This was a “sermonette” shared at our wedding 5 years ago today and I find it as powerful today as I did then. What is ironic is that we ended up adopting our daughter! I wonder Who it was that really planned this message! And of course, some of our wedding pics thrown in!
Our Marriage & Adoption
John & Jamee, in few moments you are going to be announced as a married couple.
Jamee, as a part of that process, you are going to take on a new name, you will take John’s last name as your own.
That is an important part of the ceremony because in essence, by taking his name that means you are taking upon yourself the heritage he has and you’re joining together adds to that heritage and it expands that heritage.
A few other times in life show people taking upon themselves a new name.
One of those is adoption. When a child is adopted into a family, they take on a new name when the adoption is official. Our church has a lot of people who have foster children, but adoption is one step beyond.
A foster child is a child who is in a parental custody, yet the new parent does not have complete control of the child, nor complete responsibility for that child. But when adoption takes place, everything changes. The name, the home, the future, even the past changes somewhat.
Why I am talking about adoption at a wedding?
Why I am spending so much time talking about the name change of the ceremony?
Quite honestly, it is because several years ago, John and Jamee each took upon them another name change, a more important name change.
For John that came in 1999, 6 years ago.
For Jamee that came in 1998, 7 years ago
What happened on those dates and times? Those are the instance where John and Jamee were adopted, not my earthly family, but by God.
3Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us in the heavenly realms with every spiritual blessing in Christ. 4For he chose us in him before the creation of the world to be holy and blameless in his sight. In love 5he predestined us to be adopted as his sons through Jesus Christ, in accordance with his pleasure and will—6to the praise of his glorious grace, which he has freely given us in the One he loves. 7In him we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of sins, in accordance with the riches of God’s grace 8that he lavished on us with all wisdom and understanding. 9And he made known to us the mystery of his will according to his good pleasure, which he purposed in Christ, 10to be put into effect when the times will have reached their fulfillment—to bring all things in heaven and on earth together under one head, even Christ. Eph. 1:3-10
John and Jamee will become of the same name today, M***, but they have been of the same name, a believer in Jesus Christ, a Christian, for many years.
Why is that important to share with you today?
1. In Christ we find forgiveness –
2. In Christ we find redemption – that simply means we find grace, an undeserved gift, that changes us, it means we must change but for a good reason.
3. Through Christ’s taking us in – we can become blameless in his sight.
How does this all happen? How do we find the hope, this peace, this joy, this forgiveness and become an adopted member of God’s family and accept the grace and forgiveness of God?
7In him we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of sins, in accordance with the riches of God’s grace 8that he lavished on us with all wisdom sand understanding. Ephesians 1: 7-8
The blood of Christ – the sacrifice, the plan of God unveiled and revealed for you and I.
I realize this is a wedding, but at John and Jamee’s request I want you to know that tonight, following the service, if you don’t have that forgiveness, if you have not been adopted into God’s family, then please understand the beauty of being a part of God’s family. It is a gift like no other and one that no one else will give….
What is your name today? If the Christian cannot be added to your name, make it so today.
For God, so loved the world that he gave his one and only son, that whosoever belief in him will not perish but will have everlasting life.
God, John and Jamee will take a joint name as M*** today, but their biggest joy is being called a Christian, a believer in Jesus Christ, he has adopted us into his family forever.
May that be true of everyone in this place tonight?