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Thursday, July 7, 2011

The Gospel of Adoption

I don’t know if anyone is aware – but I’m actually a former orphan myself. Not in sense that Hannah and Joseph were orphans – but in the sense that I spent many years of my life separated from my Heavenly Father.

For reasons still far beyond my comprehension, I was adopted into His royal family. I did nothing to earn or deserve this privilege. I became an heiress to the treasures of Heaven based not on my merit or performance –  but only on His love for me.

Becoming an adoptive parent has helped me to grasp and understand my own spiritual adoption in a way a never quite understood it before.

Adoption is redemption. It's love and nuture and un-earned grace and favor. As Katie Davis once wrote on the subject… “It’s the Gospel in my living room.”

We began pursuing the adoption of Hannah and Joseph about this time last year. Since last July, we've considered them our son and daughter, at least in our hearts and minds. But today, they became our son and daughter on paper as well. It's officially official. Team Owens is seven strong.

We waited in the courtroom for just a few minutes and then were called back to the judge's chambers. All five children sat on the floor and played nicely while Dan and I took our oaths and gave testimony.

All was well... until it wasn't. Baby Charlotte pulled a giant Costco-sized bag of goldfish out of her diaper bag and dumped the entire thing on the judge's very nice rug. But she was super nice about it. And that's just how we roll...with five small children, there always has to be at least one small incident.

While we waited in the judge's chambers (and, very glamorously, cleaned up our mountain of goldfish) our attorney asked us a question. "Can you imagine," she said, "what Hannah and Joseph's lives would be like if you hadn't adopted them?"

Dan and I looked at each other and exchanged knowing looks. We both knew what the other was thinking. The real question is this... can you imagine what OUR lives would look like if we hadn't adopted Hannah and Joseph?

We can hardly remember what life was like before these two littles joined our family. What if God hadn't opened our eyes to the deep hurt and the many needs around the world? What if He'd not given us the courage and the faith to get up and do something about it? We can't imagine.

Thankfully, we don't have to.

Happy Adoption Day, Hannah:
Picture by www.griffingibson.com

Happy Adoption Day, Joseph:

Picture by www.griffingibson.com

Before the foundations of the Earth were laid, God chose Dan and me to be your parents. We are truly blessed. You've rescued us more than we could have ever rescued you.

"But when the time had fully come, God sent his Son, born of a woman, born under law, to redeem those who were under the law, so that we might receive adoption as sons." Galations 4:4-5


The Fruitful Family said...

No words. Just praise!

Okay, I do have words - Gotta love that everyone is smiling except for CeCe! Love that child!

And love your family beyond measure.

Anonymous said...

Beautiful, Shelly! You guys are such a sweet, special family (even if you are CRAZY!!) =)

Rebekah said...

Such a precious reminder of God's unfailing love! Congrats on officially becoming official! I am so happy for your family!

Allie said...

Congratulations to all of you. And I know what you mean--adoption is such a blessing.

Nancy said...

I have chills, Shelly! What a blessing you are to me!

Christy said...

yaaaaaaaaaaay! Congratulations! Those pictures are gorgeous!

Tracy said...

Praise God!! Growing up my parents always told me that is how they felt about my adoption...they were the ones blessed (and I always thought no I am the one blessed) but now that I am on the other side of adoption...I get it!! We serve one unbelievable God!! Love the family picture!

the_blissful_mommy said...

'sabout time. ;) Love it. Praise the Lord. He is Redeemer.

Sophie said...

Congratulations Owens family, and what a beautiful family you have!

Praise God for His unfailing love and mercy.

Audrey @ The Brown Brigade said...

Congratulations!!! How beautiful!!

Johanna @ These Prices said...

Congratulations! Your family is beautiful.

anything but LoKEY said...

So sweet! I love keeping up with you peeps. It is encouraging.

And btw....that mountain of goldfish thang....that is just how we roll too. I feel ya! :)

Wild Olive said...

Happy, happy adoption day, sweet peas!!! Can't wait to hug your necks next week!
Big love,
Auntie Colleen

Griffin Gibson said...

I have tears reading every one of your posts... It's a true privilege to know and spend time with your precious family. :) It's amazing how we, by God's love, mercy, and grace, have been adopted into His family. God's love for Hannah and Joseph through you and Dan is a real and amazing picture of our adoption into His family!!

Brandi said...

God bless your precious family!! Thank you for sharing your adoption video on the L.C. It made my day and brought tears to my eyes!