CHANGE OF SURNAME
But when the fullness of time had come, God sent forth his Son, born of woman, born under the law, to redeem those who were under the law, so that we might receive adoption as sons. And because you are sons, God has sent the Spirit of his Son into our hearts, crying, “Abba! Father!” (Galatians 4:4-6)
I know someone who had her surname changed after birth. Born out of wedlock her biological father abandoned her mother and her to fend for themselves. When her mother realized he was never coming back, she had the surname of her baby changed to bear her maiden surname. The birth certificate would forever show the devastating neglect of a father for his child. She grew up without a dad. Without his surname. Until Jesus met her in her late teens. From that day everything changed. She was adopted into a divine family, became a child of God, with a new name, a restored identity and her true worth. God became her Father. This woman is today my wife, Nancy.
People think adoption is second best. That would be true in a sinful world. But if we were already slaves to sin, condemned by the law and abandoned on the rubbish heap of our depravity without any future, totally destitute and helpless, then adoption is the BEST thing that can happen! Especially, as the bible tells us, we have been adopted into a royal family with all the privileges of such a household! That is the grace of God displayed for us at Christmas! It a celebration of the right time when God sent forth His Son, born of a woman, born under the law to redeem us from condemnation by the law. For what? That we might receive adoption as sons (and daughters)!
My mother was adopted into a better off family as a baby because she was born into an impoverished home. When she met up with her twin sister 65 years later, their joy of being reunited was tampered only by the comparisons of their life journeys. My mum had by far, the better deal. She was in better health, had better education and had seen and travelled the world. Her sister had grown up in poverty. For my mum, who had nothing, adoption was not second best. It was God’s best! And that is the real miracle of Christmas. Jesus came to redeem us who had nothing, so that we might be adopted into God’s royal family so that our surname and status might change forever!
2016 YEAR OF STRENGTH
Ps Dr Philip Lyn