When Anne Le Tissier adopted her husband’s child, she became more aware of God’s love for us all.
At the invitation of my partner’s extended family, I joined their Mother’s Day celebrations. His precious little girl was there too, already calling me ‘Mummy’, long before she was actually my daughter. But when I later married her widower father, God prompted me to adopt her as my own; to make the legal-transfer to be ‘Mummy’ in every way possible.
My parents’ history coupled with my own tests for erratic periods had previously confirmed I’d have problems conceiving. For long months I prayed, concluding that for my little girl’s welfare, I wouldn’t pursue fertility treatment. I write that with heartfelt appreciation and support for any woman who is being led differently, but this was my personal guidance; burying my unanswered questions and a sense—at the time—of inadequacy as a woman, for being unable to conceive.
God’s gift of adopting another as my own was immeasurably more than I could ask or imagine. I may not have given birth but I keenly felt the protective instinct of my child, and my longing to comfort, support, nurture, provide for and guide. The bonding I had—and have—with her, isn’t because I’m her ‘natural’ mother, it’s because she is my daughter. I appreciate that’s not everyone’s experience of adoption, but there’s a deeply rooted spiritual truth we can receive from my own story. You are God’s child; God’s precious daughter. God loves you so passionately that he chose to adopt you—as—his—own[i]. I’ve shared my mother-daughter relationship but how much deeper, wider, longer and higher is God’s breath-taking love for you as his daughter.
This is a weighty reality but misunderstandings and feelings birthed from an upbringing, education, relationship or experience can subtly train us to try and earn love, favour, acceptance or approval—even from God. And the assurance, confidence, peace and poise of being God’s daughter can get muddied. It can even be diminished to mere head belief, words on a page, or something we believe for others but not for ourselves. And instead of our Father’s love informing and shaping our wellbeing, we’re influenced by the lies we believe about ourselves. We adopt the words that we, or others, use to put us down. We feed on regret and shame of failure and imperfection. Or we doubt God’s love if we’re nursing broken dreams and unanswered prayers.
The innate love I feel for my daughter, however, is a minutiae glimpse of how God loves you. God who longs for you to know the inward wholeness his love infuses. To be strengthened at the core of your being as you invite him to help you believe and receive it for yourself. To plumb its depths and rise to its heights as you choose to live life in the fullness of God, whose love is immeasurably more than you can imagine[ii].
You are His daughter. Grasp this unchanging truth and don’t let go.
[i] Romans 8:16-17
2 Corinthians 6:18
[ii] Adapted from Ephesians 3:14-20 from The Message