I celebrated my birthday recently, but my friend Melanie celebrated an equally special day—her adoption day.
Like a birthday only better, her celebration marked the day her parents chose her. She knows her position in their family came about because two people deeply desired her. They were willing to sacrifice to bring her into their family. They chose to pursue her, open their hearts to her, and give her their name.
Some of you know our family also has an adopted child. His name is Winston.
Winston’s birthday is somewhere in mid-December, but his adoption day is March 26, my birthday. I tell him he’s the best birthday gift I’ve ever received, because I know he came from the Lord.
Several years before we adopted Winston, we had lost our 17-year-old “firstborn.” The only member of the family with brown eyes like me, Polly was a buff Cocker Spaniel with silky fur and a tiny stub of a tail. Her death left a gaping hole in our family, and we knew we needed another pet.
Instead of purchasing a dog from a breeder, we chose to pursue a rescue.
Like many adoptive parents, we researched the best adoption (rescue) agencies. We carefully filled out an application, submitted letters of reference, and agreed to a home visit. Then I spent hours poring over picture after picture of adoptive dogs.
The details overwhelmed me, and I finally cried out to the Lord.
Lord, if we’re going to adopt, I need you to send the puppy to us. May I please have a girl dog, because I can’t stand that leg-hiking thing? And if she could have a coat that doesn’t require much grooming, that would be wonderful. I loved Polly’s sweet Cocker Spaniel face and ears, and her easy-going disposition worked well with our family. And would you please send one big enough to take long walks together? Thank you, Amen.
I prayed, and God, through my sister, worked. An email popped up in my mailbox one Sunday afternoon. “If you don’t look at any others,” it said, “look at the first one.” She had attached ten pictures.
This is similar to the first picture I saw.
A Cocker Spaniel/Irish Setter mix, Winston has the face of a Cocker, the smooth coat of a setter, loves to take long walks, has an easy-going disposition, and, though he’s not a girl dog, almost never hikes his leg.
He is a precious and beloved member of our family, and I know he is a perfectly chosen gift from God to us.
My friend Melanie will tell you that there’s something very special about being chosen. If Winston could talk, I think he’d agree.
This is why, when I read in Ephesians 1:4-5 how God chose us to be adopted as his children, I feel pretty special, too.
“For he chose us in him . . . In love he predestined us to be adopted as his sons through Jesus Christ, in accordance with his pleasure and will.”
He sought me. He bought me. He wanted me. He welcomed me into his family, and he is my forever Father.
He is yours, too, if you’ve trusted him as your Savior.
By law in every state in the union, a parent may never disown his adoptive child. It is a forever contract. Parents may disown their biological children, but adoptive children are theirs forever. So it is with Christ. When we are adopted into his family, it is forever.
Doesn’t this make you feel special? Cared for? Secure? Loved?
If you’re struggling today, I pray the words of Ephesians 1 will remind you how much God loves you, what great lengths he went to adopt you, and how secure you are as his child.
If you haven’t yet experienced the joy of adoption, I encourage you to click here to read more about how to become part of God’s forever family.
As Melanie, Winston, and I say, “It’s GREAT to be adopted.”
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