National Adoption Month

As you may be aware, every November is National Adoption Month. So I thought I would take a moment to let you know how much adoption has been a blessing to our family.

If you haven’t guessed by now, yes, Jaylin is adopted. I know it isn’t necessarily obvious or anything. He started out with us as a foster child when he was eight months old, and he officially became a part of our family through adoption two years later, just before his third birthday.

I don’t know how you might see him, but I see Jaylin as a natural part of our family, belonging there just as much as anyone who would have the same DNA as we do. Because as far as we are concerned, he does. He belongs to us, and we belong to him. We are a family. There is nothing unusual about it in our minds. It is just how we are. When we are out somewhere, we do still sometimes get strange looks and an occasional question or two, especially from younger children. And that is understandable. But that is just how our family is.

From time to time, I hear someone say, “I just don’t know if I could love an adopted child as much as my own.” But I don’t buy that. Of course, as Jaylin is our only child, we don’t actually have a “birth child” to compare experiences, but I can’t see that we would love anyone else any more. I sometimes think people just use their own doubts as an excuse.

Yes, there are some differences. Going along with the whole “nature vs. nurture” debate, there aer occasionally some behaviors and such about Jaylin that we just don’t understand, because those behaviors are nothing like either of us have ever experienced. But then at the same time, he does lots of things that are indeed just like us, and it is sometimes a reminder of just how much influence you have over someone when you see him doing something that you recognize from yourself. In the last few years, some people have even started saying that he looks like me, which is pretty funny in some ways. And sad for him that he didn’t end up with a better-looking father to look like. Oh well, we chose him more than he chose us.

Sometimes people tell us that we are doing a great thing. But we really aren’t. Anyone can do it. And we don’t feel that we are super people because we have adopted. It is just what we did. And what most anyone can do.

Adoption has been a great blessing to us, making our lives much different, and much better, than we ever thought they would be.

And of course, adoption is a perfect representation of our relationship with God. Not to compare ourselves with God, of course. But just as Jaylin has all the full rights that come from being in our Burns family, we also have all the rights of God’s children through adoption:

When the time came to completion, God sent His Son, born of a woman, born under the law, to redeem those under the law, so that we might receive adoption as sons. And because you are sons, God has sent the Spirit of His Son into our hearts, crying, “Abba, Father!” So you are no longer a slave but a son, and if a son, then an heir through God. - Galatians 4:4-7

With this being National Adoption Month, perhaps you just might be considering adoption. Or maybe you have never considered adoption before now. But either way, let me tell you that our experience with adoption has absolutely been a blessing. Not just a blessing for Jaylin, but a blessing for our entire family.

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Burnsland is Steve Burns, with generous help from his lovely wife Laura. Steve is a husband, father, photographer, webmaster, writer, podcaster, artist, Christian. Steve enjoys sharing his photography, art, and stories through, from the Burnsland World Headquarters in Tennessee.