Family problems-Part 2

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Family problems-Part 2          

Luke 12:51-53 “Do you think I came to bring peace on earth? No, I tell you, but division. From now on there will be five in one family divided against each other, three against two and two against three. They will be divided, father against son and son against father, mother against daughter and daughter against mother, mother-in-law against daughter-in-law and daughter-in-law against mother-in-law.”

Extra Reading: Luke 12:49-53

Each family member needs to be loved for who they are! Conditional love, however, says a person is loved if, because or when he or she behaves a certain way. Love that depends on external behaviour places an enormous burden on a family member to earn love rather than to be loved. In fact, conditional love becomes a leverage: love is withheld or withdrawn when a member’s behaviour is “unacceptable.” This perpetuates the “try harder” compulsion to please others in order to feel acceptable. Family members who live under the dominating influence of conditional love begin to believe they have an internal flaw that makes them unworthy of being loved. Without the assurance that their family will “love them forever,” even when they make mistakes, they become insecure. Conditional love leads to a pattern of distrust and unworthiness that spirals in a negative direction.

A compelling picture of God in the Bible is that of One who faithfully initiates and persistently pursues people through unconditional, love, even when they pull away and turn their back on him. Jehovah God of the Old Testament is the model parent who loves the children of Israel with a love that will not let go. A family that can keep on loving, even when members behave in unlovable ways, provides a basic trust and security for its members. In the Scriptures that we read, Jesus demands a response, and so intimate groups like a family may be torn apart when some choose to follow him and others refuse to do so. Loyalties must be declared and commitments made, sometimes to the point of severing relationships with those who reject Jesus or who try to substitute him with something else. In many parts of the world, becoming a Christian means severing all ties with family. In more tolerant countries, families may deeply resent converts, shunning them, and disinheriting them. Are you willing to risk your family’s disapproval in order to follow the Lord Jesus Christ?

Prayer: Lord Jesus, we thank you that you are Lord! Every other relationship comes after you. In your name, we pray, Amen!

Rev. Samuel N. Modise

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