In my mind family and the trinity are the same expression. God himself lives in community. Three in one. The individuals within God, the trinity, are separate persons yet one. They have individual expression, purpose, function, and yet are one. They move separately yet are one. How God relates to himself, or how the trinity relates to one another is the self-sustaining heaven humanity gets to partake of. Everything is satisfied within God himself, yet he invited us to experience the glory of his nature. And not only to experience it, but embody it through him indwelling within us. I no longer live, yet Christ in me.
Family. Let’s start with marriage. God said let man and woman be made in my image. Himself, not fully expressed in man, or woman, but their functioning together. God could have made us asexual able to regenerate ourselves but he didn’t. He purposed for two genders to live their lives together, living it through him, by him, and in him, as two separate beings functioning as one. He said I have made you one flesh. Of course wedding partners don’t become Siamese twins but they are one person, one flesh, not a trinity but a binity? And then comes the third element, children.
We are never called to be one with are children, but one a larger scale we are called to be one as Christ’s body. We are all called to be one. How do we all become one? How do we become one with our spouse? Our children? We become one with Holy Spirit. Well you already are one with Holy Spirit as he lives inside of you and your spirit is one with his, but when we become one with him, we become one with someone who is already one with that other person, whether it be your child, your spouse, whomever. Fear in our relationships doesn’t lead us to love others well, Holy Spirit does. And often loving others well often begins with healthy love for ourself.
This might have gotten a little confusing but we don’t become one in family by forcing it. Any family with a teenager has probably seen that doesn’t work, but God is one with his children, he knows them, he knows you. Everyone wants to belong somewhere. Everyone wants to be accepted somewhere. These wants and desires have their origins in the innate purpose of family. If the church is ever to become one with each other, it is not a matter of church membership. It is a matter of holy spirit living. But this post isn’t my church post, this is my family post, but perhaps, just perhaps the function and purpose of the two are the same.
In the absence of family, or even with a healthy one, God is family to us. The trinity is our eternal family, always has been, always will be. Our natural families merely reveals his expressions. He is our mother, he was our mother’s love to us in our lives, that was him loving you. God is our brother, our friend, our counselor, our husband, our leader. He is all those things and so much more. He is the love you are experiencing every day through the people around you. It is him. He is that love. He is actively in love with you through your family, or those who play that role for you in your life.
So if family is created to be so wonderful and amazing and heaven on earth, why is it so often not? I’m not even referring to mine specifically, just in general it seems so many hard things can come our way through family itself, the very thing meant to be a blessing to us. Whether you feel misunderstood, neglected, abused, or abandoned, you are worth far more than any negative thing a family member believes about you. In fact you are a blessing to your family. God can give you love for your family with healthy boundaries even if they don’t have them.
You can not change people and others actions and words are out of your control. But you have the power to fully control your thoughts, actions, and words and when the opportunity arises, you can love. You can think and speak blessing. You can ask questions and listen. You can celebrate and you can serve. You may not be able to make others love you but you can celebrate them just as they are still fully possessing the full value of Christ’s sacrifice.
I know that my husband embodies Christ to me. And God wants me to get that. He wants me to connect that reality to my mind even beyond my heart. He wants us to be interdependent and needing one another. He wants life to be enjoyed being shared. This can also happen through community outside of the conventional family structure. The same healthy exchange of love is still lived, witnessed, and experienced through friendship and covenant amongst people outside of traditional marriage roles. But that’s still family. It still embodies the destiny and purpose of family.
The family entity embodies the presence of God. It can be heaven on earth as God lives through and in the participating people. We are not slaves or zombies, we get to live the fullest expression of ourselves in complete freedom and that reveals him as we get to love others and share life with them in all its ups and downs. A family living in the strength of love reveals the exchange that has eternally existed within the Godhead.
The kindness in your tone towards your husband reveals him, the empathy you show towards your wife reveals him, the joy you share your children reveals him. Heaven is community living in healthy love. No self-destructive or other-destructive behaviors. This is where things are headed. Loving people loving people. Family is meant to be the canvas that reveals a servant lover, a humble savior, a faithful friend. Healthy family is the breeding ground for courage.
Family is a safe place to fail. Without faithfulness beyond failure, it is not love and you can catch up on that in my other piece called LOVE. This piece on family may expand later but this is all I have for now. Moving along.