Dear Child: An Open Letter to the Adopted

Dear Child: An Open Letter to the Adopted

I wrote the following letter to a new born child who was adopted by a family in our church. The parents feared that as the child grew and came to realize it was adopted it might view this as a stigma rather than a blessing. Perhaps they would question their identity and self-worth. They might wonder if they were ever actually loved. I offered it to the parents as sort of time capsule of proof. The hope was that as the child reached that inevitable moment they could open the letter and hear the testimony of an observer. “You are loved in magnificent ways!” Recently, a friend asked if she might pass it on to a family who was processing the same fears. After pulling it up and re-reading it I thought it a good idea to make it available for any who find themselves encouraging those in a similar context. Copy and paste. Feel free to plagiarize and make it your own. 

One Note: Over they years I’ve come to realize how applicable this letter is to the adult believer. How often is it we drift back to the orphanage of our previous state rather than trusting in the love of our Father. So many insecurities and fears. So many doubts and questions about who we are. Fact is, you are loved in magnificent ways. Adoption is no stigma. It is a sign of blessing. Our shame is great indeed, but He has covered our shame. He has given us His name   

“Dear Child,

One of these days you are going to have some questions about your life. Who you are? Where you came from? Why you have the traits you do? But, mainly you will wonder if you are loved. There will possibly come a time as you grow older and become more aware of your history when you’ll wonder if you were some kind of mistake. Something discarded that someone else picked up. I want you to know these are reasonable questions to ask. Who wouldn’t wonder these things? Especially those who realize they are different than others. I’ve been here. I have looked around at fathers and sons, mothers and daughters and back up at my own and realized my life was different. So, in anticipation of this moment in your own life I want to tell you something. Something about whether you were loved or not.

Indeed you are loved. Beyond what you may ever realize. Your mom and dad loved you before they knew you existed. Not merely the idea of you, but you. When you came into their life you had not even arrived and they loved you. When you did arrive their love finally found its appropriate and singular object. At that moment you were absorbed into them and they into you. Not discarded. No mistake. But their child. You have made complete and total sense of their life. I was there when your parents heard of the reality of you. I followed them through the entire process of getting you and you becoming theirs. They were your parents before you were even legally their child. God ordained all of who you are and your mom and dad. If there is any shame at the word “adopted” – it has been covered in their name. For they have given you their name. You are their daughter. Live in this. Thrive in this.

This word – adopted – is no stigma. It is a banner over your life. It is a sign that reads “favor and love.” Adoption can mean nothing other than you were loved with a particular love that few people will ever experience. There are children who have their biological parents who wished they knew the love you know. Your parents are amazing people. You are blessed to have them. They are a sign of God’s good favor in your life. They count you the greatest treasure of their life. I once heard your mom say “She did not deserve to be your mother.” I was astounded at this. But, I suppose it only serves to prove the point. You are loved. You always have been. For they have given you a name.

In Him

Byron”  

 

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