He replied to him, “Who is my mother, and who are my brothers?” Pointing to his disciples, he said, “Here are my mother and my brothers. For whoever does the will of my Father in heaven is my brother and sister and mother.”
(Continued from Day 4)
“Bec! I’d never ask you to get into trouble! I might ask you to come over and have dinner with us though, and if you can confuse Mark, all the better.”
Deanna leans back, taking a sip of her flat white.
“Seriously though Dee, what’s it like being married?” her friend Rebecca asks.
“You know, it’s both how I thought it would be, and not.”
“What do you mean?”
“Well, I knew there’d be changes that we’d both have to get used to. There’s the small changes, like which dishwashing liquid we use, or where things go in the fridge. There’s the big changes, like I said, sleeping with someone else instead of alone, for example. But the biggest change has probably been around family, which I honestly didn’t expect.”
“But you love his parents!”
“I do, and they love me… but now I’m not Mark’s girlfriend, or Mark’s fiancée, I’m their daughter… and I have more brothers and sisters than I know what to do with! They love me even more than they did before, which is wonderful, but now I’m expected to be part of the family. I don’t think I know how to do that.”
“I’ve experienced something like that myself Dee, you know?”
The newly-married young woman looks over at Rebecca incredulously.
“What? You never told me you were married.”
“That’s because I’ve never been married. I mean when I became a Christian.”
“How is that the same as getting married and having a new fam… oh.”
“That’s right. I was outside of the church, but as I got to know Jesus, I got to know the family of God, the Christians in our church. When I finally accepted Jesus, when I was baptised, I got all these brothers and sisters, a hundred of them! Old, young, white, black, single, married… and all of them became my family.”
“That is a bit like getting married. How did you handle it?”
“Well, I had this lovely young lady who introduced herself to me, and we became good friends. She helped me understand how the family worked, and introduced me to others. Ever since then, I’ve felt like it is
my family, and as the church is the bride of Christ…”
“So, you’re saying that I welcomed you into the family, after the marriage, as it were?”
“Exactly. Mark’s family are all Christians, so I’m sure that there’s someone who will do for you what you did for me. Marriages bring people closer together, after all, and being closer helps us to love one another. We’re meant to be family, not isolated individuals.”
“Amen to that sister.”
(To be continued…)
We thank you for family, that you created us to be in relationship with one another through you.
We thank you for the gift of marriage, that it provides one of the greatest examples of how to bring together different people into a union of love.
May the Holy Spirit help us to encourage one another to grow closer in relationship with you and with each other.
In Jesus’ name,
Devotionals written by Ben & Thea Pratt with editorial assistance by
Warwick Marsh & David Rowsome from Canberra Declaration with thanks for input and advice from an interdenominational editorial team. The team at the Canberra Declaration also thank the team at the National Day of Prayer & Fasting for their kind assistance