December 12 – Behind the Christmas Card – Difficult family members

Read 1 John 4: 7-21 and 1 Peter 4:11

To the mother of a loved child who is struggling…

To the father who wishes he himself could correct his child’s ways…

To the one who has a sibling that is struggling, and not the same person you remember growing up with…

To the child who has a parent struggling… or an aunt/uncle/cousin…

I see you. Better yet, God sees you! He is with you in the trenches. No matter the circumstances, He sees your family. HE is above all. ALL of heaven and earth are held together in Him. Hallelujah!

This morning I write to you with conviction and fellowship in the learning. I, too, struggle with loving certain family members well. That real love that shows itself in each face-to-face interaction. The kind God asks us to have for one another, when we love Him. Do you find yourself struggling, too? Good! God probably has a next step for you to take, as you grow in Him. Let us let Him have control this morning.

Loving can be hard. Especially when we cannot support someone’s actions, but still need to look for ways to love them. In fact, if we relied solely on our own ability, it would be impossible. First Peter 4:11 reminds us to keep God as our source, so that He might be glorified. First John reminds us to act based on the unexplainable love God has for ALL of us.

We can love, because God has loved us. Perhaps the world would tell us to write certain people off. But, God’s love reminds us to love them well, with wisdom. Even though we might be annoyed or understandably exhausted, we are called to be a witness for Christ. Loving one another is not an option or a suggestion. It is a command. It is a result of our love for God and being in an active relationship with Him.

It does not mean no boundaries. It does not mean enabling a bad behavior. It means love. It means forgiveness. And, it is only when we find ourselves deeply rooted in God, that all of this is possible. Apart from Him, we can do nothing.

This Christmas, cling to God and remember it is not for us, but for His glory. Remain in Him. Allow Him to work in and through you for His glory. And let us pray for one another!

Beth Starkey

This entry was posted in 1 John, 1 Peter, Behind the Christmas Card. Bookmark the permalink.

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