Thursday, January 9, 2014

Our dysfunctional families

Does your family tree include a few messed up people?

You probably answered “yes,” and that’s OKReally. Take heart: Jesus’ human genealogy included some messed up people, too. 

In a recent Sunday sermon, son-on-law Brian pointed out that Jesus’ family tree included a liar, a schemer, an adulterer, a murderer, a drunkard, a prostitute.…

We all have blemished families, in varying degrees.

But here's the good news: God used Jesus’ less-than-perfect human family and God can use yours and mine, too.

How can that be? It doesn’t seem possible that God could use defective, broken, scarred families and their stories.

How could God use OUR stories

“It’s purely because of grace,” said Brian.

God doesn’t make us submit an application listing our qualifications. “It’s not about qualifications,” he said. “We base our lives on God’s promises of faithfulness and grace.”

What would we be without God’s forgiveness and lavish grace?

I want to fall on my face in tears when I think what I’d be without God’s merciful grace.

Our lives matter
of God’s grace and forgiveness
and healing and faithfulness. 
Our lives matter
God reaches out to us
in our disasters and calamities
and gives us second chances:
He heals us spiritually,
mentally, emotionally,
physically, relationally.

That’s how we can go on with our lives. And that’s why we can, and should, tell what He has done in our families and daily activities.

In fact, we need to tell our stories. Jesus said, “Go back and tell your family all God has done for you” (Mark 5:19; Luke 8:39).

God uses stories. They are among His most powerful tools.

You are part of a story
much bigger than yourself.

Your story is important.
It’s part of God’s story,
and God’s story is part of your story.

Connect your story with God’s story—
not as a hobby, but as a ministry to your family.

Write your stories. Yes, acknowledge the problems, but instead of dwelling on wreckage and malfunctions, tell what God has done to turn lives around. 

Other dysfunctional people—that’s all of us—need to know how God helped you. Tell us your stories: We want to know how God can bring help and healing and hope into our own lives and families.

Related posts:  
Say it”  


  1. Linda, yes, we need to write our stories and for all the reasons you've shared. God has laid out our stories, and families are mixed up and messed up in some corners, but our stories are what He wants us to share. So grateful you remain true to your faith!

  2. Sherrey, thanks for stopping by and leaving your encouraging words. Perhaps someone else reading them has been afraid to start writing but, because of your words, he/she will be inspired to write their stories after all. Bless you for your enthusiasm and commitment to write your God-and-Sherrey stories. :)
    Happy 2014,

  3. It's encouraging to remember that other people also have messed up, dysfunctional, or just plain WEIRD :-) people in their families. Good that I'm not the only one. I suppose even if my family was perfect, well then I'd ruin it because I can be a bit of a mess myself. :-) Only God's grace...

  4. That's it, Betsy, only God's grace. My daughter and I were talking last evening about how thankful and humble we are when God extends grace to us, and that, in turn, makes us willing and even eager to extend grace to others. It's not easy to do that, but worthy of our every effort. Thanks for stopping by, dear Betsy.

  5. Hi Linda~
    New Years Blessings to you and yours!
    I finally finished the memoir about searching for connection with my mother! THE MOTHER GAP: A Daughter's Search for Connection should be out next month!!! Hooray! Now I just need to get the word out.
    Could I share a guest post at some point?
    If you'd like to see a video we produced to highlight the book's theme, check out the link below. To GOD be the Glory!

    1. Jess! Congratulations on finishing your memoir! Yes, let me send you an e-mail about a guest blog post here.

    2. Jess, I can't find an e-mail address for you. Help!