Family Matters: God Placed you in your family for a Reason
By Muriithi Wanjau
What a difficult season we have been in! The COVID-19 pandemic has probably impacted the world more than anything else has since World War II.
Across the globe, businesses have imploded, schools are closed and jobs have been lost. Scores of people have lost loved ones, with some families even losing more than one member. In Kenya the situation has been exacerbated the high costs of living, unemployment and rampant government corruption. There has also been a spike in the rate of divorce, separation and gender based violence with numerous reports of intimate-partner murders.
What can we as God’s people do? Should we run for cover in fear? What if we viewed this crisis as a God-given opportunity to take care of our families? People are in this season more spiritually open and this is an opening that can be used by families to deal with issues previously unaddressed.
Now, you may be asking, “With all that I have to deal with already, WHY would I want to take on more issues?” I have three really good reasons! Find them below:
1. Family Influences Who You Become:
Whether you are aware of it or not, your family background plays a large role in how you make decisions and respond to crises.
Look at Jacob for instance. His name meant ‘he deceives’, something he lived up to quite well. He stole from his older brother Esau twice, first by tricking him into giving up his birthright and later when he got the firstborn blessing after deceiving their blind father Isaac. Later we read how after living with his maternal uncle Laban for several years, Jacob walked away with all the healthy sheep and goats, leaving his uncle with all the weak and sickly ones. Talk about a troublemaker!
One look at his background though, and you can understand where all that came from! Jacob’s grandfather Abraham made a habit of telling people that his wife Sarah was his sister. Years later, Isaac did the same thing! Let’s not forget Jacob’s mum. She was the brains behind him stealing Esau’s blessing from Isaac! And while Jacob pulled a fast one on Laban with the livestock, Laban was no saint himself. He tricked Jacob into marrying the wrong woman and got him to work for him for twice the time they had agreed upon.
If you were to look at your own family, what characteristics would you see prominently among several members? Are all the men mysteriously not amounting to much or the women having children out of wedlock? Perhaps people die relatively young, or suffer from similar conditions such as high blood pressure or heart disease. These things often seem so normal that we hardly think that there could be another reality!
On top of these, there are the blind spots to consider (things you’re not aware of from your family) that affect how you think and behave. They could be the lid that has been keeping you from being everything God created you to be.
2. God Placed You In Your Family for a Reason:
The story of Jacob’s son Joseph, illustrates this well. He was his father’s favorite son, which made his brothers resent him. They sold him as a slave and for many years, he lived a harsh life. I wonder how many times he wished he had been born into a different family!
God eventually elevated him to become the prime minister of Egypt and years later, in come his brothers in search of aid. Joseph could have made them suffer for what they did, but instead he said, “It was not you who sent me here, but God…” (Gen. 45:8).” Adding later, “You intended to harm me, but God intended it for good to accomplish what is now being done, the saving of many lives.” (Gen. 50:20)
Whether you come from a completely broken family or from a loving family where people support each other, God did not make a mistake in placing you there! He had a very specific reason and purpose for doing so. Why not step up then, and fight for your family’s freedom?
3. Your Family’s Destiny is Your Priority
Luke narrates a powerful story Jesus told about a rich man who died and went to a place of torment. While he was there, he clamoured for word to be sent to his five brothers ‘so that they will not also come to this place of torment’ (Luke 16:28). Here lies our lesson. When all else is stripped away, none of the material things we avidly chase, matter at all. The man didn’t ask for more money, fame or another shot at his career. He just wanted his people to know about the danger of an eternity without God!
Similarly, the most important thing you can care about is the eternal destiny of your family members. Do they have a relationship with God? Or are they heading towards destruction? What if you took opportunity of this COVID crisis and invested in your family? You may start by leading them through SIMAMA, our ten-week experienced centred on the family.
2021 can turn out to be the best year our families have ever had. Let us trust God to break the strongholds that have held our families back, and to turn into good, what the enemy intended for evil.
SIMAMA is a 10-week experience that helps you break any spiritual strongholds that have held you or your family back from being all that God created them to be. The experience is designed to help families be self-aware of the cultural and spiritual forces that influence their particular circumstances, and then teaches them to employ the spiritual, emotional and psychological resources needed to overcome the works of darkness in their lives. If you haven’t already, download the SIMAMA info pack here and see how you can be involved!