Family Photo

October 11, 2005
by Anne Russell

2 Corinthians 5:18-19 – All this is from God, who reconciled us to himself through Christ and gave us the ministry of reconciliation: that God was reconciling the world to himself in Christ, not counting men's sins against them. And he has committed to us the message of reconciliation. (NIV)

I was looking at an old photo, taken in the fall some years ago, showing our family walking down a country road amid a blaze of coloured leaves. It brought back pleasant memories of days now gone by. A photo, though, cannot make time stand still. Time passes, people change, and some are even taken away. As I write about this treasured photo, I feel a loss, a grief, for if I tore the picture in half, it would tell a story of its own: a home divided and torn in two. When family members are hurt and have unforgiving hearts, it brings sorrow and separation when families should be sharing good times together: birthdays, anniversaries, reunions, Thanksgiving, Christmas, and Easter.

I know I am not alone, for there are many homes that are torn in two for many different reasons, usually with fault on both sides. How can we mend a heart which is not ours and which seemingly won't melt? What did we do wrong? What can we do to make it right? Often we are tempted to give up, and sometimes we may even ask what use it is to have faith. Where is our hope? — O God, it is in You!

For in the midst of our troubles, if we can but relate to God's faithfulness, and trust that He has a wonderful plan for our situation, He will enable us to continue to pray and never give up on a fractured situation in our lives. We must continue praying for those we grieve over, even though it is painful to think about it. God is a God of reconciliation, and He has given us the ministry of reconciliation. While there is life, we must live in hope that one day there will be a coming together, and in trust that God has a plan of His own. As we give it all to Him, we can plead for His peace within, which passes all understanding.

1 Peter 1:21 – Through [Christ] you believe in God, who raised him from the dead and glorified him, and so your faith and hope are in God. (NIV)

Prayer: Dear Father in heaven, help us to keep our trust in You and to find comfort in Your eternal hope. Grant us patience during the time it takes to heal hearts that seem hardened. Pour Your healing balm into the pain as we give it all to You. Grant us Your grace that we may find Your peace and never lose hope. In Jesus' name, we pray. Amen.

About the author:

Anne Russell <anbrussell@rogers.com>

Brampton, Ontario, Canada


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