Wednesday, April 16, 2008

Our Decision to Adopt, Part 1

It was over three years ago that I saw Steven Curtis Chapman give a presentation about adoption. The presentation was concerning a new charity he and his wife, Mary Beth, started called Shaohannah's Hope. The concept for the non-profit started after the Chapmans arrived home from adopting their first daughter, Shaohannah, from China. While they were in the airport concourse with their newly adopted daughter, people began coming up to them telling them about their desire to adopt. Many felt they couldn't because of the costs. Right there in the airport, Mary Beth started writing checks to help cover the fees.

Now, I had seen charity presentations before at Christian events. Most of the time they involve child sponsorship or giving to provide drinkable water in third-world countries. These are all good things, but this time I was seeing something completely unique. This guy was saying that there were all kinds of couples in the US wanting to adopt children, but couldn't afford it. His family was starting this new organization to raise money so these people could adopt. And then he finished it off by saying, "By the way, here's a picture of the three girls WE adopted from China." Call me ignorant, but I was shaken to the core. I'd never heard of this before!

I was deeply moved after hearing some of the family's stories. And I couldn't help but be struck by the fact that a guy like Chapman (in his 40s, already had three kids, probably has better things to do) had a heart for taking in helpless children and advocating for those who had the same burden.

Anne-Marie wasn't with me that night, so I told her the next day how greatly I had been affected by what I had seen and heard. At the time I didn't think anything about it, except that it was a great cause that "someday" I would like to be involved in.

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