As discussions have made their way around me lately about vertical adoption (that's God's adoption of us) versus horizontal adoption (humans adopting humans) I have had an increasing desire to stress some important points.
You see, while I accept and fully believe that God adopted His children as filthy unworthy orphans out of the abundance of His grace for the praise of His glory I am nearly nauseated when I hear discussions simply end there. While the parallel is certainly to be made I often notice a gaping hole where horizontal adoption is concerned. I have lately found that I feel a very urgent need to remind myself and other people that when drawing such comparisons we might easily leave our adopted children feeling dirty, unworthy, and sinful simply because they were once physically orphaned too. And, that is a lie I'm sure we all want our kids (and adult adoptees for that matter) to stay away from. Completely.
It is important to me to acknowledge that in horizontal adoption as in vertical adoption the orphan has very real value because God has deemed them valuable. God has deemed the once orphaned child worthy of love, justice and full rights as an heir through faith and because of Christ's worthiness bestowed upon him. I want to stress to our adopted children that this bestowing of value upon us by God is the ONLY way WE ALL gain value whether we have been raised by biological parents or adoptive parents. I am burdened to hear conversations fall short of acknowledging this truth aloud especially in the context of adoptees listening ears.
As an adoptive mother I need to continually meditate on what it is to have been orphaned myself. Too often I've become uncomfortable at my own willingness to fall into the prideful, delusional trap of taking on some rescuer complex which fails to EXALT ( and I mean HIGH, HIGH above myself) the truth that adoption is God's idea for His orphaned children in this world, not mine. I've failed to soak in the knowledge that unconditional love was authored by a pen dipped in the ink of Jesus Christ's blood, not mine.
I want to make sure I stress all of the parallels in adoption. But, I'd also like to beat to death the point that our adopted children didn't do anything to deserve their orphan status except be born under original sin and that just like every other child born into the world the consequences of original sin made pain and loss a guaranteed experience in this life for them. That is to clearly and often say to them that they did nothing in any way to personally deserve being orphaned on the horizontal plane.
I want our son to hear these things over and over and over again.