“How come I don’t look like the other Israelite kids?” asked nine-year-old Jamie to his parents.
“Jamie,” his father said tenderly. “We need to talk.”
Jamie wasn’t the first child to ask his parents this difficult question. For centuries, children all across christendom have realized that even though they are considered Abraham’s seed, they look an awful lot like gentiles.
Many parents struggle with knowing how and when they should tell their child that they were adopted into the House of Israel. The conversation doesn’t need to be difficult. In fact, in can be an enriching teaching moment.
One mother, Dianne Kingsley, said of the experience, “Though I was initially very nervous about telling my son that he was adopted, I went ahead and did it. Apparently he already had his suspicions. Through tears we were able to talk about the adoption process, and he even mentioned how he would like to have his own kids adopted into Israel one day.”
When talking to your child about Israelite adoption, it is important to constantly reaffirm your love and concern. Adopted children sometimes want to understand why they were given away in the first place. Discussing the Abrahamic Covenant with your child will help reassure them that before they were formed in the womb, they were known and were subsequently chosen in the furnace of affliction and bought with a price.
While each situation is unique, experts recommend explaining Israelite adoption process to your child when they are about eight years of age.