Our family has been in the process of adopting Little Krause for 2 years now. We have been on the official waiting list just shy of 14 months. Goodness how time both flies and drags! If we have learned anything, it is that international adoption is very, very, unpredictable. We have encountered several twists and turns of uncertainty, all the while holding fast to the promises God has given us. They’re all we have.
Over the weekend my Facebook page exploded with news that Ethiopian, government officials had announced they were going to shut down international adoption. At first I chose not to react, I see lots of rumors and wanted to wait until I heard from reliable sources. But in no time at all, one of my sources in Ethiopia confirmed the chatter. Ryan and I have been sick but know all we can do is pray. We have absolutely no control, but we know the One who does.
This morning I received an email from our adoption agency in response. Here is an excerpt:
Over the weekend in Ethiopia a multiday meeting was held by the House of Representatives along with MOWCYA officials. In attendance were numerous Ethiopian government officials and public stakeholders, roughly 400 people were present. A research paper prepared by MOWCYA in conjunction with Parliament was presented regarding issues of sexual harassment, drug abuse and adoption within Ethiopia. Following the presentation of the research, the group of attendees were divided into six groups to discuss and respond to 15 questions. Roughly seven of the 15 questions were directly related to adoption. (America World is in the process of translating the research paper and questions.) Each group had a mixed representation of parliament officials, MOWCYA officials, Court President and officials, NGOs, adoption agency representatives, teachers, and public attendees. America World’s In-Country Director, Adey, was present at the meeting and in one of the working groups.
The groups reviewed the material, discussed for several hours, and then had one individual from each group present to the larger group suggestions for addressing the issues noted. Regarding adoption issues, it was noted that many Parliament officials involved strongly lobbied for the closure of international adoption while many of the groups encouraged a greater focus on domestic adoption while continuing international adoption as a good option for children. At the conclusion of the group presentations, the speaker of the House of Representatives stated that government officials were shown to have had conflicts of interest leading to corruption and did not speak positively regarding international adoption. In closing he noted that a strategic plan would be provided after 10 business days.
Not good news.
There has been a lot of negative media surrounding international adoption recently. As trendy as is was a few years ago to hop on the adoption band wagon, it is now the trend to speak out against it. Funny how we humans roll. Ryan and I believe the orphan crisis in Ethiopia is multi-faceted and there is no one solution. That is why we have partnered with the Alade Genet church. We believe in orphan prevention and family preservation as the #1 goal but we know that is not always possible and there must be other options. Fostering the spirit of adoption among Ethiopians is one and I PRAY international adoption will remain another. People, there is not 1 magic solution and to believe so is ignorant and will only hurt the children we are ALL trying to save.
So, here I go again. Begging for your prayers on behalf of our family and the orphaned and vulnerable children of Ethoipia. In our hearts and minds the Little Krause we have dreamed of has always been Ethiopian. We have deeply invested in and fallen deeply in love with the country and her amazing people. Please pray, really really hard.
At the end of the day, I find comfort in knowing this is not a surprise to God. He knew from the beginning this would happen and I will continue to trust the One who holds our lives in the palm of his hands. I will leave you with a post that came to my mind this morning. I wrote it in 2008!:)
I just love how you can read familiar scripture and receive a new word! God's Word truly is living and active (Hebrews 4:12)! Today, my current Bible study, No Other Gods by Kelly Minter, brought me to Psalm 121, a Psalm of Ascent. We were to read the passage and record what spoke most deeply to us regarding trust. I read it once, then twice and WOW! The second part of verse 7: "He will keep your life". Let me chew on that for a moment... The wondrous God of all creation keeps MY life! It's truly beyond the understanding of my mediocre mind! I was immediately filled with the urge to write this on a note card as I need constant reminders and encouragement.
Why should I fear? He keeps my life!
Why should I ever doubt? He keeps my life!
Why should I feel unworthy? He keeps my life!
Why must I struggle for control (or should I say FALSE control)? He keeps my life!
Why should I worry? He keeps my life!
In seasons of uncertainty and struggles, I can be secure! I can dig my feet into His promises and stand. God says He will keep my life. It's about a choice and I choose to take Him at His Word! God I will trust you with my ALL because you keep my life