After Mass one day, a friend at church told me with great joy about her experiences adopting a child from a foreign land. Ralph and I often sat behind her and her son, who was a teenager. They clearly enjoyed the Mass, beaming with love for the Lord, fully participating. The lad was visibly excited about being Catholic. And their close mother-son relationship was precious.
If not for this adoptive mother’s love, which is God’s love poured out to the child with great mercy and compassion, his life would be very different.
“Let the children come to me, do not prevent them: for the Kingdom of God belongs to such as these.” (Mark 10:14)
Pope Francis said about this scripture: “Today, we ask the Lord that all parents and educators in the world, as well as all of society, are made instruments of that acceptance and love with which Jesus embraces the little ones. He looks into their hearts with tenderness and solicitude of a father and a mother at the same time. I think of so many children that are hungry, abandoned, exploited, forced into the war, refused. It is painful to see images of children that are unhappy, looking lost, fleeing from poverty and conflicts. They are knocking on our doors and our hearts begging for help. The Lord helps us not to be a ‘fortress-society,’ but a ‘family-society,’ which welcomes, with proper rules, but welcomes… Always welcomes… with love!” (October 4, 2015)
God wants to give his love, his help, his salvation to children through us. It might be by welcoming our children’s friends into our homes and becoming like a second mother or father to them. It might be by doting on grandchildren and sharing our faith with them. It might be by accepting a son-in-law or daughter-in-law into the family as if he/she were the most wonderful person to ever walk through our doors, even though we have doubts. And it might be by extending our family to become foster or adoptive parents for abused, abandoned, or orphaned children.
It might seem daunting, but we can be confident that we will be able handle the challenges that occur when we pour God’s love out to children in an open, welcoming home, because we can count on the Lord’s help. Whatever God wants us to do, the Holy Spirit empowers us to do. The question is not: Should we? Rather, the real question is: Whom is God longing to love through me and my sweetheart?
- What opportunities to welcome children are available to me?
- How does my sweetheart feel about partnering with God to share Christ’s love with children?
Strengthen your relationship:
Share with each other how you feel about children when you think about partnering with God. Then pray to humbly open yourselves to whatever God wants you to do next in regards to children.
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© 2017 by Terry Modica of Good News Ministries