Monday, November 25, 2013

The Loving Care of Our Father God

God's Words:

Though my father and mother forsake me, the Lord will receive me.
~Psalm 27:10

This verse popped out at me in a big way this morning during my devotions.  See it circled in pen at the bottom? You are probably thinking right now to yourself, "Wow, she is highlighter happy".  Why yes, yes I am and happy to admit it!  I love me some God's Word!  By the time I'm 95 and about ready to crawl (or be carried by a very strong hospice nurse) into my death bed, I will probably have highlighted every verse in my much-adored Bible.

Anyway, as I read this verse this morning, it struck me that many children are forsaken by their parents, in many different ways; whether done on purpose or not.

There are foster children whose parents aren't capable for whatever reason of taking proper care of them.  Maybe these parents have been abused and are carrying on the horrible cycle of abuse to the next generation.  Maybe they are in the bondage of addiction, trying to numb their own personal pain, leaving them unable to give their children the loving care and attention each child desperately needs.

Then, of course, there are the children in abusive or negligent homes who haven't been rescued yet.  My heart aches so painfully for them and I wish I could save them all.  My own mother and her siblings were children just like this. They were never rescued from their extremely mentally, emotionally, spiritually and physically sick, abusive father...until the day he drank himself to death when they were all grown-up or nearly grown-up. And even now, many years later, they are each still carrying the wounds and bearing the scars of how they were hurt by the hands and mouth of their own father.

Yet, God always has a plan of healing and restoration for these hurting souls; they have only to reach out to the Savior Jesus Christ and find his supernatural healing from all their pain, shame, and bitterness.  And in Him they will also find forgiveness - not only for themselves, but also the ability to forgive those who hurt them.

In addition, this verse ultimately makes me think of all the millions and millions of aborted children in the history of the world.  Yes, there has always been abortion, you know; just not always a "legal right" where there are actual massively-funded centers in which a woman can "safely" have her child dismembered, sucked, and many other despicably-cruel-and-taboo-to-mention-methods of removal.

These precious, innocent lives may be forsaken by their very own parents whom they were given to by God to care for, love, and cherish for all their life long.  After all, this is an imperfect world with imperfect people suffering from many forms and degrees of pain and sin.

But all of these beloved of God are NOT forsaken by their Heavenly Father. He WILL receive them, somehow, someway.  It's a promise.  Right there in His Word.

I think of all the aborted babies being excitedly welcomed into heaven by their Heavenly Father and His angels when their earthly parents haven't chosen to keep them, for whatever reason.

A father to the fatherless, a defender of widows, is God in his holy dwelling.
Psalm 68:5

As the wife of a pregnancy resource center director, I am more aware than the average person of the fact that many girls and women who end up choosing abortion have felt forced to do so. Some have no support from their family and friends, either financially or emotionally.  Some have boyfriends or husbands or parents who order them to kill their child.  Many others are ashamed to be pregnant in the first place and are desperate to hide their secret from the world. Or feel like their future will be ruined if they bring the baby to term, regardless of whether they choose to raise it themselves or give it up for adoption.

Unless one has been in the situation of an unwanted pregnancy, I dare say it is difficult to truly understand the excruciating thought and decision processes that these women (and their partners) go through before they make that final decision to keep, give up, or abort their child. And my heart goes out to each of them, because I don't think anyone really desires to be in that situation. 

Then I think of the many amazing people who have followed God's call to be foster parents. Oh, the selfless, self-sacrificing work they do, day in and day out, and throughout each night of caring for hurting little ones!  The stories I have heard firsthand from my fostering friends have made me cry, both in sadness and happiness.  Foster parents are my heroes (along with single parents). These specially-gifted people amaze me.  I am constantly in awe of their sacrificial love for needy children.  God comes to the aid of these children by providing temporary (and oftentimes long-term) caretakers:

Religion that God our Father accepts as pure and faultless is this:  to look after orphans and widows in their distress...
~James 1:27

Whoever heard me spoke well of me, and those who saw me commended me, because I rescued the poor who cried for help, and the fatherless who had none to assist them.
~Job 29:11-12

And I think of the numerous people who have followed the Lord's call to rescue orphans by becoming adoptive parents.  Now THOSE children are the especially "wanted" ones!  They are specifically chosen to become one's son or daughter!  Wow.  The gift of adoption is like none other and blows my mind whenever I really think about it.  God reaches out to these parentless children - in the form of new parents who want so much to have them be their very own children.

I will not leave you as orphans; I will come to you.
~John 14:18

...for in You the fatherless find compassion...
~Hosea 14:3e

God sets the lonely in families...
~Psalm 68:6a

So the comfort we find in today's key verse is this:  Whenever a child is forsaken for whatever reason, God has promised, and always follows through, to receive them in one way or another.  He promises to provide for their needs, somehow, someway.  He offers them complete healing through the power of His compassionate love, His Spirit, and the saving, forgiving work of His Son which enables them to be set free and whole from the hurt of their past.  And He promises to love and take care of them, when they are unloved by seemingly everyone else. Even if that means joyfully welcoming them into heaven before they take their first breath on earth.

Have your ever suffered in some way by being forsaken by your parent(s)?  Or do you know of someone who has or is enduring this pain?  How have you, or they, been received by God?

Or perhaps you feel the call to help children such as this?  How do you feel God specifically calling you to reach out to them and be His arms and feet of love and care and protection for them?

In Christ,


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