I'M ADOPTED!

by David Sisler

Kids can be very cruel to each other (I've often wondered: "Is it because they see cruelty in their parents?"). They seem to look for something that is different in another young person and then single him out for rough treatment because of that difference. There's the fat kid, four eyes, pizza face, and shorty. One youngster starts the refrain, and a chorus of hecklers join the song.

On the playground one afternoon, Jerry was the object of ridicule. In a sing-song cadence the other first graders were chanting, "Jerry's adopted! Jerry's adopted! Jerry's adopted!"

Mrs. Adams, the first grade teacher, rolled her eyes upward, pushed her arms straight to her sides, clinched her hands into fists, and started toward the crowd of tormentors. She stopped suddenly as Jerry squared his shoulders, wiped wet eyes and an equally wet nose across his sleeve and faced his classmates.

"Yes, I'm adopted!" Jerry said proudly. "My parents had a choice when they got me. Your parents were stuck with you!"

Barbara's two children are adopted. One day she was attempting to explain what that means to her eight year old granddaughter. The little girl said, with amazement, "You bought my Daddy?"

As soon as Sharon was old enough to understand, and maybe even before she wasn't, her parents told her simply and proudly, that she had been adopted. It seemed always to be a source of joy for the youngster. One Sunday morning, she ran from her Sunday school class room, into the sanctuary, and announced in a voice which seems peculiar to five year olds it can be heard three miles away "Mom, my Sunday school teacher is PREGETT!"

Adults sitting close by smiled knowingly, each one secretly relieved it was another parent who was being embarrassed by an exuberant child. Trying to recover some dignity, Sharon's mother said, "Pregett? Honey, what's pregett?"

Sharon jammed her hands onto her hips and with an exasperated sigh said, "Don't even know what pregett is! Mom, it's no wonder you can't have kids of your own!"

Edith and Stanley Merchant are two of the most unusual parents I've ever met. They had four natural born children and five adopted children. In order to keep three sisters from being separated, they adopted all three. They did the same thing with two brothers. The girls molded beautifully into the family. The boys never did. After months of trying, months of distress, the boys, at their request, were returned to the orphanage. It was always with anguish that Stan Merchant spoke of the two boys. They had disrupted the home, were mean to the other children, but Stan always viewed their "unadoption" as his greatest failure.

Adoption agencies easily find homes for babies. It is only with great difficulty that older children are placed. Teenagers seldom are adopted. Suppose for a moment you are choosing a child to adopt. Would you pick a prostitute to be your new son or daughter? How about a drug addict or an alcoholic? A thief? What about a convicted murderer?

Do you realize all of God's children are adopted? Those are just the kind of people He chose. "And such," Paul told the Corinthians, "were some of you. But now your sins are washed away, and you are set apart for God. He has accepted you because of what the Lord Jesus Christ has done."

When Jesus began His public ministry, His own people did not accept Him. "Yet," John wrote, "to all who received him, to those who believed in his name, he gave the right to become children of God children born not of natural descent, nor of human decision, but born of God."

What does it mean to be adopted? A six year old boy, who was adopted, said, "That's when you have the same family, but not the same face."

A new mother asked her mother, "I wonder where our baby gets his curly hair?" "Your Dad has curly hair," her mother replied. "Mom," she said, "that doesn't matter. I'm adopted." With an embarrassed smile, the new grandma said, "I keep forgetting."

Can you call God, "Father?" You can if you have placed your personal faith in His only begotten Son. Get adopted!

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Copyright 2001 by David Sisler. All Rights Reserved.

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