Sunday, May 12, 2013

Thinking of Africa

"Children born to another woman call me “Mom.” The magnitude of that tragedy and the depth of that privilege are not lost on me." -Jody Landers
(this quote showed up in my Facebook feed right after I had posted this blog; seems that I am not the only one thinking of birth mothers this Mother's Day)

Behind the beauty and joy and redemption and love of adoption, there is a dark, sad, ugly, painful truth.  Adoption is not the original plan for these children.  These children who have lost parents through disease and poverty and violence and every other misfortune you can think of.  It's easy to gloss over the pain and sadness when you think of the healing work that can be done when you bring a child into your home that otherwise would remain orphaned, but today, Mother's Day, I cannot help but think of the mothers on the other side of the world.  Mothers who experienced the joy and wonder of carrying a child in their womb and in their arms, only to have that joy taken away; diseases that could be cured or at least treated if only they lived in a different location, poverty so extreme that we can barely begin to understand, rape, shame, war.  We live in a fallen, sinful world, and this has never been more clear to me than when I began to try to understand how children, millions of children, are left without homes, without mothers.  This was not God's plan.  My heart is aching for our future child's first mother, and while I continuously pray for her, the sadness of what I know will happen is overwhelming.  I do not know her story, and it's possible that I never will, but what I do know is that it ends with a child, a beautiful, precious, amazing, perfectly created child.  A child who was born to her but will call me "Mama".  It is unfair.  I am so blessed, and look to the future with joy and anticipation as I wait for God to work, and yet I feel that I do not deserve such a precious gift.  But our God is a redeeming God, and while I may never understand why He will give this child to us and not her, I will forever be grateful for her sacrifice and will live my life in constant thankfulness for this mother who gave her child the most beautiful gift, life.

On this Mother's Day, while we remember our own mothers and friends who have children and those who long for both, I will also pray for the mother who gives up her child, whether her choice or not.  It is not the original plan, but I am so grateful to be a part of this mystery.

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