Fifty-six years ago on September 12, a couple walked into an orphanage where they met a two month old girl with brown eyes and a hint of brown hair. In that moment of meeting, they opened their hearts and welcomed a daughter into their life and home.
Before adoption was acceptable, before celebrities made it the cool thing to do, in a time when friends and family strongly discouraged adoption, this couple walked in faith, living out the gospel in a beautiful and tangible way. The little girl did not choose the couple. She didn’t do anything to merit or earn adoption. She was chosen.
Without knowing what past came with the child, what the future held, what blessings and what heartaches might be on the horizon, this couple welcomed a daughter into their family, giving her their name and all of the birthrights that come as a “daughter.”
As wonderful as this story is, it pales in comparison to the story of God’s adoption of His children.
The Lord chose us. His Word tells us over and over again how He chose us and loved us first.
"Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us in Christ with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places, even as he chose us in him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and blameless before him. In love he predestined us for adoption as sons through Jesus Christ, according to the purpose of his will, to the praise of his glorious grace, with which he has blessed us in the Beloved...
In him we have obtained an inheritance, having been predestined according to the purpose of him who works all things according to the counsel of his will, so that we who were the first to hope in Christ might be to the praise of his glory. In him you also, when you heard the word of truth, the gospel of your salvation, and believed in him, were sealed with the promised Holy Spirit, who is the guarantee of our inheritance until we acquire possession of it, to the praise of his glory." - Ephesians 1:3-6, 11-14
We didn’t do anything to warrant His love for us, His pursuit of us, His adoption of us. He chose us for redemption and adoption before the foundations of the world! And unlike the couple mentioned above, God knew all of the heartache, failures, rebellion, and sin that lurked within us. He chose us with the full knowledge of who we are, sinners in need of a Savior.
"But God, being rich in mercy, because of the great love with which he loved us, even when we were dead in our trespasses made us alive together with Christ." - Ephesians 2:4-5a
This is a love that is unfathomable to finite minds. But it is the love that has been lavished upon us by a Father who is infinitely loving, and Romans 8:38-39 reminds us that nothing will be able to separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord.
So on this day as I give thanks for my earthly family. I thank the Lord even more for the way He knits together eternal families. May we celebrate everyday remembering our “gotcha day” and the joy of our salvation.