Families are a raincoat during the storms of life.
Sometimes a child is going through a storm. Sometimes Mom is going through a storm. Sometimes Dad is going through a storm. No matter which of our family members is going through a storm, we have to help each other. Awesome families protect each other in the storm.
Ecclesiastes 4:9 says, "Two are better than one, because there is a good reward for their labor together" (MEV).
There are three storms that we need to care for our family members in. The first is change. Another storm of life is what I call harmful ideas.
But the most painful storm of all is rejection. When your children or your husband or your wife feels rejected, the family needs to rally around and be there as a raincoat in the storm.
I'll never forget many years ago when my oldest child, Amy, was in high school. She tried out to be a cheerleader. She went to practice after practice. Her friends got accepted, but she got rejected because they said she was "too large," and it broke her heart. When she came home, she ran into her room, went into her closet, sat down on the ground, and burst into tears.
Every one of us in our family could hear Amy crying. And one by one, all on our own, we ended up walking into her room, sitting down on the floor in her closet with her, and crying with her.
We didn't give her any advice. She didn't need advice! We didn't say, "Now, now, don't worry. It's not a big deal." It was a big deal! We didn't say, "Don't cry!" That's a stupid thing to say to somebody who's grieving. No. We all just sat there and for about 30 minutes just cried with her.
Our family will never forget that incident. Why? Because at that point, we were being a raincoat. We were being a storm catcher. We were being a protector. Somebody in our family had been hurt, and we weren't demeaning it. We weren't trying to talk her out of it. We weren't trying to cheer her up. We just wept with her.
Awesome families protect each other in the storm.
Talk It Over
- Why should people feel the most support from their families?
- What do you normally say to a child who has faced rejection? What do you think is the loving, biblical thing to say or do?
- How do we sometimes try to talk people out of feeling rejected? What is the harm in doing this?
Rick Warren is the founding pastor of Saddleback Church in Lake Forest, California, one of America's largest and most influential churches. He is author of the New York Times best-seller The Purpose Driven Life. His book, The Purpose Driven Church, was named one of the 100 Christian books that changed the 20th century. He is also founder of pastors.com, a global Internet community for pastors.
For the original article, visit rickwarren.org.