Thursday, June 25, 2009

An Open Letter To The President of The United States of America

I am the father of six young children. My oldest son Max was born in Eastern Ukraine in 1999. He was subjected to some of the vilest abuse one can imagine. At the age of four Max suffered a catastrophic head injury at the hand of the person who should have been protecting him. My son at the age of FOUR through no fault of his own found himself with a fractured skull lying in a snow bank!

Thankfully my son survived. Max moved to an orphanage. For four years Max lingered in that orphanage before he and his two younger brothers became a part of our family. Given Max’s significant medical history, citizens from places like Canada, Great Britain, France, and Spain probably would not have been able to adopt him.

Mr. Obama, the reason my son would not have been able to be adopted by parents from those countries is because of "health care reform" that the governments of those countries passed. In those countries children like my son are weeded out by bureaucrats so that only the pure and healthiest children are adopted. That is sick!

President Obama, you are suggesting similar type reforms. That scares me! I want to know if your plans for health care would have denied my son a family? Are there provisions within your health care plan that would prevent a child like my son Max from being adopted? Would your plan DAMN my son to a life in an orphanage without a family? Would your health care plan have left my son lying in that awful snow bank in Eastern Ukraine ?

Mr. Obama, the lost children of this world deserve to know whether they have a friend or a foe in the President of the United States . My son deserves to know whether his president’s health care plan would have allowed a bureaucrat in Washington DC to sentence him to almost certain demise. Mr. President, I love my son and he deserved a family whether he was deemed perfect by a bureaucrat or not!

Respectfully,

Stephen Eimers

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Thursday, June 18, 2009

Adoption and Questions About 'The Will of God'

How are things working out? How are the boys adjusting? Would you adopt again knowing what you know?

These are questions we are often asked regarding the adoption of our sons. The next statements are ones that we have heard several times.

We had friends who have adopted and it has been awful. IT is pretty clear it wasn’t God’s will for them to adopt!

There was a man who after becoming a Christian:

  • Lost his position on the preeminent political body of the day
  • Was jailed unjustly numerous times
  • Was shipwrecked and bitten by a poisonous snake
  • Was beaten, stoned, and tortured repeatedly; several times almost to death
  • Finally lost his life when his head was cut off on the Apian Way outside of Rome

Was this man a failure? Could we infer based on all these consequences the man was outside of God’s will? Would that be a fair assessment?

Of course not! The man to whom I am referring to is St. Paul. The man who through the work of the Holy Spirit is most responsible for the spread of the Gospel of Jesus Christ!

Using the consequences of obedience to God's call as the metric of success or failure is completely unfair. By those standards every Apostle would have to be considered a failure and outside of the will of God. St. Peter was crucified upside down. St. James was stoned to death. St. John was banished and was the only Apostle not to suffer an early death.

Obedience to God’s will and commands has consequences! Adoption has consequences but so does not adopting.

The child not adopted will almost surely be sexually exploited. The child not adopted will face an almost certain untimely demise. The child not adopted will most likely never find the grace of adoption by the Heavenly Father.

I would be negligent if I didn’t acknowledge how hard adoption can be. I know many a family that has been broken or bankrupted trying to help a lost child find healing.

There will be consequences if you choose the adoption journey! The hurt child will find and expose every character flaw you have. However St. James made a simple statement care for the orphans. It was not qualified! It did not guarantee a smooth path!

So how can you know if it is God’s will for you to adopt? How does one know if they have been ‘called?’ Do you need to hear some mystical voice or see some sign?

If you are a follower of the adopted Christ than you have already been called to care for the orphan. The scriptures are clear about God’s love for little children. The example of adoption throughout the scriptures is clear. The case for Christians adopting lost children is self evident!

So should everybody adopt? Of course not! Maybe you are disqualified from adopting lost children because of a health, moral, legal, financial, or other issue. The fairer question regarding whether or not it is God’s will for you to adopt may be; Is it God’s will that I not adopt?

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

In the spirit of Father's Day

One of those things dads often do with their boys is beat them up. Now, I mean this in the nicest way, really! LOL! But dads and their sons have wrestled in living rooms threatening the safety of mother's decoratives for eons and I suppose there is not much chance that this type of playing will disappear anytime soon. In our house, I am guessing that it will continue until one of the boys gets big enough to win (I could be wrong).

So, this is the activity the boys chose the other night before bed. (I forgot to say that this is another thing dads don't mind doing; getting the kids riled up before bed. Most moms would never do this.) I sat safely in my chair and took pictures without the flash. I like the blurriness of these photos. Gives a sense of the movement. I did try for one picture of all my boys at the end of the playtime but it was hard to get much with them all keyed up like they were!

Max and Misha made some initial attacks and were subdued temporarily but Vitali kept coming back for more. He loves this sort of thing.

I mean, he really loves it!

But Max wasn't gone for long. He tried a sneak attack. Unsuccessfully, I might add.
Then, a little practice wrestling which involved some foot-tickling. Very effective against Misha. Smart move, Max.

And lastly, I got this picture. Four quite sweaty, breathlessly content boys.

And, they didn't even break anything.

Melissa

Monday, June 15, 2009

Adoption Story

Some friends of ours from church are in the early stages of adopting from Korea. They have started to blog their process. If you like to follow adoption stories, then this is the time to start watching theirs. They only have 2 posts so far!

I know they covet prayers as they are truly stepping out on faith in this new phase of their lives. Please take a moment to "drop by" and leave them an encouraging note.

Right now there is a little baby or small child (or both!) in South Korea who thinks that the life she is leading is all there is. Imagine her surprise when she finds out what a forever family is and how life will change for her because of love. Love that is already in action, seeking her out to give her the gift that she never knew she always needed.

Visit Dominic and Tiffany here:
www.morofamily.wordpress.com

I have also added them to our sidebar.
Melissa

Saturday, June 13, 2009

Its 11 O'clock!

Its 11 O’clock! Do you know where your children are?

This was the lead in question every night right before Irv Weinstein would start the 11 O’clock news on WKBW. I heard that lead in hundreds of times but just the other day as I was remembering it, I HEARD it in a totally new way.

Looking back I often wonder where I was when important events occurred in my sons’ lives. I wonder what I was doing on September 27, 1999 when my oldest son Max was born. Where was I eleven months later when he suffered his first traumatic brain injury? Where was I on July 12, 2001 when his younger brother Mikhail was born? What was going on in my life when at the age of four Max was beaten nearly to death and thrown into a snow bank like yesterday’s trash? Where was I while my son lay clinging to life for two days in that snow bank in Eastern Ukraine?

Where? What? Why? The idea of adopting was out there during these times but it never hit me that I had children that were alive! It never crossed my mind that I had children who were vulnerable and that I could not physically protect them. My greatest regret was that I wasn’t praying for my boys while they were living through the hell I was impotent to prevent!

Adoption may not even be on your radar right now but it might be in a few years.

Maybe you are in college? Single? Facing your own crisis? The reality is that child who will become your son or daughter might be alive TODAY!

Your child could be facing untenable circumstances right now. Every one of these lost children faces incredible loss and difficult odds. Many will witness unspeakable violence. Others will suffer the vilest of abuse. The broken road that brings them into your home is never pretty!

If I could offer just one piece of advice it would be for you to pray for the child you don’t know that you may have. Your son! Your daughter!

Don’t have the same regrets I have.

Steve

Sunday, June 07, 2009

That's not what she meant...

(Misha playing in a toy boat and making that sound
with his lips that all boys make when imagining motor sounds)


We went on vacation to the beach a couple of weeks ago! We had a great time and you can see pictures on our family blog.

While we were gone, our good friend Ginger Shamblin offered to chicken-sit for us. Misha asked us several times if he could call Ms Ginger and check on Indiana Jones.

Finally, at the hotel we dialed the number for him. I could hear both sides of the conversation as he talked. Occasionally I coached him on what to say since he depends a lot on watching people talk to follow their dialogue. At one point I heard Ms. Ginger ask , "Is it raining where you are?"

Misha answered confidently, "No. We are inside."

Motives

I have been asked if I am judging people’s motives for adopting. In one sense, yes I am, on the other hand no. (Nice political answer right?)

I can honestly admit that our motives when we started the adoption of our sons were an inward desire to altruism. I wanted to do something of significance. Something that mattered! It was about our feelings.

Is it wrong to adopt to fulfill a dream? Of course not! I can however tell you this dream at times can be a nightmare!

Is adoption a natural solution to infertility? This is an obvious yes. I have talked with countless couples who say “I wish we hadn’t started with the idea that adoption was our last resort.

Adoption is a worthy choice in and of itself!

I accept almost any catalyst towards adoption but I can assure you that reason will likely not be enough to hold you up during the tough times.

I try to refocus attention repeatedly to the purpose of adoption because ontologically speaking these lost children were created in the image of the holy and just God. When (NOT IF) you hit the hard times in adoption this will be what sustains you.

The hurt child will find and expose every character flaw you have. If we move our focus on adoption away from our own desires and for that matter the lost child’s desire and towards the need and ontological value of the child this is what will carry us through the trials.

Adoption and all life issues surround one central theme: the inherent transcendent value of the human soul!

Steve

Thursday, June 04, 2009

I wrote this for Hope Resource Center to use in their adoption counseling service. Thought I would share it here.

Steve

The Gift of Life

Somehow in our culture a misunderstanding regarding the purpose of adoption has developed. Many of us have come to believe that adoption was created to resolve a problem or a desire for the adoptive parent. Whatever that desire may be? Historically this is the farthest thing from the truth. One of the finest examples of how an adoption should occur is the adoption of Moses in the Bible.

During the reign of the Egyptian Pharaoh Ahmose, a decree was issued for all the male Hebrew children born to be murdered. The mother of the baby boy who would later be named Moses could not bear to have her son killed. The mother of Moses carefully planned the adoption of her son.

Moses’ birth mother searched for a woman who was compassionate and would love her son as her own. She watched this woman and noted her routine. She carefully constructed a tender reed basket in which to place her son. At the perfect time she placed the young child into the basket and floated him gently into the Nile River as the Egyptian princess bathed. Moses’ birth mom had her daughter waiting on the river bank to offer help to the woman she had chosen to raise her son. Through these deliberate and intentional actions the birth mother of Moses facilitated history’s first open adoption.

Moses’ birth mother made this sacrifice not to help this young wealthy Egyptian woman "fulfill a dream." She didn’t offer her son because the princess was "having fertility problems." She didn’t even give up her son because “she wanted to give him a better [material] life.”

The woman who gave Moses life chose adoption to preserve his very LIFE! Her love for her son led her to the choose the only option that would save him. Moses’ birth mother’s choice for life gave US one of the most important men to ever live.

Through the courage of this woman we were given the man to whom God presented Himself to mankind as the “I Am.” Through the courage of this woman we were given the man to whom God gave the Ten Commandments. Through the courage of this woman we were given the man whom God chose to lead His people on The Exodus. Through the courage of this woman we were given the man whom God chose to write the first five books of the Bible.

The story of Moses and his life is well documented. The adoptive mother of Moses, the princess of Egypt has been clearly noted. There is however one who remains anonymous. The young Jewish mother who courageously chose life and by her choice blessed all humanity.

It is often said that adoption is about giving a gift. It is indeed a gift. One of the most important gifts that can ever be given! Adoption is about giving a child the opportunity for life!

We have been negligent in not honoring those women, like the mother of Moses, who have chosen life. Those women who have sacrificed to give their child the option of living. We must never forget these women and the difficult choices they had to make in the most desperate of situations.