In Honor of Archie

Today is a special day.  Exactly two years ago, the Eicher family adopted a little boy named Archie.  This day is significant in the lives of the Eichers, The Archibald Project, and so many people past, present and future. For us, Archie is the namesake of The Archibald Project.  His adoption story showed us that his story and others like it carry a magnitude and importance far beyond what we could have imagined.  Without his family, his story, and the gospel it represents, we would not exist.

For myself and everyone else, Archie has been an emblem of joy and wonder.  Most people that cross his path immediately fall in love with him.  He is so accepting and loving of everyone he meets.  There is something about him that just puts a smile on your face.  But the most beautiful part is that he has no idea.  Archie is just being himself.  He is not trying to impress anyone.  He is not trying to get people to like him.  Whether knowing it or not Archie embraces who God made him to be, and it is exactly what is needed.

Reflecting on these moments and memories reminds of the feelings I had when we were traveling to get Archie.  I remember thinking, “I can’t believe they are adopting a special needs child, this is crazy and so scary.”  I’m sure I’m not the only one who had those feelings.  I don’t think they were wrong, but they were based on fear and the unknown.  It is natural to fear what we don’t know, but we can’t let that fear control our decisions.  I am so grateful that the Eichers were not controlled by that fear.  And now, two years later, it is scarier to think about them never adopting Archie in the first place.

Like with any child, the Eichers have their struggles with Archie, and some of those struggles are directly related to his special needs.  But I know that they are infinitely more joyful because they followed the path God was leading them down.  Not everyone is supposed to adopt a special needs child, but don’t dismiss the idea just because it is foreign and scary.  Archie is living proof of how a life that once seemed so insignificant can have such a huge impact on the world.