National Adoption Month: Aging Out

I just watched this video, and I hope you will, too.

And then join me in praying for forgiveness.

We have no excuses, y’all.

Usually I’m preaching at the church, because as a Christian, I believe that if the church were living the way Jesus told us to, things like foster care systems wouldn’t need to exist. If we stepped up and did what He told us to, I wouldn’t be writing this post.

But today? I’m preaching at just about every American. Because there is no excuse that in a country as rich as ours, there are this many children aging out of foster care. Or even in foster care to begin with!

Older child adoption isn’t for everyone, and some will say I have no right to comment on domestic adoption because I haven’t done it yet. But we have adopted a 12-year-old from another country and I am here to tell you: this girl is a blessing to everyone who knows her.

And your blessing might be out there praying for a mom or dad like you, right now, as I type.

But no, we’re Americans. We’re too busy chasing that dream, working hard, making that money. We’re too busy creating controversies over silly red cups and arguing about politics and whining because someone hurt our precious wittle fee-fees by not agreeing with us.

It crushes my heart that there are kids tonight going to bed in a hotel room with a social worker, or on the floor of a government office, or ON THE STREET, because there aren’t enough families willing to make the sacrifice of saying “yes” to these kids. And by kids, I mean every age under 21.

I have three teenagers at home and I can assure you — not one is ready to live on his or her own, (even though they probably would disagree with me on that). The thought of even one of them being homeless crushes me. In so many ways, they are still children.

Isn’t it ironic? My eldest, like so many his age, simply cannot wait to finish with high school and move out. He would go today, if he legally could. He doesn’t begin to realize that it’s really a luxury to have a loving family to leave behind. Ask Dominique, Mia and Aaron if they’d be rushing out the door if they had a family that loved them, that welcomed them. I get that kids are supposed to grow out of their need for us, and that’s fine. But some kids take the rejecting of their family too far, and never stop to think that there are thousands of kids who would trade places with them in a heartbeat. Older foster kids know, all too painfully, that you never outgrow your need for a family. Ever.

I’m just going to close with this, because I’m all emotional and broken up over this tonight. If you’ve ever felt that nudge that maybe you should adopt, that maybe you could be a foster parent, follow that nudge. Look into it. Find out what’s really involved and seriously consider turning that nudge into a reality.

Because I don’t know about you, but I am ashamed that my country, a nation with this many resources, refuses to do what it takes to keep kids from aging out of foster care alone.