September 9, 2011

Adopting

If I had it my way our house would be huge and our family much, much bigger than it is. It seems like every time I turn around I find someone else I want to adopt.

For instance, there's a tiny, weathered grandma I see each week at church; all through the service she appears to be smacking her gums silently while she listens to the sermon. She has a feisty look in her eye that defies her aged body. She looks sweet and tough and ornery- like someone who would keep you in line but laughing while you stood there.

Then there's Bill. He's another old person I'd like to keep. My son and I see Bill almost every day when we walk. At first Bill would just nod, and smile as we passed each other on the road. Then one day he stopped us and asked our names. The next day he wanted to chat for a moment. Now he actually comes wobbling down his driveway to greet us if we don't see him on the road, in a hurry to say hello and visit. Bill's body is falling apart, and he's practically deaf, but his spirit is strong. He's cheerful and sweet and optimistic. He doesn't need adopting-his daughter lives just two doors down and watches out for him-I just appreciate his positive attitude and thankful heart.

Old people aren't the only people I want to bring home. Everywhere I go I see teenage boys that look like they desperately need a mom. I would love to bring them all home, bake cookies for them and tell them they are loved no matter what they may have heard to the contrary. Some people are afraid of teenage boys and avoid them at all costs. I used to feel that way, but having had 3 of them pass through our lives has changed my attitude. Teenage boys are so funny, interesting, creative, refreshing and unpredictable. They don't frighten me at all. And the lost, angry, sad looking boys? I want to clobber their parents. They were given the gift of caring for a sweet little life and they ignored the miracle.

On the other hand you have teenage girls. They intimidate me-I haven't seen too many adolescent girls I'd like to invite into our home. Why do some teenage boys look sad and lost while the girls look a lot like predators?

I must say however, that there are about 6 teenage girls I would actually steal and bring home if given the chance. I'd love to snatch the entire Chinese girls gymnastic team and hide them away somewhere. Talk about sad and lost looking. And after they taught me Chinese or I taught them English, I'd tell them about Jesus and that He loves them even if they never, ever, ever bring home a medal. I'd hug them and love them and just. let. them. be. Don't they look like that's what they need? To just be? Someone needs to tell them that it's possible to be loved even if you don't perform....

Finally, if I had it my way, there would be several bedroom suites way up at the top of the house for some of the single moms I see. I'd give each of them a light, airy room with a comfy rocking chair near a window and a soft, warm crib waiting in an adjoining bedroom. I'd let them rest their weary hearts and reassure them that life can be better; it's always changing and there's always hope. I'd give them nights of uninterrupted sleep by holding their babies, rocking and loving them so their mommas could rest.

Just imagine it....our home full to overflowing-noisy, and busy. Grandparents toddling around, teenage boys making them laugh so hard they'd need their walkers. Small, muscled girls joyfully tumbling and cartwheeling through the house with babies crawling under their flying feet. Weary young mothers sitting and pondering their next step but feeling safe and cared for while they think.

I wonder how much I'd need to build a house like that?

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