I recently applied for my daughter’s first passport. No big deal, millions of people have a passport.
However as an adopted child, it is a big deal because it raises issues of identity.
Who is she?
Who are her parents?
Where does she legally have a right to reside?
After all the court applications for her adoption and all the administrators we have encountered in the last 12 months (who really do not seem to get adoption), I was a little apprehensive.
First question – name
Star’s first name has always been the same, it was about the only thing that has not changed in her life. When we legally adopted her, she legally gained our last name. Her entry into the birth register was altered and a new adoption certificate produced. In place of her birth parents names are our names, our occupations and our places of birth. We gave her a new middle name, because both of our birth children have names reflecting our faith in the God of the Bible.
Hannah is named after a lady who cried out to God for a baby. She was misunderstood by the one person who should have accepted and helped her (Eli the priest thought she was drunk) and tormented by her husband’s other (fertile) wife. God answered her prayer and she was faithful to the promise she made. Her son Samuel was God’s faithful servant from his early days for his entire life.
Ben is named Benjamin – much loved son. Which is quite simply true of our lovely little man.
Star’s new middle name is given because of a lady in the book of Acts. Dorcas was a good lady who helped the poor. She died and then was brought back to life by Peter. We gave Star this middle name, as a prayer and a thanks, that God has given her a second chance at life. We pray that having been adopted in our family, she will one day be adopted into his.
Okay, next ….date and place of birth. I know these, (but I was not there).
Next…. right to a U.K. passport. As someone born in England, this is not really something I have ever considered. I guess day to day it isn’t important, but it becomes essential if you want to leave the country or return home. For the purposes of a passport you have to prove you are entitled to be a citizen of the country. This may be dependent on where you were born, or where your parents or grandparents were born.
The residency status of the adopted parent determines the rights of the child.
I am a citizen of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland. I am proud to be a Brit (most of the time.)
However I am also a citizen of another country, of heaven.
You to not need a physical passport to enter heaven, but if you did. My heavenly passport application would look something like this:
Name : My name, no need for ID number or anything else. The Good shepherd knows me by name, he has counted the hairs on my head.
Date of birth – my Lord knows this, he also knows my date of death and all the days in between because he has numbered them
Father – God, creator of heaven and earth
Right to residency in heaven, for eternity- the precious blood of Jesus
My right as an adopted child to enter heaven is based entirely on the status of my adoptive father and my adoption was made possible by the blood of Jesus.
And a few days after I made the application her new passport arrived. No questions, no further explanation required, no misunderstanding. The legal adoption order changed her status permanently. We are her parents. She is legally ours.
And I am eternally HIS.