Thursday, March 4, 2010

I, (State your name), am a recovering orphan, Part III

Be sure to check yesterday's post for Part II

I’m reminded of one of my favorite movies…The Martian Child. I’ll never forget the scene when Dennis (the orphan John Cusack’s character, David, is seeking to adopt), accidentally breaks something on Cusack’s desk. Dennis gets REALLY upset and asks “David” if he is going to send him back…”because he was bad.”

Hmmmm, sounds similar to my friend’s story (the story from yesterday's's a Blog Mini-series...sorry!)

Actually, sounds similar to a LOT of my friends’ stories…not my “friends that have adopted children” stories…but my FRIENDS’ stories…

Actually, sounds similar to MY story…

One of the tragedies of the Fall of humanity into sin is that we adopted (ironic word I know) an orphan mentality. What’s an orphan mentality? Let me try to explain by referencing yet another movie…

In the movie “Millions” a young boy, Damien, finds lots of cash hidden by thieves. Somehow they discover Damien has the money and they ransack his house. When he and his dad come home one night Damien tells his dad about the money…which the thieves never found. Damien’s dad is planning on keeping the money, especially since his house has been ransacked. Damien tells his dad it’s wrong…Damien’s dad disagrees that it is wrong to keep the money, then delivers a key line as to why he thinks this way:

Damien’s dad says, “There’s no one looking out for us, Damien, so we’re going to look out for ourselves.”

Wow…now THAT is an orphan mentality.

And THAT is often my mentality.

I have a Father in heaven who loves me, cares for me and promises me all I need…but when I refuse to believe that…I act and live as an orphan.

And it affects EVERYTHING.

How I feel. How I react to circumstances. How I respond to others…EVERYTHING.

Some of us get easily defensive…it is our orphan mentality fearing exposure, rejection.

Some of us are very demanding…it is our orphan mentality fearing scarcity…there’s not enough to go around, there’s no one looking out for me, so I need to look out for myself…after all, it’s a dog-eat-dog world.

Some of us are filled with coping mechanisms of self-protection…it is our orphan mentality telling us, “leave them before they leave you…don’t allow yourself to get into a situation where you might experience loss.”

Some of us are afraid to risk…it is our orphan mentality leading us to fear losing the love and respect of our “family.”

Some of us are performers…it is our orphan mentality telling us the only reason we’re accepted and have a “family” is because we are coming through for others…if we fail, we’ll be rejected and alone. Show no weakness, or else…

Some of us are control freaks…it is our orphan mentality telling us that there is no one we can trust but ourselves.

Some of us are approval-addicts or people-pleasers…we are virtual chameleons, adapting to our environment, becoming whatever and whomever we sense the people around us want us to be…it is our orphan mentality telling us that if we want to belong, we can’t be ourselves, we can’t be real, we can’t be transparent.

Again...this "orphan mentality" is clearly a result of our brokenness, fallenness...and it's such an issue that God addresses it continually in the New Testament through all the Biblical teaching on "adoption." Do a word study, word'll be amazed...but just for today...Read Ephesians 1 and Romans 8.

...One more thing...try to live as a beloved son/daughter IN Christ today.

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