During my Orientation Course last year with OMF before I left for Thailand, I met an American family who was also preparing to go to Thailand to serve in the cross-cultural mission field. They were no ordinary family, for they came bringing a total of 8 children out of the 10 children they have. The other 2 of their children are grown up and have their own families in America. The other extraordinary thing about this family with 10 children is that, 5 of their children are adopted. 4 are adopted from China and 1 from Ethiopia.
My mind was totally blown away when I met this huge family – even more so because half of their children are not their own. I simply had to interview the parents of all these children.
Just as I thought, if it was not the love of God and the Word of God that inspired and motivated them, they would not have had such conviction to take up the responsibility to care for so many children.
The father quoted Romans 8:15 as one of the verses about adoption that burdened them.
“For you did not receive the spirit of slavery to fall back into fear, but you have received the Spirit of adoption as sons, by whom we cry, “Abba! Father!”
One of the gifts and privileges we receive when we accept Jesus Christ as our Savior, is the Spirit of adoption. We are received into God’s family and become His children through adoption. We are His, loved by Him and are sons and daughters of God. We once were sinners, undeserving of the grace and mercy of an Almighty God. But He chose us, cleansed us and brought us into His family, and He continues to walk with us through life’s journey as a father journeys along with his son.
The truth of the fact that God has chosen us and adopted us to be His children despite us being so undeserving, convicted my 2 American friends. They were deeply moved and felt called by God to show His love by adopting underprivileged children. What did a kid in China who was almost completely blind have in common with an American couple thousands of miles away have in common? Probably nothing much. My American friends did not have to adopt him, but they chose to do so. Although no one had taken a second look at this child in China, this American couple decided to adopt him and love him as their own. They also took in an Albino boy and a girl with some problems regarding her spine. They wanted to be ambassadors of adoption. According to their research, if every protestant family were to adopt just one orphan, every orphan in the world would be able to have a family.
Not everyone is called to adopt children. Some of us shudder at the thought of starting a family. Some of us are already all tied up raising our own children. Perhaps adopting children is something very far-fetched to us.
So how else can we extend the immense love that we have received from God our Abba Father? Maybe we do not need to adopt children literally, but how about looking out for that teenage child of a good friend, or taking the younger sister of a fellow peer under your wing? If we keep our eyes open, I am sure there will be someone whom we can reach out to and impact in our own little way. Let us bring this to the Lord in prayer and ask Him to show us how we can make a difference in someone’s life today.
Sister Cherlyn Oh