Adoption is love

Originally printed in the pages of Simply Family Magazine’s November 2017 issue.

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Photos courtesy of the DeSarro Family

November is National Adoption Month. You may see posters around town, your pastor may preach on it, advertisements may run on TV… This isn’t an article about numbers; this is an article about a family, a family who loves adoption.

One of the DeSarro family's mottos is: We always say yes to life. Their family photo affirms this. Fourteen years ago, Matt and Amanda (pregnant at the time) traveled to Colombia to bring their first son, Daniel Dominic, home. Years later, they headed to Ethiopia to bring home their daughters, Hadassah and Bella, and son, Gideon. With six children, two biological, four adopted, Matt and Amanda felt their family was complete. They continued to pray, work, and save for almost two years. At the end of 2016, Matt felt strongly they needed to prepare their home because “their” next baby was coming soon. He was right. In a matter of weeks, the DeSarro’s were introduced to a beautiful young woman, struggling with the decision of what to do with her unplanned pregnancy. Enter baby Benjamin.

Sitting in their home is like sitting in another world. A world filled with life, food, energy, noise, laundry, and schedules. However, what makes it “otherworldly” is that there is a palpable undercurrent of purpose undergirding the family. It’s a purpose bigger than their immediate family’s desires and goals. Their foundational purpose is to love people lavishly, beyond themselves. This determination called them to minister to over 700 children in the regions of Ethiopia where their children are from. Last year, this love took Daniel and Matt back to Daniel’s orphanage in Colombia. That trip ignited a passion in Daniel for the hurting people in his country. As a result, God is using him and his family to begin a new work in the poorest region. Daniel’s heart for his people emulates another of their family mottos: Live-Abundantly, Love-Extravagantly, Serve-Joyfully.

As I was talking with Amanda about this article, Daniel walked by. I snagged him with the question, “What do you think about adoption?” His face lit up. Weeks before, Amanda had charged her children with a writing assignment. They were to write a paper answering the question, “What do you believe in strongly?” To Amanda’s surprise, Daniel turned in the following paper.

“What do I believe in strongly? I believe in adoption. Adoption saves lives all over the world. It is an amazing gift from God. I thank God for my parents who took me into their home. They clothed me, they fed me, and they loved me. I would not be here if it weren't for them. Their love, faith, selflessness, and trust in God had saved my life.  God had a great plan for my life, and my parents were in it. They are my heroes. Adoption is a selfless and humble act of bringing another one of God's children under your roof as your child. I thank God for adoption in my life, and I thank Him for amazing parents who adopted me. Adoption is love."

Adoption is love, but it is also arduous. Matt and Amanda attest to this. Is it worth it? Absolutely. Amanda’s answer to my first question when we began our time together sits in my heart still. I asked her, “What do you think about adoption?” With her new son perched on her hip, she replied, "I have always thought it’s a beautiful way to build a family.”

about the author...Johanna Kennedy is a mom to four children, a wife to one man, a teacher, and a student. She loves adventure whether it be traveling, learning something new, or reading a great book. She is also the author of By the Waters (bythewaters.org) a lifestyle blog dedicated to encouraging women in the midst of a pressure-filled world.