Little Jocelyn’s first grade class was talking about adoption. Excitedly, she raised her hand and said, “I know all about adoption because I’m adopted!”
“What does it mean to be adopted?” asked the teacher.
“It means,” said Jocelyn, “that you grew in your mother’s heart instead of her tummy.”
Norma Jean and I know what Jocelyn meant. It was 44 years ago today that we drove to the Children’s Home Society in St. Petersburg, Florida, to see our daughter Rachél for the first time. When we walked in the room, although she was only 4 ½ month old, she pulled herself up in her crib. Stood there smiling at us, as if to say, “Hi Mommy and Daddy! I’m your little girl. Take me home.” And we did.
Although the official adoption papers were signed weeks later in family court, we celebrate today as her adoption birthday. Reflecting on that period in our lives floods our hearts with so many emotions and our minds with special thoughts.
#1 Roe v Wade had been the law of the land for 5 years. Abortions were legal. Today, that debate is being renewed since the Supreme Court struck it down as unconstitutional. How thankful we are that Rachél’s birth mother was pro-life. That she possessed the strength, courage, and commitment to give birth. Then do what she knew was best for Rachél’s future.
There is no way to know how many lives, besides ours, have been positively impacted by her virtuous decision. Thank you.
#2 While we told Rachél from her earliest days, she was adopted, it wasn’t something we dwelt upon. Or allowed it to make a distinction from our son, Kenny. Rachél received the same blessings and benefits of our family. We shared the same values with both children. We tried to evenly teach the same responsibilities and expectations. We can relate to one mother who quipped, “I have four children. Two are adopted. I can’t remember which two.”
#3 This is a good time to remind Christians that it’s not enough to be against abortion, we must be for adoption. Obviously, not everyone can or even should adopt children. But we can all support it. One of the organizations, we recommend and support is Sacred Selections. Since its founding in 2006, they have either partially or fully funded the adoption of 415 children.
#4 The physical act of adoption reminds us that as Christians God has adopted us into His spiritual family.
“Even as he chose us in him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and blameless before him. “In love He predestined us for adoption through Jesus Christ, according to the purpose of his will, to the praise of his glorious grace, with which he has blessed us in the Beloved.” (Eph 1:4-6, ESV)
William Hendriksen in his commentary on Ephesians expressed the thought of the text in a beautiful fashion. “When the Father chose a people for himself, deciding to adopt them as his own children, he was motivated by love alone. Hence, what he did was a result not of sheer determination but of supreme delight. A person may be fully determined to submit to a very serious operation. Again, he may be just as fully determined to plant a beautiful rose garden. Both are matters of the will. However, the latter alone is a matter of delight, that is, of his will’s good pleasure. Thus, God, who does not afflict from the heart (Lam. 3:33), delights in the salvation of sinner.”
As a Christian, you grew in God’s heart. He chose you. He wanted you. He adopted you. He delights in you. And He has a purpose and plan for your life in His Son, Jesus Christ.
Furthermore, this was not a spur of the moment or emotional decision. He purposed your adoption before He created the world. It was a choice motivated by love.
It’s worth noting, that we didn’t adopt our daughter because of what she could do for us, but what we could do for her. Similarly, God adopted us because of blessings He can provide for us in His Family.
When a child was adopted in the first century, Roman culture, author Charles Welch observed there were four major changes. A change of family. A change of name. A change of home. And a change of responsibilities. That’s what God did when He adopted you and me.
Think about it. You’re a part of God’s spiritual family. You’re afforded “all spiritual blessings in Christ.” Jesus in now your elder brother. And you’ve been given a new name–Christian.
Furthermore, you are guaranteed an inheritance. A mansion in heaven. Eternal riches. Yes, you have a special place in His heart.
We’re thankful for the blessing of adoption. Happy adoption birthday, Rachél
And thank you, Father, for adopting us into your Family.
–Ken Weliever, The Preacherman
5 responses to “The Blessing of Adoption”
Ken, thanks for sharing the beautiful story. Happy adoption Birthday, Rache’l! I know you’ve been a blessing to Ken and Norma Jean.
“Happy Adoption Birthday”, Rachel! What a wonderful blessing for everyone – gifts to each other from God! Roe vs. Wade was a horrible law that begin the shredding of this country’s soul. So I rejoice even more at every adoption of a wee one!
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Thank you! I hope to meet you someday,
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That would be wonderful.