God created Adam out of the dust, then took a rib and created Eve.  In time the two became one, procreating the human race by God’s almighty miracle.   Humans may have different skin colors, physical confirmation, facial profiles, and hair types, but all are a part of one race, the human race.   “…red and yellow, black and white, they are precious in His sight…” the children’s hymn reminds us.  All members of the human race are precious to the Lord who created us all, each for a special purpose.

As with chickens, there is always a pecking order when 2 or more humans are together.  It is our sinful nature.  We naturally want to be at the top, which means others have to be beneath us.   Whether within the small confine of home, or larger world community, the barnyard pecking order morphs into the sinful suppression of other humans, and thus racial prejudice, and pre-judgement of any kind, exists in a fallen world.

As a youth, I grew up in white Christian family, lived in a mostly white upper middle class neighborhood in a small mid-west city, attended mostly white middle class public schools through college, and so was always in the middle of the pecking order.  The middle is the ideal place in my humble opinion, as you aren’t pecked on so much, and you don’t really have to do any pecking yourself.

As an adult, I moved to a major metropolitan area that was more diverse in culture, ethnic, and racial sub-groups.  I made friends with anyone with whom I had something in common, enjoying a rich circle of friends and work colleagues from all backgrounds in God’s human race.  I bought a house in a diverse urban neighborhood, then gained a husband and 6 biological children.  I remained in the middle of the pecking order.

When we moved to our remote farm, as newcomers to the area we were now at the bottom of the pecking order!  I found that the bottom of the pecking order was not a nice place to be!  No friends, no support system, no caring community.  After years of ‘proving’ ourselves to be hard-working, trustworthy, God-fearing people, who would stay in the area for many years and were therefore worthy of friendship, we finally rose to a higher level of status – back into the middle of the pecking order.

When we adopted children transracially, we went to the bottom of the pecking order once again.  Regardless of what color of humans we encountered, we were ensconced at the bottom.  If it was in a group of whites – including family and church – our non-white kids drove us to the bottom.  If it was in a group of color – including our adopted kids birth family relatives – our whiteness drove us to the bottom.  The fact that we were also a large family, home schoolers, conservative Christians, lower middle class farmers, with adopted children, also kept us at the bottom.  None of these lifestyle choices are what contemporary media culture sets as the standard for life in today’s world. 

When we adopt children, our place in the pecking order of our familial and social circles does change.  We need to accept that as fact, and learn to deal with it.  We need to look to the Lord for guidance and comfort as we deal with this new set of circumstances surrounding our obedience to adopt and care for the Lord’s orphans.

I am comforted by the thought that Jesus Christ, our Lord and Savior, was at the bottom of the pecking order.  He thrived there!  He came alongside of prostitutes, sinners, thieves, even those who wanted to kill him.  His place in the pecking order didn’t change who He was or what He accomplished. 

Pecking order based on racism, economic status, belief system, or even family size, doesn’t matter in the grand scheme of God’s universe and His plan for the human race.  We may face being at the bottom of the pecking order everyday as adoptive families, but Jesus walks through it with us.  In the end, when we spend eternity in Christ’s kingdom with the little ones we adopted into our family, there will be no pecking order.

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