For 31 Days I am blogging about Adopting Intentionally, you can find an overview and links to daily posts here. On the weekends during this series I am inviting guest bloggers to share. This Sunday, Crystal is sharing her a devotion on adoption.
Crystal is a stand out. I came to know her when she applied to work at Houston Baptist University and we were all quick to agree that we must hire her. She and her husband Nick are a great team. They now live in Oklahoma with their little girl.
Scripture Reading: Ephesians 1:1-14, New Living Translation
1 This letter is from Paul, chosen by the will of God to be an apostle of Christ Jesus.
I am writing to God’s holy people in Ephesus,[a] who are faithful followers of Christ Jesus. 2 May God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ give you grace and peace.
Spiritual Blessings 3 All praise to God, the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly realms because we are united with Christ. 4 Even before he made the world, God loved us and chose us in Christ to be holy and without fault in his eyes. 5 God decided in advance to adopt us into his own family by bringing us to himself through Jesus Christ. This is what he wanted to do, and it gave him great pleasure. 6 So we praise God for the glorious grace he has poured out on us who belong to his dear Son.[b] 7 He is so rich in kindness and grace that he purchased our freedom with the blood of his Son and forgave our sins. 8 He has showered his kindness on us, along with all wisdom and understanding. 9 God has now revealed to us his mysterious plan regarding Christ, a plan to fulfill his own good pleasure. 10 And this is the plan: At the right time he will bring everything together under the authority of Christ—everything in heaven and on earth. 11 Furthermore, because we are united with Christ, we have received an inheritance from God,[c] for he chose us in advance, and he makes everything work out according to his plan.12 God’s purpose was that we Jews who were the first to trust in Christ would bring praise and glory to God. 13 And now you Gentiles have also heard the truth, the Good News that God saves you. And when you believed in Christ, he identified you as his own[d] by giving you the Holy Spirit, whom he promised long ago. 14 The Spirit is God’s guarantee that he will give us the inheritance he promised and that he has purchased us to be his own people. He did this so we would praise and glorify him.
Ephesians 1:5 in the New Living Translation of the Bible states, “God decided in advance to adopt us into his own family by bringing us to himself through Jesus Christ. This is what he wanted to do, and it gave him great pleasure.” The prevailing message I take away from this verse is that adoption is a Godly and God ordained privilege – not only that we are adopted by God into a heavenly family, but He plans, predestines, and uses adoption to create and bless earthly families. In my life, I have not only been afforded the grace to become a child of God through adoption, but have also been blessed through the deep responsibility and honor of living as an adoptive parent.
I’ve heard numerous adoptive parents say, “I never thought that I would adopt, but this has become my story.” Although this statement doesn’t necessarily puzzle me, I always find it interesting. The main reason this statement surprises me is that my path has been much different. Honestly, I have always known in my heart that I would adopt. I didn’t know the details, the reasons, or the timing…but I knew. I knew the same way you feel in your gut that you are going to be good friends with someone when you first meet, or in the way you read a job description and know that it has been written just for you and that you are meant for the position described. I knew because God had planted a seed in my soul that I knew would continue to grow. I was predestined to be an adoptive parent of the wonderful miracle child I call my sweet baby girl. It was part of God’s plan all along.
When my husband and I had been approved in the adoption process, but still not matched with the birthmother that would go on to give us our amazing daughter, we attended a mandatory adoption readiness seminar though the adoption agency with which we were working. At the adoption seminar, one of the speakers was an adoption attorney that worked frequently with the agency. She explained that when you were matched with the correct birth family and child you would know because, “you will feel the hand of God.” Looking back on our adoption journey, this statement became true of our experience and in our own hearts. From the moment we met our daughter’s birthmother, from the first time we held our daughter in our arms at the hospital, and from visits with our birth family as our daughter continues to grow, I cannot explain, but I can attest – I continue to feel the hand of God.
If “God decided in advance to adopt us into his own family” (Ephesians 1:5) as the Bible says, and as I believe he did, it only makes sense that he has in advance chosen those of us that have a very special role of acting as adoptive parents. What a privilege. What a blessing. What a life. I thank God for this deep joy everyday.
Prayer: Dear God. Thank you for placing the seeds of faith and family deep within my spirit. Please give me the patience to accept and persist in the steps that lead to your will, and guide me to the path that you have planned for my life.
Thought for the day: Ephesians 1: 9-10 – “God has now revealed to us his mysterious plan regarding Christ, a plan to fulfill his own good pleasure. And this is the plan: At the right time he will bring everything together under the authority of Christ—everything in heaven and on earth.”