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Archive for called to adopt

“Our son is a gift, made of miracles and divine love!”

Anthony and Sara with their son ElijahLast year, adoptive couple Anthony and Sara were blessed to adopt a baby boy through Lifetime. In this family’s story, we hear from Sara about her life-long call to adoption, getting “the call” that a birth mother was interested in them, and their experience with becoming parents together through an open adoption.
 
Now a forever family, adoptive mom Sara shares their beautiful story in this special guest blog post!

 
On February 28, 2018, we got the call that would change our lives forever. For some reason, I didn’t have my phone on vibrate that day, and I heard the ringing from the next room as I was unloading the dishwasher. I set the plastic plate in my hand down on the counter and made my way to the desk where my phone was perched. Grass Valley, California was on the caller ID.
 
Newly-born Elijah“We have a birth mother who’s interested in you.”
 
Fast forward exactly four weeks. This time, the caller ID was flashing our birth mom’s name. Not the first time she had ever called, but this call was unscheduled, after 10 pm, and less than a week out from her due date.
 
“My water just broke.”
 
Fast forward about forty hours. We had just driven cross-country to a tiny town in upstate New York. There was another name, but it wasn’t on a caller ID, it was on a hospital crib. “That’s him. As soon as you sent her his name, she had us write it on the crib card.”
 
Fast forward nine months. Here we are. At the time that I’m writing this, it’s been nine months to the day since we left the hospital. As I sit here and reflect on this adoption journey that led us to the most beautiful and perfect baby boy I could have ever dreamed into existence, I realize that adopting our son has taught me some things – not the least of which is my fresh perspective of the gospel message.
 
Worth the adoption wait!I first felt the call to adopt as a very young teenager. It started with one of those controversial “Feed the Children” commercials. Then learning about the unwanted baby girls in China. Then hearing a missionary speak about the orphans they help care for in Uganda, and working with poverty-stricken American children on various missions trips throughout high school. And so on. Each experience was like kindling to my little spark, and God continued to breathe on it.
 
I wanted to adopt because there are so many children in the world who need parents. I wanted to adopt because I want women to choose adoption over abortion when faced with a choice between the two. I wanted to adopt because not everyone has the emotional make-up for it, but for some reason, God gave that to me. I wanted to adopt for reasons that can’t be articulated but only felt with the heart. I felt so strongly about adopting that it would have kept me from marrying someone who didn’t share that desire. So, God sent me a man who had been adopted himself and understood my heart for it. And the flame continued to grow. It was like “a fire, shut up in my bones (Jeremiah 20:9, NIV)”. I was weary of holding it in, and indeed, I could not.
 
On November 1, 2016, the first day of Adoption Awareness Month, Anthony and I officially announced our plans to begin an adoption process. Exactly two years later, to the day, we finalized Elijah’s adoption. It was a beautiful full circle moment, and the moments in between were wrought with God’s goodness.
 
Anthony and Sara's adoption profileWe had to postpone our home study for a while, due to an upcoming move for my husband’s job. So, once our application with Lifetime was approved, we set aside a handful of months to save some money and work on our digital and print profiles. We officially contracted with Lifetime in July 2017 and were home study-ready that October. Then, the real wait began.
 
It was daunting. Looking through page after page of the digital profiles for so many wonderful waiting families on Lifetime’s website made me feel overwhelmingly…small. How could we possibly stand out to someone in that ocean that was teeming with such life? But I kept reminding myself that God had called us to do this and that He would make the right thing stand out to the right birth mother at the right time.
 
Elijah as Max from Where the Wild Things AreAnd He did. Just four months after completing our home study, we were selected by an amazing young woman who had contacted Lifetime late in her pregnancy. She was initially drawn to the fact that Anthony and the birth father have the same college degree, and once she read the rest of our profile, according to her, “it just felt right.” After speaking with her, it felt right to us too.
 
We’ve been blessed with an incredible birth family for our son that we look forward to remaining connected with throughout the years. The coming together of our families is undoubtedly something to celebrate.
 
There are thousands of babies born in the world each day, and the vast majority of these births are insignificant to most of us. Certainly, we rejoice when pregnant women choose life. Certainly, we acknowledge that each life is special. But, we don’t necessarily take a particular interest in all of those lives.
 
Anthony, Elijah, and Sara todayAn example of such a life is the baby boy born in a tiny town in upstate New York at 8:22 am on March 29, 2018, to a woman none of our family and friends have ever met. But, the moment he took on our name, he became part of the family. Elijah has become such a source of excitement and joy in our family. He was automatically accepted and loved. Because he took on our name. That’s the gospel, and watching it play out in front of me these past months has been too beautiful for words.
 
Some people wonder if having an adopted baby could possibly feel the same as having a child that you helped create, but I can say with absolute certainty that we couldn’t love this precious little soul any more in this moment. He is made of dream dust and miracles and divine love, and he is better than we ever imagined. He is a gift. As he grows, we’ll tell him his story – about the God who created him, his birth parents, and the string of holy moments that brought us all together.
 
There are parts of Elijah’s tale I’ll never share publicly, out of respect for him and his birth mother’s privacy. Those sacred details are tucked away in my heart, convincing me even more that he was meant to walk this earth and meant to do it as part of our family. That the God who paid the ultimate price for him has set the stage for His great and marvelous plans for my son’s life to unfold.
 
I can’t wait to find out the rest of the story!
 

Lifetime would love to help you adopt a baby, too!
 
Start your open adoption journey today by completing Lifetime’s free application to adopt.

Why Should We Choose a Christian Adoption Agency?

Tommy and Kaycee, one of the many happy couples that Lifetime's Christian adoption agency has helped!“My wife and I have just started to look into adopting because fertility treatments aren’t working. Since our faith is such a major part of our lives, we want to adopt through a Christian adoption agency. But, we’ve noticed that there are so many Christian adoption agencies out there! How do we decide?”

The best way to evaluate all of the agencies you’ve found is to create a list of questions that are important to you. Then, call each agency and speak with a real person. If you’re wondering what to ask them, you can get ideas from these 20 questions: “Your Checklist for Choosing an Adoption Professional.”

When you talk with a representative from the agency, don’t be afraid to ask the hard questions. After all, this is the organization that will be helping guide you to the child God has meant for you! Ask, and make sure to take good notes so that you can refer to later.

Religious beliefs play a role in every aspect of one’s life, including adoption. When it becomes clear after lots of prayer that you’re being called to adopt a baby, it’s important to keep your faith in mind when searching for an adoption agency.

Lifetime has worked for hundreds of Christian couples as they prayerfully traveled down the path of adoption. Christian adoption agencies such as Lifetime are not just faith-based, but Christ-centered as well. From the person who processes your application to adopt to the one who works with your birth mother, it’s comforting for Christian adoptive couples to know the people at their agency share their core values and speak a common language of belief.

Many birth parents of faith have chosen our Christian adoption agency because they want their child to be raised by parents of the same faith. When a birth mother creates an adoption plan for her older child, she benefits from knowing that the foundation of faith she’s begun in her child’s life will continue. Providing this match and assurance is one of the many ways a Christian adoption agency like Lifetime can offer support to all involved.

The adoption process can be an emotional one, but you can take comfort knowing that the adoption agency you choose is more than just a business. Instead, it’s a prayerfully built ministry, called to assist both adoptive and birth parents.

We’d love to answer your questions about how Lifetime can help you adopt! Just give us a call at 1-800-923-6784 or email us.

We invite you to step forward in faith today, and fill out Lifetime’s free online application to adopt!

Trusting the Lord’s Call to Adopt

called_to_adoption-200x300“Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things.” -Philippians 4:8

An important distinction of people who succeed at adoption is that they have faith in their desires, are very intentional in their steps, and are focused on their goal. Many prospective adoptive parents look and dream about adopting but do little to move past that point. While it is wise to do research before moving on to adopt, there are many who don’t move any further to complete what they have started. Sadly, fear is often the culprit. You have to believe you will adopt!

Many years ago, I was caring for a baby who was going to be adopted. I had him in my arms and was standing outside my church after services when Grace, a woman I knew, came up to me. She was spry and cheerful at the age of 82, and she looked at the child with shining eyes.

“Babies are so wonderful,” she said. She was quiet for a time. “I wish I had known you when I was younger. I would have asked you to find a baby for me to adopt.” It turned out she and her husband were unable to have children.

Grace was a loving person who was always around children, so I had assumed she was a mother. But on that Sunday morning, I learned she had lived her whole life without the joy of sharing her love with a son or daughter. “We didn’t know what to do or where to begin,” she said. ‚So we never did have a baby.” If only someone long ago had helped her get started on the road to adoption, she would have had her little one.

If, like Grace, you are unable to have a biological child or have always wanted to adopt and with all your heart you want to love, nurture, and bring up a child, then you should set out to find the child meant for you.

Successful adoptive parents know that the timing, planning, and dedication to completing their adoption goal can make its success much easier and smoother. I believe with any goal, there are basic steps that must be taken to attain the desired end result…becoming a parent! Those who have gone before you know it takes time and patience and following a concise plan to realize adoption success.

I do believe the Lord doesn’t allow us more than we can handle and that even the obstacles or the birth mothers who change their mind are part of His plan, too. I can’t imagine not having my son, and I wouldn’t if it weren’t for the birth mother who changed her mind before I met his birth mother. Thank God He has a plan!

“Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid or terrified because of them, for the Lord your God goes with you; He will never leave you nor forsake you.”
-Deuteronomy 31:6

This was excerpted from Lifetime Adoption Founder Mardie Caldwell’s book, Called to Adoption. Are you ready to answer the Lord’s call to adopt and start your family? Please call Lifetime Adoption: 1-877-383-6847. Your first step in getting started is to fill out our free online application to adopt.