Thursday, February 12, 2009

“Family: The good, the bad and the ugly”


As I ponder life many things come flowing through my head. Some thoughts I capture and process, others just keep on moving. Lately one thought that has been coming back to me is that of loved ones and family.

I’m not just talking about biological family members. But also the members within the family of Christ. As I process all of this I began to consider what it is to disown someone. Merriam Webster’s definition of the word is “to repudiate any connection or identification with”. I know that this unfortunately does occur within biological or legal family members. But what about within the Body of Christ? Is this possible? Since we have the same Father and Brother it would be kind of tough. Plus with that definition would want to??

So again coming home from work today I heard the Addison Road song “Sticking with You”. It’s such a great song with lyrics that speak to the depth of what the Christian walk is to look like. This has been reconfirmed also these past few weeks by the book I’m currently reading. “Searching for God Knows What” by Donald Miller. I’m sure some wouldn’t like his writing style or even his view of life. But the very fundamental truth that he is focused on is that we are relational creatures created this way by our Creator. It’s not an accident.

We are to be relational to non-believers so that our lives can show the love of Christ. Just like Christ Himself as He was spending His time with the prostitutes, adulterers and other societal misfits and sinners. He loved them and simply showed them a Way out of their current hopelessness.

We are to be relational with our fellow believers. To be there for each other, love each other, support each other and learn from each other. This definitely doesn’t allow us to disown those that we really don’t like or are sick of.

Galatians 6:9-11 draws a good picture of this. “Let us not become weary in doing good, for at the proper time we will reap a harvest if we do not give up. Therefore, as we have opportunity, let us do good to all people, especially to those who belong to the family of believers.” We are supposed to stick with people.

Just like the song says… “I'm staying here cause that's what love's about. I might let you down, but I won't let you go. So lean into me, I want to know everything about the fear you hold inside cause you and I are better than just one,”. That last statement takes us back to Ecclesiastes 4:9-12 “Two are better than one, they have a good return for their work: If one falls down, his friend can help him up. But pity the man who falls and has no one to help him up! Also, if two lie down together, they will keep warm. But how can one keep warm alone? Though one may be overpowered, two can defend themselves. A cord of three strands is not quickly broken.”
Fellowship is a fundamental need that has been created within us from the very beginning. Look at Adam. He was hanging out with God in paradise but still something was missing until he traded a rib for a woman to be named later. Eve. God even said that it is not good for man to be alone.

So what does this really look like as we traverse this life?? I know that things look real different on paper then when you are in the middle of the storm making real life decisions. I have gotten to apply these things in real life. This is not something that someone goes around looking for so they can walk into. But once in the middle, I wouldn’t back down or turn around for the world. I see more clearly now what Christ is trying to get through our thick skulls. This is all part of our Christian journey. Key word being journey. It’s not a short trip to the corner store. It’s a journey through the unknown. What will the terrain be? What will the weather be? What will the obstacles be? Through it all we continue on.
The next part of the song could probably be offensive to some. These ‘some’ being people that would rather go it alone and take that easier trip to the corner store. Or the people afraid of being real. But to me, they speak volumes. ” So if I have to jump then I'll jump and I won't look down. You can cry, you can fight, we can scream and shout. I'll push and pull until your walls come down and you understand I'm gonna be around I'm sticking with you” We are to be real with each other. God’s family sticks together.

So… I’m sticking with you.