Saturday, November 2, 2013

My Heart On Orphan Sunday

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. -James 1:27

I didn't used to loose sleep at night over children without families.  Now I can't seem to stop the wheels in my mind from thinking about them.  What can I do?  How can little ole me make a difference?  I don't even know where to start!  So many times in life I've come to the conclusion that I can't really do anything significant so why bother even going forward.  But I cannot sleep at night people.  I just keep seeing children's faces as I lay in bed.  Faces that just want someone to stand up and do something.  Faces that want a mom, a dad, old, young, black, white, purple...they don't care.  They just want someone to tuck them in at night, support them, cheer for them, and mostly love them unconditionally.

Today, upwards of a half-million children are in the foster-care system in America, and approximately 130 thousand of those children are immediately adoptable.  IMMEDIATELY!  That's just in our country alone.

The thing is, when God "visited" His people, He didn't just send a check!  He came personally to the aid of His people.  We shouldn't be content with just sending money either.  Instead, we should come to the aid of orphans in order to reflect, "This is what God is like!"

God was all for adoption.  Just think about the people who were adopted in the Bible.

-Dan and Naphtali, and later Ephraim and Manasseh, were adopted by Jacob. (Gen, 30:1-13; 48:5)
-Moses was adopted by Pharaoh's daughter (Ex. 2:10)
-Esther was adopted by Mordecai (Est. 2:7)


-Jesus was adopted by Joseph, who served as his earthly father. 

So that's a lot of evidence that God is for adoption.  But there is also one really big reason that we know God is for adoption: the gospel!  Adoption is at the heart of the gospel.  Adoption was never plan B; it has always been plan A.  It existed before the world existed.  Paul wrote, "In love, he predestined us for adoption as sons through Jesus Christ, according to the purpose of his will" (Ephesians 1:4-5)

Y'all it cost God the blood of His own son for us to be adopted into His family.  So to me the message is pretty clear.  I have been rescued by God.  I have put off my old clothes, and put on the new clothes in Christ Jesus.  He did that for me!  

Knowing that orphaned children are easy to exploit.  Knowing that when they are taken they are not missed. Knowing that when they are abused they are not heard.  Knowing that tons of children are phasing out of the system with not a single person to turn to for the basic necessities of life.  It leads me to believe that they need me and you to show up and love them.  They need to know what love is so that they can begin to comprehend what Jesus did on the cross for THEM.

By no means am I saying that adoption is easy, or that it's the only way to help orphans.  There are tons of other ways to help but today I'm just talkin adoption.  I mean what a difference in one person's life you could make.  I'm sitting here tonight looking at a stack of papers with 14 different kids faces.  These kids live in Texas and are waiting to be adopted.  They are beautiful.  They are children of God.  And I cannot sleep because in one of these pictures there is a girl wearing a shirt that says Best Sis Ever.  She is standing next to her adorable little brother.  There is something in their smiles and a twinkle in their eyes that is just robbing me of sleep.  I feel like I know them.  I feel like Jake and I could find a way to get over all our excuses (not ready/ it's an emotional decision/ we want to birth another child first/are we even ready to be parents of middle school children...etc.) and make it work.  The question I am asking myself over and over againis why shouldn't we adopt these two children right NOW?  Because I know it's His will.  Adoption is God's will!  We would be stepping out in faith and adoption would be an expression in our lives of the gospel in our hearts.                    

How are you working today to make a difference on Jesus' behalf in the life of an orphan?

And whoever welcomes one such child in my name welcomes me. - Matthew 18:5

** Italicized writing taken from Orphanology: Awakening to Gospel-Centered Adoption and Orphan Care by Tony Merida

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