As I stood talking to the woman at the counter, I heard a pleasant man’s voice behind me. “I have a granddaughter who is handicapped,” he told someone else in the waiting room, “but she doesn’t know it. . . . . One time when she was little, she told me, ‘Grandpa, you hurt my feelings, but I have to love you ’cause we’re family.'”
As we prepare to spend time with our families this Christmas — or to spend lonely time longing for our families — or as we look ahead with uncertainty or fear before the visits we anticipate, I pray that God helps us remember to love one another ’cause we’re family.
The passage below gives hope to all of us — no matter which category we are in this Christmas. Though it’s sometimes hard to remember this about others and about ourselves, every person in our lives is someone God created in His image — including each of us.
No matter how wonderful — or tough — family relationships are, God really is able to do far beyond what we could ask or imagine. This Christmas let’s fret less and spend more time asking and imagining.
For this reason I bow my knees before the Father,
from whom every family in heaven and on earth derives its name,
that He would grant you, according to the riches of His glory,
to be strengthened with power through His Spirit in the inner man,
so that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith;
and that you, being rooted and grounded in love,
may be able to comprehend with all the saints
what is the breadth and length and height and depth,
and to know the love of Christ which surpasses knowledge,
that you may be filled up to all the fullness of God.
Now to Him who is able to do far more abundantly
beyond all that we ask or think,
according to the power that works within us,
to Him be the glory in the church and in Christ Jesus
to all generations forever and ever. Amen.