Family Potential

family2Many of us want to live up to the potential God has for us, but sometimes it’s difficult to accept the different plans that God has for others, especially within our families. God has created each of us specifically and has given us all unique talents. Although we should be loving and encouraging within our families, displaying Christ-likeness, there is unfortunately too often resentment and competition. Our sinful human nature makes us competitive people, but that is not God’s ideal for us. Romans 12:15 reminds us to share in each others’ successes, stating, “Rejoice with those who rejoice.”

Remember that God has a different plan for everyone. If you have siblings, chances are you have experienced some sibling rivalry at some point in your life. This is often even truer when you have a sibling of the same gender, or one who is very close in age. It’s unlikely that you can grow up with a sibling without someone comparing you to one another at some point. But God does not compare you with others: “But each man has his own gift from God; one has this gift, another has that” (1 Corinthians 7:7). If we’re competing with our siblings, instead of encouraging them, we are allowing ourselves to miss out on a blessing from God.

God doesn’t plan for everyone to go to the same college, marry at the same age, or excel at the same activities. It’s okay if you play the piano and your sister is the star of her soccer team. It’s also okay if an older sibling marries at twenty, but you feel that you should wait until you’re older than that. Or, maybe a sibling is attending a private university somewhere, but you want to go to a community college and live at home. That’s okay! Rejoice with your siblings for their successes and happiness, and you’ll be more likely to have a better relationship with them because of it.

family1Pray that God will reveal to you His plan for you––and listen! Unfortunately, we are often so focused on others’ talents and lives that we ignore God’s voice speaking to us about our own. And not only is this the case in our physical families but also in our spiritual families. How often have we been consumed with jealousy that a sister in Christ seems to have everything going for her? Or bitter that a brother in Christ got the scholarship we wanted? We need to pray that God will work on our hearts to help us refocus.

When we are focused on others, or on ourselves, we are not focused on Him. There are so many ways our Father desires to bless His children, but we must be focused on Him or else we will miss the opportunities he has in store for us. We should be rejoicing with others, knowing that God has His own very special and unique plan for their lives as well as ours!

By Lisa Grimenstein

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