Monday, February 28, 2011

Adopted for Life: The Priority of Adoption for Christian Families & Churches, by Russell D. Moore


A decent enough book on the importance of adoption for Christians--part memoir, part practical guidebook, part theological text. Nothing terribly earth shattering, though. Moore clearly has a passion for adoption, and encourages others to consider adopting, primarily as a result of our own adoption in Christ. And he makes several excellent points along the way--we do get fixated on the value of having our "own" children and are willing to pursue any possible means of "acquiring" them. We can view adoption as an inferior option, or consider it only in addition to natural children. But it is not inferior, and more than Christians are inferior to their Jewish forbears. Our bond in Christ supersedes our genetic bond with our biological offspring--there are more important things than blood ties.

Moore addresses several common misconceptions and talks frankly about his family's struggles with infertility and his own resistance to adoption. He also firmly but gently highlights (and rebukes) the consumerist mentality that is so pervasive, even in our attitudes about children. Adopted children are more work, we think--health problems, abuse, behavioral issues, cost, who knows what all. But we have no guarantee that our "own" children will be free of such struggles. Even biological children can have birth defects or develop deadly diseases or experience trauma that affects them for years to come.

Really, to Moore, adoption is like missions. Well, adoption is missions, from his perspective. What I mean is, he believes that just as even those who are not called to move to a third world country to become missionaries are still called to support missions, even those who are not called to adopt children have an obligation to help facilitate and encourage adoption. I have to say, I think he has a point.

This might be a much harder read for someone who is either steadfastly resistant to adoption, or who desperately wants his or her "own" biological children and has trouble with the idea of letting go of that dream. But since I have no dog in this fight, I merely found it a moderately interesting exposition on the theological case for adoption.

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