Luke 12:52-53 HCSB “From now on, five in one household will be divided: three against two, and two against three. They will be divided, father against son, son against father, mother against daughter, daughter against mother, mother-in-law against her daughter-in-law, and daughter-in-law against mother-in-law.”
Who is a better parent than almighty God? Nobody comes close. God is the perfect Father, and He’s like the perfect Mother rolled all into one.😊 Yet some of God’s own children in heaven rebelled against Him. God’s children on earth the first humans created (Adam and Eve) also rebelled against Him. Humans for thousands of years and wicked angels have been rebelling against God constantly. That’s a whole lot of rebellion!😞 And yet God still permits people to breathe His air? WHAT A PATIENT PERSON GOD IS!!!
It appears that loved ones turning on one another is a part of life. It happened to God so why can’t it happen to you or me?🤔 The sooner we come to grips with this the easier it will be to handle when your loved ones turn on you. I didn’t say it will be easy. I’m only saying the sting of betrayal will be less severe when what Jesus says about family ties is accepted. (Luke 12:52-53) Jesus tells us plain and up-front that family members will turn on each other. Some will be for Him, and some against Him. Even the most dearest of ties cannot escape the cut the word of God makes which is sharper than any double edged sword. (Hebrews 4:12)
WHO REALLY IS MY MOTHER SISTER OR BROTHER?
Mark 3:31-35 HCSB “Then His [Jesus] mother and His brothers came, and standing outside, they sent word to Him and called Him. A crowd was sitting around Him and told Him, “Look, Your mother, Your brothers, and Your sisters are outside asking for You.” He replied to them, “Who are My mother and My brothers? ” And looking about at those who were sitting in a circle around Him, He said, “Here are My mother and My brothers! WHOEVER DOES THE WILL OF GOD is My brother and sister and mother.”
Jesus says those who do the will of God are His real kinfolk. While on earth He placed them above physical ties including His own mother Mary.🤔 For our own spiritual well being it is imperative that we have the mind of Christ. (1 Corinthians 2:16)
I was talking with a father of 6 grown children the other day, I don’t know the man from a can of paint (physically), but (spiritually) I do know him though it was my first time meeting him. All we talked about and did was encourage one another in The Lord like we knew each other for years. He’s my brother, and I hope to see Him again soon. He was sharing with me that one of his son’s was lying heavy on his heart and was the most challenging of all 6 of his children. He then said something to me that an old lady told him: “When your children are small they lie in your lap, but when they grow up they lie on your heart.” How profound. I’m sure many parents can relate to that. But so can many sons and daughters who care about their parents. Family ties are some of the strongest bonds which is why they hurt so much when they are broken. The Devil loves dividing families.
THE REAL CHALLENGE
Luke 6:27-28 HCSB “But I say to you who listen: Love your enemies, do what is good to those who hate you, bless those who curse you, pray for those who mistreat you.”
When you and I are betrayed (even by family members) JESUS SAYS apply the above passage to them. What a challenge!😢 You see, the real fight with any human being on earth is the fight with ourselves, not those who betray us. Will I be controlled by my flesh, or will I submit to God’s Holy Spirit no matter what is done to me? That’s the real challenge! I know, what they did to you was foul, it was aweful, I know. So was what I did when I backslid against God!😲 So was what I did all my life before God revealed himself to me. That’s a whole lot of rebellion I commited against God!🤔 And yet He still forgave me and you! WHAT AN AWESOME, PATIENT GOD!!!😃 To continue enjoying God’s mercy and forgiveness a condition must be met. It is stated in the next passage:
Matthew 6:14-15 HCSB “For if you forgive people their wrongdoing, your heavenly Father will forgive you as well. But if you don’t forgive people, your Father will not forgive your wrongdoing.”😲
It doesn’t get plainer than that. There are conditions to God’s love, yes. Saying that God will always love His children unconditionally is an error. Look up in any dictionary what the word, “Condition,” means and see for yourself. IF WE DO NOT FORGIVE OTHERS WHO WRONG US GOD WILL NOT FORGIVE US, PERIOD.
HOW DO I FORGIVE?
Yes, I know forgiving others isn’t always easy. But in order to do so we must first agree that God is right. We must believe Him (faith), that He knows what He’s doing when He tells us to forgive that rapist, child molester, murderer, adulterer, liar, thief, that terrible father, that horrible mother, that thankless son or daughter, etcetera. We must remember that we have sinned against God too. None of us are immune. (Romans 3:23) By right God can destroy all of us because all of us are sinners.😲 If you do not believe this truth and think that you are less sinful than other people you are self-righteous. You may not know it but you are. We’ve all been guilty of this at some time or another. (Luke 18:9-14) Believing that your sins are not as bad as other people’s makes it nearly impossible to forgive them unless you repent. I would like to share with you a quote from a brother made in the 17th century:
“There are only two kinds of men: the righteous who believe themselves sinners; the rest, sinners, who believe themselves righteous.”
Blaise Pascal “Pensées”
Right said Fred!😊 It’s the truth.
Knowing the truth is one thing putting it into practice is another. The best advice I can give from personal experience on how to forgive others and deal with betrayal is found in the passage below:
Mark 14:38 HCSB “Stay awake and PRAY so that you won’t enter into temptation. The spirit is willing, but the flesh is weak.”
Pray, pray, and pray some more!🙏 “The spirit is willing, but the flesh is weak.” There are times it’s so hard dealing with being mistreated. Your emotions are saying one thing and the Holy Spirit is saying another, it’s a real war inside. (Galatians 5:17) That’s the real challenge, the battle within yourself. The only thing that gets me through those moments is prayer, real heartfelt prayer. Begging God to help you not give in to your emotions, pleading with Him for help to conquer your fears, literally crying to God, “HELP LORD I FEEL MYSELF FALLING!!!” and telling Him how weak you are works wonders. This reminds me of a time apostle Paul had a thorn in his flesh that weakened Him so much he begged the Lord three times to take it away. The Lord’s answer to Paul and Paul’s response are quite amazing:
CHRIST’S POWER PERFECTED IN WEAKNESSES
2 Corinthians 12:7-10 KJV “And lest I should be exalted above measure through the abundance of the revelations, there was given to me a thorn in the flesh, the messenger of Satan to buffet me, lest I should be exalted above measure. For this thing I besought the Lord thrice, that it might depart from me. And he said unto me, My grace is sufficient for thee: for my strength is made perfect in weakness. Most gladly therefore will I rather glory in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon me. Therefore I take pleasure in infirmities, in reproaches, in necessities, in persecutions, in distresses for Christ’s sake: for when I am weak, then am I strong.”
One would really have to be spiritually mature to thank God for and take pleasure in infirmities, reproaches, going through rough times, persecutions, etcetera. Paul learned what his tough times and weaknesses was doing for him: perfecting him with the strength of Jesus Christ. Jesus’ power is made perfect in our weaknesses. And we certainly have His grace. When we are persecuted, reproached, betrayed, and the like know that Jesus is there with us. He knows what it’s like, He went through it all Himself, remember? Yes there are many hurtful situations in this life but the more a diamond is cut the more it sparkles. And the heavier the cross the heavier the crown👑 Hang in there, don’t give up.
1 Peter 4:14 ICB “When people insult you because you follow Christ, then you are blessed. You are blessed because the glorious Spirit, the Spirit of God, is with you.”
Please share this with a friend😊