Church is family. Scripture refers to believers several times and in several ways as being at of God’s family. I don’t know of any human family that is without drama of some kind. As a minister I’ve seen families which are completely dysfunctional and in some cases dangerous while others are much healthier and joyful. Even these joyful families experience times of struggle and trial. In even the healthiest families feelings can get hurt and people get angry. Every family has drama.
The church as family is no exception. We don’t always get along with our parents and siblings, much less our extended family. We won’t always get along with our brothers and sisters in Christ either. We shouldn’t expect that just because most people present claim to be followers of Christ that all strife and tension will magically be gone. We shouldn’t be surprised when misunderstandings happen. We should be quick to listen, slow to speak and always ready to forgive. That is perhaps something different between the church and our human families – or at least ought to be something different. The cool thing is that we have a Father who, though He is just and will discipline, is full of mercy and always forgives us when we play the fool.
I know me. God knows me better even than I do myself. Only He knows truly how foolish, prideful and judgmental I can be. And yet he forgives me. Every time. He is patient and puts up with more than’ll know of this side of the grave. And He forgives.
“Father, give me a heart filled with the Gospel of Your grace. Teach me to be quick to listen and slow to speak. May I be always ready to forgive and humble enough to always ask forgiveness from those I wrong.”