Thoughts on Thursday – Are adopted children real children?

Came across a great article this morning on adoption (much thanks to Justin Taylor for the usually good posts and links). This writer tells the story of their adoption of two boys and the myriad of questions they were asked regarding their newly adopted sons. It has some really great insights into the nature of adoption, the biases we all carry, and the radical truth that lies behind adoption – especially our adoption into God’s family in Christ. Check it out here. This is the part that got me hooked:

Maria and I had returned to Kentucky to wait for the call to return to pick up our children, and had only these pictures of young Maxim and Sergei, our equivalent of a prenatal sonogram, to show to our friends and relatives back home. But people kept asking: “Are they brothers?”

“They are now,” I replied. “Yes,” the lady snapped, “I know. But are they really brothers?” Clenching my jaw, I coolly responded, “Yes, now they are both our children so they are nowreally brothers.” The woman sighed, rolled her eyes, and said, “Well, you know what I mean.”

Of course, we did know what she meant. She meant did these two boys—born three weeks apart—share a common biological ancestry, a common bloodline, some common DNA. It struck me that this question betrayed what most of us tend to view as really important when it comes to sonship: traceable genetic material.

This is the reason people would also ask us, “So do you also have any children of your own?” And it is the reason newspaper obituaries will often refer to the deceased’s “adopted child,” as though this were the equivalent of a stepchild or a protégé, rather than a real offspring.

If you want to read some more great thoughts on the topic of adoption, both practical and theological, check out Carolina Hope Adoption Agency and Dan Cruver’s blog Eucatastrophe.