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MATTHEW WEST-STRONG ENOUGH
Since this month is National Adoption Month, I wanted to showcase some SOS listeners that have experienced adoption first hand. I would like to introduce you to the Souza family.
John and I were married in March 2008 and a few months later, God placed foster care on our hearts. In August 2008, we had our first placement. The last 3 1/2 years have been a whirlwind of ups and downs but there has never been a moment when Jesus wasn't there. We currently have 4 adopted children, 2 biological and 1 foster placement. We have no idea what Jesus has for our family's future but we are enjoying every minute of this crazy journey He has us on.
1. What caused you to start the adoption process - There was a flyer in the bulletin at church about the need for foster parents in Clark County. John and I talked about it after church a bit then put it aside and over the next week or so, God separately confirmed for both of us that it was what we were supposed to be doing.
2. How did it change your family and your faith - My faith has never been stretched as much as it was the first few weeks we had our first placement. We went from having no kids to having 4 overnight and I felt completely inadequate. It was amazing to watch how God had just the right person with just the right words at just the right time. God showed himself through our kids over and over and we couldn't have been more blessed then to see Jesus through them.
3. Why do you chose that type of adoption - Although we always knew we wanted to adopt one day, we started fostering just for the purpose of fostering, not to adopt. We very quickly grew attached to our children and when the opportunity to adopt them came up, we knew it was from God.
4. What advice do you have for others thinking about taking the adoption route. - Adoption is the picture of salvation. Jesus has adopted us all into His family. He has given us all his name. There is nothing "easy" about adoption and especially adopting through the foster system. Things change all the time. It is a complete emotional roller coaster. BUT, it is worth all of the pain and sacrifice to be able to show Jesus to a child who would otherwise possibly not have the opportunity. It is also very important to get involved in some type of support group. Everything is easier when you have someone who has walked in your shoes and understand exactly what you're going through.