Having had the joy of knowing big and small families, I’ve learned they all have problems. If families didn’t have people, maybe they wouldn’t, but they do. That’s what makes them altogether wonderful and frustrating.
The “family of God” designation means a lot to me. It’s no mere pleasantry. When we understand God’s will we see how meaningful it is.
As we reflect more on scripture, we understand something about God’s family. First, God desires for the family to grow. Think of the command to be fruitful and multiply. The next thing we know about the family is we’re in it. So, that means, from time to time, it’s going to be messed up.
Those are things we see in scripture. For every step forward God moves to expand the family, we seem to leap back. Instead of growing with God, we take on each other.
Look at Joseph and his brothers. Why are the brothers angry with Joseph? I understand the culture, perhaps, would not permit it, but shouldn’t they direct their feelings toward their father? Hash it out with him? He’s the one playing obvious favorites. Instead, they turn on their brother and hand him over to be a slave.
Why did they do this?
Sometimes, that’s what we do. We turn on each other. Joseph’s brothers didn’t have the power to speak the truth of their feelings. So, they did what was in their power. They set out to harm their brother.
Joseph’s dreams were God’s way of showing the Lord would preserve the family, but that didn’t matter. It didn’t make sense to everyone else. The others couldn’t see past their jealousy and their hatred swelled.
All families have problems, for sure. God’s wisdom teaches to walk through those issues. But we’ll never have the healing God wills for us as long as we hold on to our selfish and prideful ways.
Now, to be sure, I’m talking about your family, my family and our family of God.