Genesis 1:26-28 (NIV)
Then God said, “Let us make mankind in our image, in our likeness, so that they may rule over the fish in the sea and the birds in the sky, over the livestock and all the wild animals, and over all the creatures that move along the ground.” So God created mankind in his own image, in the image of God he created them; male and female he created them. God blessed them and said to them, “Be fruitful and increase in number; fill the earth and subdue it. Rule over the fish in the sea and the birds in the sky and over every living creature that moves on the ground.”
Malachi 4:6 (NIV)
“He will turn the hearts of the parents to their children, and the hearts of the children to their parents; or else I will come and strike the land with total destruction.”
Continuing on in the series God Loves Blank the discussion for this week addresses a love we can all relate to: God loves family. Families impact each of us, from the way we act, think, and eat, to how we cope and manage distress. Family has an influence on us financially, emotionally, physically, and spiritually. Right now many of us may be experiencing a range of emotions at the mention of this word. We all have unique experiences associated with the many branches of the family unit, but the reality is that family can be a hard word.
As we dive deeper into who God loves, the breadth and depth of our own love is challenged. We cannot call ourselves believers and not be growing in our love for others. At the core of the Gospel and at the core of Christianity is a gospel of love, that we are to love the Lord our God with all our heart, soul, mind, and strength and to love our neighbor as ourselves . . including family.
As we use this time to unpack our relationship with family, let us bear in mind these three truths: We don’t get to pick our family.
We all come from a dysfunctional family.
Because of Jesus it can stop with me.
Families are the very thing God instituted in the Garden of Eden: God loves families because family was God’s idea.
- What sentiments do I have towards members of my family?
- Where do I notice patterns of dysfunction in my family?
- How can I use my relationship with Jesus to make it stop with me?
Let us cultivate a generation of believers who turn to forgiveness, turn to the end of addiction, turn from bitterness, and turn towards Jesus. Jesus is “the way, the truth, and the life” (John 14:6 NIV). We must stop looking for the perfect image of family and ask God to help us do the work. Talk about the topics nobody wants to talk about and don’t let the silence within a family be a tool of destruction. As designed by God, we will surrender our pain, heal our wounds, and every day, love a little more like Jesus.
Prayer Request + Praise Reports
- We are back at Gilley’s on Sunday, November 26th! Two services: 9AM & 11:30AM. Social DNA Step 1 is happening after both services.
- November 26th is Social Global Day at Gilley’s! Our Social Global Family, this will be a fun day for those who join us online every week to meet us in-house and get to experience a service tailored JUST for you! Click here to RSVP!
- If you are interested in leading a Connect Group in 2024, after prayerful consideration, apply here. Applications must be submitted by November 30th!