Once you get all (or most) of that sorted out, there are the friends and family to consider. Hopefully they’ll be supportive, but they may not all immediately jump on board with your decision, especially at first. Any naysayers probably have your best interest at heart, so give them time and information as needed. Most of them will come around, especially when they meet your new little sweetheart and see the effect parenthood has on you.

The Process

Adoption is often a complex, arduous process and not one that can be neatly shoehorned into a single article. When you think about it, that’s a good thing; taking custody of a child should require more oversight than, say, rescuing a pet from the local animal shelter. Laws and processes vary by state, by agency, and by type of adoption (public or private, foreign or domestic). There will be forms to fill out, questions to answer, steps to follow, fees to pay, sometimes less-than-helpful professionals to deal with, and plenty of waiting. Keep your eyes on the prize and hang in there. All that waiting will give you plenty of opportunities for prayer—but then, so does parenting.

Even Singles Don’t Have to Go It Alone

There is good news: you don’t have to go through the process alone. There are books, articles, organizations, and support groups available, many of them specifically geared to the single parent. If you make contact with an adoptive parent group before beginning the process, they can help you with where to go and what to do. Some adoption agencies are more likely than others to place a child with a single parent. Recommendations from those who have successfully walked that road will make your own path to parenthood a smoother one.

Adoption in the Bible

Is there a biblical precedent for single parent adoption? Why yes, actually, there is . . . remember Mordecai? He was the (apparently) single guy whose adopted daughter grew up to become queen and save her people from extinction. You’ll find their story in the book of Esther 2. Moses was also adopted­—pulled from the river by Pharaoh’s sister, you may recall—but it’s not clear if she was married or single at the time.

But the most personal adoption story in the Bible is our own adoption by God. “Long, long ago he decided to adopt us into his family through Jesus Christ” (Ephesians 1:5, The Message). So if you do adopt a child, you might think of it as following in your heavenly Father’s footsteps.

Susan Ellingburg is a natural-born Texan who sings at every opportunity, reads as much as possible, and cherishes every day she gets to spend with friends. She's a serious foodie and not-so-serious gardener who is determined not to let being single stand in the way of living an amazing life. Read Susan's blog at TastingGod.wordpress.com.