This post has been sitting in my head for months. I have tried desperately to put into words these thoughts, and I am not sure I know the best way to do it. But I think it is worth saying.
I am generalizing, not speaking to anyone in particular, except maybe myself. And I am aware that this does not apply to everyone. But, I believe that a lot of us are believing this lie, "Doing nothing is better than doing something." And Satan is celebrating.
Throughout this adoption process, we have faced many skeptics, people who have told us that adoption is not the answer. There needs to be reform in orphanages; children should not be taken out of their own countries; and families are being tricked into giving their children up for adoption. All the people that have said these things have meant well and believe what they are saying is right and true. And I believe that some of it is true as well. But there is a fear that adoption will cause things to happen that should never happen and will prevent things from happening that should happen.
Not every child in every orphanage has been stolen from their families. Not adopting will neither help these children nor prevent children from flooding orphanages. Also there is an idea that if we adopt, no one will reform orphanages. I believe the opposite is actually the case. The more people are aware of what is happening in orphanages, through adoption, the more likely people will DO something to change the orphanages.
I do not know the best answer. But I do know that if we do nothing, it will fix nothing. I know there will be kids that will spend the rest of their lives in cribs without a family. I know that if you said those things as an excuse to not act, you are wrong. I know there is no easy answer, but doing nothing out of fear of doing something wrong, cannot be the answer.
There are stories about children on the street in India begging for food. If you see them I have heard you are not supposed to give them food because they are only getting it to bring back to someone who is beating them or selling them or using them. I am simplifying this. And I do not mean to be trite. There are horrible, unimaginable things happening to children around this world, children on the street with no one to protect them. But not giving a child food when they are hungry seems wrong. There is no easy solution but again, I feel like we live in fear that doing something is going to cause harm and end up doing nothing, we walk by, telling ourselves that we are really helping them because I am saving them from this thing I heard happens. And they are STILL starving.
But we are to help the least of these. And these conversations play in my head. And I tell myself something has to be better than nothing.
And the man on the corner asking for food or money. We drive by because we are sure they will use it for drugs. And we do not have the McDonald's gift card we usually carry and we would not dare give cash because what would they use it for? So we drive by and do nothing, because we fear doing something is worse than doing nothing.
And I do not know the best solution. But I think when the least of these were described in the Bible, when we were told to care for them, it was not with an asterick or footnote stating when caring for the least of these should not be our priority. Principles and theories and things we have heard should not stop us from acting. Fear comes in and lies fill my head. And I do not act because I am afraid that doing something is worse than doing nothing.
And I am wrong.
All of this I say knowing there is a lot that needs to be done. And yes, we should fight for parents to keep their children. We should not promote child trafficking or child exploitation. But this should not paralyze us from acting.
We should be wise. We should be overly gracious.
We should do something.