Thursday, November 13, 2014

How to Love the Adopted Child

I recently read an article about the ugly side of adoption, written by an adoptive mother who is struggling with her adopted child. Many of us have an idealistic image of adoption before we go through the long process of paperwork, wait and wait some more, and then finally bring our child into the family. We take personal pride in the knowledge that we will be bringing hope and love to a child whose life may have otherwise been spent working in the rice paddies, eating with other orphans in an orphanage, living in an abusive home or even surviving on the streets. The picture we imagined of the perfect family, however may soon become replaced with a painful image of life with an emotionally injured child. We want to love the child and make them whole, but they have a subconscious awareness that they were abandoned, and the feelings of abandonment play out in deceptive behavior and rejection of those who want to love them.

We know that our redemption was paid for the by the sacrifice of our loving Savior, and that God chose those of us who follow Him to be blessed and whole in Him: In him we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of sins, in accordance with the riches of Gods grace that he lavished on us. With all wisdom and understanding, he made known to us the mystery of his will according to his good pleasure, which he purposed in Christ to be put into affect when the times reach their fulfillment - to bring unity to all things in heaven and on earth under Christ (Ephesians 1: 7-10).

Why then, if we have faith and are obedient to Christ, don't we have that "unity" in our family? Why must adoption continue in its path of pain? Should it be difficult to love? I must remember, when my child is not acting lovable that I too am blemished, but perfect in God's sight because of what Christ did for me on the cross.  I also know that my daughter was created in the image of God, and that He loves her with an everlasting love (Jeremiah 31:3). I draw strength from the Word and am comforted with the reminder that His strength is made perfect in weakness: But he said to me, "My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness." Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ's power may rest on me. (2 Corinthians 12:9). And, I am empowered as I read that He who works in me will fulfill His purpose: being confident of this, that he who began a good work in you will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus. (Philippians 1:6).

Dear Father, You made my child in Your image, and love him/her with an everlasting love. Give me Your strength in my weakness so that I can be the loving parent my child so desperately needs. Thank you that You are my confidence, comfort, and strength in hard times. In Jesus' Name. Amern

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