No Longer Orphans

“But when the set time had fully come, God sent his Son, born of a woman, born under the law, to redeem those under the law, that we might receive adoption to sonship.” Galatians 4:4-5

The sun was setting in the distance as the last ray of light hit tear-streamed faces of children opening their hearts to Jesus. It was my first experience at an orphanage in Choluteca, Honduras, and one that will forever be etched in my heart. As we walked around praying for the children, a little boy, no more than four or five years old, caught my eye. He sat in the back of the room, dangling his little feet off the plastic chair. When we approached him, he had tears streaming down his soft, tan skin, with his arms crossed over his belly. Instantly my heart felt tight, as I was trying to hold back my tears. After we prayed for him, I picked up that sweet boy and held him in my arms – swaying him back and forth. For a moment, I felt like he was mine, just like my George and Oliver, how I would hold them while swaying them back and forth. We sat down in the plastic chair together and he laid his little head on my chest. I looked down at his skinny arms enlaced around mine, and I was undone. I prayed to myself that God would comfort him with His angels, and that he would protect him and keep him. When he was feeling better after a mama snuggle, he jumped off my lap, walked around, but quickly would find me again and back to my lap he would go. At the end of the night, we were able to find him a pair of flipflops that fit him perfectly. He was so happy as he ripped off his socks, trying them on for the first time. We hugged once more before I had to go, and all I wanted to do was take him with me…

“But to all who did receive him, who believed in his name, he gave the right to become children of God, who were born, not of blood nor of the will of the flesh nor of the will of man, but of God.” John 1:12-13 

I think of that boy sitting in the back, overwhelmed in a sea of hopelessness and abandonment, and in the same thought I think of Resurrection Sunday and the promise of sonship that has been given to us through God’s only son, Jesus. I see a world like that little boy, sitting in the back of the room desiring to belong, to be accepted and chosen. A world waiting for a Savior who do not know He has already come and paid the price for their adoption on that wooden cross. For He said, “I will not leave you as orphans; I will come to you.” (John 14:18). Today, my heart is heavy for the ones who have not received Him, or who do not believe in His name. The very ones that believe they do not belong, they are not good enough, they are not loved, they are not worthy, and no one will ever want them. Just as I picked up that boy and swayed him back and forth in my arms, Jesus is offering the same invitation of love to EVERYONE, who is willing to believe in God, the One who sent His only son to pay the price for us to have everlasting life with our forever, heavenly Father. 

Apart from Christ we are in isolation, but with Christ, we are eternal, we are loved, we are accepted, we are adopted, we are chosen, we are a family of God, “And, I will be a Father to you, and you will be my sons and daughters, says the Lord Almighty.” (2 Corinthians 6:18). When Jesus comes to us in our orphanhood, He invites us into the family of God.  I picture Him coming to the little boy in the back of the room, getting on His knee saying, “son, I’ve already paid the high price for your adoption, and I have loved you even before the time you were created. I have a mansion that I’ve been working on and preparing for you, and I will keep you, hold you and love you for all eternity.” The rightly response would be, “Abba Father, yes.” This beautiful invitation is offered for all, as 2 Peter 3:9 reminds us that God is not willing, “that ANY should perish, but that all should come to repentance.” God’s heart is for ALL to come to Him, saying yes to His invitation that’s already been written, paid, and sealed.  

This is an invitation to the believers and non-believers. For the believers, we must open our eyes to the orphans sitting in the back of the rooms or walking down the dark streets. Even the ones who smile in the light but feel empty and dark inside; they are all around us! The harvest is ready, and I believe people are open to the hope that only the Lord can offer. Let us hand out the adoption papers, and remind people that it is already finished, for we are no longer orphans, but sons and daughters of the most high God, hallelujah!  

More Scriptures about our adoption into the family of God

“I will be a Father to you, and you will be my sons and daughters, says the Lord Almighty.” 2 Corinthians 6:18

“But to all who did receive him, who believed in his name, he gave the right to become children of God, who were born, not of blood nor of the will of the flesh nor of the will of man, but of God.” John 1:12-13 (For we have been born again into the Family of God!) 

“For those who are led by the Spirit of God are the children of God.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.” The Spirit himself testifies with our spirit that we are God’s children. Now if we are children, then we are heirs—heirs of God and co-heirs with Christ, if indeed we share in his sufferings in order that we may also share in his glory.” Romans 8:14-17

“But you are a chosen people, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, God’s special possession, that you may declare the praises of him who called you out of darkness into his wonderful light.” 1 Peter 2:9

“Consequently, you are no longer foreigners and strangers, but fellow citizens with God’s people and also members of his household.” Ephesians 2:19

The sweet little boy at the orphanage.


Published by Emily Rodewald

Emily is a writer and worship leader. She has written several worship songs, she is a co-author or two children's books and has begun writing about the light of Jesus in her blog at She is a co-founder of Parallel Ministries and a mom of two boys, George and Oliver. She has been married for 13 years to the man of her dreams, Daniel. She and her family live in beautiful Montana where they enjoy taking the boys fishing, going on adventures, and renovating their new home.

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