“For the Spirit God gave us does not make us timid, but gives us power, love and self-discipline.” (2 Timothy 1:7)
We all have our own individuality which should be respected. This doesn’t negate the fact that we remain family no matter what. You’d be surprised at how family loves you to death, regardless of how judgmental they seem at times. There’s nothing wrong with being an individual member of the family. Share your passions and pains with them, and try to be a graceful recipient of help toward them as much as you’d like to be there for them as well.
Family can’t help and show their love for us, even in the tiniest ways, if all we do is keep on closing the door on them and only see them through a window. Distance is a safety mechanism, but love knows no distance. Show your love for them and allow them to show their love for you as well. This way, graceful memories are built.
Family is weak as well, not always knowing everything while always wanting to be the judge. It’s ok. Let them be a judge. Join the conversation to educate them and inform them what you value and believe. Neither of you have to be right. We just need to keep that line of communication open, even on petty subjects.
Welcome their inquiries as opportunities to get a conversation going. You don’t have to remain intimidated as when you were young whenever you come close to a family member. Surprise them and engage in the conversation even if you happen to be the topic. Next thing you know, they’ll start saying, “She never talks much about herself! And now she’s talking like she’s a full grown adult .”
And by the grace of God, you are a grown adult who’s free by Christ to not have to live your past in the present. You don’t have to deny your past or be ashamed of it. You don’t have to be stuck in it either.
You can be an open book, sharing your values and beliefs and even some questions along the way and not have to fear of that you’ll give others control over you if you open up to them. Some will understand right away and some will take time, and the rest won’t understand much but will probably still love you no matter what.
Laugh together, eat together, cry together and even dance together, for by the grace of God, the love of God for all of us, we are free to do so and are to do so as soon as the opportunity arises. Thank God for family. The more time spent with them, the more we remember of our identity, “loved by God.” Some are looking for your help, some are looking to know if you need any help, some just want to know how you’re doing and would love to crack or share a joke with you or invite you over to eat together.
We’re not perfect by others’ standards, but we’re all children of God through Christ growing up by grace, growing up by the understanding that only God could serve and teach us. In everything, give all the credit to God for Christ for none of us is born knowing everything. Like Christ, we can all hope in Him for all our needs.
“Let us give thanks to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ! For in our union with Christ he has blessed us by giving us every spiritual blessing in the heavenly world. Even before the world was made, God had already chosen us to be his through our union with Christ, so that we would be holy and without fault before him. Because of his love God had already decided that through Jesus Christ he would make us his sons and daughters — this was his pleasure and purpose. Let us praise God for his glorious grace, for the free gift he gave us in his dear Son! For by the blood of Christ we are set free, that is, our sins are forgiven. How great is the grace of God, which he gave to us in such large measure! In all his wisdom and insight God did what he had purposed, and made known to us the secret plan he had already decided to complete by means of Christ. This plan, which God will complete when the time is right, is to bring all creation together, everything in heaven and on earth, with Christ as head. All things are done according to God’s plan and decision; and God chose us to be his own people in union with Christ because of his own purpose, based on what he had decided from the very beginning. Let us, then, who were the first to hope in Christ, praise God’s glory!”
(Ephesians 1:3-12 Good News Bible)