Thursday, June 16, 2011

My Daughters' {Other} Father

It seems each year as Mother's Day approaches that there is so much talk about birthmoms and celebrating them, honoring them, giving them a place in all the festivities. Then throw into the mix a vast variety of different {sometimes conflicting} ways that adoptive families feel very passionately about how they want that to play out for their families. And while that is all good and I'm thankful we take that time to stop and pause .... each year I come away thinking about this .... what about Father's Day? Why don't I typically hear the same buzz going on?

Each story is different. Neither of my daughters' birthfathers even know they exist. I have very limited information about each of them. With one of my precious daughters, I don't even know the "real story". We were told two VERY different stories. We'll never know which of them is even true.

While I want to do all I can to honor my children's birthparents, there is something else I want even more. While my sweet girls only know tiny bits of info about their birthfathers, there is SO much I want them to know about their other Father.

You see, their other Father is the reason they are even our children and belong in our family. It is because of what HE did for us, that spurred us on to reach out and do the same for a child we didn't even know. It is their other Father who poured out mercy on us and helped us finish the course two separate times when nothing matched up in the banking ledger. It is their other Father who gave us strength to stand when we were weary and weak from the journey. It is their other Father who taught us what it truly means to LOVE like He loves, even if our family didn't understand at the time. It was their other Father who PROVIDED. It was their other Father who ministered to them in ways too hard to even fathom as they were each alone.

The beauty of adoption isn't just that a mom and dad adds a child to the family. Oh yes, that is a wonderful blessing. I truly cannot imagine our lives without our two youngest. However, adoption is so much more than that. More than food and clothing and shelter. More than affection and acceptance and opportunity. I think so often we get caught up in all the "others" and forget the deepest, most important truth that adoption is. Adoption means BELONGING. Yes, legally, my daughters now "belong" to the Roberts family. But what is SO MUCH MORE important than that is that they also belong to their other Father. They were His first and foremost, even if I was never part of the picture. They have a Heavenly Father who CREATED them and DESIGNED them and gave a PURPOSE for their lives. And this is what they need to know and understand. This is what is going to carry them through when they face loss and grief and even racism.

It blesses me go greatly to see my girls run to see their daddy at the end of a work day. They are filled with more spunk and sweetness than he can hardly handle. I LOVE THAT. I am SO THANKFUL that my daughters have been given an earthly father. HOWEVER, MORE than that .... oh so much MORE than that my heart rejoices as I see them grasp the knowledge that they have their other Father. I love to see them worship and praise Him.

Some of you reading this can relate to the heartbreak of the orphan. Perhaps you never had much of an earthly father. Perhaps you never knew his name. Perhaps he walked out on you when you were just a wee-thing. Perhaps you were at the receiving end of his abuse. Perhaps he never even knew you were born. Oh if that is you .... can I just remind you that YOU HAVE another Father! He calls you by NAME. He knows the NUMBER of hairs on your head. He longs for you to call Him ABBA Father.

I'm often reminded of the pain of adoption. There is no adoption without pain. Pain is the reason adoption is even needed in the physical sense. My daughters will each go through times of sensing that pain and loss. Yet, my prayer is that AS THEY DO ..... they will realize they NEVER have to walk that alone .... because their other Father promises to be there ... every step of the way. We consider it an incredible privilege to also be here to walk with them.

It's so hard for me to even fathom what my Father has done for me.

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