Tuesday, March 11, 2014
We had the blessing of adopting our 5th boy two weeks ago, for a total of 8 forever children. The day before the adoption we received a little pink bundle, and I mean little! At two months she weighs in at 7.6 lbs. None of my bio babies were that small outside my body. After each adoption we go for ice cream. There are balloons and gifts and well wishes. But the real moment my adopted children feel like my own is not when we sign the papers in the courtroom.
The Sunday following the adoption we got up extra early. We rarely make it to church on time. Even the days we think we have everything ready to go and we're ahead of the game we forget something vital or lose shoes or have major meltdowns. But this Sunday we HAD to get there on time. Our new son was getting baptized!
Some people don't understand why on earth we would baptize a baby. Many of my Christian friends think we're acting a little prematurely since the wee ones can't profess the faith themselves. There is much written and even more history to support this practice, but the practical side is, we are immersing our "littles" in the fullness of the faith, why would we want to wait? Of course all of our children must choose or reject Christ, just as each of us, baptized or not, must daily choose or reject Him until we breath our last.
When the priest anoints the child with holy oil he says "(name) is sealed with the gift of the Holy Spirit", to which we all respond, "SEALED!" This tends to be the favorite part of the children because they get to be a little loud in church as we all participate in this sacrament. We respond with "SEALED!" as the forehead, eyes, nostrils, mouth, ears, chest, hands and feet are each anointed with the Holy Chrism. It is a holy moment. It is the moment that the adoption into our family and the adoption into the Church is complete.
After the service, in the fellowship hall, a lovely woman congratulated us and gave our new son the gift of a blanket she had made. It was a cuddly soft yellow fleece. It was perfect! Because our family is so big we color code our children. Each child has their own color so we know at a glance who left their plates on the table or towel on the floor. This son's color happened to be yellow!
Next, this sweet woman pulled out a cozy purple blanket for the new baby, and that's when I burst into tears. Our new baby's color is purple! After I finished crying and dried off her shoulder, she shared that she had a few blankets in her car that morning and had asked God to pick the right ones for her. You see, our God cares even about the small details. He's not somewhere way up there out of touch with His people. He is ever present and fully interested in our lives!
Whatever is going on in our lives, whether the joy of new life or chronic or terminal illnesses, we can trust we have a God who cares, a God who is with us and a God who personally sees to the details.
May we rejoice in the One who has offered mankind adoption through Christ our Lord and may we be thankful for the "blankets" He picks for us ;)