Freely I received…Now what?

When I look at my son I am taken back a couple of years and reminded of how I longed to be a father so that I could better understand God as Father. I believed that I would have a better understanding of His love for me if I was able to look at my own child and experience the love of a father, as the father.

It has nearly been 3 years, and God has allowed me glimpses into His love for me through my love for my son in ways that I could never have imagined. Just today my son fell into the pool and as I reached into the water,  looking at his little body gasping and grasping for anything that could save him, I was again staggered by the thought that the urgency and determination that I expressed in pulling my son out of the water didn’t even compare to the desire that He has to reach down and save us.

Befitting of this realisation is that it happened on the Easter weekend, the single most important yearly event in the lives of all Christians.

But God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us. Romans 5:8

I cannot understand the love of a God who would allow his Son to die, but I can understand the love of a father who would do anything so that his son would be saved.

So this is where we are a family at the moment. We have received so much, but we find ourselves challenged to express the love that was given freely to us, to others. Daily I find my heart is breaking for the things that break His and that mostly involves how his little children, the most innocent and helpless, find themselves hurt, abandoned and oppressed on a daily basis. I cannot stand by!

According to UNICEF 25% of children, or 3.9 million, are living in South Africa are orphans, imagine the challenges these children will face in the future when we find ourselves in a situation where 25% of adults have come from a position of abandonment. Only 500000 of this 3.9 million are seen as wards of the state, leaving 3.4 million still wondering, where is the hope of the world? If we were to take the number of adoptable children and then estimate how long it would take to have these children placed into loving families, based on the current rate of adoptions in South Africa, we’re looking at 200 years and that’s if we ignore the fact that more children are being born daily and that some of these children will never be adopted because after age 7 their chances drop hugely.

I think as Christians the one thing we often forget is that God never gave birth to us, He adopted us. We are foreigners from another land lovingly grafted into His family and blessed with every privilege and title that is usually reserved for the biological children. But He declared that we are His, and joint heirs with Jesus. God is in the business of adopting. So the challenge I lay before every believer, every person who has ever accepted Jesus into their heart and gladly taken ownership of all that their Father has given them, the challenge, the question I put before you is whether you have ever thought of extending the same offering to a child, a helpless, innocent, beautiful child that you gladly received?

The fact of the matter is that Jesus will come for his beautiful spotless bride, the church, but we the people who make up His body have allowed the church’s mandate, the church’s teeth, the church’s relevance, to come under fire because we are not standing up and becoming the solution to the issues that face us on a daily basis. Heres a question, who is supposed to be the example of family? We are! Who is supposed to stand in the gap for the helpless? We are! Who is supposed to be light in a dark world? We Are! There are many issues facing society that I believe we, as the church, should be solving.

God loved me so much that he took me, loved me, saved me, adopted me and made me his very own son. The Father’s heart cannot be separated from His desire to adopt. It’s not about being Him, but it certainly is about becoming like Him. I challenge and encourage all believers to take a look at all they have freely received and challenge them to freely give. We cannot sit back and argue finances, space, inconvenience, because imagine if God had said the cost is too great or my family is too large or I really cannot be burdened with this today, imagine if Jesus had said those 2000 odd years ago that it was too much to handle, where would we be today?

It’s not about guilting the church into adopting all the orphans in the world, but when we see that if just 7% of all Christians were to adopt, there would be NO ORPHANS we cannot sit back and do nothing. Established families, I implore you to consider adopting a child, young unmarried’s, soon to be married’s or newly married’s, I encourage you, think about growing your family and think about adoption as one of the ways of doing this. It will only take 7% of us! I am convicted that every believer should in some way or another be contributing to the existence of an orphanless world. Many years ago it was about giving a family a child. Times have changed and it has become about giving a child a family. Think of His heart, ask Him to break your heart for what breaks His. We can be the change makers and we should be leading the way and creating homes for His children.

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