Friday, March 2
Day 15—Read Mark 6
When my family gets together we have a great time reliving our childhood. We especially laugh at stupid things we’ve said or done over the years. They know all my embarrassing moments… and I know all of theirs. We rag on my brother who was known as the “what if” boy, climbing up the side of the house and hanging off the back of a neighbor’s car (unbeknownst to them) while skateboarding in the neighborhood. We make fun of my other brother who literally couldn’t go ANYWHERE without throwing up, including getting sick through our camper screen door after one too many rides on a roller coaster. And my sister… she was a wild child and knew she was as cute as button. She would say something naughty and we couldn’t help but just laugh and laugh.
To me, these stories and memories will always be a part of them. I have had people tell me how amazing one of my siblings was and at times I thought, “that knucklehead?!” But the truth is, they all have grown into amazing, incredible people. One is a teacher, changing the world of his students. Another brother constantly amazes me with his insights and his faith. My youngest brother is so kind and sweet – I constantly am challenged by his servant-minded heart. And my sister. She’s sassy, a fighter – with a heart of gold. God has spoken to me through each of them and continues to use them to teach me.
Sometimes it’s so easy to let those who are familiar to us stay those early versions of themselves. People say, “to me you’re still that little child running around.” Perhaps this was part of the problem when Jesus returned to His hometown. Though perfect, Jesus still had a childhood. I’m sure those in his hometown had some stories about Him and His family. Maybe this made recognizing Him as the long-awaited Savior difficult.
But God can use anyone. He can and does use strangers to teach us. But He also uses the people closest to us to challenge, inspire, motivate, and grow us. Don’t let familiarity bred contempt. Don’t let your knowledge and familiarity with those closest to you make you miss what God is trying to teach you. Instead, let those around you challenge you to be better, to grow, and to chase after the heart of God. Give them the honor they are due for the people God has created them to be.