TargetPoint Volume 9 of 32
Todays Verse/Thought: Ministry vs. Manipulation In My Family
John 20:27-28 But among you it should be quite different. Whoever wants to be a leader among you must be your servant, and whoever wants to be first must become your slave. For even I, the Son of Man, came here not to be served but to serve others, and to give my life as a ransom for many.
I once knew of a woman in our former church who literally cut her teeth on an atmosphere of fear. Her mother was so fearful that she would lock her daughter in the closet for days. This young woman went through great healing, but it took a process of time. In that family, fear and intimidation were the modus operandi.
Families learn to function working around each individualís personalities. Birth order also comes into play. Whether the siblings are boys, and/or girls has an affect. Daughters can learn how to manipulate their Dads and their brothers; they can become little dictators. Sons learn how to manipulate by their actions and attitudes. Their role models are their parents. If the parents manipulate one another, the children learn that naturally. BUT, if the PARENTS MINISTER TO ONE ANOTHER and to their children, the children will learn that way of operating naturally.
Jesus gave us the perfect model of how we should behave within a group, a family unit, and with friends. JESUS WAS A SERVANT, BUT HE WAS NOT A DOORMAT. One who feels free to serve others is one who is free from fear and self-centeredness. One who becomes a doormat, however, is not a person who is free. That individual is shackled by a fear of man, which we will discuss later.
Take a hard look at your family situation. Are you one who has the best interests of your family members at heart? Or, do you tend to manipulate your children, your parents, your siblings, in order to get your own way. RECOGNIZE THAT THIS WAY OF FUNCTIONING IS DRIVEN BY FEAR, A NEED TO PROTECT ONESELF. Ask God to
begin to help you in specific situations to choose to minister to that family member rather than manipulate. What a joy it is to live within a family unit where each member is looking out for the well-being of the others. LEAN ON YOUR SAVIOR to give you the safety you desire and to minister to your needs. THEN, ASK HIM TO HELP YOU do the same for your family members.
Tomorrow In TargetPoint:
Ministry vs. Manipulation In My Friendships