Sunday, December 23, 2012

Bringing Us Together by Scott Groshans (reprinted from Advent Devotions - 1996)

Malachi 4:4-6

Remember the law of my servant Moses, the decrees and laws I gave him at Horeb for all Israel.“See, I will send the prophet Elijah to you before that great and dreadful day of the Lord comes. He will turn the hearts of the parents to their children, and the hearts of the children to their parents; or else I will come and strike the land with total destruction.

In 1994, I spent six months in China, helping start up a new chemical plant. It was an exciting project, but I hated being separated from my wife and our one- and three-year-old sons. When I returned, my youngest son Aaron did not know me. He was very attached to my wife, Laura, and he treated me like a stranger.  I was hurt, but I felt certain things would get back to normal after a few weeks.

Well, they didn’t.  Although Aaron got used to having me around again, he clung to his mother, and I couldn’t develop a bond with him, so I began to resent him for not giving me a chance.  After a year, things hadn’t changed much, when Laura received an opportunity to start working again, part-time in the evenings.  Although we were worried about how this would impact our family, we decided to give it a try.

With Laura gone at night, Aaron had to depend on me, and I had to take care of him. Gradually, the tension between us disappeared, and we finally formed that bond I wanted so badly.  The Lord is constantly at work in our lives, trying to help us become the people He wants us to be.  His presence isn’t always made known through the dramatic voice of a prophet.  Sometimes, key events occur in our lives which bear the unmistakable mark of His grace.

Dear Lord, thank you for Your healing presence in our lives, as you work to help us reconcile our differences, and thereby bring us closer to you. Amen.

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