Family in Crisis: How Jesus Heals and Restores Family Hurt and Disappointment

Jesus at Home  •  Sermon  •  Submitted
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By redefining the central value of what is family, Jesus places his presence and purpose as the central goal for family relations.

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Jesus Orders the Family

Matthew 12:46–50 CSB
While he was still speaking with the crowds, his mother and brothers were standing outside wanting to speak to him. Someone told him, “Look, your mother and your brothers are standing outside, wanting to speak to you.” He replied to the one who was speaking to him, “Who is my mother and who are my brothers?” Stretching out his hand toward his disciples, he said, “Here are my mother and my brothers! For whoever does the will of my Father in heaven is my brother and sister and mother.”
John 19:25–29 (CSB)
Standing by the cross of Jesus were his mother, his mother’s sister, Mary the wife of Clopas, and Mary Magdalene. When Jesus saw his mother and the disciple he loved standing there, he said to his mother, “Woman, here is your son.” Then he said to the disciple, “Here is your mother.” And from that hour the disciple took her into his home.
After this, when Jesus knew that everything was now finished that the Scripture might be fulfilled, he said, “I’m thirsty.” A jar full of sour wine was sitting there; so they fixed a sponge full of sour wine on a hyssop branch and held it up to his mouth.

Family in Crisis

Crisis comes to all families at some point. Examples...
changing dynamics of a growing family
different stages of a child’s life (infant demands, teenage pressures, parenting adult children)
financial pressures
job transition
divorce
broken trust and loss of intimacy in marriages
widowhood
illness, disease, addictions
Eli (1 Sam 2) in Scripture as examples of abandoning the assignment of cultivating a Jesus-centered home.
1 Samuel 2:29 “You have honored your sons more than me, by making yourselves fat with the best part of all of the offerings of my people Israel.’”
It’s important to note that NO FAMILY avoids crisis…family tension and family crisis should NOT be thought of as failure in the home or God’s punishment....
It’s how we respond before, during, and after family crisis that puts Jesus at the center of our homes.

The Family in our Community:

According to the U.S. Census Bureau, the majority (70.1%) of the nation’s children under age 18 lived with two parents, 21.4% lived with their mother, 4.4% with their father, and 4.0% did not live with a parent in 2019.
Among the 4.0% of children under age 18 who did not live with a parent, 53.2% lived with a grandparent in 2019. Grandparents are the fastest growing parent demographic today.
The percentage of children living in multigenerational households increased across all racial and ethnic groups between 2008 and 2018.
Almost a quarter of U.S. children under the age of 18 live with one parent and no other adults (23%), more than three times the share of children around the world who do so (7%).
Children living with two unmarried parents were more likely to live below the poverty line in 2019 (38.1%) than children with married parents (7.5%).
34% or individuals over 20 years old have experienced divorce. The rate is higher for older adults.
The Church has to come to terms with the realities of strained and broken family relationships...
How do we respond when the family feels like it’s falling apart?

Jesus Creates a New Family

What are we to make of the way Jesus seems to turn away his mother and brothers in Matthew 12?
Jesus says “whoever does the will of the Father is my family...”
So for Jesus, loving God and loving others like God is foundational to what it means to be “family”.
it’s not ONLY your biology that defines family relationships for the church…God is the Father of all and his children love indiscriminately.
…bloodline family was even more central to the culture in Jesus’ day…yet his teaching and model point to the practice of “faithful love” (hesed/agape) as FIRST importance.
…Jesus wasn’t rejecting his mother or bothers (John has him staying with his mother and brothers Jn 2:12), he was saying something like “you say mother and brothers are important, but I say love ALWAYS as if all people were your mother and brother.”

Jesus’ Model for a Family in Crisis

Offer forgiveness just as you were forgiven (Jn 20:23)
Loving family should always remain in a posture of mutual love, mutual forgiveness, and mutual surrender to each other.
Release others from “unforgiveness prison’
You cannot experience God’s love for yourself or others while there is bitterness in your heart.
Understand that you cannot force or control the process of healing for others
This is where faith is important…healing, restoration takes time…we cannot force the process, but we can trust God in the middle of the process.
Let your actions be defined by Love rather than desperation, manipulation, or control.

Where Relationships are Lost or Broken

Remember that God is our mother, father, brother, sister, husband, wife….
We all should be looking to God’s family for on-going & loving support.
Isolation & self-dependency are NOT honorable traits for God’s family
Trust in the God who brings restoration and wholeness to all families.
Psalms 68:6 “God provides homes for those who are deserted. He leads out the prisoners to prosperity, but the rebellious live in a scorched land.”

Groups Prayer

Read: Malachi 4:5-6
Share & Pray: How have you seen Jesus restore families in your life? Pray for healing and restoration in broken relationships.