Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Family Ties

"Family Ties" was a television show from several decades ago for those that may not remember or know. However, we all have family ties in the body of Christ. As a child of God that allows me to be the brother to other believers. I am proud to be a part of the family of God.

Now I know that there are times when the family acts like a dysfunctional family but that is still family. I have been thinking about family over the last few months due to the fact my father-in-law was diagnosed with lymphoma, my baby brother has 'poly-myoscitis" and my older sister has terminal liver and lung cancer. In fact I am awaiting a call on her home going almost every day now. So family means a lot to me. You see I have been twice chosen so I love the fact that I can be part of the family of God; even if it's going to be a hard visit! : )

I came across this Parent Devo from Tyndale House Publishers, the owners of the New Living Translation, and it spoke to me today. Maybe because I am reflecting on life more, my age, grand-children; or the love of my life Sula. Anyway, take a look and let me know what you think about "Family Ties".

Loving Others like Family

“Love each other with genuine affection, and take delight in honoring each other.”Romans 12:10 NLT

The December 31, 1989 issue of the Chicago Tribune featured a series of photographs considered the best photos of the decade. Michael Fryer’s image of a rescue attempt was a dramatic fire photo. It captured a fireman and a paramedic carrying a fire victim away from the scene. The blaze Fryer covered occurred in December 1984 at Irving Park and Kenmore Avenues in Chicago. It seemed routine until firefighters discovered a mother and five children huddled in one apartment’s kitchen. Fryer said firefighters surmised: “She could have escaped with two or three but could not decide who to pick and chose to wait for firefighters to arrive. All of them died of smoke inhalation.”

The apostle Paul wrote, “Love each other with genuine love” (Romans 12:10). The terms he used convey a love that is “full of tenderness” or “affectionate.” Actually, his first term “love” translates a compound Greek word that literally means, “love of the family.” The word translated genuine affection is a familiar Greek word, philadelphia. It means literally “love of the brethren.” I find it quite intriguing that Paul employs two words--love of family and love of brothers--to communicate the need for commitment in loving.

The deep affection and abiding commitment made between natural family members, like the Chicago mother toward her children, should be expressed in the spiritual family as well. We are to love our brothers and sisters of faith, as we love our brothers and sisters of blood. Brotherly kindness is an affection that family members have for one another.
Jesus has given authority to the entire world to judge whether or not we are genuine believers on the basis of our love for fellow believers. Love is the badge that identifies us as followers of Jesus Christ. Any time we do not show love toward fellow believers, we forfeit our right to proudly represent Jesus Christ in the world.

People around us who are bored by doctrine and can’t fathom theology instinctively understand love. People look at Christians before they look at our creed. They form their opinions about our religion when they see how we behave. If they like the melody, they will listen to our words. If what they hear is discord, then the lyrics of our faith seldom register in their lives.
As believers in Jesus Christ we need to make a clear, unequivocal commitment to loving each other as a family, for our own sake and for our witness to a watching world.

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