Family feuds, divorce, adultery, fighting over wealth, discrimination and favouritism between family members… there has never been a perfect family. Many of the greatest historical figures in the Bible had dysfunctional families but each showed that with obedience and true worship, they could overcome their family backgrounds to do great things for God. In a sea of family stress, outrage, grief, burdens and hurts, praise God we can find strength in Him and overcome our hurts, distress and frustrations.
Psalm 27:10 ESV For my father and my mother have forsaken me, But the LORD will take me up.
A prayer over family disappointments
“Dear Heavenly Father,
Thank you, God, that You call us Your sons and daughters and sacrificed Your own perfect Son for our sake. Help us to remember Your lordship over our earthly families, and that You gave us our families for a purpose.
Romans 8:31-32 ESV What then shall we say to these things? If God is for us, who can be against us? He who did not spare his own Son but gave him up for us all, how will he not also with him graciously give us all things?
Help us to live out our lives as rightful heirs together with Jesus Christ, and not be tied down to earthly relationships and ungodly family influences.
Romans 8:16-17 ESV The Spirit himself bears witness with our spirit that we are children of God, and if children, then heirs—heirs of God and fellow heirs with Christ, provided we suffer with him in order that we may also be glorified with him.
We may not know the reason why we have the families we do, but we trust that Your purposes and timing are perfect. In spite of what appears to be rather disturbing family circumstances now, we lift our situations up to you and ask that You turn things around for Your glory.
Hebrews 2:10-11 ESV For it was fitting that he, for whom and by whom all things exist, in bringing many sons to glory, should make the founder of their salvation perfect through suffering. For he who sanctifies and those who are sanctified all have one source. That is why he is not ashamed to call them brothers,
Continue to sanctify us through this time of suffering so we can become more and more like You. Please strengthen us when we are weak and restore us when we fall, so we can withstand the current hardships and continue to forgive and love those who disappoint us. We want to see our family members as You do, and not through our biased judgmental views. You never give up on us so we don’t want to give up on our own family.
1 Peter 5:10 ESV And after you have suffered a little while, the God of all grace, who has called you to his eternal glory in Christ, will himself restore, confirm, strengthen, and establish you.
Galatians 6:9 ESV And let us not grow weary of doing good, for in due season we will reap, if we do not give up.
2 Chronicles 15:7 ESV But you, take courage! Do not let your hands be weak, for your work shall be rewarded.”
Heavenly Father, in the name of Jesus Christ, we nail our family wounds and disappointments to the cross and we leave them there. Please close the holes in our wounded hearts. Help us to look at our “battle scars” and praise You that Your work is made perfect in us – when we open our hearts to your complete healing.
Psalm 147:3 ESV He heals the brokenhearted and binds up their wounds.
In the name of Jesus Christ, we remove any generational curses passed down from the sins of our forefathers. Help us to understand how our family dynamics imprints onto our spiritual DNA, so that we can identify those things that tarnish our relationship with You, our perfect Heavenly Father, and be renewed in Jesus Christ!
Psalm 79:8 NIV Do not hold against us the sins of past generations; may your mercy come quickly to meet us, for we are in desperate need.
We will wait patiently for Your perfect timing for the salvation of all our family members, because Lord, You do not want anyone to perish. Please remind us every day that we are vessels of Your peace, so help us share the gospel through loving actions, not just through empty words.
2 Peter 3:9 ESV The Lord is not slow to fulfill his promise as some count slowness, but is patient toward you, not wishing that any should perish, but that all should reach repentance.
At the same time, help us to know how to draw healthy boundaries and yet continue to be bridges of love. Thank you that Jesus Christ, who is our Mighty God, Wonderful Counselor, Everlasting Father and Prince of Peace, also suffered as we have, and reminded us to be as shrewd as snakes and innocent as doves.
Isaiah 9:6 ESV For to us a child is born, to us a son is given; and the government shall be upon his shoulder, and his name shall be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.
Matthew 10:16 ESV “Behold, I am sending you out as sheep in the midst of wolves, so be wise as serpents and innocent as doves.
Thank you, Lord, that where our family members may disappoint and hurt us, You have placed a new spiritual family (trusted brothers and sisters in Christ) in our lives to lift us up and encourage us.
Proverbs 18:24 ESV A man of many companions may come to ruin, but there is a friend who sticks closer than a brother.
Thank you that You have said that when we do Your will, then we are truly your family members. Thank you for being willing to make us, broken and sinful as we are, Your own.
Matthew 12:48-50 ESV But he replied to the man who told him, “Who is my mother, and who are my brothers?” And stretching out his hand toward 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.”
In Jesus’ name, amen! “