ones in my home, I know our Savior in such deep ways that I never would have before. It is hard, and there are such dark days. They are damaged, but so am I. The difference is I know the key to redeeming the brokenness, as you also do.
Let's not limit the work of the Kingdom in fellow believers' lives, simply because we do not believe we are called to it. Let's cheer and celebrate the fact that God uses messy, dirty people like me and you even when He has no need for us. Let's praise Him that He invites us in and makes us His temple for the world to see.
Let's let God out of our box.