Genesis 4:8 Cain said to his brother Abel, "Let's go out to the field." So they went to the field. Then Cain attacked his brother Abel and killed him.
All too often we look at our own families and think: What a mess! I mean, why can’t my family be perfect like that one over there? I must have the worst family on the street! That’s a pretty common reaction, by the way. You’re not the only one, if you happen to be having […]
All too often we look at our own families and think: What a mess! I mean, why can’t my family be perfect like that one over there? I must have the worst family on the street!
That’s a pretty common reaction, by the way. You’re not the only one, if you happen to be having those thoughts. Because we imagine somehow that out there somewhere, is a perfect family. In fact, when you’re dealing with the reality of rubbing up close to imperfect people, when they’re annoying you and grating on your nerves, everybody’s family seems better than yours. Because, of course, we see those other families from a safe distance.
Of course, this notion that all those families out there somehow fit the model of “the perfect family”, is complete rubbish. There’s no such thing. You know that. I know that. So why do we measure our family against that ridiculous ideal? Families struggle. All families struggle sometimes and yours is no different.
Cain said to his brother Abel, “Let’s go out to the field.” So they went to the field. Then Cain attacked his brother Abel and killed him. (Genesis 4:8)
And right there you have the first instance of sibling rivalry recorded in all of history. There’s nothing new under the sun. Families have been struggling, pretty much, since time began.
So, here’s a tip. Instead of worrying about those people over there in that family, remember this. It was God’s idea to put imperfect people together in your family. His plan all along, was for imperfect people to rub up against one another. And all in all, it’s a pretty good plan!
So, let’s come back to your family. What is it that’s not going well at the moment? Who is it that’s not playing their part, or who’s annoying you, or even hurting you?
And how can you love that person, the way Jesus loved you? What sacrifices can you make to bring that person closer to you, to help them deal with their bad behaviour?
Sometimes, we think that means being the doormat in the family, but that’s not true. When we sacrifice willingly, as Jesus did for us, we’re operating from a position of strength. It’ll probably still hurt, but then, with Jesus’ love in the mix, there’s every chance that peace will break out.
That’s God’s Word. Fresh … for you … today.