Wednesday, October 5, 2011

A Big Question

Recently as I was putting my 4 year old son down for a nap, I kissed him and said, “I love you.” He said, “I love you, too.” That exchange happens often, but then he asked me a question that stopped me cold.

“Would you love me even if I didn’t love you?”

It was a good question. A big question for anyone to ask of another human being, much less to come from a 4 year old.

I began my answer to my little guy like many parents probably would, "Of course I'd love you! No matter what, I'll always love you, even if you did not love me."

But because we've been in this process to adopt a little girl from Ethiopia for over 2 years, it's something we've talked about for so long that my 4 year old son probably does not remember life before adoption was a regular family topic of conversation, I was also able to illustrate it for him like this, "You know (insert name of our Ethiopian daughter here)? She doesn't love us right now, she doesn't even know we are her family, but we love her, right?"

And oh how we love her! How we desperately want her home with us!

But, we do not love her because she loves us.

We love her because she was created by God in His image and because hers was the picture He predestined to have flash up from an email onto our computer screen that wonderful referral day.

We love her because that is how God first loved us, when we didn't love Him.

"In this the love of God was made manifest among us, that God sent his only Son into the world, so that we might live through him. In this is love, not that we have loved God but that he loved us and sent his Son to be the propitiation for our sins. Beloved, if God so loved us, we also ought to love one another."
1 John 4:9-11

"We love because He first loved us."
1 John 4:19


  1. What a wonderful opportunity to reinforce the unconditional nature of God's love! It's funny how often the questions of our little ones cut right to the heart of a matter.

  2. Amen amen amen! Oh how we love them when they don't even know who we are! Praying for y'all!

  3. I've used this exact same example to my kids. I've tried to prepare them. Though they've known about their soon-to-be brother for a long time, the idea will be totally new to him. I want them to be prepared and not be totally crushed, should he not show any love or like to them for quite some time.

    Great question from your lil 4 year-old!

  4. So sweet! Blessings to you in your effort to adopt. What a blessings!

    Have a wonderful day!

  5. Wow,

    I was so moved by this exchange and your heart. Thank you for living out love, God's love, right in front of us and your little guy. Praying blessings and that God moves mightily to get your daughter safely home. Hugs.


I'd love to hear what you think!