Sunday, July 10, 2011

Family champions are called to repair broken families

Imagine that you have a rusty old bicycle. It is so old that it is hard work to pedal on the flat but you are happy with the way it rattles along. Then your friend who is a mechanic in town comes home. He takes a horrified look at your old bike and sets to work with spanners, screwdrivers and oil. In an hour it’s a completely different machine. You wonder how you could ever have been satisfied with the way it was.

Family can be like the old bicycle. It is in need of repair but we don’t realize because “that’s the way things are.” Family Champions are called to repair broken families just as the mechanic fixed his friend’s bicycle. However, families are harder than bicycles to fix because we live in a fallen world.

Think again about the first chapters in the Bible: God’s beautiful plan for marriage is pictured in Genesis 1 and 2. Then in Genesis 3 Satan enters the perfect world God made. Adam and Eve are tricked and disbelieve the beauty and goodness of God’s plan and their relationship is damaged. The results are with us today:

Shame of nakedness: “They realized they were naked and sewed fig leaves together and made coverings for themselves” (3:7). What a contrast with 2:25 when the man and woman were naked and felt no shame. Men and women still hide who they really are from each other. There are hidden secrets in many families. We are not open with one another.
Fear of God: “They hid from the Lord God” (3:8). In Genesis 2 there was an open relationship with God. Probably Adam and Eve had often walked with God in the cool of the day. Now they hide. We still do.
Blaming each other (3:12): God asks Adam. “Where are you? Who told you that you were naked? Have you eaten from the tree?” God is not impressed when Adam blames Eve saying, “The woman you gave me…” How far Adam and Eve have fallen! Modern families also blame and accuse one another.
Conflict in the home: The domination by the husband in 3:16 is part of God’s curse. It is a picture of domestic violence far removed from the harmony and loving headship implied in Genesis 2.
Fighting between brothers: It got so bad that Cain murdered his brother (4:8) and went out from the Lord’s presence (4:16).
: Already in Genesis 4 Lamech married two women (4:23). Marriage had become a matter of convenience rather than a partnership growing into oneness (see 2: 24)

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