(Reconciliation can be hard. This is a repeat post from a couple of years ago but I wanted to repost it as I believe the pandemic has probably been the cause of many family issues this past eighteen or so months. And even though this is a post centering around the death of someone, I believe the principles are the same.
But let’s not wait for so long to reconcile.)
I wrote earlier this week that my mother-in-law was dying.
She died under Hospice care at 4:30 Tuesday morning. My husband was by her side as she drew her last breath. I was so glad she didn’t die alone.
Death is hard.
But with death, hope can coexist. Hope that relationships will be mended.
And it’s harder when family relationships aren’t what they should be. There are so many unresolved issues. But every once in a while, even the most dysfunctional of families, get it all together at the last minute. That’s what my husband’s family has managed to do.
They made funeral arrangements today with not one moment of dissension. Everyone was in agreement.
As I wrote yesterday, it truly touched my heart. I want my husband to be reunited with his brothers and sisters and I sense that is happening. What an unexpected blessing.
It’s so easy to give up when families are so dysfunctional but I have been so encouraged by their reconciliation. And even if there is that one who just can’t get there, and we all know what that means, the rest can make it work.
And it’s not about quick and easy forgiveness. I am eventually going to do a series of posts about what forgiveness really is. I get very frustrated when Christians diminish the Cross of Christ by making forgiveness something we say as easily as we say, “Hello”.
Forgiveness is serious business
Our forgiveness was bought at a huge price. Sometimes, we cheapen that price by making grace no more than words. When we extend real forgiveness, it’s a serious matter that deserves much thought on our part.
And then there’s the fact that some offenses don’t even need to be forgiven; they simply need to be overlooked. Not every offense committed against us requires forgiveness any more than every offense we commit requires an apology.
Don’t you agree?
So with my husband’s family, there have been some deep hurts but they are in the past. They are all different people now. Life and maturity have tempered them. True forgiveness, in this case, means letting the past be in the past and not interfere with the future.
Hope for future reconciliation
I hope if you are dealing with some dysfunction within your family network, you have the same good experience we did, albeit at a sad time. There is always hope that relationships can change for the better. Isn’t that what most of us want?
When my own mother died, I was hoping for reconciliation with my brother. We had become close during her illness. Alas, it’s four years later, and while I’ve tried to reconnect, it has never happened. But I feel good that I tried. Sometimes, that is all we can do. It takes two to reconnect.
God bless and have a good day.
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