Love your blood! ...metaphorically speaking...

Reading Isaiah today, one of the notes in the margin of my study Bible referred to visions, wondering if visions were still being shared to people in the twenty-first century. It got me thinking to a daydream I had (as I was cleaning my room) last year:
I was cleaning my room and could hear my sister come into the doorway. Without turning around, I told her to go away and leave me alone, but when I turned around, it wasn't my sister but Jesus Christ standing in the doorway. "Why would you talk to your sister like that? What you do to others, you also do unto Me."
 The last thing that was said reminds me of Jesus' words in Matthew 25:
"... 'Truly I tell you, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers and sisters of mine, you did for me'" (vv. 40).
 I don't know about the rest of you, but this is a sort of stinging slap in the face for me. I know I'm not a perfect oldest sister. I may not be the best role model in the world. I may not be the nicest person to my little sisters. It's not my fault, though. They deserved it. Besides, I'm not a perfect person. I can't be expected to do any better than what I'm doing now. Siblings can't be siblings without some rivalry, right?

NO. There is no excuse for not showing love to our family. One of my favorite examples of relationships between siblings is the story of Joseph (son of Israel, not father of Jesus). Joseph's brothers despised him because their father showed Joseph more favor than them, so they plotted to kill him but threw him in a cistern in the desert instead. Later, he was sold to Ishmaelites, sent to prison after false persecution where he worked. Toward the end of the story, Joseph reunited with his brothers and, because they were afraid that Joseph held a grudge toward them (Who wouldn't with all that Joseph went through?), asked for his forgiveness. Joseph FORGAVE THEM, saying, "You intended to harm me, but God intended it for good..." (Genesis 50:20).

As not only siblings by blood but siblings in Christ, we ought to love one another as Jesus loves us. Even though our brothers and sisters hurt us, we are to forgive them seventy-seven times (Matthew 18:22) and continue to love them. How can we love others and complete strangers if we can't even love our own biological brothers and sisters?

I know that it is difficult to love our family, especially when they have emotionally caused you pain or done something that seems to be unforgiveable, but Jesus calls us to love our enemies:
"You have heard that it was said, 'Love your neighbor and hate your enemy.' But I tell you: Love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you, that you may be sons of your Father in heaven. He causes his sun to rise on the evil and the good, and sends rain on the righteous and the unrighteous. If you love those who love you, what reward will you get? Are not even the tax collectors doing that? And if you greet only your brothers, what are you doing more than others? Do not even pagans do that? Be perfect, therefore, as your heavenly Father is perfect" (Matthew 5:43-48).
 As Jesus proclaims, "A new commandment I give you: Love one another. As I have loved you, so you must love one another" (John 13:34).

These girls are such a blessing to my life.
Without them, I don't know where I would be today.

God bless!