Some people have no idea just how fortunate they are to have been raised in families who stressed the importance of LOVE and FAMILY, and being together every chance you get, because you never know if you will have another.
I didn’t grow up in a family like that. To my parents, getting together with other family was just something that happened on occasion, holidays were never a very big deal, you never woke up to a big deal on your birthday. There just wasn’t that demonstration of love. I believe there was some love there, just a lack of understanding on how to demonstrate that love. I don’t ever remember hearing “I love you” until my first serious boyfriend!!
I have tried to do things differently with my kids and let them know that they are loved, more than anything in this world. Sometimes I think I did a fairly good job, and others…not so good. But, I believe my kids know I love them, and they know how important to me (and their dad) that they are. They all know that we will do anything we can to help them out at any time. They know how important it is to us for us all to get together from time to time. I pray they never forget that.
This comes up tonight for me because of a loss of a family member. My cousin lost his ex-wife today, the mother of his sons. I have never been really close with any of my cousins, but there are some that I have managed to keep in contact with, and actually see from time to time. It has been a very long time since seeing most though.
I believe God is telling me that I need to make some changes in my life regarding my family. There are some reconciliations to be made, some forgiveness to give and request, hurts to be healed. But I know that God can facilitate all of that.
For many years I have avoided all of the above, but I realize tonight that I have to stop avoiding them. I have to do what God wants me to do, because there may not be much time left, and I certainly don’t want to live the rest of my life with regrets. All I can do is try to make amends with those who have “beefs” with me. It is up to them to receive my apology and give forgiveness if they choose. I know God forgives me, because I have asked Him to.
So, tonight, or whenever you are reading this, make sure those closest to you know how you feel about them. And if there is a distance between you and any family member other than just miles, an argument between you or something else, see if you can make amends. It may not be fun, may even be painful, but in the end, you will feel so much better. It will do your heart good. And God will be smiling.
I love you Billy, Dustin, Jeffery, Donna, Elaine, Kim, Bobby, Mike, Lisa, Lucille, Chris, Kane, Emily, Melissa, Stephanie, John, Johnny, David, Aunt Cynthia and Uncle Frank, Aunt Alice and Uncle Skeeter, Mom, and yes, even my brothers Robert and Lewis, and so many other cousins, (I would be here for a LONG time).
Father, I pray for your strength as I do what I need to do over the next few days. Lord, you know the circumstances in some of these relationships and you know how difficult some of the conversations will be, but I just ask for your guidance. Give me the words to say and help me to approach the subjects in a way that they will be accepted by those who need to hear the words. Father, I just ask for your blessing on those that are hurting right now. Give them peace and comfort. Wrap your loving arms around them tonight so that they might get some rest. Father, those who hold a grudge, I just ask that you lay it upon there heart to prepare to release that grudge or anger. Let forgiveness and love flow freely between family members. I ask you father for more opportunities to see and visit with each other on happier occasions. I ask you Lord to remove any roadblocks that may prevent any of the family from attending a reunion this summer. Bring us all together and let us all enjoy each other’s company! Thank you so much Father. You have blessed me beyond measure and I cannot thank you enough. I thank you for your son, whom you sent to die on the cross at Calvary so that I, and all who believe in you and your son, may have everlasting life with you in heaven. I love you Lord. In Jesus’ name, Amen.