Since our FMoG got out of prison, there’ve been some ups and downs. I suppose that’s to be expected. I’ve never, personally, dealt with anyone close to me going to prison, so this is all new to me. I know this though, it seems that it’s way easier to extend grace to a perfect stranger than your own flesh and blood!
If I encounter someone while doing jail ministry, or someone who comes to our church, who may be a little “rough around the edges”, it seems so easy to love and accept them just as they are. They might use profanity, or talk too much in class, or say inappropriate things simply out of ignorance. They may wear weird clothes or feel uncomfortable during really spiritual moments, and my heart breaks for them! I want to reach out, hug them, and assure them that they’re good, and that God has big plans for them! However, when it comes to the ones closest to me, those things don’t come so easily! I’d rather just punch them in the face! I mean, I want to do it lovingly, but I want to do it nonetheless.
Some of it is pride. What MY flesh and blood does is a reflection on ME! And I want “me” to look good! However, most of it is because my heart is tied to him, and I love him so much! I KNOW the potential he has, and I know what God’s promised me, and I want those promises to be fulfilled NOW! When there’s no ties with a person, yes there’s hope, but our expectations of them are not as high. That’s because when it comes to a stranger, with whom we have no heart ties, we really are putting our trust in God and not them! Ouch! My toes just got stepped on!
God’s using our situation to grow our family. Is it easy? Nowhere near it! Not for any of us! Are we screwing up? Almost on a daily basis. ALL of us!Might there be tough times, and tough decisions to be made? There sure might! As parents of adult children should you demand respect? You bet your bottom dollar you do! However, I know that no matter what goes down, how many mistakes WE make, God’s promises are true! He never lies! I can stand on His word! And that my trust is to be in HIM, not in any person! People may let us down, and we’ll let others down, but God will never fail us!
If there’s someone in your life that you’re praying for to be delivered from a situation, whether it be addiction, salvation, a bad marriage, whatever the situation; remember your hope is in Christ and not them! Remember that everything is a spiritual battle, and that satan loves nothing more than to cause division in your family. Don’t get as angry at the person as you do the battle. Don’t give up! Set boundaries when they’re needed and PRAY, PRAY, PRAY! Get others to pray! Rally in the troops! Band together an army of prayer warriors! Cling to God’s word, and stand on His promises, and show the devil who’s boss! He CAN’T win against all that!
20-22 Whatever God has promised gets stamped with the Yes of Jesus. In him, this is what we preach and pray, the great Amen, God’s Yes and our Yes together, gloriously evident. God affirms us, making us a sure thing in Christ, putting his Yes within us. By his Spirit he has stamped us with his eternal pledge—a sure beginning of what he is destined to complete. 2 Corinthians 1