Wednesday, September 17, 2014

SERMON: Wanted: A Loving Family

By CLINTON DECKER, Hope for Today | 11/15/2013

Fifteen-year-old Davion Only, looking for a family to call his own, told a Florida church congregation “I’ll take anyone.”

As his story made national news, it tugged at the heart strings of a nation. Unfortunately, through the course of human history, there have been millions of Davions.

Fifteen-year-old Davion Only, looking for a family to call his own, told a Florida church congregation “I’ll take anyone.”

As his story made national news, it tugged at the heart strings of a nation. Unfortunately, through the course of human history, there have been millions of Davions.

November is National Adoption Month. History’s first-recorded adoption was thousands of years ago in ancient Hebrew days. Abraham, the Biblical patriarch, had a brother, Haran. He passed away early in life, leaving behind a son, Lot. Abraham, as his uncle, willingly took Lot in, becoming like his own father.   

Lot was orphaned because of the death of his parents. Other children are orphaned because of war, abduction, illness, tragedy or simply because the parents are unfit and authorities have taken the children. In the Christian faith, followers are urged to care for these orphans. The Scriptures say, “Religion that is pure and undefiled before God ... is this: to visit [or care for] orphans” (James 1:27).      

Beyond the scriptural admonition, why do Christians concern themselves with the orphan? They do because the desire comes from the heart of God. He is the Creator of all mankind and architect of the family. His heart is filled with compassion toward those who have no family. Therefore, He urges His followers to be His hands and feet to a world in need.

When someone is orphaned, there is a natural instinct to search for that missing relationship. The first place everyone can start their search, no matter their family story, is with God. We were born spiritual beings, instinctively knowing we have a Creator, yet separated from Him because of our sinful hearts. The search for Him took us down winding roads filled with detours. We blindly thought relationships, success, religion or addictions would give us what we lacked, but none of it satisfied.     

It was for this God sent His only Son — Jesus. He is the answer. He came to show us a Father’s love and wants to adopt us into His loving family. In a sense, we are all orphans in need of a Father. Call out to Him in humble and desperate faith. Then He will welcome you, cleanse you from all sin, come into your life, make you a new person and give you a new family. Jesus said, “For this my son [or daughter] ... was lost, and is found” (Luke 15:24). In your pursuit of family, may you discover your Heavenly Father and His Son, Jesus. May He be your hope for today.     

Clint Decker is president of Great Awakenings Inc. in Clay Center. Email him at cdecker@greatawakenings.org

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