Wednesday, November 12, 2014

FAMILY IT! — Wednesday Family Devotional — “Happy Endings”

Supplies: Bible

Category: favorite movie.  On the count of three, everyone say your answer.  Don’t give yourself time to think, just blurt out whatever is coming to mind.  One…two…three!  

Were you surprised by what your family said?  Were you surprised by what you said?  Share why you chose that particular cinematic feature.

In all fairness, I think for a lot of people favorite movies, like favorite foods, vary throughout our life.  For example, if you had been sitting next to me just now you would have heard me call out “While You Were Sleeping,” a cheesy 90’s romantic comedy starring Sandra Bullock and Bill Pullman.  (I’ve watched it at least twice in the last week since I discovered it on Netflix.)  When I was in high school and college I tried really hard to love edgy cinema.  You know, those Sundance Film Festival kind of movies that left you with more questions than answers, like “Apocalypse Now” or “Citizen Kane.”  As I age, however, I find myself drawn to a very particular standard when it comes to movies I choose to watch.  In fact, if this one requirement isn’t there, I’m probably NOT going to watch it…ever.  

I want my movies to have a happy ending.

I know, it’s bourgeois.  But that’s what I like.  It’s what makes me smile.  It’s why I’ve already decided to pull up Sandra and Bill after I’m done typing this blog.  (Incredibly happy, cheesy, ride-off-in-the-sunset ending, in case you didn’t know.)

Read Genesis Genesis 45:16-46:7, 28-30 together as a family.  Really soak in the verses from chapter 46.

I think God is the king of happy endings.  I mean, the story of Joseph plays out like some Hallmark Channel movie of the week, doesn’t it?  This dysfunctional family suffers for decades, Jacob in his grief, the brothers with their guilt, and then Joseph and his emotional merry-go-round while he struggles in Egypt.  And then, finally, the entire family is reunited!  That moment that none of them even dreamed possible became a reality and Joseph weeps on his dad’s shoulder.  (*sniff*)  

This is such a beautiful picture all by itself, but it is just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to God.  Our Lord is in the restoration business, after all.  His goal is to restore broken relationships.  His passion is bringing healing to hurt hearts.  He wants to reconcile our marriages, our friendships, our families.  More than anything, the story of Joseph’s reunion with his father reminds us of what God has been doing throughout history: restoring His broken family by reuniting lost children with their Father.  The ultimate happy ending is living eternally in the love of our Father and the light of His Son, our Savior.  

My guess is you have a relationship that is a little damaged right now.  Maybe it’s a friendship that’s a little strained.  It could be a long-standing tension with a family member.  Or perhaps there’s some hurt between you and someone in your home.  Know right now, no matter what the damage is, God wants to restore that relationship.  His passion is to help you work through the pain and hurt so that forgiveness and, ultimately, reconnection can happen.  Seek Him and He will give you the patience to wait through the process and the words to say when the moment comes to talk it out.

In the same way, realize that God also wants to restore His relationship with you.  If your connection with the Heavenly Father seems a little damaged or strained—or maybe not even recognizable—understand that this is not what He wants.  In fact, He’s at work right now trying to pull you two closer together so He can reconnect with your heart.  As you close your time together, pray for God to restore your broken relationships and heal hearts.

Heavenly Father, we praise You and all Your ways!  Thank You, God, for being a leader who loves to bring people together, most especially together with You.  Help us, Lord, as we see to restore our relationships.  Bring us Your happy endings! In Your Holy Name we pray, Amen.


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