A love of my own

Saying yes to life

But you know all about it— the contempt, the abuse. I dare to believe that the luckless will get lucky someday in you. You won’t let them down: orphans won’t be orphans forever. ~Psalm 10:14 (MSG) 

Every Fourth of July since I was very small, I have traveled to Huntington Indiana for a family reunion. My dad has three brothers and four sisters all who had large families too and most of them came every year for a celebration. At noon we would gather for a big meal. Much talk and lots of fun was had by all. The visiting would continue throughout the day into the evening. Roasting hot dogs and marshmallows, swimming in the lake, capture the flag in the dark… all memories I look back on with fondness. I could paint this picture with all the skill of a fine master painter leaving out things like mosquito bites and sunburns. I could also easily leave out of this picture that I paint that this family is not really mine.

After my parents had been married for a year, my dad adopted me. My birth father never contested it. Even though God sent me a wonderful man to be my father I still felt the sting of the rejection. The man never had a significant role in my life after he and my mother divorced but the simple act of not caring shadowed me. I have always felt that it was probably best that he was not part of my life and I have no real memories of him, but I always wondered why I was so unlovable.

I still travel to the family reunions, bringing my husband and children along. Although I have been adopted into this family for forty years now, I still feel like I am just pretending- that I don’t really belong. My head tells me that I am part of this family but my heart still remembers that once there was someone who didn’t want me. In college I went through a difficult time and was really struggling to figure out just who I was compared to what I had been told. In my own way I rebelled and hid, but one thing I just couldn’t hide from was my Bible. That semester I read Romans through and through and it brought some balm to my tender soul. I read again and again Romans chapters 8 and 9. I learned that even though there was an earthly family that didn’t love me, through Jesus Christ I was adopted into, grafted into a family that was true. In the Bible I could find a heritage that was mine to claim. Romans told me that the love God had for me would never fluctuate or die

God never leaves us were we are,   John 14:18 says, “I won’t leave you as orphans. I will come to you. (CEB)” Romans 9:8 says it “isn’t the natural children who are God’s children, but it is the children from the promise who are counted as descendants. (MSG)” Jesus said in Matthew 12:50, “Whoever does the will of my Father who is in heaven is my brother, sister, and mother.” John 1:13 says I am a child of God, “born not of natural descent, nor of human decision or a husband’s will, but born of God. (NIV)” The Bible assures me that I am loved and wanted as part of a family. Just because those who are supposed to love us can’t doesn’t mean that God won’t send others so that He can love us through them. We can’t reject the love He sends just because someone else couldn’t or didn’t. He sends us mothers and fathers, sisters and brothers in Christ to walk with us on this journey.

Heavenly Father, I thank You for loving me. I thank You for family You send my way to ease the travels of this life. May I always be quick to show Your love to others that I meet along the way. Amen

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