Posts Tagged ‘ free will ’

What’s good about being adopted?

This question was asked of me recently by an adoptive mother, following a talk I presented to an adoption support group on the myriad painful emotional issues adoptees have to deal with over their lifetime.

For a few moments I was silent as I tried to think of an answer.

“That’s a difficult one,” I said eventually, playing for time while I frantically searched my brain for an answer.

Then I thought of the Bible story about the man born blind (John 9:1ff). Jesus’ disciples asked Him whose sin – the man’s or his parents’ – had caused him to be born blind.

“Neither this man nor his parents sinned,” said Jesus, “but this happened so that the works of God might be displayed in him.” (John 9:3)

It’s a heavy cross we adoptees have to bear, but my journey of healing has showed me that we can use it to glorify God and further His Gospel, as the apostle Paul did (Philippians 1:12).

He also encouraged the Corinthian Church with these words:

“We are troubled on every side, yet not distressed; we are perplexed, but not in despair; persecuted, but not forsaken; cast down, but not destroyed” (2 Corinthians 4:8)

and went on to say:

“For our light and momentary troubles are achieving for us an eternal glory that far outweighs them all” (2 Corinthians 4:17).

It is important to note, however, that God doesn’t cause bad things to happen so that He can manifest Himself and others can learn of Him. For example, an innocent person being killed by a drunk driver is certainly not part of God’s plan or His will.

But God can use situations such as these and turn them into good. As He did with Joseph, who was sold into slavery by his own brothers (sounds a little familiar, doesn’t it?).

Despite all the hardships Joseph had to endure while in Egypt, he remained faithful to God and eventually became a high-ranking ruler of the country. In time, he was  reunited and reconciled with his family and saved his countrymen from famine.

Thus he was able to say to his brothers:

“You intended to harm me, but God intended it for good to accomplish what is now being done, the saving of many lives” (Genesis 50:20).

God is fully aware of the pain that results when babies are placed for adoption, but because He has given us free will, He doesn’t interfere with our choices. He can turn that pain into something beautiful, however, as long as we remain faithful to Him and wholly submit our lives to His will.

It’s a wonderful, liberating promise.

Where is God in adoption?

Adoption is fraught with pain. Anyone touched by it, even to the smallest degree, knows this. But who is responsible for this pain? Is it God? And if so, how can He then be a God of love? Would a truly loving God allow such pain and anguish to be perpetrated on innocent babies and children?

There is a propensity to blame God for the existence of any evil, heartache and unjustices perpetrated. Indeed, any tragedy that befalls the human race is usually attributed God. The fact is, however, that wars, genocide and other evil actions generated by humankind are self-willed and not instigated by God.

God has never put “babies in the wrong bellies”. We as humans perform the act of conception. We are free to act as  irresponsibly as we wish, provided we don’t contravene the laws of our country. Consequently, we should then take responsibility for our actions and the consequences that follow.

The precepts of God’s moral law are found in the Bible, but whether we choose to abide by them is up to us. We can choose to ignore these tenets of morality and “do our own thing”, in which case we have no relationship with God, no promise of peace or blessing, and no prospect of eternal life after death.

Alternatively, we can decide to serve God according to His Word, and receive the blessing of answered prayer during times of trouble or anguish and the assurance that “all things [will] work together for the good of those who love Him and are called according to His purpose (Romans 8:28).

God is not a respector of persons and irrespective of our background or upbringing He desires a relationship with us. Every person on this planet who earnestly seeks God will find Him through His plan of salvation, as found in the Bible.

Nobody is forced to recognise God, let alone love and obey Him. Yet many venture into His domain and express themselves on  His existence, His actions, His motives, His laws and His love without the vaguest idea of who He is, what He stands for and how He interacts with those who love Him and keep His commands.

Despite the emotional turmoils and uncertainties of life, the providence of God manifests itself in the lives of those whose faith does not wane. It also illustrates how God can bring beauty, hope and clarity to an otherwise dismal situation. He does this by fragmenting our grief into manageable parts, enabling us to once again see the light of day, much like He gives us a rainbow after a severe storm.

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