6 In Book Reviews

When You’re Not Called To Adopt {Orphan Justice Review}

Over the last several years, God has been awakening my heart to causes of social justice, including orphans.  At one time in my life, I thought I would adopt.  Although that hasn’t happened for me, I know that the cause of the orphan is something that I must be involved in.  It’s an issue that everyone must be involved in, in one way or another.

“Adoption is not for everyone, but caring for orphans is for everyone.” – Orphan Justice.

This past month, I was honored to have received a copy of Johnny Carr’s book, “Orphan Justice: How to Care for Orphans Beyond Adoption”.  It’s a book that I knew I had to read. As I did, my heart broke as I was challenged and convicted in many ways.  Acccording to UNICEF, there are 153 Million orphans worldwide.  That is an astounding number. The cause of the orphan is a much bigger issue than being fatherless — it is linked with human trafficking, HIV/AIDS, poverty, racism and abortion.  Together, all of these issue assist in the growing number of orphans each and every day. 

“Indeed, caring for orphaned and vulnerable children requires us to care about related issues from child trafficking and HIV/AIDS to racism and poverty.  Too often, we only discuss or theologize the issues, relegating the responsibilities to governments.” – Orphan Justice

My heart breaks for these children, yet at times I feel as if the issue is so much bigger than I am.  And it is.  But it’s not too big for God.  In his book, Johnny talks openly and honestly about what Christians can do, especially those who do not feel led to adopt.

“If we were honest, many of us would have to admit that we have no clue how to respond, beyond well-meaning prayer or writing a check.” – Orphan Justice

He also talks about how the Church, the Body of Christ, must step up to assist in the cause of the orphan.  It’s not just a nice gesture, but it’s a mandate from God.

Pure and genuine religion in the sight of God the Father means caring for orphans and widows in their distress and refusing to let the world corrupt you.  (James 1:27 NLT)

Give justice to the weak and the fatherless; maintain the right of the afflicted and the destitute.  (Psalm 82:3)

Overall, this is a very thought provoking book that will cause you to ask God, “What is it you’ve called me to do?”  My prayer is that God would continue to break my heart for the cause of the orphan and show me creative ways that I can get involved.

How about you, my friend. How does the cause of the orphan move on your heart? I’d love for you to share in the comments.

*I was given a free copy of this book in exchange for my honest review.  All opinions expressed are my own.  I am disclosing this in accordance with FTC regulations. 

*This post is part of a challenge to blog every weekday in the month of April.  You can read more about it here.

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6 Comments

  • Reply
    Sara Bowyer
    April 11, 2013 at 5:41 am

    God has been working on my heart in this area for the last year and has led me to fostering. In fact, today is our last walk through and then our house will be open to foster. There are SO MANY kids in your own city that need a place that is safe and so few christian homes to put them in. Even if you are older (like me) you can provide respite care for foster parents…HUGE need. There are so many ways to be involved!!!
    Sara Bowyer recently posted..Lay me down by Chris Tomlin

    • Reply
      Barbie
      April 11, 2013 at 8:28 am

      I love the idea of fostering. Thank you for sharing your heart and taking the time to comment Sara!

  • Reply
    Elizabeth
    April 11, 2013 at 9:02 am

    Our church is building an orphanage in Ghana in 2014. I also write my congressman about legislation that helps make adoption easier. Best of all, two of my grandbabies are adopted, and we helped our daughter and son in law with some of the immense financial cost. Adoption SHOULD NOT be so expensive. More children would no longer be orphans if it was financially easier to adopt.
    Elizabeth recently posted..Friday’s Favs….Fabric Pennant Garland

    • Reply
      Barbie
      April 11, 2013 at 9:34 am

      Elizabeth, I agree. If it were easier financially, I would still consider it an option today. I know God is big, but sometimes it’s just not financially feasible. I love that your church is building an orphanage. Will you be taking a missions trip to Ghana in 2014? My husband is a carpenter! Hmmmmm 🙂

  • Reply
    Missy
    April 12, 2013 at 6:39 am

    This issue is heavily on my heart, lately. As is the human trafficking issue. I will now be adding this book to my spring reading list. It seems like exactly the conundrum I find myself in – not called to adopt, but wanting to do SOMEthing. Thank you for bringing attention to this book, Barbie. And for reminding us that we all are called to do what we can!
    Missy recently posted..One Withered Fig

  • Reply
    Rebecca
    April 19, 2013 at 9:36 pm

    Thank you for the book, I’ll definitely add it to my wish list.

    In our case, we sponsor a couple little girls through Compassion International, and when we get a little extra money, we give to an organization like Half the Sky. Would still love to do much more though.

    In all honesty though, the thing we want more than anything else is to adopt internationally. We’ve even saved most of the fees already, but no countries that we know of allow people under 25 to adopt. It is really frustrating to know that because my DH is 24, we won’t be able to adopt for /at least/ another year (more if we want to adopt from China, with a minimum age of 30!). Forget the fact that we have been married for almost six years, have a steady income, and have known for ages that we want to adopt, clearly being under 30 means we are incompetent or uncommitted to adopt. :/

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