In 2013, the world, in tears, watched the viral video of Davion Only, an orphaned teenager, who stood at the front of a church and pleaded for someone—anyone—to adopt him. Dressed in his best suit, he stood at the podium saying that he wasn’t picky. They could be “black or white, old or young, mom or dad.” He just wanted someone to love him “until I die.”
He said he was growing impatient, but he wouldn’t lose hope. “I know God hasn’t given up on me, so I’m not giving up either.”
In response to his plea, his foster agency received thousands of inquiries from people interested in giving Davion a home. He even went to live with a prospective adoptive family, only to be returned to foster care over conflict with his adoptive siblings. Over the next year, he lived in a succession of four more temporary placements.
Throughout his journey to find a “forever” home, Davion leaned heavily on his caseworker, Connie Going, repeatedly asking her if she would be his mother. Connie, who had two biological daughters, as well as a son whom she had already adopted out of foster care, was continually resistant to his pleas, holding out hope that there was a great home waiting somewhere out there for him.
But all that changed with Davion's latest plea. “In adoption there is a ‘claiming moment,’ when you know someone is your child. When he called me to ask, in that moment, I just knew. … When he asked me, my heart felt this ache and I just knew he was my son.”
Ms. Going followed the prompting of her heart and entered her application for his adoption. It will become final April 22, 2015.
As his caseworker for more than 10 years (and already the mom of another adopted foster child), Going is all too familiar with the challenges which lie ahead. She knows that Davion has a temper, that he struggles with interpersonal relationship with his peers, that he struggles with depression and self-esteem issues. But she is undaunted.
“I want him to know he is unconditionally loved for who he is, the way he is,” she says. “The changes he chooses to make in his life, and the choices, are his to make. As a family we will be there through it all, the good and the bad for our lifetime. He is home.”
Click here for a 2013 interview of Davion and his caseworker Connie Going.
Have you searched for unconditional love and acceptance from the world, only to be turned away time and time again? Are you still searching for the moment when you will be "claimed" by someone who promises to love you no matter what?
In our hearts, all of us (even those from loving, nurturing families) long for a “forever” home—a place where we can be unconditionally loved and accepted without any fear of rejection or abandonment, not just until we die, as Davion hoped, but truly for “forever.” That kind of security can come from God alone.
His offer of adoption is for every single soul who longs for that kind of acceptance.
As Going suggested, “In every adoption there is a ‘claiming’ moment.” In the case of the seeker, that's the moment when we turn our search for perfect love and acceptance to the only one who could fulfill it; to the one who was almost too obvious; to the one who has been there all along. It is in that moment, when we call upon God to become our adoptive parent, that the heart that has ached for us, claims us as His own.
The moment we do that, we are home!
“God decided in advance to adopt us into his own family by bringing us to himself through Jesus Christ. This is what he wanted to do, and it gave him great pleasure” (Ephesians 1:5, NLT). “God sent Jesus to buy freedom for us who were slaves to the law, so that he could adopt us as his very own children. And because we are his children, God has sent the Spirit of his Son into our hearts, prompting us to call out, ‘Abba, Father’” (Galatians 4:5-6, NLT).