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The holidays can be a season of joy and celebration, but it can also be a time of sadness, turmoil, stress, and frustration.
For many, the get-togethers and visits with extended family are less than pleasant and more let’s-just-get-through-this, adding more pressure during a busy time of year.
I’ve been thinking about how God’s Word can help us through the difficult reunions.
5 Scripture Verses for Visiting with Family
We also pray that you will be strengthened with all his glorious power so you will have all the endurance and patience you need.
Patience. No matter how well we get along with family members, we need an extra supply of patience. Extra excited children running around, long-winded story tellers, doting aunts and grandparents…there’s a lot going on at a gathering. Some love it, some don’t. Some thrive in crowds, some crave a few minutes alone. That’s the great thing about silent prayer. While you smile and try to stay engaged, you can be asking God for patience to get through the next minute…and the next hour…and the rest of the day.
The Lord doesn’t see things the way you see them. People judge by outward appearance, but the Lord looks at the heart.
What we see doesn’t tell the entire story. Just as we may wear a mask and try to act like everything is alright, others do too. When we’re growing weary of others, it might be helpful to remember that we don’t always know what someone else is going through. But God knows, and perhaps He’s placing you in this person’s path for a reason.
My commandment is this: love one another, just as I love you.
When I’m struggling to show love to someone not acting loveable, I have to remind myself that I’m not always loveable myself. If someone seems extra irritable or moody, it’s possible they’re weighed down by life. (And aren’t we all at times?) Whether they want to talk about it or not, compassion, even when we don’t know the circumstances, goes a long way.
Sensible people control their temper; they earn respect by overlooking wrongs.
I’ve known family members who refused to talk to each other for a long time because of misspoken or misunderstood words. Most of the time, getting the last word just isn’t worth the drama and hurt feelings. Sometimes the best thing you can do is to resist the urge to engage and walk away.
Get rid of all bitterness, rage, anger, harsh words, and slander, as well as all types of evil behavior. Instead, be kind to each other, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, just as God through Christ has forgiven you.
We cannot control other people’s behavior, but we can control our own actions and reactions. Don’t take the bait leading to an argument, gossip, or any other behavior more pleasing to the enemy than to God. If you feel yourself getting pulled in, ask for His help to hold your tongue, change or leave the conversation, and to forgive others’ behavior.
No matter how hard we try, the truth is not one of us is perfect, and family relationships have never been easy.
Remember Jacob? He had issues with his twin brother Esau; was tricked by his father-in-law into marrying Leah when he loved and wanted to marry Rachel; and played favorites with his sons from both Leah and Rachel, which, of course, led to many years of more family drama.
And yet, God loved Jacob, giving him the name Israel, and placing him directly in the lineage of Jesus.
[This post first appeared at Laura Rath ~ Journey in Faith . All rights reserved. / Photo credit: Unsplash.com]
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