Watching the gold and brown leaves fall outside of her window, she sighed over the thought of another year in this place. The breeze curved like a loving hand as it carefully set each one gently on the ground.
The care of mother nature for every piece of creation never ceased to amaze her as she longed for one of her own, a parent that is. She longed for a parent to love her.
Walking to the mirror, she straightened her uniform for the 100th time. Noticing a hair out of place, she curled it behind her ear. “Must be perfect!” She thought to herself. “This is the one, I just know it!”
“What are you doing? What makes you think they want you? Don’t get too excited, you’ll just be disappointed, AGAIN. Why don’t you just give up?”
Rolling her eyes at the negative-nancy in the mirror, she replied, “If I just look perfect, they will love me. I just have to be perfect.”
As she walked down the stairs, she thought of all of the hugs, the kisses and the love she would receive. She was willing to do anything to be loved. To go anywhere. This place- well, she was thankful to get 3 squares a day, but truth be told she was just-
LOST. ALONE. UNLOVED
If only- that seemed to be the beginning of most of her sentences. If only she was beautiful. If only she was smart. If only she was … lovable. Then she would be accepted. Looking down at her spit-shined shoes, she watched as a tear fell to the floor. She would never be lovable. Maybe negative-nancy was right, maybe she should just give it all up. What was life anyway, if she was always asking, “If only.”
Looking down the row of young girls, she could see the expectation in each of their eyes. Each one had her own story. Each one wanted desperately to write a new one. Heavy despair began to settle in her heart as she began to compare herself to each of the young girls eagerly awaiting their fate. And just as quickly, a sense of shame fell as she considered her selfishness over thinking that she was more worthy.
All of a sudden, a Light entered the room. She looked around as she noticed the feeling of warmth surrounding her. The girls were all giddy in their excitement over this new Arrival.
“I wonder who He is?” Her roommate asked. “Oh, I hope He picks me,” the girl from across the hall spoke expectantly.
Amid all of the chatter, she could only stare. He seemed to make the room brighter. Even the lamps dimmed as He walked past. “Who is this Man that can make even the lamps dim?” She muttered under her breath.
The sound of His voice quietened everyone at once. “Good morning, ladies. I have been waiting for you.”
Each young girl looked at one another with a question-mark in their eyes. “What does He mean, He’s been waiting? We’ve been right here.”
He walked directly to her and stared lovingly into her eyes. She began to weep. She knew deep down that this is the One she had been waiting for all of her life. “Hello,” she whispered.
“Don’t cry,” He said as He cupped His Hand to catch the tears. Immediately, her eyes met His as she thought of the leaves falling from the tree that morning.
“You are the One, aren’t you?” She asked.
“Why yes, I am,” He answered. “I have been waiting for you. Do you believe in Me?”
“Yes, yes I do.”
“I knew you when you were formed. Every hair on your head is known by me. Every tear you have shed I have captured in my bottle. I know every step you have and will ever take. I have heard all of your prayers.” She looked down at His outstretched Hand and noticed the scar for the first time. Strangely enough, she began to see her name, as if someone was writing in cursive on His Hand. “I have loved you since the beginning of time. Are you ready to follow Me?” He asked.
“Follow you?” She questioned as she looked into His eyes.
“Yes, I waited until this moment in time to reveal myself. You had to be ready.”
“But, how do you know I am ready?”
“Because, my Daughter, I have called you to Me and you have finally seen what has been around you all along. My child, I have to tell you- the road, it will not be easy, but you will never be alone. I will never leave or forsake you. Your calling- it is to be strong and courageous, to stand firm, to love Me and to love others. You will serve as My Hands and Feet to a dying world- a world that cannot see me.”
“But, you have a choice. To follow me or to stay. I will accept whatever choice you make.”
As she looked down at the other girls who were staring intently at the exchange, she whispered, “What about them?”
“They can come too,” He answered. “When they are ready. The heart is a fickle thing. As long as it focuses on the things of this world, it will never accept the FREE GIFT that I have to give.”
“FREE?” She asked.
“Why yes, long before you were ever born, My Father and I designed a plan to adopt each of You into our family. You see, we loved you from the first moment of your creation. We breathed the breath of life into you and spoke your story into existence. Darkness invaded your heart and separated you from Us. For years, you have been seeking that which was lost; that which only an adoption could replace. I paid the price for your adoption- a price you could never pay. Today I am here to take you Home with Me, and before you ask- I accept you just as you are. But know this, I will not force you into My Family, the invitation is yours to accept.”
Her hand immediately found the strand of hair that had fallen as His Hand reached out to hers.
“I accept you, just as you are. Will you follow me?”
Her heart leapt as her Hand found His. Yes, she would follow Him.
We all want to be accepted. In a world seeking perfection, our eyes yearn to fill the hole in our hearts with things that only One can fill. He sent His Son to redeem that which was lost. He replaces our loneliness with His Presence. And He pours His love into a weary heart that longs for it’s Maker. He meets us where we are and He accepts us just as we are.
Do you know Jesus? He is waiting for you. He has paid the price for your adoption and longs to take your hand in His.
For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life. For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through him. John 3:16-17
“The Spirit you received does not make you slaves, so that you live in fear again; rather, the Spirit you received brought about your adoption to sonship. And by him we cry, “ Abba, Father.”” Romans 8:15