Are YOU called to adopt just because you are a Christian? Bluntly put. NO! Now before you get your feathers ruffled, and quote James 1:27 to me, please hear me out.
In fact, let’s look at James 1:27.
Religion that is pure and undefiled before God, the Father, is this: to visit orphans and widows in their affliction, and to keep oneself unstained from the world. ESV
Now, most Christians can quote the first part of that verse inside out. In fact, I would call it the Christian Adoption Theme Verse.
You know, just as Deuteronomy 6 is the Christian Home Education Theme Verse.
And these are GREAT verses; but you know what? God did not write either one of these specifically for the purpose they are being used for today. They are not proof texts for adoption or for home educating.
But back to James:
Most people usually stop quoting after they get to the word orphans. BUT, there is MORE to the verse. What about the WIDOWS? And not only that, but we are to keep ourselves unstained from the world!
Here’s what I want you to notice. This verse is not about adopting! This verse is about taking care of people in NEED! This verse is about our Christian responsibility to those suffering loss.
I realize I might get a lot of flack for this; especially as an adoptive mother. And as one who feels adoption is one of the greatest blessings in my life. But we’ve got to stop this MADNESS!
Will you first consider the fact that many of these children are NOT true orphans?
Those that are in the United States custody, DFS, CPS, etc. are not orphans! They have families. Yes, they were removed from their families for one reason or another but THEY HAVE FAMILIES!
Sometimes you have an overzealous social worker out to “save” the children (most often, these sw’s are fairly recent college grads and have no children or maybe one child of their own)
Many times children are removed because of an unfounded accusation-then the worker finds “something”
A social worker got an “anonymous” call from a disgruntled relative.
or an adopted child with SEVERE issues lied and the social worker believed the lie over the parents truth. (I know SEVERAL people who this has happened to, one family still doesn’t have their children home over a year later!)
Sometimes they get removed for educational neglect. (this happened a lot during early homeschooling years)
Or, sometimes the boyfriend of the mother really does abuse these precious children
Sometimes, there is real abuse; and in these (I believe) rare situations a child should be removed.
I submit that the problem isn’t with the “orphans”
Our families are falling apart.
Or maybe they weren’t even a family to begin with.
More children are raised in single parent homes than ever before. These single parent homes are most likely a 2nd generation. These mothers don’t know how to parent their children well. Many single parents today were raised as latchkey children. Their Moms went to work and they were never taught to be a parent. Public schools taught home ec and that included taking care of a “baby” in their health curriculum. BUT was this enough? I submit to you that NO, carrying around a “fake” baby to take care of for one week is NOT enough training for the rigorous task of raising children!
As evidenced by the fact, that children are growing up by themselves today.
So my questions are:
What are we doing about the widows?
What are we doing to keep ourselves “unstained from the world?”
You see there is much more to this passage.
I challenge you to read the 2nd part of James 1:27
visit… widows in their affliction, and to keep oneself unstained from the world.
Now, this verse literally does mean actual orphans and widows. but in our culture, we have many orphans and widows. Children that have been abandoned by a parent. Parents that have been abandoned by their spouses or by the father of their child (that never was their husband).
So here’s my question for today:
Are we taking care of these widows?
Are we keeping ourselves unstained from the world?
Stay tuned for Part III