July 12, 2010

Testimony of a Man, Part 4

I need to share a little bit about what was going on that led up to my adoption.  It is pretty rare that a teenager in America is adopted today. 
I want to be very careful and up front , so let me say that I do not mean to dishonor or disrespect my parents or step-parents.  These are just pieces of information to help you understand why I ended up as a 15 year old in an adoption process at all.

I had a very cruel and abusive step-father, but he was a broken man who did not know Christ, and his personal life taught him only one way to control - through fear, manipulation, and physical power.  I had a step-mother who tried to love me, but was unable to connect with me through her own pain, and she ultimately made my father choose between her or me.
Both my real parents tried to love me, but they were too busy trying to protect themselves or pick up the pieces of their own life to be what I needed as their son.

What was my part?  Well, I wasn't a rebellious son.  I wasn't disrespectful or disobedient beyond that of any child, I just didn't seem to fit in anywhere.  I don't know if you can grasp a sense of what I am talking about, but because of the turbulence of my formative years, I really didn't know how to belong to anyone.  I didn't know how to fit.  And, of course, I didn't know this about myself then; nor did anybody else.  It is a grace from God today though, because I can recognize it in other people and it helps me as a counselor and pastor.

It was in the midst of this broken family that I eventually found myself as a Ward of the Court having been disowned by both of my real parents.  This is when God brought a family into my life that began to love me and accept me simply as a boy.  I was a boy, they were a mom, a dad (and I gained two older sisters), and it was that simple.  Life wasn't simple, but when they took me in as their own, for the first time in my life, I belonged, and it was that simple.  They loved me because I was lovable, not because I was perfect or fit some ideal of a son (because I didn't)!
I had never known simple, unearned love from a person.

God was working in my life in ways that I couldn't fully see for a very long time, and probably will never fully understand on this side of Eternity; but God is so good.  He brought me out of a personal darkness that I didn't even know I was in.  He then brought me out of a (social? familial?) darkness that I didn't even know I was in.  He loved me and He put other people in my life to love me as well.  I am so thankful that God gives us love through people that we may experience it in that daily tangible way while we wait to fully realize the love He gives us in His son Jesus Christ.

I don't know how to wrap this up except to thank God - so - Thank You Father for what You have done.  Where would I be, where would any of us be without You?

God Bless, I will continue with the next part of my testimony tomorrow.
With you for His Glory

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