Life Choices has been an important part of my life since I can remember. My parents involvement with this ministry has allowed me to see the reverence they have for the sanctity of life. When my husband and I decided to grow our family through adoption, we knew we wanted Life Choices to be a part of our journey. After an initial inquiry, we began reviewing the application. We came across what, at first, seemed to be the most difficult question, but in all actuality, was the easiest. Would we be willing to adopt a child with a disability? Many more questions followed as we contemplated the overwhelming range of possibilities. As with any prospective adoptive parent, this pulled on our heartstrings. Of course we felt that any child born with a disability deserved a loving home, but did it necessarily mean our home. Already having two young daughters, we carefully considered the effect a decision like this may have on their future.
I was in high school when I first started volunteering in the special needs community. It was a group of people I found very beautiful and full of life, and I immediately fell in love. I also saw some of the physical and emotional challenges these families were faced with, and knew it was only the tip of the iceberg. There was grief, but not despair. Their ability to find joy in the midst of suffering was life-changing for me. They are living testimonies of a refiners fire.
It was then, God planted the seed.
It didn’t take long for God to give us an answer. Feelings of anxiety were being consumed by an inexplicable peace as faith took the place of fear. It wasn’t long after this revelation that we were contacted by Life Choices inquiring about our interest in a possible adoption opportunity. It involved a 5 week old baby boy who had been diagnosed with Down Syndrome, and would likely require open heart surgery as an infant. There was no doubt in our minds he was meant for us. We fell in love with him as soon as we saw his sweet face, and knew our lives would be forever changed. We understood there would be obvious challenges ahead, but never dreamt it would lead to such an immense spiritual transformation for our family. I watch our daughters unashamedly show off their baby brother to the world. This small illustration of God’s all-encompassing love has been a defining moment in our family. The ways in which God has already used this child as a vessel to advance His Kingdom is immeasurable.
Today Jase is a happy and healthy two year old! He loves life to the fullest, and has completed our family in a way we never imagined. God has BIG plans for our son, and we are honored to be his parents. We believe Jase has been made PERFECT in His image, and the trisomy of his 21st chromosome is not a mistake. He is exactly how our Creator designed him, and we look forward to see the mountains he will move.
-Joe and Bekah