From An Orphan to Adoption into God’s Family

Evelyn Stringer

By the age of 12, I had lost my mother and father to the AIDS virus in Uganda. My aunt, whom I now call my mother, adopted my brothers and I here in the US. Through my earthly adoption and as God continued to reveal himself to me, I’ve come to understand the awesome privilege and new identity that comes from being called a daughter of the Most High God. The Bible says that as a Christian, I was chosen in Him before the foundation of the world, that I should be holy and blameless before Him. In love, God predestined me for adoption through Jesus Christ according to His will (Eph 1:3-6).

An Inheritance Through Adoption

As a Christian, I inherited the Spirit of adoption, which meant that I had a new Father whom I could call “Abba Father!” This signified that I could now have a close, intimate relationship like that of a father with his child. Through adoption, I was an heir of God and fellow heir with Christ (Rom 8:17). As an heir, I have the rights to a great eternal inheritance, which is imperishable, undefiled, and unfading, kept in heaven for me (1 Peter 1:4).

A Loving Father Through Adoption

Through God’s adoption, I have a good and loving father. Unlike my earthly father, this Father does not leave me nor forsake me (Deut 31:6); this Father loves me (1 John 3:1) and nothing can separate me from this love (Rom 8:39); He knew me before I was born (Jer. 1:5); He takes care of me (Matt. 6:32) and He gives good gifts (Matt. 7:11).

A New Identity Through Adoption

Adoption into God’s family also comes with a new identity. Part of being adopted, after my parents passed, was that I took on my new mother’s last name. I had to adhere to the rules of her home; I had to listen and obey her; my cousins were no longer my cousins, I called them my brothers. In the same light, once I was adopted into God’s family, I was under a new loving authority (John 14:23). Through God’s adoption, I now align myself with my brothers and sisters in Christ who do the will of my heavenly father (Matt 12:48-50).

Because I am a child of God, by His grace and mercy, I strive to do the works that please Him. As children of God, we must understand that “it is God who works in you, both to will and to work for his good pleasure” (Phil. 4:13).

A new identity in Christ also means that I no longer identify with my old self. The Bible says that I am a new creation; “the old has passed away; behold, the new has come” (Cor. 5:17). Because of God’s saving grace, I do not identify myself as an unloved, un-forgiven, hopeless and forsaken AIDS orphan. Through God’s adoption, I identify myself as a loved, hopeful, forgiven and cherished daughter of a King. I am part of “a chosen race, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a people for his possession” (1 Peter 2:9). I (who was once dead in my sins) am no longer identified by my sins, but was made alive in Christ. My debt of sin was paid through Christ’s death on the cross. My new identity means that I have friendship with God. (John 15:15)

The adopter always initiates adoption; there was nothing I could do to deserve adoption into God’s Kingdom. It is a free gift of love, mercy, and grace. Yet, through this I am called a daughter of the Living God. I pray that we as Christians would bow in humble adoration to the King of Kings and Lord of Lords because he has chosen to show us his grace by adopting us and calling us his own.

As a Christian, how has the knowledge that you have an inheritance, have a loving father and a new identity in Christ shaped your understanding of your family, your understanding of God’s adoption, acceptance and love?

14 thoughts on “From An Orphan to Adoption into God’s Family

  1. Evelyn

    Thank you – all glory to God

  2. Kwame Anim

    Thanks for putting a smile on my face. Christ is King. Stay Blessed!

  3. Evelyn

    Very insightful. Thank you for your comment

  4. droidrazredge

    This was beautifully written Evelyn. You have truly transpired and become a true woman in the eyes of God. This is what is meant as the sword and armor a Christian must wear and the tribulations and sorrows that might come ones way as we bear witness to the Lamb of God and all his glory. All things are done is his glory “And the God of all grace, who called you to his eternal glory in Christ, after you have suffered a little while, will himself restore you and make you strong, firm and steadfast.” 1 Peter 5:10.

    Keep up the path of righteousness that god has set for you and the true glory of your story will soon become known to you and to the world by gods purpose for you in this life.

    Here are some passages that came to mind when I read this.

    Hebrews 11: Faith in Action

    Now faith is confidence in what we hope for and assurance about what we do not see. 2 This is what the ancients were commended for.

    Hebrews 12:

    Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles. And let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us, 2 fixing our eyes on Jesus,
    the pioneer and perfecter of faith. For the joy set before him he endured the
    cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God.
    3 Consider him who endured such opposition from sinners, so that you will not grow weary and lose heart.

    God Disciplines His Children

    4 In your struggle against sin, you have not yet resisted to the point of shedding your blood. 5 And have you completely forgotten this word of encouragement that addresses you as a father addresses his son? It says, “My son, do not make light of the Lord’s discipline, and do not lose heart when he rebukes you,
    6 because the Lord disciplines the one he loves, and he chastens everyone he accepts as his son.”[a]

    7 Endure hardship as discipline; God is treating you as his children. For what children are not disciplined by their
    father? 8 If you are not disciplined—and everyone undergoes discipline—then you are not legitimate, not true sons and daughters at all. 9 Moreover, we have all had human fathers who disciplined us and we respected them for it. How much more should we submit to the Father of spirits and live! 10 They disciplined us for a little while as they thought best; but God disciplines us for our good, in order that we may share in his holiness. 11 No discipline seems pleasant at the time, but painful. Later on, however, it produces a harvest of righteousness and peace for those who have been trained
    by it.

    12 Therefore, strengthen your feeble arms and weak knees. 13 “Make level paths for your feet,”[b] so that the lame may not be disabled, but
    rather healed. Trials and Temptations

    2 Consider it pure joy, my brothers and sisters,[a] whenever you face trials of many kinds, 3 because you know that the testing of your faith produces perseverance. 4 Let perseverance finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything. 5 If any of you lacks wisdom, you should ask God, who gives generously to all without finding fault, and it will be given to you. 6 But when you ask, you must believe and not doubt, because the one who doubts is like a wave of the sea, blown and tossed by the wind. 7 That person should not expect to receive anything from the Lord. 8 Such a person is double-minded and unstable in all they do.

    9 Believers in humble circumstances ought to take pride in their high position. 10 But the rich should take pride in their humiliation—since they will pass away like a wild flower. 11 For the sun rises with scorching heat and withers the plant; its blossom falls and its beauty is destroyed. In the same way, the rich will fade away even while they go about their business.

    12 Blessed is the one who perseveres under trial because, having stood the test, that person will receive the crown of life that the Lord has promised to those who love him.

    13 When tempted, no one should say, “God is tempting me.” For God cannot be tempted by evil, nor does he tempt anyone; 14 but each person is tempted
    when they are dragged away by their own evil desire and enticed. 15 Then, after desire has conceived, it gives birth to sin; and sin, when it is full-grown, gives birth
    to death.

    16 Don’t be deceived, my dear brothers and sisters. 17 Every good and perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of the heavenly lights, who does not change like shifting shadows. 18 He chose to give us birth through the word of truth, that we might be a kind of firstfruits of all he created.

    Listening and Doing

    19 My dear brothers and sisters, take note of this: Everyone should be quick to listen, slow to speak and slow to become angry, 20 because human anger does
    not produce the righteousness that God desires. 21 Therefore, get rid of all moral filth and the evil that is so prevalent and humbly accept the word planted in you, which can save you.

    22 Do not merely listen to the word, and so deceive yourselves. Do what it says. 23 Anyone who listens to the word but does not do what it says is like someone who looks at his face in a mirror 24 and, after looking at himself, goes away and immediately forgets what he looks like. 25 But whoever looks intentlyinto the perfect law that gives freedom, and continues in it—not forgetting what they have heard, but doing it—they will be blessed in what they do.

    26 Those who consider themselves religious and yet do not keep a tight rein on their tongues deceive themselves, and their religion is worthless.
    27 Religion that God our Father accepts as pure and faultless is this: to look after orphans and widows in their distress and to keep oneself from being polluted by the world.

  5. Evelyn

    Thanks Albert!

  6. Albert Qian

    Love it! This is the start of the telling of your story, Evelyn! The world cannot wait to hear your message. 🙂

  7. Evelyn

    Thank you

  8. John

    Great read & article. All glory to God.

  9. Evelyn

    Thank you Mrs Ellis. All glory to God.

  10. Karen Angela Ellis

    This is a beautiful, Christ centered piece – thanks so much for sharing.

  11. Evelyn

    “We have a freedom to trust, and let go” when we really know we are adopted by a loving father – well said. I’m glad you were blessed by this article.

  12. Meghan Reid

    Beautifully written. This blessed and encouraged me. I
    love how she didn’t lament on about how difficult her circumstances
    were even though she had even right and reason to. Every facet of her
    story was founded on who God is, and who she is in him, defined in his
    Word. She relied solely on the strength of God! I find that to be


    This merits a 5 page essay response, so
    I’ll stick to the first component. Knowing, I mean really knowing we
    have an inheritance (through a loving and eternal father) is the
    ultimate security. When we have a guarantee of Eternal life, and a full
    life in him in which he takes care of us, we are free. We have the
    freedom to trust, and let go. This allows God to be who he is and love
    others through us, which affects every aspect of our relationships. A
    guarantee produces trust, trust produces freedom, and freedom brings

    Thank you for writing this! Your obedience
    to the Lord is clear. How refreshing it is to know we do not have to
    look to the world to tell us who we are!

  13. Evelyn


  14. Dennis Kabuye

    Praise God. Adoption, isn’t that what the gospel is essentially about? Our Lord reigns, praise Him from whom all blessings flow. Soli Deo Gloria!!!!

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