#SpreadtheLove this Valentine's Day

Originally published Thursday, 14 February 2013.


Galatians 3:23-29

26 So in Christ Jesus you are all children of God through faith, 27 for all of you who were baptized into Christ have clothed yourselves with Christ. 28 There is neither Jew nor Gentile, neither slave nor free, nor is there male and female, for you are all one in Christ Jesus. 29 If you belong to Christ, then you are Abraham’s seed, and heirs according to the promise.
1 John 3:1a, 10
See what great love the Father has lavished on us, that we should be calledchildren of God! And that is what we are!
10 This is how we know who the children of God are and who the children of the devil are: Anyone who does not do what is right is not God’s child, nor is anyone who does not love their brother and sister.
When I married my husband, I was warmly welcomed into the most amazing family.
I had already been a Christian for several years, so I was already a child of God.
But until I joined the Osborne clan, I didn’t have a clear picture of what this looked like. I’m theirs. They are mine. I belong to them. Just like any biological member.
They hold my hand and hug me close. Dry my tears and laugh at my jokes. Celebrate my successes and comfort me when I fail. They beautifully embody my adoption into the family of God.
Galatians 3 paints such a beautiful picture of this adoption. Nothing makes you different or separate when you join God’s family. Every one of us is His. Wholly and holy. Truly, truly His. Just as the biological line of Abraham.
That love astounds me. The love of adoption into God’s family.
Being scooped up out of despair and loneliness and brought into care and comfort for eternity.
And His wish for us as His children is to be connected and cared for in this family, to love our brother and sister as He has loved us. Welcome more and more members into our family, just as he has welcomed us.
Do you remember what it was like? To be an orphan? Separated from God? Before you were adopted through Christ?
May this serve as a reminder to each of us…
An Earthly Adoption Story: Tony & Emily Gould
Tony and Emily are adorable.
Their love for one another shines so bright from their faces. Their love for Christ shines even brighter.
These beautiful, caring, children of God came together and faithfully, prayerfully sought to complete their family with one sweet addition.
God clarified the where and the when and from whom their child would come. And these two brave souls put one foot in front of the other with just the light they were given.
A sweet little two-year-old popped up on their computer screen one day. Details staring back. A world away, tiny toddler fingers existed. Waiting to grow and fatten with new found nourishment. Waiting to be kissed. 

There she was. Their tiny toddler. And a family was born.
I just remember sitting in front of the computer reading and re-reading the email that described her…. it didn't take us long to know she was our daughter.”
Like all expectant parents, they had a million questions. And in their asking and praying they found another piece of the puzzle. An 8-year-old sister…
“Soon we realized that this girl was not just our daughter’s sister, she was also our daughter.”
Faithfully, prayerfully they continued to step in faith. And their second daughter was pulled in, took root in their heart.
Their lovely, little Gould girls. So very far away.
2 little ones wait to be scooped up in their mother’s arms. Hold their Daddy’s hand. Snuggle under blankets. Read stories with flashlights. Fall asleep wrapped up in arms and legs all covered cookie crumbs after a long day of fun.
2 tinies eagerly await the Goulds and to know more of their glorious God. These wonderful parents, who are nothing but a picture and a promise. 

These sweet onse have no idea the future that awaits them. In the arms of their earthly parents. In the arms of the amazing Lord that the Goulds will share with them.
One day very soon, they will be rocked to sleep and sung lullabies. Their hair will be stroked and tiny toes tickled. So many dance parties and tea parties and princess parties lay ahead.
Their precious hearts will be nurtured and guided and listened to. They will be known and loved, truly and deeply, down to their marrow.
Emily & Tony will tell them how deeply they have been loved from afar. How deeply loved they have always been by a loving God who always knew them. Was always with them. Always loved them. And always will.
An ocean currently separates Tony & Emily from their gorgeous Gould girls. And with each day that passes the tension grows. The little girls’ yearning for acceptance and belonging.
They are coming, girls. Your mama and daddy are on their way. They are praying and filing and calling and writing and organizing and working and saving to bring you home. To your home, sweet ones.
They’re putting away pennies to come see you right now. To whisper firm, unchanging truth, in your little ears. “I am yours and you are mine.”

*Read more about Tony & Emily at http://tonyandemily.blogspot.com/
Today’s Challenge… #SpreadtheLove

  • Pray for orphans around the world and families that God has called to adopt them. 
  • Read the stories below and pray for those families.
  • Share the link to this post on Facebook, Twitter, any social media. Encouraging people to pray for orphans and their families.
  • Donate $14 to on February 14. You can donate to Tony & Emily Gould by clicking on the give here button. Or you may choose another adoption or orphan ministry.
"I will not leave you as orphans; I will come to you." John 14:18