There Is No End To A Father’s Love

My heart is breaking for Steven Curtis Chapman this morning.

His daughter Maria, just five years old, was struck and killed in Chapman’s driveway yesterday afternoon.  According to the Tennessean, the SUV that struck the little girl was driven by Chapman’s teenage son.  He never saw her.

I’ve always felt a bond with Chapman, and not just because he was a proponent of international adoption.  We met him and his wife MaryBeth at an event for our the adoption agency that helped our kids come home, and they were as warm and personable as could be.  It was obvious that Steven had that incredible, deep abiding love for his children, and he understood the joys and challenges of raising a child who was born on the other side of the world.

There are many misconceptions about adoption, especially international adoption.  Please do not think that the pain is any less for Chapman because Maria was not his biological offspring.  I can tell you that the sought-after child holds a place in your heart that you can never get back.

My daughter has recently become a daddy’s girl (finally!), and with every hug and “I love you”, the thought of losing her becomes more and more inconceivable to me.  I cannot help but to weep at the mere thought.

I pray that Steven Curtis Chapman can feel the loving embrace of his Heavenly Father in this awful, awful time.  One thing adoptive fathers understand instinctively is that no child is ‘ours’ – they belong to God, and only come under our care for a while.  She is back with Him today, and I pray that Steven can find at least a small measure of solace from that knowledge.

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4 Responses to “There Is No End To A Father’s Love”

  1. cschellenberg Says:

    Listen when you have the chance – –

    God bless,
    Chris
    http://chrisschellenberg.com/

  2. Katherine Coble Says:

    Please do not think that the pain is any less for Chapman because Maria was not his biological offspring

    Why on earth would anyone even begin to think that?

    Why on earth would the circumstances of her birth matter at all in this time of her death?

  3. Slartibartfast Says:

    You would be amazed, Kat, at some of the things we’ve heard over the years.

    I’s almost as if people’s IQ goes down when confronted with a situation they aren’t used to.

    I’ll never forget the person who aked us, in front of our infant son, if he spoke English.

    Believe it or not, here in 2008, people till use the term “real parents” when speaking about birth-parents.

    That being said, I hope you’re right.

  4. Katherine Coble Says:

    When I was a kid I used to always ask my dad about his real mom and dad. (That’s how I’d phrase it.) He never corrected me, as he never corrects anyone because as he puts it–in his lawyerly way–“parent” is a vague noun and one of its definitions is “the sire of a child” so it’s not necessarily wrong, from a legalistic standpoint to enquire about the “real” parents with the understanding that the term “real parents” is meant to apply to genetic forebears. (And yes, I got this speech when I was about six. That may tell you something about how and where I grew up.)

    Now what makes my father bristle, oddly enough, is when people say that he was not his mother’s “real son”. I think it’s just a mental thing with him because “son” has the same legalistic definition as “parent”.

    Anyway, sorry. Got off on a tangent there.

    I will admit though that given the sort of, er, interesting folks on my dad’s side of the family that he often claims his adoptive status with a sense of pride or something. I think it helps him cope with the various black sheep he has for siblings, nieces and nephews. (Three drug addicts, one child molester, one 800lb man caught masturbating in public with a bag over his head to protest the closing of our local dirty movie theatre, etc.)

    Of course having now met the birth family and all those relatives years later I can say that…oh, no I can’t. They just aren’t near as frotzed up as my dad’s family. Unless you count the whole “man rapes his sister in law repeatedly, two resulting children given up for adoption” story as a frotzedupness.


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