- Michael Sitko
From the dawn of creation, family was Gods idea. It all began in a garden with a family and it all ends in a beautiful paradise of God, at a banquet table, filled with His sons and daughters at the greatest party the world will ever see, the marriage supper of the Lamb. When we come to the understanding that God was the creator and the originator of family, we can begin to recognize that He is the ultimate authority on family and its purpose.
Family was created by God as the first and foremost organism for the creation of community and for the shaping of His children. From His Baptism and on throughout His earthly ministry Jesus was defined by God the Father as a Son and Jesus repeatedly exhorted His followers that His mission was to reveal the Father and that His ultimate purpose was to reconcile the sons of men to their place as the sons of God, their Heavenly Dad. Not only did Jesus come to reveal family, Gods model and structure for shaping kingdom life, but He also came to reveal the superior position role and benefits that came along with being a part of Gods familyin relation to our lives here on the earth. In a sense God came to reveal the big picture of what family is from His perspective.
The Role of Earthly Parents:
When God created mankind, He created man as an exact representation and replica of Himself. The Bible says that God made man in His image. At creation, when Eve was taken out of Adam for the purpose of companionship, the dual nature of God as a Father and a Mother was first revealed. As God first created family, we see that He created mankind with the capacity and the purpose of procreation as well as with a mandate to educate their offspring in the knowledge of God as Creator and Father. God intended for the role of the father to represent the nature of Himself as Father and the role of mother to represent the nature of Himself as a Mother. As we look further into this we can see that family is an institution created by God and that family is the original and first place of education and connection for humanity. Fathering and mothering is a big deal to God because it is the medium that He created for His family to represent His nature to all of humanity. This is why father and mother wounds affect the lives of people so deeply, because the role of father and mother were intended to be a direct representation of God in the lives of children both natural and spiritual.
Much of the orphan behaviour that we see in the world today is the result of father and mother wounds. Whether it is bad fathering, bad mothering or no fathering or mothering the results are accentuated to the degree of the disfunction and the results are the reinforcing of the orphan spirit within mankind. When Adam & Eve first sinned they were pre-maturely separated from God as their Father and became the first spiritual orphans. As a result an orphan spirit was released into mankind. In the same way that sin was inherently passed down from Adam to every human being that came after him with the exception of Jesus, so was the product of that sin, the orphan spirit.
Sonship: Gods Remedy for the Orphan Spirit.
Through Chirst, God the Fathers intent, was to reconcile mankind back into His family and to eliminate the separation that was created through sin. This is the reason why Jesus came as a Son of God, to reveal the Father to mankind, so that we could be reconciled to the Father and so that we could see sonship modelled by Jesus and the orphan spirit could be dealt with.
As Jesus spent time with His disciples, He had done such a magnificent job of representing the Father to them, that they began to connect and come into an awareness of their Heavenly Dad. As a matter of fact they abandoned their earthly fathers to pursue this new relationship with their Heavenly Father. In John 14:18; we get a glimpse into just how effective Jesus was in revealing the Father to His followers when He was preparing to go to the cross and addressed His disciples reassuring them of their unspoken but probably very real concern that they had to His comments about His leaving when He said “I will not leave you as orphans, I will come to you.” Jesus said this, with the intentions of bringing a revelation of the nature of the role of the Holy Spirit’s ministry as the Spirit of Sonship, the Spirit of Adoption, the Spirit of Jesus.
Jesus assured His followers that this new found understanding and relationship that had been restored to them with the Father was something that God intended to never end. As members of Gods family it is essential that we understand the concepts of family from His perspective so that we can represent Him accurately and so that we know how to conduct ourselves as that household of God. Not only did He send the Holy Spirit but He also created the church, Gods family on the earth. This enabled fathering and mothering to go to a whole new level and provided a place where every son and daughter could belong, whether they had a natural family or not, no one would be without the family that He desired and created them to have.
The Purpose of Family:
“I am the vine and you are the branches...” Gods purpose for family is connection and growth. As Jesus shares with us in John 15, we are destined to be connected to the vine, who is Jesus, who is ultimately connected to the root which is the Father. The family is designed by God as the chief learning institution in humanity and the ultimate source for the change and transformation that He intends for us to experience. The family is the place where connection happens, growth happens, fruit is produced and where pruning and healing takes place. Connection in the family is not about trying to be part of the family it is simply about coming into the realization that you are family and as that realization begins to take root, fruit is produced.
As we behold Jesus, we become like Jesus. In much the same way as we get connected into community and family, we become connected into the source of the life that God intends to be produced in us. As sons and daughters in His kingdom He intends for us to be connected, nourished, conformed to His image and healed in family. So lets get connected.