Anyway, I'm a few weeks behind, so this morning I listened to their April 11th broadcast called "A Conversation for Christians." If you are a Christian who gets frustrated with the way other Christians perceive us who are foster and adoptive parents (we must be special or saints because we do this) you should listen to this episode. They talk about how other Christians are compelled to give them all the reasons why they could never be foster or adoptive parents. And Wendy quoted me, though she really didn't quote me because she doesn't know me. But she said, "Who ever said we shouldn't do something just because it's hard?" which, if you are a reader of this blog, you have read many times like in this post or this one.
If you are a Christian foster or adoptive parent, you probably are already familiar with James 1:27. It says, Religion that God our Father accepts as pure and faultless is this: to look after orphans and widows in their distress and to keep oneself from being polluted by the world..
Tim, on the podcast, goes on to give many options of what many Christians think James 1:28 must say. I paraphrase of course, but they were things like:
You should do this (take care of orphans) UNLESS you'd get too attached and couldn't handle giving them back;
You should do this (take care of orphans) AFTER things settle down for you;
You should do this (take care of orphans) WHEN you get to a different point in your life;
You should do this (take care of orphans) AS LONG AS they don't have emotional problems.
and I could add several other excuses that I've heard:
You should do this (take care of orphans) ONLY when you're financially secure;
You should do this (take care of orphans) AS SOON AS your birth children are out of school;
You should do this (take care of orphans) IF you feel you could handle the stress;
or even You should do this (take care of orphans) SOME DAY.
THe podcast concludes with a reminder that we can do all things through Christ who gives us the strength.
I'm grateful to Tim and Wendy for going out on a limb to say things to us, the church that need to be said again and again. Wendy did the math, and I believe that she concluded that there were 449 people who call themselves Christians in our country for every orphan in the U.S.
I want to repeat everything that they said here, but that would hardly be fair and then you wouldn't want to listen to the podcast. But there is a lot of good stuff in this episode so if you're a Christian, you should head over there and hear it.
And to answer the question, there is no James 1:28. And I think that is incredibly powerful. The verse doesn't even exist. The chapter ends there, as does the issue as far as James, the writer of the book, was concerned. He defined true religion in verse 27. There are no some days, or ifs, no "as soon as," only, "as long as", when, unless or afters. It's a statement, a verse, and a chapter that ends right there.
There is no James 1:28. Dang, that's powerful.