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I AM CONFUSED ABOUT MY IDENTITY: Online Adoptee Bible Study

Who Am I, Anyway?

Is it any wonder that many adoptees and foster kids struggle with their identity? Two sets of parents? To whom do I belong? And, what do I get from whom?

Moses also struggled, so take heart, friends.

The Scripture Base for Moses’ Life

Exodus 3:1-6

 1 Now Moses was tending the flock of Jethro his father-in-law, the priest of Midian, and he led the flock to the far side of the wilderness and came to Horeb, the mountain of God. 2 There the angel of the LORD appeared to him in flames of fire from within a bush. Moses saw that though the bush was on fire it did not burn up. 3 So Moses thought, “I will go over and see this strange sight—why the bush does not burn up.”  4 When the LORD saw that he had gone over to look, God called to him from within the bush, “Moses! Moses!” And Moses said, “Here I am.” 5 “Do not come any closer,” God said. “Take off your sandals, for the place where you are standing is holy ground.” 6 Then he said, “I am the God of your father, the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac and the God of Jacob.” At this, Moses hid his face, because he was afraid to look at God. 

The Story of Moses 

One lonely night when Moses was tending the flock of Jethro, his father-in-law, he led the sheep to the far side of the desert and came to the mountain of God. All of a sudden, a blazing light broke the darkness. “There the angel of the Lord appeared to him in flames of fire from within a blazing bush” (3:2). 

Moses stopped dead in his tracks with his eyes fixed on the burning bush. “Why is it so bright? Why doesn’t the scraggly little thing burn up? Why don’t the shooting flames extinguish?” he may have asked himself. 

“I will go over and see this strange sight—why the bush does not burn up” Moses said to himself (v. 3). When the Lord saw that he was coming to check it out, he called to him from within the bush, “Moses. Moses”(v. 4)! “Here I am,” Moses said, wondering where the voice was coming from (v. 4b). “Do not come any closer. Take off your sandals, for the place you are standing is holy ground” (v. 5). “Holy ground?” Moses may have said, furrowing his brows. “WHAT is holy ground?” “I am the God of your father, the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac and the God of Jacob” (v. 6). 

“The God of my father?” Moses may have said. “Which father? My birth father or my adoptive father? I get so confused whenever family heritage is discussed.” 

“When I was young,” he may have thought, “my birth parents probably taught me about the God of Israel, but my adoptive mother taught me about the Egyptian gods. I am so confused.”

  1. Do you think Moses had any idea that God was involved in his adoption?

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  1. When the voice said, “I am the God of your father,” do you think he was aware of a God who was alive and who spoke to individuals?

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How Moses Saw God 

Moses had yet to learn about El-Olam, God of eternity, or God, the Everlasting One. His sovereignty extends through the passing of time and beyond our ability to see or understand. Moses would have to learn to trust in God’s sovereign plan in allowing his life to be touched by adoption. 

How You See God

Please refer to the list of Names for Jesus in Scripture in Appendix B and list three to five names for God that stand out to you. It will be encouraging to look back when finished with the workbook and see how your perception has grown!

You can record your words here:

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How Other Adoptees Feel 

Check the statements which are most meaningful to you and explain why on the lines that follow: 

  • When others ask about my nationality, I am so embarrassed. I don’t even know what it is. 
  • Before my adoptive parents died they told me that I would inherit all that they had. I didn’t even want it. It didn’t seem like it was mine. 
  • I absolutely hate it when our class is asked to do a family tree assignment. My family tree has no pattern. It would have to be two trees instead of one. 
  • When our class is asked to bring an ethnic dish to pass, I feel like I can’t bring anything. 
  • Who are my real parents? 
  • I feel like an alien. 
  • None of the above. 

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Learning about Adoption 

One night at a dinner party I listened as my host mused about his children: his son looks like his grandfather, but does not have his disposition; his first daughter has his reserved and deep nature; his second daughter looks like his wife’s brother and shares his interest in science. Without being conscious of it, he was telling me how his children are connected to the family. Adopted children never hear their parents make such conversation. They don’t know who they resemble or who resembles them, whose interests and talents they share. They suffer from what is called ‘genealogical bewilderment’—a lack of knowledge of one’s real parents and ancestors.

–Journey of the Adopted Self by Betty Jean Lifton

Putting my Feelings and Needs into Words 

  1. Do you ever feel like an “alien?” Like you weren’t really born, but were just dropped into your adoptive family? Explain.

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  1. How does it feel not to share looks or personality with your adoptive family?

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  1. If you were asked to draw your family tree, how would you do it? Draw it below:

How did you feel when drawing the family tree? 

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  1. Do you believe you have a “dual identity” because you were adopted? If so, how will you get a true sense of who you really are? 

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Writing a Letter TO and FROM My Birth Mother 

  • Write a letter TO your birth mother about your confusion about your identity, if you struggle with this. If not, write her about what stood out to you in this chapter. 
  • Write a letter FROM your birth mother, expressing feelings and thoughts she may want to convey to you. 

My Birth Mother

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Digging Deep for Answers to My Adoption Questions 

  1. Read Romans 8:28-29…”And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose. For those God foreknew he also predestined to be conformed to the image of his Son, that he might be the firstborn among many brothers and sisters.” What does God promise to do in and through the confusing things of life for those who belong to him?

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  1. Read Romans 11:17…”If some of the branches have been broken off, and you, though a wild olive shoot, have been grafted in among the others and now share in the nourishing sap from the olive root.” How could you liken this verse to adoption? Who is the wild olive shoot?

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  1. What does this verse say happened to you? What specific word describes the shoot’s relationship to the tree (hint: it starts with “g”)? 

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  1. With application to adoption, what does the olive shoot receive from the root? Who do you think the root is and what does the shoot receive from it?

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  1. What does God promise you will become? See Isaiah 61:3b…”They will be called oaks of righteousness,  a planting of the LORD for the display of his splendor.

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  1. What is the “take away” from this chapter? How will your life change?

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Thoughts, Insights, Goals and Prayers 

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Our confusion about our identity often results in a drive to be perfect. We will talk about that next. 

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CAPITULO CINCO

“Estoy confundido sobre mi identidad”

Éxodo 3
La Historia de Moisés

Una noche solitaria cuando Moisés estaba cuidando la manada de Jetro, su suegro, guió a los corderos al otro extremo del desierto y llego a la montaña de Dios. De repente una luz flameante interrumpió la oscuridad. “Estando allí, el ángel del Señor se le apareció entre las llamas de un arbusto ardiente.” (3:2)

Moisés se paro como muerto con sus ojos fijos en el arbusto ardiente. “¿Por qué está tan brillante? ¿Por qué no se quema ésta pequeña cosa? ¿Por qué no se apagan las llamas?

“Voy a ir a ver éste sitio tan extraño- porqué no se consume el arbusto” Moisés se dijo a si mismo. (v.3)

“Cuando el Señor vio que Moisés se acercaba a mirar, lo llamó desde el arbusto, ¡Moisés, Moisés!” (v. 4)

“Aquí me tienes” respondió Moisés, preguntándose de donde venía la voz. (v. 4b) “No te acerques más. Quítate las sandalias, porque estás pisando tierra santa” (v 5).

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“¿Tierra santa?” Moisés pudiera haber dicho, frunciendo sus cejas. “¿Qué es tierra santa?”

“Yo soy el Dios de tu padre. Soy el Dios de Abraham, de Isaac y de Jacob.” (v 6)

“¿El Dios de mi padre?” Moisés pudiera haber dicho. “¿Cual padre? ¿Mi padre de nacimiento o mi padre adoptivo? Me confundo tanto cuando se discute sobre mi historia familiar.”

“Cuando yo era joven”, el pudiera haber pensado, “mis padres de nacimiento probablemente me enseñaron acerca del Dios de Israel, pero mi madre adoptivo me enseñó a cerca de los dioses Egipcios. Estoy muy confundido.”

1. ¿Piensas que Moisés tenía alguna idea de que Dios estaba involucrado en su Adopción?

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2. ¿Cuando la voz dijo “Yo soy el Dios de tu padre,” piensas que Moisés estaba consciente de un Dios que estaba vivo y hablaba con los individuos?

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Como Moisés Vio a Dios

Moisés todavía tenía que aprender acerca El-OLAM, el Dios de la eternidad, o Dios, El Eterno. Su soberanía se extiende a través del tiempo y más allá de nuestra habilidad para ver o entender. Moisés tendrá que aprender a tener confianza en el plan soberano de Dios en permitir que su vida se relacione con la adopción.

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Como Sienten Otros Hijos Adoptivos

  • Cuando otros me preguntan sobre mi nacionalidad, siento pena. Ni siquiera sé lo que es.
  • Antes que mis padres adoptivos murieran, me dijeron que yo heredaría todo que ellos tenían. Ni siquiera lo quería. No me parecía que fuera mía.
  • Odio en absoluto cuando en la escuela nos piden hacer un árbol genealógico. Mi árbol genealógico no sigue una norma. Tendrían que ser dos árboles en lugar que uno.
  • Cuando en mi salón de clases nos piden traer un platillo étnico para compartir, siento que no puedo traer nada.
  • ¿Quienes son mis padres verdaderos?
  • Me siento como un forastero.
  • Ninguna de las de arriba.

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Aprendiendo Sobre la Adopción

Betty Jean Lifton, escribe en su libro Jornada del Ser Adoptivo. “Un noche durante la cena en una fiesta yo estaba escuchando al anfitrión hablar sobre sus hijos: su hijo perece a su abuelo, pero no tiene su carácter; su primera hija tiene un naturaleza reservada y profunda; su segunda hija se perece al hermano de su esposa y comparte su interés el las ciencias. Sin estar consciente de eso, el me estaba platicando como sus hijos estaban conectados a la familia. Los hijos adoptivos nunca oyen a sus padres conversar así. No saben a quien se parecen o quien se perece a ellos, quienes comparten sus intereses y talentos. Ellos sufren lo que se llama “Separación genealógica” – una falta de conocimiento de los padres y ancestros reales.”

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Poniendo Mis Sentimientos y Necesidades en Palabras

  1. ¿Alguna vez te has sentido como un “extraño”? ¿Cómo que realmente nunca naciste, sino que solamente fuiste colocado dentro de tu familia adoptiva? Explica. _______________________________________________________________ _______________________________________________________________ _______________________________________________________________
  2. ¿Cómo se siente el hecho de no tener el mismo aspecto o la personalidad de tu familia adoptiva? _______________________________________________________________ _______________________________________________________________ _______________________________________________________________ _______________________________________________________________
  3. ¿Si te pidieran dibujar tu árbol genealógico, como los harías? Dibújalo en el espacio asignado.

4 ¿Como sentiste cuando estabas dibujando tu árbol genealógico? _______________________________________________________________ _______________________________________________________________ _______________________________________________________________

5. ¿Crees que tienes una “doble identidad” porque fuiste adoptado? ¿Si es así, como vas a lograr tener el verdadero sentido de quien realmente eres? _______________________________________________________________ _______________________________________________________________ _______________________________________________________________ _______________________________________________________________

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Escribiendo Una Carta a Mi Madre de Nacimiento

  1. Escribe una carta PARA tu madre de nacimiento acerca de tu confusión sobre tu identidad, si es que luchas con esto. Si no, escribe sobre lo que te pareció destaco en esta capitulo. _______________________________________________________________ _______________________________________________________________ _______________________________________________________________ _______________________________________________________________ _______________________________________________________________
  2. Escribe una carta DE tu madre de nacimiento, expresando sentimientos y pensamientos que ella quisiera transmitirte.___________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________

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Profundizando a Fondo para las Respuestas a mis Preguntas Sobre Adopción.

  1. Lee Romanos 8:28-29. ¿Qué es lo que Dios promete hacer dentro y a través de las cosas confusas de la vida para quienes le pertenecen? _______________________________________________________________ _______________________________________________________________
  2. Lee Romanos 11.17. ¿Cómo puedes comparar este verso a la adopción? ¿Quién es el renuevo del olivo silvestre? _______________________________________________________________ _______________________________________________________________
  3. ¿Qué es lo que este verso dice que te sucedió¡ ¿Qué palabra especifica describe la relación del renuevo con el árbol? (empieza con “i”) _______________________________________________________________ _______________________________________________________________ _______________________________________________________________
  4. Aplicado lo a la adopción, ¿Qué es lo que recibe el renuevo recibe de la raíz? ¿Quien crees que es la raíz y que es lo que recibe el renuevo? _______________________________________________________________ _______________________________________________________________
  5. ¿Qué es en lo que Dios promete que te convertirás? Ver Isaías 61:3b _______________________________________________________________ _______________________________________________________________

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6. ¿Qué es lo que te llevas al completar esta capitulo? ¿Cómo va a cambiar tu vida?

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Pensamientos, Percepciones, Metas y

Oraciones

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Nuestra confusión sobre la identidad frecuentemente resulta en un deseo para ser perfectos. Vamos a hablar sobre esto en el siguiente capitulo.

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