“In this manner, therefore, pray: Our Father……….”  Matthew 6:9

“For the Father Himself loves you, because you have loved Me and have believed I came forth from God…” John 17:27

There was a common theme I can remember growing up.  It may be that it was just fiction or it may be that there was an actual stigma attached to being adopted.  The sense that being adopted would be something that you would want to hide from the child.  I’m not sure if it was based on not wanting the child to believe that they were at some time unwanted.  Or perhaps it was the idea that sense there was not a blood relation, that somehow the parent and child relationship was somehow less.  If that stigma actually existed, it does not appear to be as pronounced in today’s culture at least within the United States.  Yet still there seems to linger, at least in the world at large,  a sense of different/lessor relationship for an adopted child.

The  bible is very clear about one thing.  There is only one Messiah.  In prophesying the Messiah in the Old Testament, it is pointed out that the Child of the virgin, will be the only, true Son of God.  Herod believed that for when the wise men arrived and asked him about the birth of the Christ, the Once and for All King of the Jews.  Herod killed Bethlehem’s young male population in hopes of destroying one Child.

Jesus is teaching His disciples, plus His followers during His time and finally, the rest of us, for all time,  through His lessons.  We know that Jesus chooses His words very carefully being very precise in the message that He proclaims.  After all, as Jesus Himself testifies, it is not His message but the Message He heard straight from God Almighty, His Father that He is teaching.  When He teaches about fasting and giving alms. Jesus mentions the reward for proper behavior comes from “your Father”.  When Jesus teaches about proper prayer, He starts the prayer with “Our Father…”.  Now Jesus could have substituted terms of God, the Great I Am, Yahweh, Your Creator, but He didn’t.  It seems clear that Jesus wanted to communicate a very specific concept.  Jesus wanted to and did communicate a relationship, a very special relationship of Father to child.  But if Jesus was the One and Only begotten Son of God; the only way that God could be our Father is if He adopted us.

When and how did we come into a need of a new father?  Jesus explains this when He explains being born again.  Through the loving of and acknowledging Jesus Christ as the Son of God, we are born anew into a new relationship.  A relationship that finds us changed from children of this world to children with a New Parent; God Our Father Almighty.

Wait a second, the world responds.  Adoption requires a contract, a covenant if you will.  Earthly adoptions also require some sort of payment by the parents.  Another aspect of worldly adoptions involves the parents sometimes researching the backgrounds of the potential adoptees to see if they are going to be worthy to be brought into the family.

Our Heavenly Father says there is a covenant to our adoption.  The covenant of believing that He has one Son, Jesus Christ, who came to earth from heaven.  Second, a payment for us to be adopted?  Well that ties into the third part about our being worthy of adoption.  Here’s the thing, we should have been turned down.  We utterly have failed our background check.  Sin should have been the eternal objection and obstacle to our adoption.  The Parent is worthy.  The child is not.  We, the children in need of adoption, do not have the wherewithal to make ourselves worthy of being adopted into God’s Family.

The Parent could have walked away.  God, the Father, could have searched for more worthy children.  He did neither.  Our Father wants to be Our Father so badly, that He devised a plan to pay the price.  Jesus Christ, wanted us to be a part of His Family so bad, that He went along with His Father’s plan and paid the price, our price so that we could be adopted.  Jesus Christ died in our place.  In taking our place, we can be allowed to be with Him in His place with God Almighty being Our Heavenly Father.

So, you or I may be feeling abandoned today.  Even with earthly parents trying as hard as they can, we may be feeling lost.  The world is telling us to give up on trying to have a relationship with the Father; we are not of His blood.  You feel not wanted.  Bottom line; God can make it no clearer.  He wants you and I.  He has done everything to bring you into the Family.  Understand, there is no need on His part (there is the greatest need on our part).  He doesn’t need us to be part of His Family.  It is all about His Loving Desire.  In an unfathomable act of Love, the only reason Jesus Christ needed to die is to allow for our adoption.  There can be no stigma attached.  Our Father has seen to that.

Our Most Gracious and Heavenly Father, we freely admit that we can not fully conceive of Your Love, so gracious as to want us just as we come, to be Your Children.  Our Praise is to You for the plan as well as Your Son Jesus Christ for His sacrifice that makes our adoption possible.  Forgive us Most Merciful Father that, because we don’t understand, we don’t fully appreciate the extraordinary lengths Your Love has gone to for us.  We testify of our need for Your Spirit to help us with a sincere desire to live as truly Your Children would live.  To the praise of Your Most Holy Name and in the Name of Jesus Christ we pray.  Amen