Friday, December 2, 2016

Tis the Season to LOVE the Family

Tis the Season to LOVE the family
For many people, the Christmas season is a blissful, beautiful, and beloved time of year; surrounded by family, friends, and friendly strangers. Although that may be true for most, there are people who don’t share those same blessings.
I am incredibly blessed to have a wonderful family. My dad is a hard worker to provide for our family, as well as, raise us by example of putting the Lord first and giving God glory through his job and his diverse career paths that have led him where is he today. There are times when he may fall short of “perfect”, but, there again, no one is perfect. What matters is he has a relationship with the Lord and portrays that to his family through living and speaking scripture into our lives and sending the whole family through email, Daily Bread devotionals.J  I think it is pretty amazing that he is such a great dad, and has NEVER had an example of an earthly father.  Only his heavenly father could have guided him to be the dad he is.  He credits much of his ability to be a dad and husband to Anchorage Baptist Temple, and his Pastor, Jerry Prevo.  He has been at that church since he was 3 years old, and says it is the only stability in life he’s ever known.  ABT is always there, always strong and stable. 
Some lessons my dad has taught me is to be considerate to others and think through my actions. I am still learning these lessons and get to practice them through my siblings…mostly my brother. God designed my brother with an opposite personality type than mine; my brother knows how and when to push my buttons. I like to think that God gave me my brother to get me ready for nursing, because he is the patient that never leaves!  Mean in good humor, of course!
I had the pleasure of helping raise my baby sister, because there is 10 years age difference between us.  Through that, I learned a number of motherly assets I hope to use in the future. Thanks, Bee!
Well, like you, I came from somewhere, and it wasn’t my dad’s tummybut my “Mumski.” She is seriously so beautiful and silly. She has had to have been gifted by the Lord to raise me, because my dad and I are exactly alike in our flaws of stubbornness. In the past, I did not have a strong connection or pattern of communication with my parents; I kept my issues private and settled them on my own. However, lately I have grown more confident in the Lord and I can understand my mom’s correction and guidance. I trust the way she always encourages me by pointing me to scripture.
 I am the oldest; my precious/irritating/annoying/funny/cute brother and sister have played a big role in my growth as an as an adult and disciple of Christ. My brother and I have had conflicts; he was truly the most annoying person in my life. I didn’t understand why the Lord would give me such a hard time being the oldest if I was always going to get blamed for the wrong between my brother and me.
My youngest sibling, little Bee, she always wants to do what I am doing; watch the same movies, wear make-up, wants to sleep in my bed, or always want to hang out with my best friend and I. I felt like I was having my “fun” time compromised by involving Bee.
Now that I am at Liberty, I have grown in my walk with the Lord and have new perspective for past issues.  Many have said “ you don’t know what you have until you don’t have it.”  That is one way to put it, in being away from home.  Another is to realize how God was using my childhood to prepare me for what I am doing now.  My brother was teaching me and preparing me in an area of life I would need to grow, in order to be a wife someday.  From my Big Bro, I’ve learned patience, perseverance, and self-control!  My sister helped me realize little kids are always watching, learning, and wanting to be who they see. I am a constant influence in her life so I must be a godly influence for her. In sight of being the older sibling I longed for that relationship with an older sibling.  My Sunday school Pastor’s daughter was the closest person I have had to an older sister. I Thank the Lord for such godly influences within my church family.
Overall my family gets on my nerves and I mean all my nerves, but they also make me lose my breath while laughing, they are always there for me, and know me better than anyone. I love them very much and I hope to be someone they are proud of.
So, this is a reminder to love your family no matter their flaws and no matter how irritating or argumentative they are. Appreciate that you have them and find the good they give. In fact, put to practice this verse that many of us have read many, many, many, many times…and yet still haven’t applied it!  It’s a challenge, LOVE BETTER this Christmas and remember….. Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, ALWAYS perseveres.

Merry Christmas!