Daniel and I are high school sweethearts who married at the age of twenty. We knew we wanted children and we also knew that adoption would be in the fabric of our family makeup. I grew up in Southeast Asia: Thailand, Indonesia, and Singapore. Adoption was in my heart at a very young age after seeing the heartache of the orphan crisis firsthand. Thankfully Daniel was one the same page from day one. However, we had our heart set on adopting a little girl from Thailand. Little did we know that God had a little boy in India that would become our son.
We were blessed with two biological children, Madison and Brady. After having them, adoption would be how we would expand our family further. Once Brady turned five we started looking into beginning the adoption process,with our hearts still set on a little girl from Thailand. However, God knows best and knows exactly what we need. He closed every door and pointed us to India. India? This is a country we’d never visited nor knew much about. We knew we just wanted to bring another child into our family even if it wasn’t exactly how we had it pictured in our minds. So…We began the arduous paper trail to adopt a child from India (hearts still set on a girl). Once we were approved to adopt from India our agency began to send us files of beautiful children. Before this happened I remember praying that God would make it evident to us who was our child. It was a typical day around our house and my phone dinged. Sure enough, it was an email stating “Three Child Profiles”…Three, how could I possibly look at three precious faces knowing that we can only choose one. Daniel was at work so I reluctantly opened the email without him and there were three precious boys. My hands shaking, I opened the first profile. I knew instantly that I was looking into the eyes of my son. There he was, a beautiful brown eyed two-year-old boy from Pune, India. One small thing, he has a genetic blood disorder called Beta Thalassemia Major and requires monthly blood transfusions which would be lifelong. What? How? He looks perfectly healthy. In spite of his diagnosis, I knew he was ours. Daniel on the other hand needed a little more time for confirmation.
Daniel sat silent for a week while I prayed that God would simply unite us. I didn’t want to persuade Daniel, I wanted God’s voice to speak louder. He tends to be more analytical in his decision making process, mine comes straight from the heart. It can be frustrating at times, but we really are the perfect balance for each other. Daniel sat silent for a week on making a decision and I kept quiet without nagging… Hard to do at times, can I get an amen ladies?! Well, God really spoke to Daniel during a sermon our pastor did speaking about Abraham and Isaac and how God tested Abraham by asking him to give up Isaac, his only son for Him. The overall question was, “What is your Isaac?”. I sat next my husband as tears were streaming down his face. When we got the files Daniel started to panic a bit wondering if this was maybe a bit too much, that convenience would be the easier route. God quickly reminded Daniel that laying our “yes” down on the table meant leaping in and putting our full trust in Him. We aren’t called to a life of convenience, but a life of obedience and full servanthood as followers of Jesus. What a freeing feeling it is to lay it all down in full surrender to Jesus. So, we emailed our agency first thing on Monday morning stating we wanted to move forward with adopting Shubham (Titus now).
Fast forward six months later we were on a plane to India to bring our son Titus home. The connection with him was instant and has only grown deeply in the three months he’s been home. However, his medical condition is a lot. He may look like a normal two-year-old but he’s fighting daily for his little life. He receives blood transfusions every 2-4 weeks. This will be lifelong for him until a bone marrow match or stem cell match is found for him. But he’s home and he’s ours and gets to do all this “scary” with his family holding him tightly. That is everything.
Physical adoption is a reflection of our heavenly adoption. It’s the gospel lived out right before your eyes. This verse is the very reason adoption is part of our family makeup: “For you did not receive the spirit of slavery to fall back into fear, but you have received the Spirit of adoption as sons, by whom we cry, ‘Abba! Father!’” – Romans 8:15 The word “Abba” literally means “Daddy.” To think that us as sinful humans can approach our Heavenly Father and call him “Daddy” is just mind-blowing to us. We have done nothing to deserve this yet He freely welcomes us with open arms.
For those currently in the trenches of adoption, press on and cling to Jesus. Where He leads, He provides. Will it be easy? No. Once you say yes to adoption you have to be prepared for the spiritual warfare that comes along with it. It's real and it's scary. You'll question whether or not this is actually for you. One thing I learned and continue to learn is that the enemy will do anything to stray you off course from God's plan for your life. That's especially true when in the process of adoption. Just remember that in the messy it's still beautiful. Adoption has opened so many doors to share our faith because this has nothing to do with us but it has everything to do with Jesus through us. We're simply the vessel.
Adoption has refined me. It has given me such a deeper appreciation of the daughter that I am to my Heavenly Father. You know, since Titus has been home we've heard often how lucky he is to have us. It's the complete opposite. His story isn't lucky, it's filled with tragedy and brokenness. It's a brokenness that one day we'll have to share with him as he starts to have questions. However, the silver lining in all the broken is the restoration. The word "lucky" should be replaced with "blessed" and it's a blessing that is fully bestowed on us as we get to raise our baby boy and point him to the one who can heal all the broken, Jesus.
We’re blessed Titus is part of our family and that we get to raise him as our own. This is a story only written by God himself and for that we’re forever grateful!