Saturday, July 12, 2014

God's Family

I often describe God's people as God's family. Scripture bears this out. God calls himself our Father. (Though he often acts our Mother.) Scripture refers to fellow-Christians as brothers and sisters.

We became a family by being born of the same Father. We are then knit together with an indissoluble bond.

Why is the fact that the body of Christ is a family? Family is one of the foundation stones of humanity. It gives the under girding for the definition of being human.

● provide values. We learn what is important, what is necessary and what is not.
● gives instruction and modelling. Numerous areas in life are caught, rather than taught. We learn these areas by watching and being with others as they are examples.
      - We learn steps and methods in problem solving.
      - We learn how to respond in failure and negative circumstances.
      - We learn ways and attitudes around resolving conflict.
● work together to achieve goals. In the family of God, this includes:
      - demonstrating God's nature.
      - proclaiming his message of restoration.
      - instilling his character in members of the family.
● growing together in wholeness.
● depending on and including God in life.
● nurturing and giving identity to his children.

Many are pushing to redefine family. In part, this is rebellion against the God who created family. In part, this is a reaction against a church that has not fully lived out God's word.

Church has moved away from being family, and has moved toward being a volunteer organization, like club. One chooses to belong based on personal preference. Don't like the music, the decor, the speakers, then change. Keep shopping until you find one you like, that you feel comfortable with.

But a person cannot opt out of his family. God designed people and he designed family. And he gave each person a mother and a father. God designed men and women differently, so God designed mothers and fathers differently. Each parent contributes uniquely to the development, health and well-being of each child.

Similarly, God puts each person into a place and enables him to contribute to the health and well-being of his spiritual family.  The family of God grows and flourishes as each member contributes his part. (Jumping to a different metaphor ... how well would your body work if your right hand decided to quit? Or decided that doing the work of God was entirely the province of the mouth?)

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