I’m a Child of God, Yes I Am




It was a moment that had me transfixed. A moment I’ve replayed in my head dozens of times since. As I watched, I held my breath. Surely, we were on holy ground. 


I was at the Lifeline Children’s Services fundraising banquet. Seven-year-old Grace took the stage with her parents. I know Grace. Her family has become dear to us, and Grace is a special friend of my Lucy. 

Grace held the mic and my heart soared, because I know Grace’s story. I know it was once said of Grace, “She may never be able to learn,” so I cheered as she stood on that stage and quoted scripture; as she answered questions about who God is and who she is in Him. I held it together just fine until her little hand tugged on her mom’s sleeve. “Mama, can I sing my song?” And then, in front of a crowd of a thousand, with no music except the cadence of her voice, Grace sang truth from the depths of her little soul: 


Who the Son sets free 

Oh is free indeed, 

I’m a child of God, 

Yes, I am 


In my Father’s house, 

There’s a place for me. 

I’m a child of God, 

Yes, I am. 


I am chosen, not forsaken, 

I am who You say I am. 

You are for me, not against me, 

I am who You say I am. 

I am who You say I am. 


(“I Am Who You Say I Am,” Hillsong Worship) 


I couldn’t see for the tears. I wept tears of joy for little Grace, singing out the meaning of her name. I wept for her life, redeemed and restored. And I wept for my own little girl, wanting to wash the truth of those words over her own story. 


Who the Son sets free, oh is free indeed 


I see my Lucy, once confined to the isolating bars of an orphanage crib, free to run and laugh and live 


In my Father’s house, there’s a place for me 


My baby, who once had no home, has a home where she is safe and so very loved. And she has a home to look forward to—her eternal home with her perfect Father. There’s a place for her there that’s even more beautiful than her pale purple room with the soft white curtains, one that’s even more secure than the pink quilt that rests on her cheeks at night. There’s a place for her here. There’s a place for her there. She is provided for, and she belongs. 


I am chosen, not forsaken 


The enemy taunts my daughter: “Your identity is in your broken beginning.” The Savior says, “Before the foundation of the world, you were Mine.” As Grace sang, I prayed for my Lucy, “Believe, little girl, believe. You were chosen in love. You will never be left alone.” 


I am who You say I am 


Loved. Redeemed. Treasured. Protected. Adored. Believe, baby girl. This is what is true of you. 


You are for me, not against me 


On the darkest days to come, when all she can see are the shattered parts of her story and she feels like His back must have been turned, I pray she can choose to believe, even when it doesn’t feel true: “You. Are. For. Me.” 


I’m a child of God, yes I am. 


Grace, Lucy—dearly loved children of the King. Yes, they are. 


Sing it, Grace. Sing it for your story, and my Lucy’s story, and the stories of the 140 million orphans worldwide, and the stories of children who have been placed in forever families and may still wonder sometimes, “Who am I? Am I really loved? Do I really belong?” 


Sing it for them, Grace. Sing it for you. 


And sing it for the families who are on the edge, who wonder, “Could I really make a difference? Am I really being called to be his mom? Do I have what it takes to be her dad?” Sing it for the ones who need to see that the gospel transforms lives as young as yours. Sing it to give them courage to step out in faith and say “Yes” to a life that needs to know the very truths you sing: 


I’m a child of God, yes I am. 


Jennifer Phillips is the author of Bringing Lucy Home and 30 Days of Hope for Adoptive Parents, and is co-author of Unhitching From the Crazy Train: Finding Rest in a World You Can’t Control You can follow her at