Friday, February 8, 2013

learning how to cry

I’ve never been that girl that cries whenever they see a baby, or a puppy, or "the cutest proposal video ever."  In fact, until a few years ago I could easily count on one hand the number of times I cried in a year.

That was, until one day God decided to allow me to get it.

My sophomore year in college I sat in the balcony of Biola's gym with my friends, listening to a good, but not particularly charismatic speaker.  He was talking about orphans – and ADOPTION. By the end  of his spiel I was a hot mess. Tears were streaming down my face, and my friends (who were familiar with my impaired tear ducts) were looking at me like I had grown a narwal horn.

Now, I was no stranger to orphans and adoption. I had spent time with orphans on mission trips, and have family who have adopted.

So what changed?

After a decade of knowing God, I finally understood that the orphan this speaker was talking about, the children I'd met on the dirty streets of Tijuana - was me. I understood that God the Father had reached down, opened my eyes to how desperately I needed him, and in grace had paid for my life with Jesus’ blood - so that I could be adopted into his family.  And because I've been adopted I have absolute confidence that whatever happens I have a Father and a family who is mine forever.

"But when the right time came, God sent his Son, born of a woman, subject to the law. God sent him to buy freedom for us who were slaves to the law, so that he could adopt us as his very own children. And because we are his children, God has sent the Spirit of his Son into our hearts, prompting us to call out, "Abba, Father." Galatians 4:4-6

So, yes, now I bawl when I hear stories like this:

I bawl because I can't imagine being a child living without the assurance that I have someone who will find a way to take care of me, or at the very least BE with me, no matter what happens.  And because of that, there are few things more powerful than the rescuing or ransoming of a life through adoption.
There are few things you can do that are more selfless than giving someone a forever family, pledging to be FOR them, no matter what they do.

I don’t fight for adoption because I think it’s easy.  In fact, I think its one of the hardest things you can do. I’ve seen that first hand. But as followers of Christ we don’t do things because they’re easy. It’s the exact opposite. We are called to “take up our cross daily” and to, by our words and actions, point people to our God and his good news of salvation.

What better way to do that then living out the physical reality of our spiritual state  - our lives, ransomed by Christ. Not because we deserve it.  Or because we’ve been perfect children since our adoption. But because of grace that was freely given.

"Pure and genuine religion in the sight of God the Father means caring for orphans and widows in their distress and refusing to let the world corrupt you." James 1:27

So now you know my secret.
If you want to see me puffy-eyed and blotchy, introduce me to a family like this one:

Freely we've received, freely we must give.


  1. BETSY, I'm full on sobbing in my cubicle thanks to that video! I'm glad your tear ducts have indeed been redeemed, this made the idea of adoption so much more of a reality to me.

  2. AMEN! :) Good reminders Betsy!! XO

  3. What a beautiful post Betsy...the HEARTBEAT of the Father is adoption. US into His family and the lonely into their forever families. So sweet. So good!

  4. Understanding the Father's heart can bring so much change in our lives. I appreciate the eloquence, your genuineness and and your ability to inspire through your story. You should probably write a book someday.