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Thursday, April 08, 2010

A personal and political dilemma

I would like to know what all of you think.

I have thought about this for some time now, and I can't seem to come to a conclusion on what the right thing is for us to do. That being said, I don't believe that what is right for us to do would necessarily be right for you to do, if you were in the same situation. Perhaps some of you may have already done what I am about to ask. While I do believe in absolute truth, I don't think that there is necessarily a fixed answer to this question. Even so, I would value everyone's opinion.

Here goes!

When we first started this adoption process, one of my greatest fears was how in the world are we going to pay for this? Honestly, the price tag seemed way too high for us to conquer... and unfair, too. I won't go down that rabbit trail because my feelings have definitely changed, but it was how I felt in the beginning. Once we got started, though, baby step of faith after baby step of faith, God showed Himself faithful to us financially and helped us to realize that coming up with the money to adopt wasn't really about us. It was about Him!

His
resources. His provision. His faithfulness. His goodness. His grace. His heart to give good gifts to us as His children. His heart to care for the orphan.

Ok. That all being said, I remember when I learned about the Adoption Tax Credit, and I realized how much of a difference it could make for us. Granted, you don't get it until after the adoption is complete, but still. It would be helpful. Then, the other week, I learned that the Adoption Tax Credit had been increased to $13,170! Wow!!! It was done in conjunction with the new Health Care Bill, which by the way, I do not like! I can only imagine what else is included in the bill. Again, I don't want to go there.

This brings me to my question: Do you think it is right for every other tax paying citizen of the United States to have to pay for our adoption? Is this a tax credit that we should take advantage of? I mean, I don't need to trust our government to provide for me. I have God to do that.

I see this tax credit as being a little bit different than say, the Cash for Clunkers program that was recently implemented in our country. While I disagree with that program, too, I see it as different. That program was a fixed amount of money to be given to the first x number of people to go through the showroom doors. Whether I got a car or you got a car, that money was going to be spent. No ifs, ands, or buts about it. This credit, though, only gets spent if someone adopts and then chooses to claim it on their tax return.

So, once again, I ask: Why should YOU pay for OUR adoption?

Shouldn't we all start trusting God to take care of our every need? Isn't that what it meant when He taught them to pray: Give us this day our DAILY bread?

Open for polite discussion! :-)

Living in His JOY, HOPE, and PEACE...

8 comments:

Kevin said...

Hey,

Some good thinking here. It seems that the government likes to spend my tax money even before they get it. I would rather it be spent on helping you with your adoption than other things that will remain unmentioned.

-MaNut to NoNut- said...

That's a loaded question! I know your dilemma is quite different but it kind of reminds me of the feelings I have towards claiming tithe on your taxes and using your tithe as a deduction. There are quite a few spiritual role models in my life who have mentioned something about year-end giving, etc. to make sure it counts for the current year. In my mind, tithing and tax deductions are 2 totally different things bcs tithing is something you should do bcs you are giving back to God what is His not making sure you meet the tax deduction amount. It's such a gray area. Some of the questions you ask I've also wondered about Christians accepting food stamps vs. trusting God.

But at the same time, if we have to pay, I'd rather our money go to someone who really wants, loves and provides for children who wouldn't have a home otherwise. That money is money well-spent gov't money (for once). BTW, we had health insurance pay for M's birth. What you are paying now is what we would have paid had we not had insurance...so it's almost like this credit could be equated w/a "health insurance reimbursement" for a birth (if that makes sense).

Sometimes I think God provides in unique ways including through the gov't. But, it's such a personal decision. If there is ANY conflict in your soul about it, then you need to listen to it and pray about it...God is the author of peace, not confusion.

Stephanie Harbin said...

You are certainly right that it is your decision. I adopted from the state. My daughter was a foster daughter. While I thought it was ok to accept money to be a foster parent, the adoption subsidy bothered me for a while. But then I started looking at it from another point of view. It is to the "states" advantage to get these children into good homes, get them healthy and educated because the chances are that they will become tax payers instead of dependents.

Another thought - Our gov't is kind of crazy!!

Liz said...

C.C.,

I would be more than happy to know that my taxes are going towards giving a child a good home. Because to me that's a good cause. I'm not going to bring up how I feel about where else my tax money goes. I would absolutely NOT worry about accepting that tax credit. Also, remember that you and D.T. pay taxes as well so think of it as your own money being given back to you.

Anonymous said...

It is a "credit" on the taxes YOU paid.

Jessi said...

Maybe God is working through a corrupt government to do good and help you (and many others) reach their dreams of having children. And helping children get to homes with loving parents.
I'd be happy to know my tax dollars were helping families in that way...especially rather then other ways. You're also kinda just getting money YOU paid back. I don't think you should feel bad about it.
Prayers & Blessings

Anonymous said...

I find it scary that people are claiming the federal government here is so "corrupt". I have seen the Killing Fields in Cambodia! I have seen people living on rooftops in India! I have visited people living in caves in China! Despite all of our problems in the US, it is still one of the best, if not the best, places to live.

Anytime I start to feel sorry for myself and the situations I may be in, I remember the skulls of people piled up in Cambodia...I remember the "school" I visited that was a CONCENTRATION CAMP in which 14,000 people were processed and SEVEN survive. I saw pictures that were drawn of how the Khmer Rouger killed the babies with BAYONETS! The babies!

I have seen and what I have seen is NOTHING compared to the complaints circulating in our own country. Good God, and I do mean GOOD GOD, that none of us posting on this blog are from Cambodia. The Cambodian people - each and every one I met when I was there, and this was in 2003!, had a story of someone who DISAPPEARED (and has NOT been found) or was KILLED in their family back in the 70s.

I thank the LORD that I was born in the United States.

Grace Matthia said...

Erin,

For you as a tax-paying citizen of our dear country it would definitely be 'right' to accept this priviledge offered to your by our society.

Many tax-breaks offered only benefit a select group of individuals. The purpose behind this in most cases is either to encourage a specific behaviour (in your example, adoption) or to provide for those who aren't able to provide for themselves (would also apply to the child for whom you provide the adoption). So, your example specifically I see as the nation saying 'thank you' to you as a couple for taking in one of our little ones who doesn't have a family of their own without you.

I realize the comparison I list next is not a direct application, but I believe the principle in the Bible supports this type of sharing through such passages as 'bear oneanother's burdens and so fulfill the law of Christ' - that clearly indicates helping others with things that are difficult to bear - adoption costs could easily fit this example.

Anyway - there you have just a few thoughts from my neck-of-the-woods...I'd be honored to know that just a little of the tax money we contribute helped a fine family like yours grow a little.
We're done raising our 6, so have no tax breaks left at all - don't mind a bit if some of the chunk we contribute gets sent your way...there's no way a growing family has equal financial strength to one on the other side of the family-raising years....


Much love - and many prayers -

Karis

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