GPS: Grow, Pray & Study

GPS for the week of January 23rd, 2022

“Let’s Talk About Your Parents”

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The Ten Commandments were not given simply as negatives.  There is so much more to them than “Thou shalt not”.  This week we explore the power of family.  The fifth commandment “Honor your father and your mother” comes with a promise:  “…so that you may live long in the land the Lord your God is giving you.”  IF you will live in respectful relationships as a family, THEN you will be blessed in life and community.  Remember this week that you get to define just what “family” means to you.  For many of us, our blood family may not be strong or may be negative while our “friend family” may actually be our true, functioning family.  You define it!

 

Prayer:  Lord, you know the pressures we face as families.  We ask your blessing today that we might live in right relationship as family.  Bless each of us so that we may be a blessing to those around us.  We ask this in the name of Jesus, who in his family was son, brother, and uncle.  Amen.

 

Monday 1.24         “Honor”                        Exodus 20: 12

We are commanded to honor our parents.  The goal is not simply the relationship with parents.  The goal is creating a strong, healthy, resilient family that spans the generations.  As you think of your parents, whether they are alive today or have been gone for years, what are some of the powerful, positive moments that you remember?

 

Tuesday 1.25        “Jesus’ birth into a family”              Luke 2: 1-20

“But Mary treasured up all these things and pondered them in her heart.” (vs 20)  As we talk about honoring others in our families, it is important to remember that Jesus came to this earth as part of a family.  He was a son.  He was a brother.  He was an uncle.  Scripture does not tell us a great deal about this, but the relationships did exist.  In your imagination from what you know about Jesus, what do you think his home family life might have been like on a daily basis?  How do you think he would have honored his mother / father, his brothers / sisters, his nieces / nephews in day-to-day living?

Wednesday 1.26  “Tensions”                     Matthew 12:46-50

”Who is my mother, and who is my brother?”  These were very real and very tense questions that Jesus himself asked.  It’s tempting to think that Jesus had the perfect family and the perfect relationships.  This is just not so.  There were tensions.  In your own family, how have you witnessed tensions over the years?  How did you resolve these?  Or have they gone unresolved?  How can you honor your parents and family still?

 

Thursday 1.27      “Our Gifts”                   1 Corinthians 12: 1-11

If you are serious about honoring your family members, it is important to remember who you are.  God’s gifts and expectations of us may be very different from the gifts and expectations assigned to us by our families, even from a very young age.  You are who you are.  You are who God created you to be.  If this is indeed true, how is it that you perhaps need to honor your own self first by becoming more of the person God created you to be?  Then how can you honor your family more deeply?

 

Friday 1.28           “One Body, Many Parts” 1 Corinthians 12:12-30

“The body is a unit, though it is made up of many parts; and though all its parts are many, they form one body.” (vs 12)  What if we substitute a word in this verse and read it this way:  “The FAMILY is a unit, though it is made up of many parts; and though all its parts are many, they form one FAMILY.”  Families are complex and often difficult, and yet God calls us to be fully a part of family.  How have you made this be true in the past?  How can you recognize the parts you play and thus strengthen your family now today?

 

Saturday 1.29              “Love”                               1 Corinthians 13

It is helpful to remember that the church in Corinth was having deep problems in getting along together.  These incredibly beautiful words were not written to a perfect family but rather to a dysfunctional church who at times were a toxic family.  What is it that most strikes you in these amazing thirteen verses?  How can you live these instructions in your own family?