Fostering an Adoption Mindset

Adoption MindsetI won’t pretend to even begin to say I know what it is like growing up in the foster care system. I’ve had friends and even some family members who tell stories of what it’s like when you’re on the receiving end of being a foster kid in the system and longing for the day you will have a “forever home.” In fact, many can’t even relate to the concept of having a forever home because they’ve been bounced around from place to place, and family to family. You’re always in a state of flux and you’re always bracing yourself for when the rug is going to be pulled out from beneath you.

When I was younger my grandparents fostered a sister and brother and they fought like mad to be able to adopt them. These particular children were my age and I had grown to love them like my own sister and a brother. When the fateful day came for them to be reassigned, it devastated our family because we had grown to accept them and were willing to adopt them as our own flesh and blood, but the “System” wasn’t having it. The tears streamed down all our faces. It was one of the saddest days of my childhood. The relationships we had quite literally “fostered” were abruptly and tragically ended. In the words of Little Orphan Annie, “It’s a hard-knock life,” don’t even begin to describe the nightmarish life of these children.

While we all may not be able to relate to the hardships of foster life, there’s a generation out there right now that lives this kind of life in a constant state of spiritual, emotional, and relational flux; always bracing themselves for the next big break-up. We get bounced from broken relationship to broken relationship, longing for stability, love, and a forever home. But friends, in this world, it’s just not meant to be. God did not send His only begotten Son just to scoop up a bunch of foster kids. Christ came that He could adopt us all!

Herein lies the distinction. Christ doesn’t just want to be a foster parent. He doesn’t expect His church to just be a foster family. And, He’s certainly not in the market for relationships that come and go. God is committed to being your forever Father. He wants His Church to be your forever family, and He most certainly wants Heaven to be your Forever Home.

This world, at best, can only offer to be your foster parent, but Jesus wants to adopt you into the Family of God through His supreme sacrifice at Calvary. He paid the dearest price to ensure you were not only adopted but that you become an heir with Him for Eternity.

In the grand scheme of things, being adopted may not sound like the optimal outcome for children in this life. Some grow to feel their birth parents abandoned them. So Christ takes it one step farther. He not only adopts us, He allows us to be “born into this family” through His Death, Burial and Resurrection, we become the Sons and Daughters of God!

This is bigger than “foster-care” or adoption; this is about a New Birth experience, where your old life is buried with Christ, and you arise to become a New Creation in Him as well. Your old life is passed away, and all things are made new!

Ephesians 1:3 – 6, “Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who hath blessed us with all spiritual blessings in heavenly places in Christ: 4 According as he hath chosen us in him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and without blame before him in love: 5 Having predestinated us unto the adoption of children by Jesus Christ to himself, according to the good pleasure of his will, 6 To the praise of the glory of his grace, wherein he hath made us accepted in the beloved.”

“Serminutes” – Sermon in a Minute.  One Minute Inspirational Sermonettes, Devotionals, and Sermon Ideas for Busy Christians, Pastors, Teachers, and Bible Students!  Visit our ABOUT PAGE  for details on what exactly that is. Thank you for visiting today! May the Lord richly bless you.  ~ RD Mangold

Big Lessons in Small Packages – Pray vs. Prey

Let all bitterness, and wrath, and anger, and clamour, and evil speaking, be put away from you, with all malice: 32And be ye kind one to another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, even as God for Christ’s sake hath forgiven you. Ephesians 4:31 – 32

One day while I was waiting for the light to change, a brown blur of feathers entered the intersection. Three sparrows were entangled in what resembled a World War II “dogfight.” Tragically, the embittered birds were so engulfed in warfare they never saw the vehicle that seconds later wiped out all three combatants in one fell swoop.

The analogy was inescapable. The misguided birds were so fixated on attacking each other they all lost their lives. Paul warned us, For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places (Eph. 6:12).

Our enemy is NOT each other! Satan is our foe, and a defeated one at that! He wants to destroy all hope of you spending eternity with Christ. But, “Ye are of God, little children, and have overcome them: because greater is he that is in you, than he that is in the world (I John 4:4).

Let brotherly love continue, building up rather than attacking each other. Let’s stop “warring” against each other or the enemy of our souls could easily destroy us “unawares!”

Sparrows are NOT birds of prey. Likewise, we should pray for, not prey on, each other.

Related Topics

“Serminutes” – Sermon in a Minute.  One Minute Spiritual Sermonettes and Sermon Ideas  for Busy Christians, Pastors, Teachers, and Bible Students!  Visit our ABOUT PAGE  for details on what exactly that is. Thank you for visiting today! May the Lord richly bless you.  Rev. RD Mangold

Weakness = Perfect Strength (Part 2 of 2)

Finally, my brethren, be strong in the Lord, and in the power of his might. Ephesians 6:10

Weakness reveals areas where strength is needed. Later, as weaknesses are revealed, those that are wise build support around those areas of their life, shoring them up and guarding them, where others hide them or behind them. Of course, try as we may, hiding our weaknesses from God is futile.

Our strength is imperfect, where God’s strength is perfect when we allow Him full reign. See, God can use our weaknesses to better reveal deeper facets of His Grace and Mercy. Rather than curse our weaknesses, we should glorify in them as the Apostle Paul in 2 Corinthians 12:9…Most gladly therefore will I rather glory in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon me.

Rather than hide from them, or behind them, Paul allowed the sources of weakness; his embarrassment, shame, and perhaps even his past, to be a source of glory, not that he was proud of them, but rather than bring him down, Paul allowed those “flaws” to remind him, and others, as long as they were there, Christ’s power was resting upon him, as if to say, Paul had Christ’s undivided attention.

If you are weak, stop hiding behind, or even from your flaws; allow God’s infinite omnipotent power to equip you in every way possible to overcome your weakness and become strong, not in your power or might, but in the Lord’s!

Link to Part 1 – Weakness = Perfect Strength

“Serminutes” – Sermon in a Minute. A one minute spiritual pick-me-up for busy Christians!  Visit this POST for details on what exactly that is. Thank you for visiting today! May the Lord richly bless you. Rodger Mangold

No Free Rides When You're Running from God

Now the word of the LORD came unto Jonah the son of Amittai, saying, 2Arise, go to Nineveh, that great city, and cry against it; for their wickedness is come up before me. 3But Jonah rose up to flee unto Tarshish from the presence of the LORD, and went down to Joppa; and he found a ship going to Tarshish: so he paid the fare thereof, and went down into it, to go with them unto Tarshish from the presence of the LORD. Jonah 1:1-3

In Isaiah 55:11 God declared regarding His Word, “it shall accomplish that which I please, and it shall prosper in the thing whereto I sent it.” How is it we think our plans supersede God’s? Jonah was foolish enough to think he could outrun God’s command to arise and cry against Nineveh. In all actuality, when we run from God it’s going to cost us dearly, and Jonah indeed “paid the fare thereof” and it was more than he was willing to pay…

  • He paid the fare for the ship ride to Tarshish
  • He paid in toiling on the stormy seas
  • He paid for 3 days and nights in the belly of the giant fish

Ironically, like Jonah we utilize more energy running from God than we would simply performing the actual assignment God tasked us with!

The shipmaster rightfully called Jonah O Sleeper.”  Jonah needed to be awakened from his self-centeredness and pride to complete His God-given mission as do we. Awake thou that sleepest,” because Jesus called us to preach the gospel to every living creature…if not, the fare may be more than we’re willing to pay!

There are no free rides when you’re running from God!

“Serminutes” – Sermon in a Minute. A one minute spiritual pick-me-up for busy Christians!  Visit this POST for details on what exactly that is. Thank you for visiting today! May the Lord richly bless you. Rodger Mangold

The Secret to the Redwood's Majesty

The northern California coast plays host to the world’s tallest and most majestic tree; The Redwood. Known for their enormous height and beauty, the secret to the strength of this giant can be traced to its extensive root system. Towering up to 350 feet, the Redwood’s root system is surprisingly shallow. Buried no deeper than 6 to 10 feet below these skyscrapers, you will find a convoluted network that travels for miles beyond each individual tree to intertwine into a sophisticated root system. With a lifespan of nearly 2000 years and each tree weighing nearly 500 tons, the success and longevity of this kingly tree is a direct result of the tapestry of interwoven roots that connect with other Redwoods. 

Despite having shallow roots in the sandy soil of California; these trees have survived for centuries not independently but collectively. The Apostle Paul stated we are members of one body. If we think we can survive in isolation, we’re wrong. As Christians our survival depends on our ability to band together until “we all come in the unity of faith.” (Eph. 4:13 

Let us take to heart the lesson the Redwoods teach us; united we stand and divided we fall.

Redwood Ecology – California Stateparks (Link)

“Serminutes” – Sermon in a Minute. A one minute spiritual pick-me-up for busy Christians!  Visit this POST for details on what exactly that is. Thank you for visiting today! May the Lord richly bless you. Rodger Mangold

"Timely" Advice from our Biblical Ancestors

Time is priceless yet it costs us nothing.

You can do anything you want with it, but you can’t own it.

You can spend it, but you can’t keep it.

And, once you’ve lost it there’s no getting it back.

Our biblical ancestors have some “timely” advice for us…

  • David resigned himself to the fact his “times” were in God’s hands. (Psalm 31:15)
  • Queen Esther convinced she had come to the kingdom “for such a time as this,” risked execution to save her people, siting, “if I perish, I perish!” (Esther 4:14)
  • James postulates our lives are just a vapor appearing for just a “little time.” (James 4:14)
  • Paul admonished the Ephesians to “redeem the time, because the days are evil.” (Ephesians 5:16)

Only God occupies all space and time…we don’t! Our days are numbered. If you’re delaying your decision and postponing your purpose, remember, you’re not guaranteed tomorrow. Don’t wait any longer! God can do more with what’s left of your life than everything you’ve accomplished up to this point!

No one knows the day nor the hour of Christ’s return. We must be ready at a moment’s notice…He came for someone today!

“Serminutes” – Sermon in a Minute. A one minute spiritual pick-me-up for busy Christians!  Visit this POST for details on what exactly that is. Thank you for visiting today! May the Lord richly bless you. Rodger Mangold

Big Lessons in Small Packages – The Tongue (Verbal Bullying)

Even so the tongue is a little member, and boasts great things. Behold, how great a matter a little fire kindles! James 3:5-12

As kids, when bullies called us names, our standard retort was, “Sticks and stones may break my bones, but words will never hurt me!”  Those words, while meant to volley back against insults, often fell on the deaf ears. According to the School Bullying Council, every day some 160,000 students stay home from school afraid of bullies. With the advent of social networking, there has been an increase in teens committing suicide because of “words” posted on sites like Facebook by “cyber-bullies.” Yes, when taken to heart words can hurt…even kill.

Paul described these “verbal bullies” as “tattlers also and busybodies, speaking things which they ought not (I Tim. 5:13).” Our words can be as sharp and cutting as any dagger. How tragic would it be, if as Christians we were guilty of bullying fellow Christians? Not physically, but verbally and mentally, isolating them from the body of believers cutting them off from their source of vital spiritual strength. We’re all admonished to “Let no corrupt communication proceed out of your mouth, but that which is good to the use of edifying, that it may minister grace unto the hearers.” (Eph. 4:29)…Oh be careful little tongue what you say!


“Serminute” Series – Big Lessons in Small Packages

“Serminutes” – Sermon in a Minute. A one minute spiritual pick-me-up for busy Christians!  Visit this POST for details on what exactly that is. Thank you for visiting today! May the Lord richly bless you. Rodger Mangold

Big Lessons in Small Packages – The Spider

24 There are four things which are little upon the earth, but they are exceeding wise: 25 The ants…26 The conies…27 The locusts…28 The spider takes hold with her hands, and is in kings’ palaces. (Proverbs 30:24 – 28)

Afraid of them or not, spiders are found virtually everywhere. The artistry of her web is a microscopic engineering marvel, with intricately woven designs it’s a fusion of both form and function. A well spun web provides her inconspicuous hiding places, well out of the reach of would-be “smooshers!”

Her wisdom lies not in the teamwork of the ant or locust, nor in the ability to scurry to safety like the rabbit. Hers is the ability to “take hold” when others let go, gaining her V.I.P. access to royal palaces! The spider’s web “connects” her to her food, her nest, and to a secure structure. As Christians, our survival depends on our ability to “connect” our spiritual food, God’s Word, to our nest or family life, and “taking hold” to a secure structure, God’s Church. The spider’s web connects her to higher heights, so too will our ability to “connect” enable us to sit “together in heavenly places” in Christ (Eph. 2:6).

“Serminute” Series – Big Lessons in Small Packages

“Serminutes” – Sermon in a Minute. A one minute spiritual pick-me-up for busy Christians!  Visit this POST for details on what exactly that is. Thank you for visiting today! May the Lord richly bless you. Rodger Mangold

My History Became HIS Story

Featuring Guest Author Sis. Marjorie Kinnee

Wonder of wonders, Amazing Grace,

That Jesus in love would die in my place;

Marvelous mystery that ALL my past history

Should become HIS story! To God be all glory!

(See Ephesians 2:4-7.)

For more by Marjorie Kinnee visit her blog at http://phebeblog.blogspot.com/

Special thanks and congratulations to Sis. Kinnee on her first of what we hope to be many more “Serminutes.” – Rodger

“Serminutes” – Sermon in a Minute. A one minute spiritual pick-me-up for busy Christians!  Visit this POST for details on what exactly that is. Thank you for visiting today! May the Lord richly bless you. Rodger Mangold