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On more than one occasion I’ve asked myself that question. To be honest, my relationship with some of my family members has not always been the best. Sometimes moments have been downright painful. There have been issues and moments of strain in my family that I’m sure many of you can relate to. So many times I’ve wondered why God placed me with the people I belong to and what it all means. Though we love each other and I know there is a greater purpose, I guess I thought I may never know the answer to the question until I saw God face to face.

Our family laughs and fights together (sometimes all in the same night) ;-). We spend holidays, special occasions and birthdays together, but I know that we can all be more connected and just be there for each other. So for many years I have been praying for my family and hoping to see things get better. Several times I debated continuing to be around those that hurt me, but there were factors that made me tough it out. For one, I did not want to miss out on the bonds I could make sharing special moments. Another factor is just not wanting to give up on my family and what I believe God has called them to be. As I’ve matured, I realize more and more this life is not about me. Jesus has accepted me with my faults, flaws and limitations with no hesitation and I would be selfish and vain to not extend that same love toward the people He has placed in my life. There’s definitely been traumatic times were I just wanted to hop off my own cross and say, “Forget it!” but something eternal has been unfolding behind the scenes despite my weariness.

Time has passed and I’ve recently begun to witness things I did not think I would ever see or hear. I’ve heard my father speak of God in a way I’ve never heard before, expressing gratitude for what He’s done in his life. He’s honestly shared the lessons he’s learned in his youth and adult years. I’ve seen a vulnerability and openness in my family that takes my breath away. We had a very painful loss a few years ago, but in that loss I believe God helped us to see Him as our help when our own feeble strength began to crumble. The glimmers of my hope were stoked and the embers of my faith began to glow.

I just recently came back from our family reunion and though it had a pretty shaky start, I saw God moving on all our hearts and I had an opportunity to lead my family in prayer as we worked through a challenging moment. God gave me the words. I had no idea what to say. And over that weekend I was able to see more of God’s purpose for sowing me into the family I belong to. That’s not to say that all our issues are fixed. We are all “working projects” and we will have some slips along the way as humans, but I thank God for revealing just a little more of His great plan for our lives. Most families have dynamics to work through with perplexing situations to navigate, but I believe that there truly is a reason and divine purpose that the Lord is working in us as we walk. #KeepWalking #TrustHim