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Holiday Greetings to “The Family of God”

      The holidays are here!  Hopefully you are enjoying family and friends and a deepening thankfulness to the Lord for His presence in your life.  For some however, holidays can be a stressful time in dealing with family dynamics.  

      One of my clients named Sue is having tremendous frustration with her daughter.  There is a lot of blaming from the daughters’ part because of things that happened as she was growing up.  In response to her hurt she has chosen to pull away physically and emotionally from her mother and father.  I believe her response to blame her parents and further put up walls is not helpful.  The apostle Paul said to “be angry and sin not” (Ephesians 4:26).  The daughter is not wrong for her anger, but for how she is dealing with it. 

     Sue has been very frustrated and hurt by her daughter’s reaction, especially around the holidays.  Her desire is to have everyone together and have beautiful family time and fellowship in the Lord.   For thanksgiving she tried to reach out to her daughter, but there was no positive response.  My client was hurt. 

      She received a phone call a week before thanksgiving from a dear friend of hers asking if her and her husband would like to spend the day with them.  She was reluctant to go to her friends because she was hoping her daughter would come around.  She decided to go and upon returning she said they had a wonderful time of fellowship and friendship in the Lord and she was thrilled to have gone.  She said she felt that her friend was part of her family in the “family of God.” 

     This situation made me reflect about the “family of God” and how wonderful it is to have brothers and sisters in the Lord to share the holidays with when your family lets you down.  In Matthew 13:46-50 Jesus’ mother and brothers were outside “wanting to speak with him.”  Jesus’ response was that His mother and brothers were those who “do the will of my Father in heaven.   I believe in that moment His mother and brothers had an agenda for Jesus that did not fit in with what He was trying to accomplish.  What touched me about this passage is that when your natural family lets you down or you are going through persecutions within your family, there can be beautiful fellowship and connection within true believers in the “family of God”.   

     My prayer for you for the holidays is that you have peace with God, family, and friends.  However, if there is tension or lack of acceptance in your family for what you believe or for whom you are, I pray that you will be able to enjoy those around you that are of the “family of God”. 

In Him,   David L. Brower, MSW, LCSW