Why are we much harder on our family than we are our best friends or complete strangers. Why are we less likely to give them the benefit of the doubt and so quick to judge them by their past instead of hoping for the best for them and doing all we can to help them in that direction. Maybe we have given them a lot of our energy to help them and aren’t seeing the results we would like or expect to see. Why do we expect near perfection from them but are so willing to forgive the faults of our friends or other acquaintances. We love our family and always want what’s best for them. We want them to make wise choices in life and when we give them direction and guidance, we expect and assume they are immediately going to follow it. Sometimes we give guidance in areas that we are familiar with and have experienced in our own lives. We claim, in our own minds, to be experts in those areas.
I wonder if others are as slow to give each of us the benefit of the doubt or are they so quick to give up on us as quickly as we are on them. I trust and pray that we all have people in our lives that encourage, are willing to challenge and push us in the right direction. We must follow the Spirit when discerning when to push and when to stand back and let go and trust them to make their own decisions. I do believe we should step in when we see family members heading toward destruction through the choices they are making. We shouldn’t allow the devil to have success in destroying them. We should always be praying for them and helping them back on the right track.
God’s also been revealing to me and reminding me that my attitude towards my family reflects my relationship with Him. Jesus said you can’t hate your brother while saying you love God whom you cannot see. To love God means that you love people. I show how much or how little I love God by how much I do or don’t show love to others.
I’m glad that God doesn’t just tell us what we want to hear or the things that will make us feel good. His word is living and active and pierces our hearts. It’s also a light that shines in our hearts to expose the sin in our lives. But God doesn’t just stop there at exposing it. He removes it from us and forgives us of it when we repent. I pray to be as forgiving as God is to me.
The amazing thing about God is that He is greater than any bad choice we’ve made. He can take our messed up life, turn it around and use it for His glory. We just have to cling close to our Savior and submit to His will and trust that He knows what is best for us. We’re all guilty leaving Jesus behind or hiding Him in our lives so that we can do what we want to do. We should allow His will to permeate ours until we become one with Him so that when people see our actions, they see Jesus.