Recently, with sadness in his voice, the person who caused the turmoil in our lives over the past several months told us indirectly and directly that members of his family had no desire to build a relationship with ours. This may explain why they did not make more of an effort. If a man's family is not supporting him in his goals, they become a hindrance to him. Of course, (sigh), that could be just one more contrived excuse. Their choice to scheme and deceive has made the waters very murky and has forced us in the undesirable position of having to carefully examine everything to gain understanding so we can deal carefully with them. There is one thing I do know with certainty:
Even when we knew this person had issued a statement saying they wished our family would fall apart, came to us with selfish motives, told us direct lies, concealed valuable property for four years, and had brought heartbreak time and time again, my family eagerly welcomed them with kindness and met them with joy...simply because I asked it of them and because they genuinely desired a restored relationship. Somewhere along the way in the midst of the frustration and outrage at how my family as been treated, I missed this. As I reflect on what has happened, I realize I am surrounded by a very loving, very giving group of people who truly believe in second chances. I am blessed!
I am not happy about what my family has been through due to the callousness of a person who was given so much. I am sad our efforts to love them were discarded with lies and manipulations. But, there is so much to rejoice over too!
I listened to my family's hearts as they prayed about this situation and know there was and still is a deep desire to rejoin these two families. I am thankful my family was willing time and time again during the past several months to open themselves up to more disappointment because their desire to please their Lord and their love for me outweighs their concern for themselves. That is agape (selfless) love my family has shown for me and for the other person. God is glorified in this! My husband continues to exemplify Christ in a way that our children are grasping and emulating. Their hearts are not bound up with anger, but with forgiveness. They are reflecting God's love for people and His desire for restored relationships with Him.
1Peter 3:9 Do not repay evil with evil or insult with insult, but with blessing, because to this you were called so that you may inherit a blessing.