"Why aren't you adopting a child in the US?" is a question that we have been asked many times over the last seven months. Some just out of curiosity, and some out of disagreement in our choice. Maybe many of you have wondered "why Ethiopia" yourselves. First of all, I will start by saying that an orphaned child is an orphaned child no matter where they are located in the world. The issue shouldn't be the where, but instead the why [are there so many orphans]. Second, we should guard ourselves against an "us and them" mentality. We are all created and loved by God. The United States and Ethiopia are very different countries located on different continents, but we are all part of the human race and this big and wonderful world that God created! Third of all, if we all just adopted within our own countries, the children of Africa would be without hope. Most of these children are orphaned because of the AIDS crisis and poverty. They may have extended family members who they could go to live with, but most of these family members cannot afford to take care of another child, leaving them orphaned. Furthermore, God told us to adopt from Ethiopia, so we are. You don't argue with God!
God has put such a love in our hearts for Africa. My heart is burdened for Africa. On top of the millions dying of AIDS over there, there are also people dying by the hundreds of thousands of curable diseases (such as malaria and tuberculosis). They need clean drinking water, they need better medical care, they need health education and prevention, they need they need they need! Be praying about how you can be Jesus to the people of Africa. We are praying about ways that God can use us now, as well as how God can use me there once I finish getting my R.N. degree. Children get bit by mosquitos in their sleep and contract malaria - buy a mosquito net for a family for $18 and save a life, or purchase seeds so that they can grow food for their family(Worldvision.org). Ask God to show you how you can help.
"When a poor person dies of hunger, it has not happened because God did not take care of him or her. It has happened because neither you nor I wanted to give that person what he or she needed. We have refused to be instruments of love in the hands of God to give the poor a piece of bread, to offer them a dress with which to ward off the cold. It has happened because we did not recognize Christ when, once more, he appeared under the guise of pain, identified with a man numb from the cold, dying of hunger; when he came in a lonely human being, in a lost child in search of a home." -Mother Teresa