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Absent Family
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We’ve all seen the lovely artist’s renditions of those family scenes: holidays, vacations, celebrations of families gathered together. Yet for some, the pictures aren’t reality as they may seldom get to see family members. We live in such a spreadout world that some families are continents apart instead of blocks or states. With this kind of fragmentation of the family, we often go from seeing those we love with golden or dark hair to not seeing them again until they possess silver hair.

How hard it must have been in the days gone by when, for instance, those who people took off in wagon trains and crossed the American land fabric—some never see their families again or those who came to America from other countries and for one reason or another never ever again gathered with family. Or go way back in time and just imagine any country and any of the dire separation circumstances.

Of course, modern technology allows us to communicate in various ways, such as Skype and Twitter, so we don’t have to be totally disconnected. However, in-person family gatherings are missed. The hugs are missed. Observing, touching hands, all the nuances aren’t there in virtual communication. But we do what we have to do to stay as connected as possible because there’s no one else to have your back the way that close family does.

Broken Relationships

Then there are the-absence- of-heart-ties by choice, not-so-close families called dysfunctional. Broken relationships, broken hearts. When this kind of absent family happens it surely is the worst kind, yet God himself knows all about it because so many of his children here on earth choose not to make His family first.

“People Need the Lord,” is the name of a Christian song that addresses the heart of dysfunction—the loneliness of separation. The lyrics tell us that those who know God are called to take His light to those lonely, hurting people.

Do you know a lonely someone or one in a dysfunctional family relationship—and/or one who is alienated in their spiritual way from Father God? If you do, try your best to be that person’s friend. Through friendship with someone who knows God as Father, they are often drawn back home—like the prodigal son—and you may be that very person to help them on that walk.

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By Betty Kossick. Copyright © 2012 by GraceNotes. All rights reserved. Use of this material is subject to usage guidelines.

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