Family Is Important

Note from JesusDear Child of God,

Family is important. Your spiritual family is important to you. Your physical family is important to you. Family is important to you just as it is to Me!

One of the great hurdles I faced in My earthly ministry was that most of My physical family didn’t believe in Me. Most of My brothers and sisters along with relatives and friends from my hometown did not believe before My resurrection. My family situation was very complicated like the family situations of many of My followers today. One time My family thought I was crazy because I ministered so passionately without thinking of My own bodily needs for food and rest (Mark 3:20-21). On another occasion, because My siblings did not believe in Me as God’s Son (John 7:1-7 — found in the verses below), they teased Me very harshly, mocking My call to be the Father’s Messiah.

So when I was raised from the dead, I appeared to My spiritual family, and I also appeared to My physical family, most notably James. One of the touching things for Me in the New Testament is the way My half-brother James began his letter with great humility toward Me and great admiration for Me:James, a servant of God and the Lord Jesus, the Anointed One, to the twelve tribes of Israel who are spread across the earth: I send you my warmest welcome.
(James 1:1)Sometimes the hardest people to bring to faith are the people in your own family. I want you to know that I know that — not just because I AM God and know everything, but also because I have experienced it in human flesh. So I remind you that an essential and powerful part of your testimony about Who I AM and what I have done is your resurrected life that shows My power, love, and grace (Romans 6:1-14). Don’t give up on those around you who do not believe. I will work in their lives to give them the opportunity to change, and I challenge you to show that I have brought new life to you. Demonstrate the power of that new life in the way that you live with righteous character and gracious compassion.Verses to LiveThe beloved disciple was close to My physical family, especially after My ascension back to the Father. When I was dying on the cross, I asked him to look after My mother, Mary (John 19:26-27). He knew about the struggle My half-siblings had in believing that I had come from God. His words in the first verses below capture the emotional tension that their lack of faith produced between them and Me.

One of the most profound blessings after My ascension was to have some of My brothers become a part of the Jerusalem disciples praying for the coming of the Holy Spirit (Acts 1:14). One of those brothers, James, went on to become a great leader in the Jerusalem church. That is why My appearance to him after My resurrection was so important. (See the second set of verses below.) My resurrection and My appearance to My brothers changed everything for them and for what they believed about Me!After these events, it was time for Jesus to move on. He began a long walk through the Galilean countryside. He was purposefully avoiding Judea because of the violent threats made against Him by the Jews there who wanted to kill Him. It was fall, the time of year when the Jews celebrated the Festival of Booths.

Brothers of Jesus (to Jesus):Let’s get out of here and go south to Judea so You can show Your disciples there what You are capable of doing. No one who seeks the public eye is content to work in secret. If You want to perform these signs, then step forward on the world’s stage; don’t hide up here in the hills, Jesus.Jesus’ own brothers were speaking contemptuously; they did not yet believe in Him, just as the people in His hometown did not see Him as anything more than Joseph’s son.

Jesus:My time has not yet arrived; but for you My brothers, by all means, it is always the right time. You have nothing to worry about because the world doesn’t hate you, but it despises Me because I am always exposing the dark evil in its works. Go on to the feast without Me; I am not going right now because My time is not yet at hand.(John 7:1-8)

Let me remind you, brothers and sisters, of the good news that I [Paul] preached to you when we first met. It’s the essential message that you have taken to heart, the central story you now base your life on; and through this gospel, you are liberated — unless, of course, your faith has come to nothing. For I passed down to you the crux of it all which I had also received from others, that the Anointed One, the Liberating King, died for our sins and was buried and raised from the dead on the third day. All this happened to fulfill the Scriptures; it was the perfect climax to God’s covenant story. Afterward He appeared alive to Cephas (you may know him as Simon Peter), then to the rest of the twelve. If that were not amazing enough, on one occasion, He appeared to more than 500 believers at one time. Many of those brothers and sisters are still around to tell the story, though some have fallen asleep in Jesus. Soon He appeared to James, His brother and the leader of the Jerusalem church, and then to all the rest of the emissaries He Himself commissioned.
(1 Corinthians 15:1-7)Response in PrayerO Father, my words will be few today, but My heart yearns for them to be fully true. Let the beauty, grace, love, and character of Jesus be seen in my life by everyone, especially by my family. In Jesus’ name, I ask this. Amen.’A Year with Jesus’ is written by Phil Ware. © 1998-2022, Heartlight, Inc. ‘A Year with Jesus’ is part of the Heartlight Network.All scripture quotations, unless otherwise indicated, are taken from The Voice™. © 2008 by Ecclesia Bible Society. Used by permission. All rights reserved.

Family Is Important
Source: Passion for Praise