I believe God was very intentional when He said we were adopted into His Kingdom. Depending on your life experience, many different images pop into your mind when you think of adoption. For me, it begins with my daughter. There is a side of adoption many choose to ignore, but I think is essential in understanding salvation and why God has adopted us. The truth is He created us, we are His. He could have chosen different imagery such as reunited, but He intentionally chose the word picture adoption to explain salvation.
The Ugly Side of Adoption
Usually, when people think about adoption, we think of happy tears and smiling families. We think of joy and love. Yes, that is a part of adoption, but the truth is every single adoption began out of pain. Even the happiest most ideal adoption would not have occurred had there not been pain. The pain of realizing another home was better/necessary. The pain of fear. The pain of loss. The pain of a million things that cause mother and child to separate.
Our adoption by God is much the same way. Take a look around. There is so much hurt, sorrow, fear, hate, pain in this world. This world is not a suitable mother. We are never going to be complete as long as this world is our guide, our leader, our parent. We need, desperately, a new parent whom is loving, patient, kind and whom will help us heal from our first home. Help us grow into who we were meant to be. But then, that doesn't mean we lose all touch with our old home. We still remember and care and love our old home.
The Beauty of Adoption
The five things I have found essential in being an adoptive mother is forgiveness, redemption, hope, faith, and love. We need to teach our children to forgive the past and redeem the future. Adoption is all about redemption and healing. We need to provide hope for our future, faith that the family is forever, and oh boy the greatest element is love - lots and lots of love.
God wants us join His family and to forgive others. He models it perfectly in the forgiveness he gives us. He redeems our soul and helps us to redeem our poor life choices. He gives us hope that someday we won't live in this world wrought with pain. He teaches us to have faith. He will never leave us nor forsake us. Then there is love - so much love. He is the author of love.
Biblical Clues on Earthly Adoption
The thing that always strikes me from the Bible is how God refers to Jesus's family. We know Mary gave birth to Him. We don't truly know what DNA God gave Him. Was it half Mary, half something/one else? Was it fully Mary with altered sex genes? Was it no genes from Mary, but a full new being with His own unique DNA? I don't think it matters. God made it clear Mary was his mother and Joseph, God recognized as His earthly father. Some refer to Joseph as his stepdad, foster dad, adoptive dad, but the Bible refers to him as his father and even uses Joseph's genealogy in Matthew.
Even in Luke, where it shows Mary's genealogical line, not Joseph's, Luke 2:33 references Joseph as his father. Not an adoptive father, not stepfather, there is no clarifier. Then again, I often hear people also refer to Jesus's brothers and sisters as his half/brothers and sisters, but in Mark 3, God clearly calls them brothers. Yet again there is no clarifier, it states just brothers.
As an adoptive mom, this is significant. It tells me that God does not look at the biology of Jesus when determining his line. He looked at the people He placed to raise Him as His true family. Just like when God adopts us into His family, he is not just our Father because He created us, but because He adopted us. He's not our adoptive father, He is our Father. We are family.
This Christian mom is far from perfect, but continually strives to grow and develop. She is an avid reader of both fiction and non-fiction and focuses a lot on personal growth. She loves to share what she has learned through her studies and her own failures, as well as walks alongside other mothers as they learn together the ins and outs of parenting.