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A Year Later…

August 16, 2015 Leave a comment

Mark Halvorsen reminded me this morning what a crazy year it has been for me. He’s right. I forget about it sometimes. It made me feel known having someone come up to me and express compassion for all I’ve been through in the last 12 months. Coincidentally, I also looked at my timehop today. This is an app which shows what you did exactly 1 year, 2 years, 3, etc on social media and messaging apps and the like. On it was a conversation with my mother which gave me a time reference.

Yesterday was exactly one year ago when I confronted my father about the many Craigslist emails on his phone where he was soliciting women and I gave him 24 hours to tell his wife about it. Today is a year from the day she found out. Tomorrow is the 1 year anniversary of the day he drove off to Kansas to be with another woman and her family. Whew, right?

Also this year, there was a massive church divide, controversy, blow up… not sure what you want to call it… that I was very close to. It was really difficult for everyone involved. It was especially difficult for me (not saying more difficult than for others or anything like that, but I’m trying to communicate how it was hard for me in a unique way) because there were a lot of sides in the conflict. For those who know me, you know I often have a hard time taking standard sides in most binary oppositions because I disagree with everyone equally in different ways.

So, I agreed with a lot of the message of one particular side of the church breakup. I also think some of the ways the people handled it on the side were sometimes simply out of fear, were mean-spirited, misrepresentative, destructive, and I think some people just jumped on board because it seemed like the opposing group was right without thinking through it themselves. Still, I found myself agreeing with many criticisms this particular group had, but I was afraid of associating myself with them because of their methodology and what I think is an over reaction, or at least the wrong reaction. I found myself wanting to side with the people I perceived to be victims only to find that, from my perspective, some had turned into perpetrators and demonizers of their fellow human beings. Additionally, I have a closeness to and love for many people on the multiple sides of this particular issue. So I never know how much to say, how to insert my perspective into the conversation, or whether doing so is even the right thing. I’m not the best person to evaluate the situation as I haven’t been directly involved in the church for a long time anyway, but still had some pretty strong thoughts about most things. At any rate, I felt like I couldn’t take any side and the whole situation made me feel lonely and heartbroken. I’m holding back tears right now as I ramble through this.

In addition, my Grandma on my mother’s side died. This was a sad event, moreso in the middle of everything else. Dealing with the added sorrow and honestly, feelings of guilt on my part for feeling like I mishandled her final years was hard. I didn’t know how to handle them well, so I didn’t do near as much as I could have. I didn’t do enough to pursue relationship with her in the twilight of her life. Grateful for my family members who did.

Anyway, long year. I also had normal life stuff which carries with it its own frustrations and difficulties. I’ve had to deal with home issues, friend issues, other family issues, church issues, wife issues, money issues, job issues, etc. Most importantly, I still live with the same struggle with sin everyone else does, with a heart that needs to die daily to sin and experience repeated rebirth in Christ through the loving forgiveness of grace and the empowering transformation of the Spirit.

So, what’s the purpose of this post? Scattered thoughts. 🙂

I believe this will be my last post in this series about dealing with the dissolution of my family. Not because I don’t have more to deal with or because more things won’t keep happening regarding it. I’m sure they will. I’m not sure what else to say about them. It’s a lot of the same stuff over and over. Sadness. Pain. Frustration. Anger. Followed by: Forgiveness. Grace. Love.Pity. Not just for the past stuff, but also for the ways he continues to wrong through attempts at manipulation of those I love and his attempts at deceiving those around him (that I have heard of, though I cannot confirm firsthand, so if I am speaking something falsely here I am sorry and open to correction). But nothing new is happening. Just my heart continuing to heal and hopefully continuing to be shaped into the image of Christ.

Also, in case you don’t know, life is weird. If last year you would have told me all the things which were going to happen to me this year, I would have wondered how I would endure it. But I did. One day at time. Sometimes on my knees. Sometimes on my feet. Some days doing a poor job of dealing with things and cowardly ignoring God and my life and everything important because it felt like too much to handle. But here I am and I feel okay. I feel really good some days. I feel really bad other days. To be perfectly honest, my overall mood and the pattern of feeling good and bad are not all that different now than it was before everything that happened in the last year.

Not only has God blessed me with endurance, but he is helping me do things on his behalf in the meantime. In September, it will be one year since I told my friend Perry I think I should do the teaching at church once a month. Despite my own theological flaws and holes in my ability to communicate, God has used me to bless people in that way. Although I’m quite confident my appeal is still to a narrow audience, I think God has helped me grow in this area. God has also blessed me with a large number of people expressing their gratitude and thankfulness and telling me the things God said to them through me as I stepped out in an area I have always perceived myself to be poorly suited for.

I’ve been writing questions for and leading/coordinating the 9 AM bible study at my church for a while. God has also used this to bless others through my questions and my participation in the discussion. He has blessed us collectively by, I believe, guiding us through the book of John together in some beautiful ways. I have also been blessed by getting to hear so many people’s perspective on scripture who respect God’s words, who are willing to challenge each other, and who are willing to disagree assertively one week, and still show up the next to engage in relationship. It’s beautiful to be a part of.

I also started a podcast. I’ve committed myself to three different things this year I’ve never committed myself to before, two of which are well outside my comfort zone and outside of my perceived zone of capability. All of which are important to my heart. All of which have blessed me. All these things I have done in the middle of an incredibly difficult and painful year. They have all helped bring me closer to God and thus my own heart and soul. God has used them to help heal me and has been wonderful about preventing me from using them as a tool to escape from myself.

Time has a way of creating a new normal. I spent the first 29 years of my life seeing my father very regularly. Now, I haven’t seen his face in a year. It’s been so long, it feels normal. Oddly, this is a helpful and hopeful reminder for me. People get used to things. We can endure a lot. And there can be bad circumstances in our lives which remain forever that don’t make our life bad forever. We can still have joy and be happy. We can still do good things. The bad things can be present and life can still be good.

God’s the best. I’m so relieved and grateful to have had my brother Jesus introduce me to his dad long before Mitch abandoned me. I’ve already been adopted into a new family. I’ve already become the son of a different Father, a son of the one who never stops loving me and who has permanently made a way for me to be in relationship with him no matter what I’ve done, as long as I turn back toward him. He’s always been my true Father anyway. Here’s something crazy: At no point in this whole ordeal have I ever felt unloved. I’ve felt unloved by Greg, but not unloved by my Father. Not generally unloved. Of course love from people in my life I have loved matters. Of course it is painful when they no longer love me. Of course it is painful when they choose their own selfish desires over you. But there is a love far more powerful and more constant which has made itself available to me, the love of God put on display most clearly in Christ Jesus. The more I embrace it, the more wonderful my life becomes even in the midst of difficult circumstances.

Simply Church: Meals

February 13, 2012 5 comments

There was a time when eating together was the norm for a family. When I was younger, almost every day my family would sit down at the dinner table and eat supper together.* Mealtime was when everyone stopped whatever they were doing, gathered together, prayed, shared a meal, and talked. Conversations weren’t always pleasant, sometimes they were uncomfortable, sometimes angry, but these mealtimes did much more to unify and solve problems in the family than create them. Meals are the perfect event for a family gathering because everyone in the family has to eat and the meal creates an environment well-suited for the conversation work of the kingdom to take place.

Jesus does a lot of his work over meals. He asks and answers questions when talking with the lawyers. He subverts ceremonial washing practices and gives a lesson about what it really means to be clean. He demonstrates in no uncertain terms the value of the sinners, prostitutes, and tax collectors. Through dinners with different crowds Jesus demonstrates the indiscriminate magnanimous love God has for the sinful religious rejects and the sinful religious elite. In making a meal, Jesus does the miraculous that everyone may eat of the food of his teaching with full stomachs. Forgiveness happens at the table. Transformation, redemption, and the rectifying of wrongs happen because of conversations with Jesus at the table. The whole celebration of the Egypt Exodus is reworked and recentered at the last supper.** Jesus does lots of cool things during meals.

The gathering of believers likes to eat together a lot too. In the beginning of Acts, while new believers are entering into the Messianic kingdom by the thousands, the church not only were devoted to learning from the apostles how to live in and bring this kingdom of the risen Messiah, but also to “fellowship, to the breaking of bread, and the prayers.”*** Obviously the teachings were central to the lives of the believers together, but so were the meals. And at these meals, as we see in subsequent chapters, great care was taken to make sure that no one went hungry. No one lets their siblings go without food.

Paul provides an interesting picture in 1 Corinthians 11 of the gathering of the Church in Corinth. He says,

“when you come together it is not for the better but for the worse. For, when you come together as a church… there are divisions among you… When you come together, it is not the Lord’s Supper that you eat.”

Paul assumes that when the church gathers together in the name of Messiah Jesus, they are eating together. Not only are they eating together, but by eating with one another in the name of the risen Lord, they are eating the Lord’s Supper. Paul goes on to heavily criticize the church because when they are eating what they presume to be the Lord’s Supper, each is eating their own meal, leaving the poor hungry and the rich drunk. Paul then goes on to explain a lot about what the Lord’s supper means and how to consume it, then says, “So then, my brothers, when you come together to eat…” Again, the underlying assumption is that eating together in the name of Christ is eating the bread and drinking the cup of the Lord.

In most church gatherings, we would never have anything approximating this problem while having the Lord’s Supper. There is not a situation where one person would eat to excess while another goes hungry, because no one eats anything substantial. The hungry would be hungry with no one knowing, because when they receive the Lord’s Supper, they only get a tiny piece of bread and a sip of juice. Our celebration of the Lord’s supper provides an equally insignificant amount of food for everyone, which doesn’t seem to be what Paul is imagining.

I have never gathered together with believers and remembered the body broken and blood shed during a meal with them. I have often taken the Lord’s Supper, but it was always a private experience of reflection, prayer, and remembrance of Jesus that occurred in a room full of people with some worship music in the background. Of course these private moments with the Risen One can be beautiful, intimate, and transforming. These moments, however, not what the Lord’s Supper was when Jesus exemplified it and explained it to His disciples, and the earliest followers of Jesus did not practice it like we did.

I don’t think we have to practice it the same way.**** However, we are missing something because we don’t gather together for a meal in the name of Jesus very often. Meals have the potential to be a place where a church functions as the church. In the joy and satisfaction of eating and drinking, much of the kingdom work of conversation can be done. Meals are an activity everyone can do together, uniting one another, making sure the hungry are fed, and are a potential conversation catalyzer.

In my life, because I have not thought about meals with other believers as the gathering of the church in the name of the Lord Jesus, I have replaced meals. I think that our desire to have these intimate moments and engage in the kingdom work of conversation has led to a preponderance of Christians going to coffee shops to gather in the name of Jesus. I don’t think I have ever met a believer in Christ at a coffee shop without talking about what the Risen Lord is doing in their lives. In my life, most of the beautiful moments of God’s power working through his people has happened during one of my conversation catalyzers: coffee shops, bars, and smoking. I believe that places and situations that invite open conversation with believers and allow the exercising of spiritual gifts are central to our lives as a community.

If we do not gather together regularly to share a meal in the name of Jesus, here is the question: What can we do to create space and an environment in our regular gatherings that stimulates transformative conversations with our brothers and sisters?
*Then sports and other commitments happened and the whole eating together thing went to shit. Obviously, football > family.

** Is this term, “last supper,” for the Passover feast with the disciples biblical? Because it doesn’t feel right. It might have been Jesus’ last meal before He was crucified, but is He not with us whenever we gather together in His name and share food?]

*** I haven’t researched this, but based upon imagery in Luke regarding the Lord’s supper as well as the meal where Jesus is revealed after the road to Emmaus, it would seem that the “breaking of bread” imagery is a way of talking about the redefined Passover meal. It certainly is an image indicating eating with others in the presence of the risen Messiah.

**** I do think that eating together is a wonderful way to remember what Jesus did and a kingdom act anticipating the marriage supper of the Lamb when all of God’s children will feast together.

Simply Church: Conversation

February 6, 2012 1 comment

This should go without saying, but I still think it needs to be said. Deliberate, open, and Jesus centered conversations are an absolutely necessary part of a church. I believe that these conversations among brothers and sisters, including Jesus and Dad, are central to life in Christ. Conversation is central to expanding the family, strengthening the love in the family, and helping the family look more like our older brother (who is the spitting image of our Father).

Dialogue about the Scriptures very often brings far more understanding than a Sunday morning monologue. Sunday morning monologues can be wonderful, informative, and encouraging, but it is through dialogue that we sort out what we really believe about something. More importantly, it is through discussion that we figure out how the Scriptures should affect the way we interact with the world. Community conversations concerning how to respond to Scriptures are frequently the beginning of actions that build, strengthen, and expand the family.

Open and prayerful discussions about our lives, struggles, confusions, frustrations, sins, and questions is one of the most powerful tools of transformation that the Spirit uses to make us like Dad. God uses Scripture to help us deal with these things, He uses His direct presence in our lives, and He uses his body, the church, to bring us direction and help in our times of need. God’s Spirit often works through conversation between believers to mend our hearts and transform us into His likeness.

Conversation is one of the most important ways to love each other toward YHWH. Encouraging, exhorting, admonishing, supporting, helping, confessing teaching, prophesying, preaching, healing, forgiving, mercy showing, praying, celebrating, and the like all happen in the context of a conversation and are all essential for believers to exercise. Having conversations surrounding these things is not something that should just be done because it’s beneficial for us and our siblings, but also because making the most of our conversations is an act of obedience.

Intimate discussions about big questions, personal struggles, how to interpret Scripture and what to do about that interpretation, and the wounds of our souls do not happen enough in community. There are very few people that make them happen. I barely make them happen. We have many opportunities and we seldom take full advantage of them. And usually, it is some form of fear that holds us back. Letting fear hold us back makes no sense for a child of God, for far more than fear holds us back, love drives us forward. Be driven by this love to actively engage your siblings in these conversations because we can’t be the body of Jesus without them.

How can you make more of your conversations? What would help you pursue others through conversation?

Simply Church: Mission

January 26, 2012 4 comments

There is a lot to say about the mission of the church family in the world. My friend @nate_ray probably has much more to say on this than I do. Again I’m going to limit my focus and zoom in on the mission of the church from a family perspective.

Our family is full of Love. Our Father is Love itself. He has breathed Himself into us, and now we are full of love. Our Father’s love is so big though. He loves to pour out His love on His children. He loves his children loving each other and watching them grow up to look more and more like Him. But it’s not enough for Him. Our Dad wants His family to grow. There’s enough love for everyone.

His first son, Jesus, charged his disciples, who were both his friends and his brothers, to go into the world and teach people to honor YHWH their Father they way that Jesus honored the Father. Jesus makes it clear elsewhere that those who do the will of his Father are his brothers and thereby also have YHWH as their Dad (this is also quite clear in the Jewish tradition that those of the covenant who live by the covenant have YHWH as their Father). Jesus tells us to go out and help people from all nations live and act in a way that makes them sons and daughters of YHWH.

Our mission as a church is to invite people into the family. Because of the great love we have from our Father and for each other, we want the family to expand. A family that has YHWH as their Father will want to and pursue expansion. The beautiful part of what our older brother has done is that he has already taken care of all of the adoption papers for everyone, making a way for all to become a part of the family. We literally can invite anyone into our family. Our Dad will lovingly adopt them because our older brother Jesus will vouch for them. And if Dad wants them, who are we to reject them? The only response is to embrace them as if they are both long lost and brand new siblings. They belong here as much as we do, and they always have.

Sometimes people reject being in the family. Sometimes people reject the family because they’d rather be independent and live in their own house with their own rules. Sometimes people reject the family because the family is dysfunctional. In our world, sometimes the family looks more like a fascist government than an incubator of love. The family can be closed off rather than invitational, or the family may become very particular about who it invites to become a part of it. The outside perception of the family is often that this family is replete with judgmental hypocrites rather than transforming lovers. Whether or not people choose to be adopted by Dad, we should at least have a family that is appealing to those without one.

Creating a family worth being in is one of the reasons why being like Dad is so important. We have to get rid of those areas in our lives, minds, hearts, and souls that run contrary to who our Father is and replace them with attributes that reflect him. Getting rid of those areas is not just for self betterment. We’re not that focused on ourselves. We work out our salvation because that’s what it means to love. The more like Jesus and Dad we are, the better we are at being in relationship. Sin keeps us from loving Dad well, loving each other well, and loving the world into adoption well. One of the reasons sin in our family is so unacceptable is because we then display to the world a family that they don’t really want to join.

When this family is reflecting its Father, it’s difficult to imagine others not wanting to be adopted. This family is where the kingdom of heaven reigns on earth, where what is wrong with the world is set right and where what is right with the world is amplified. In YHWH’s new covenant family… The wounded find healing. The homeless find home. The friendless find friends. The mourning find a shoulder to cry on. The hopeless find hope. The loveless love. The hungry food. The dirty are cleansed. The sinful are transformed. The broken are put back together. The lame walk. The blind see. The slave is freed. The joyful have brothers and sisters to rejoice with. Race, socioeconomic status, country of origin, biological family history, past sins, present issues, gender, and everything else are irrelevant. All who would give up the way of their old family to put on the way of YHWH’s family are welcome to join us and discover life that is truly life. This is the good news that we proclaim to expand the family.

Simply Church: Dealing With Each Others’ Sin

January 21, 2012 Leave a comment

We established that in the New Covenant Family we all still sin, this sin destroys the family, and our older brother, father, and their spirits are bringing us out of this sin. But we, as brothers and sisters, also have to deal with the sin of one another. Handling the sin of a brother against a brother is one of the most difficult parts of being a family. We do damage to our siblings. It’s intolerable that the family of God would do this, but it’s also inevitable.

It’s difficult to be a family. We hurt each other. Like our sin, this should never happen and it is bound to happen. We wrong each other in so many ways. We gossip with other family members. We lie to each other. We speak derogatory words to one another. We point out flaws in painful ways. We ostracize. We condemn. We judge. We ignore. We refuse to listen. We envy. We say the wrong thing at the wrong time. We’re all sinners (that’s who Jesus came to call after all). Sinners hurt people when they interact with them.

When we are sinned against, Jesus tells us, as a family, there is only one way to handle it:

“If your brother sins, rebuke him, and if he repents, forgive him. If he sins against your seven times in a day, and seven times comes back to you and says, ‘I repent,’ forgive him.” (Luke 17)

These words are wonderful and frustrating. All of the actions of these two sentences are difficult (more on this difficulty can be found here).

It is often difficult to tell someone how we have been wronged by them because we have to admit that in some way our dignity was dishonored. We have to acknowledge that we were treated in a way that is embarrassing because we weren’t valued. Humility is required to admit we have been hurt. It is scary that our brother won’t acknowledge his/her involvement in this devaluing of our personhood because this affirms (wrongly) that dishonor is simply the way we should be treated. Rebuking someone about how they’ve wronged us is simply an uncomfortable thing to do. There are a number of things that make rebuking someone for their sin difficult, but it has to be done in a proper functioning family.

And then, the next part of this process is the person who sinned admitting their sin, being contrite for it, and turning from it back into right relationship. Who wants to admit they’ve done wrong? What if what we did wasn’t even technically wrong, it was just ignorant actions that unintentionally hurt?* As the person rebuking needs humility, the person repenting needs humility in relation to their siblings to, in a sense, put themselves below their sister in their request for their sister’s forgiveness. We need something from them because we want reconciliation with them.

Forgiveness is obviously most often the most difficult of all of these steps. Jesus’ words that we have to, essentially, always forgive a repentant brother or sister are especially difficult. At least for me, the reason it sucks so bad to forgive is simple and obvious, “They hurt me and they don’t deserve my forgiveness!” The exact reasons someone needs forgiveness are the exact reasons I don’t want to give it to them. When we forgive, we have to release the other of the wrong they did to us. The reconciliation of the relationship depends on us and we have to, in a sense, absorb the sin (I explain this quite poorly here). Forgiving is difficult, but absolutely necessary for our family to be a family.

Our older brother Jesus, a master of forgiveness and reconciliation, makes some pretty bold statements about these things. He claims that reconciling with our brother is more important than sacrifice for or going to a worship service for our Father. It doesn’t even make sense in our family to worship God our Father or make sacrifices to Him if we haven’t done everything in our power to make things right in our relationships with our brothers and sisters.

Jesus also says something surprising and frustrating about forgiving our siblings: “For if you forgive others their trespasses, your heavenly Father will also forgive you, but if you do not forgive others their trespasses, neither will your Father forgive your trespasses” (Matthew 6). Pretty clear stuff. Unforgiveness makes no sense in this family because this family was started by the greatest act of forgiveness the world has ever seen. Our family began with forgiveness that allowed us to be reconciled with our Father and it continues with forgiveness that keeps us in intimate relationship with both our Father and our siblings. The only thing more unacceptable than sin in this family is refusing to forgive after all we have been forgiven.

Sometimes there is sin that is not directly against another person. Our goal in dealing sin like this is the same as our goal in everything else, how do we handle this like Dad would handle this? How do we handle this like our older brother would handle this? We do what families do, we love eachother. We give the sinner what they need. If it’s forgiveness, we offer it. If it’s a reminder of Dad’s love, we speak it. If it’s admonishment, we admonish. If it’s an embrace, we embrace. If it’s just to be there, then we just be there. We do whatever it is we have to do in order to love that person the way the Father loves them, all the while, with words and actions, pointing to the Father and our older brother.

*I’ve probably done this to you. And I’m so incredibly sorry. Help me change!

Simply Church: Dad, Jesus, and Sin

January 17, 2012 1 comment

Rather than continuing in sin, our church families and individuals within the family, should be moving out of sin. Our goal is to become like dad and to be a successful church we should be moving toward that goal. If our families are not, in large part, departing from sin, our families aren’t functioning the way that they should be. There’s so much to talk about here. I’m going to try to keep this series from getting too out of control so I’ll try to focus on some of the ways the family metaphor can shape our perspective on this.*

Our Father is Love. Our Father is defined by love. It takes great prayer and imagination to begin to grasp how high, wide, and deep the Father’s love for us is. Nothing can separate us from His love. Where everything else fails, love remains and conquers. Because of this great Love, because our dad is the Great Love, dealing with sin has to always begin with, be empowered by, and end with love.

God’s first response to our sin is conviction and guilt. God’s first response to our confession is a loving embrace. Like any good Father, our Dad doesn’t want us to live in shame and guilt because we’re imperfect. He wants us to know that there is nothing we can do to make Him love us less. After his embrace, our good Father may provide discipline, but this is not something to be avoid; rather, it should be embraced for it wonderful that Dad is working in our lives to teach us to be more strong, beautiful, delightful, joyful, and lifeful.

It’s near impossible to embrace the greatness of our Dad’s love for us while engaging in behaviors that break His heart. I believe that one of the most important elements in departing from sin is to bask in the unshakeable love God has for us. When we embrace this love, we love back. When we love, we want to please. We want to honor. We want to treat with dignity. We want to express that love through our words, actions, and life.

Our older brother has shown us how to live in the way of our Father. Sometimes it’s hard to figure out what Dad would do if He were in our circumstances. He’s a lot older and although we know what he is like as a Dad, we don’t know what he’s like as a son or daughter. We have an older brother who is everything that our Dad is, but who is also everything that we are. Jesus provides a clear representation of what it looks like to be a child of YHWH in a way that brings glory to YHWH because it reflects YHWH.

Jesus, who is everything Dad is, lived a life much like us. He intimately understands the trials, difficulties, pains, wounds, temptations, confusion, and complexities of living as a son. Jesus took pity on us, who all at one time had cut ourselves off from the family because of our messed up hearts. Jesus saw what was wrong, went before his Dad on our behalf, and figured our how, at great cost to himself, we could become a part of the family again. We broke YHWH’s heart by rejecting His love, running from home, distorting His image in us, destroying His image in others, and joining a new family. Jesus told Dad, “It’s all on me,” and both of them went to great lengths so that our rebellion would not keep us from being adopted back into God’s family.

Now that our Father and Brother have dealt with our sin, we are adopted sons and daughters. This is not like a normal adoption where a person legally becomes the child of a new set of parents. Our belonging to our Father is certainly legal, but YHWH does more. He recreates us. Through His Son, He makes us a new creation. He renews His breath in us; His spirit in us. We are given a new spiritual genetic makeup that reflects the Father. We are given the Spirit of God in us, that we might live in that same breath, glorifying Dad by imitating Him. The exchange of our rebellious hearts for new hearts is what makes it possible for us to put Dad on display through us.

One of the most wonderful things about this recreation is there is no longer such thing as being stuck in sin. We may feel stuck in sin. We might feel like there is no way out and we just can’t change. The truth is we are already changed. We have been changed. We have been made new and have a renewing of the Holy Breath of God in us which empowers us to reflect Dad. We’re free. The sense of stuckness is merely paradigms of our past masquerading as present reality, but they only have the power we allow them to have. We are new. We are children of the living God in every way. Embrace love and live in it.

*The extensive talking about concepts in light of the family is fresh for me, so I’m going to stick with it, hoping it’s fresh for you as well. In the process, there will be a lot of pertinent Scriptures that I’m going to be leaving out throughout this series. Forgive me in advance.

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