Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Counting the cost

As per the discussion that has been going on, I feel the need the share how important it is that we COUNT the COST as we step forward and obey the calling to adopt. Following Jesus will never be easy, we have that as a promise in 1 Peter chapter 4.

" So if you are suffering in a manner that pleases God, keep on doing what is right, and trust your lives to God who created you, for He will never fail you." v. 19

And again in chapter 5 we read,

"In His kindness God called you to share in His eternal glory by means of Christ Jesus. So after you have SUFFERED a little while, He will restore, support and strengthen you." v. 10

Suffering is inevitable, however, Christ's love and strength will never fail us.

This afternoon, while the kids played happily outside, and I sat reading my Bible in the warm Ugandan sunshine, the Holy Spirit prompted me to read Jeremiah 11-12. Chapter 12 verse 5 spoke deep into my heart,

"If racing against mere men makes you tired, how will you race against horses? If you stumble and fall on open ground, what will you do on the thickects near the Jordan?"

I beleive the Lord is asking you and I the same questions.

Please, before taking a child into your home, COUNT THE COST. This is more than feeding a mouth, clothing a body and kissing a boo-boo, this is about a precious soul.


Jim and April said...

thank you for this! It reminded me of a verse I just read this morning too, Romans 8:15-17 ~ For you did not receive a spirit that makes you a slave again to fear, but you received the Spirit of adoption.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."

~the part about sharing in His sufferings but also in his glory is what reminded me of what you were talking about!

sasha parker said...

I just wrote that same thing in my journal this morning. " Consider the cost" I was reading about when Jesus called James, John, Peter and Andrew. Jesus called them to abandon everything, they had just had their most successful fishing day ever! They chose to follow him
It was a reminder to me of always being prepared to follow him. Even when it does not make sense.
We leave in 4 days for Ethiopia to adopt our 6 yr old daughter! We have 4 bio kids and a 15mth old we adopted last year.
I love your blog Summer, your heart for the orphan and for the Lord!! Sasha

Melissa said...

Part 1

I have been avoiding comment, because I know my ideas are radical.

For instance, when scripture (which I believe to be infallible and inspired word of God) tells me that God hates divorce, and Jesus Himself said it was only permitted because of our foolish and stubborn hearts, when I read that...I get that God HATES divorce, and as such, I should avoid it at all costs. Praying instead, that God would bring redemption and healing into my marriage, trusting that He will.

I did and He has.

Does He always.

No, He hasn't saved every marriage.

But was that because He didn't want to?

Or because the husband and/or wife really didn't want Him to? In the deep recess of their heart, they themselves knew that in order to save the marriage, they must change. They must give up. They must die.

I agree with you, we should count the cost before we adopt.

It will be difficult, it will be painful, there will be manifold tears. There will be an enemy seeking to thwart all we do. All the while whispering in our ears that it is not worth it. That the child is damaged beyond repair. That we could never love them like we should. Maybe He has even said, that the child belongs to him and not the Lord....and that you should just let them go now.

All lies, from the enemy of our souls. Who only wants to devour and destroy.

Jesus however, wants to bring life. He tells us that life is found in Him. In dying to ourselves and finding true life in Him. His death brings life. The hope we have in Him should give us courage to do the impossible.

Sometimes that impossible thing is loving a child, not yours by birth, into the arms of Jesus.

Melissa said...

Part 2u

I would submit that perhaps (and believe me when I say I include myself in this) we falter in our calling as Christians, because we did not first count the cost of following Christ.

Yes, I wanted redemption. I wanted a way out of my sin and shame. I wanted a better way. I wanted heaven and all the other gifts God so graciously lavished upon us.

But did I count the cost?

Did I miss it when He said I must lay down my life for Him?

Did I miss it when He said I must spend my self in service to Him, by serving others?

Did I miss it when He said I should preach His gospel to my death, and that surly many would wish to bring that death upon me?

Did I miss it when He said that I would need to forsake father , mother, child, sister, and brother in pursuit of that service to Him?

Did I miss it when He said I would have many trials and much suffering?

There have been times when I KNOW I have been disobedient because of fear of man.

I must have missed it when He told me not to fear, because He is with me. and if He is for me what can man do to me?

Many times I have done what I know I ought not do, and vise versa, and used my children as an excuse. They will be in danger Lord, I must protect them.

Forgetting His protection is enough.

Forgetting my calling. Selling my heritage for a mess of pottage.

Forgetting that He just might have something to teach my children though my obedience. That He might be using my trials and pain to shape them and mold them in to people who see that following the Lord no matter the a life worth living. All else is vain and empty.

Alas, I live in this fallen world. In this body of flesh, Where I am at war daily. I do the things that I don't want to do and I don't do the things I want to. In this body of death I have been made alive in Christ. He has told me how to have victory. I am to remain in Him and He will remain in me. I am to walk by the spirit and not by the flesh. Putting to death the deeds of the flesh, and abound in the fruit of the spirt. Prepared for battle, with the whole armor of God upon me.

In Him is my victory.

In Him, following His word, even when all around me screams it is worthless....hopeless. Then and only then, I believe will we see the power of God unleashed in our lives and the lives of our children.

I truly believe we don't see the miracles of old, because we don't believe and we rely too much on ourselves and our own strength and power.

Melissa said...

Part 3

His call is radical.

We should count the cost.

Come to me and die, He says.

I am not to worry about my life, or the lives of those around me, except to feed them, clothe them, give them drink, give them the living water of Jesus. I am to be His hands and feet, following the example He set before me when He became flesh and walked among us.

He loved unto death.

He served unto death.

He prayed and trusted daily.

He fulfilled His calling.

He has given me His Spirit so that I may do the same.

The question always remains, every minute of every day

Will I?

Sometimes when life stuffs in front of me a situation that makes me count the cost

I say no. I say the cost is too great, the price to high. The pain unbearable.

My Lord and Savior is so gracious. He loving takes my face in His hands, and turns it ever so lovingly toward the cross.

Indeed the price is high.

It is then that He reminds me that He is WITH ME.

and His reward is great.

For Jesus Himself, is my reward.

Melissa said...

Sorry, I had to post in three parts. I used to many words for blogger.

Mama in Uganda said...


Are you my long lost "kindred spirit?" Amen, amen, amen and amen. Thanks so much for sharing the heart of Christ.

Adeye said...

This is EXACTLY right, my friend. We HAVE to count the cost. He paid the ULTIMATE price for us! The cost we count seems so small, so insignificant in comparison. If Jesus is our role-model (which he IS), then why aren't we TRULY living a life as He did? We have strayed so far, dear friend. We are all about ME ME ME, not HIM HIM HIM!

I know my feelings on this are probably radical and tend to offend a few, but God said it and I believe it--"LET YOUR YES BE YES!" If the Word says it, I believe it. It is non-negotiable. As Christians, we tend to find little 'loopholes' and 'way-outs' way too easily.

It was NEVER meant to be easy. Ever!

Counting the cost right there with you.

Please pray for us--we are trying to make a huge decision! Trusting the Lord to lead and guide us.

Love you :)

Jim and April said...

Hey! Just wanted to let you know we have our new official adoption blog up and running! Feel free to subscribe and follow along with us on our journey of bringing home our first child from Uganda, Africa!

Janet said...

It is ABSOLUTELY a precious soul! We have had our struggles with Adam, a much-wounded little man. His soul is still healing and will most likely take much longer to heal. Sometimes it can feel that the cost was too much. ANd then I remember.....did Christ think the cost was too great for us? No, absolutely not. ANd I look at those beautiful, brown eyes, that still can't always trust me and I remember that I MUST be patient with my little man. His soul has been wounded deeper than I would probably care to know and I am praying with with constant love and prayer, that God will heal him. How long will is take? No idea. How long will I do it? Infinitely.