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Wanted: Adopters
Photo: Studiomill
We recently watched a TV program about a young couple who adopted a child from China. They’d chosen a little girl and committed their hearts to her. Then they received word from the Chinese government that the little one might have cerebral palsy and was likely retarded. The officials suggested adopting a different child.

In this couple’s hearts, they had already adopted this girl. She was the object of their fervent prayers. “It didn’t matter what her condition,” said her adoptive father, “she still needed a family to love and care for her.”

Though the child soon proved to be physically normal and highly intelligent, the adoptive parents had prepared their hearts to accept her, love her, and help her no matter what.

I believe we are all called to be “adopters” in the name of the Lord. We can’t all bring children from foreign lands or even from our community into our homes to nourish as our own. But we, who have also been adopted and are called children of God and joint heirs with Christ (Romans 8:14-17), are called to be adopters in the sense that we bring others into God’s family, loving them as we find them.

My parents were great “adopters.” Not only did they legally adopt two children from foreign lands to become fully-loved members of their family along with the four children born to them, they also found others to “adopt.”

She Needed Everything

Mom adopted people that she watched out for—struggling families, lonely neighbors. In one place they lived, the ladies of the community services at church discovered a needy woman living in a shack out in the hills. She needed everything: food, furniture, clothing. Most of all, she needed friendship and a knowledge of her worth.

Mom and Dad began bringing her to church. She loved it, but no one would sit near her except my parents and it was hard for them. The shack had no running water and this woman had no concept of bathing or washing clothes. But Mom became her loyal friend, bringing her fresh-baked bread and food from the garden, teaching her gradually about health and nutrition.   

Trust takes time. Mom and her visitation partner gently introduced the topic of hygiene and cleanliness, and eventually convinced the lady to allow her house to be “shut” of its critter-infested furnishings and clutter. Church folks did a major work-bee: scrubbing, painting, plumbing, bringing in “new” furniture and clothes.

Through the outpouring of love, a new woman began to emerge—one who’d begun to recognize herself as a child of God and a worthy citizen.

Becoming an “adopter” for Christ—seeking to see with His eyes and love with His love—not only blesses the “adopted one” but everyone else as well.  Just as the adoptive couple accepted the Chinese child unconditionally, so God accepts each of us, where we are, and welcomes us to the family.

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By Lois Pecce. Copyright © 2012 by GraceNotes. All rights reserved. Use of this material is subject to usage guidelines.

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