Wednesday, November 10, 2010

James 1:27-2:1 Religion that is pure and undefiled before God, the Father is this: to visit orphans and widows in their affliction, and to keep oneself unstained by the world. My brothers, show no partiality as you hold the faith in our Lord Jesus Christ, the Lord of glory.

A few weeks ago, I (Dustin) was reading this passage in my quiet time because it was next. It was the first time I had ever put James 1:27 with James 2:1, and I think they are meant to tie together. My first response was to apply it to race, and the people who have issues with interracial adoption, and I still think it applies and speaks to that.
The other day though, we were finishing up the adoption paperwork, and to do that, we had to decide which diseases and past histories we would accept in our future child. It was one of the hardest things Beth and I had ever done. Looking at the list, most of the diseases or pasts existed in me or someone very close to me.
I have been wrestling with this over the past couple of days, and it has been some very humbling wrestling. None of us can measure up to the standard that God has set for His family. But God, being so compassionate, sends Jesus to heal our diseases and cover our pasts. Not at a small cost, but by way of sacrifice and death of the only One who ever deserved to be in the family of the Most High God.
This has caused me to bless God for accepting us when we have all kinds of physical, spiritual, and emotional baggage. He tells us to show no partiality, not because it's a good idea, but because that it is HIS character. It is also teaching me that I have a long way to go in embracing, knowing and living out His character.
Thank you God, our loving ABBA Father, for knowing our gross, warped, violent, unhealthy, lonely, desperate, diseased, compulsive history and pouring the blood of Your Son Jesus on our paperwork.
Maybe we should think about or list some things that God has redeemed or rescued us from, and love someone the way we have been loved.