I absolutely love the Christmas holiday! Especially when the Christmas music starts being played on the radio the day after Thanksgiving. Though it’s not cold yet (in Texas), there is still the excitement and smell of the holiday season.
To some however, the holidays are not necessarily all “sugar canes and gumdrops”. To some, the holidays are the times when the “family get’s together” (spoken with a big *sigh*). Unfortunately, there may be some reading this that knows all too well what I’m talking about. It’s usually during this time and season when you get to see that relative you haven’t seen all year long and come to realize as to why you haven’t desired to see them all year long. It’s that cousin that gets on your last nerve, or that aunt that is loud and obnoxious, or that uncle that shows up a little “tipsy”, or all the kids running around the house while you’re trying to have some holiday peace and cheer!
Thus all the while you are talking to yourself asking, “Why was I born into this family!” Well my friend we must come to grips and recognize that there absolutely is NO such thing as a perfect family. Especially our family! But would you feel better if I would even go as far as to say that even Jesus didn’t have the “perfect” family? Let’s check out the genealogy of Jesus and see why (Read Matthew 1:1-17)
Here is the interesting thing about the family tree of Jesus. According to Jewish tradition, when speaking of ancestry, women were not named among the genealogy. However if you noticed, 5 women were named in Jesus’ family tree, which were Tamar, Rahab, Ruth, Bathsheba and Mary. Why is that so important you might ask? Because these women had an interesting past!
Tamar was the incestuous daughter- in- law of Judah. She was a Canaanite, hence a gentile. Rahab was a gentile, prostitute and a member of a doomed race. Ruth was a Moabite, gentile and was in a mixed marriage. Bathsheba was the mother of Uriah due to an adulterous affair with king David. Finally, Mary was a young Isrealite girl who became pregnant and was not married (Jesus’ mother).
In this list of 5 women mentioned, 4 were gentiles, 1 a Jew. 3 of these women were openly sinful while 2 had questionable reputations. All in the family tree of Jesus! Therefore, as long as we are living on this earth amongst sin, the family unit will have its share of issues. With this in mind, let me give you 3 things to consider this holiday season concerning your family tree.
First, remember that there is no such thing as the “perfect family”. We all have our personal hang-ups. Yet as Christians, this is where we must learn to be patient and attentive. Remember, in the midst of all that seems chaotic, God is at work. He desires to make imperfect families into amazing masterpieces! It is during these moments when we must ask the Lord what He is “up to” concerning our family and walk beside Him in the process. Learn to be a blessing to your family and not part of the chaos.
Second, remember that every family member deserves an opportunity. If it were not for the grace at Calvary’s cross, we would still be lost! Yet God in His grace and mercy gave you and I an opportunity to be changed. We all have a family member that is considered the “black sheep” or the family “moocher”, but the goal this year is to show them the love of Christ by loving them despite their hang-ups. You might have some family members that you are hurt with, let’s make this the year that forgiveness flows and second chances begin. If the Lord gave you an opportunity to make things right with Him, in turn, give them the same gift this Christmas.
Finally, let your witness always point to the Father. Whether you like it or not, if you have proclaimed being a follower of Jesus in front of your family, they are watching you! Not only are they watching, they are searching. They want to see if this “Jesus” thing is for real or just a fad you’re going through (Like the time you wore parachute pants). Let your light shine bright this season so that the family member you would have never of thought would give their life to Christ, will have the opportunity to do so.
Do we have a perfect family? No. But we have a perfect God who desires to perfect great things in us this season. Be blessed and make sure to thank God for the family He gave you! – Pastor Sammy