“Bear with each other and forgive one another if any of you has a grievance against someone. Forgive as the Lord forgave you.” -Colossians 3:13
My brother has not spoken to our (biological) dad in close to five years. For reasons that I, as his sister totally understand and that others may not think as right. But as you grow older and life’s situations cause you to cherish life and relationships more closely, the hardness and hatred that you hold in your heart starts to soften and the fact that forgiveness and family IS powerful makes things that hurt you in the past trivial.
I say all of that to say that I chose to forgive my dad at a time in my life when things were falling apart and I needed him to be apart of my tight family circle. Unfortunately, my brother couldn’t forgive him. He couldn’t repair their damaged relationship. Even in his un-forgiveness I supported his decision and kept my prayers to God the same. “Repair the relationship between my brother and dad.” God does everything in his time but the other night, my prayer was answered. My brother, his fiancee and their oldest son Grayson came to my house because our grandmother was in town. My dad was also in town for meetings but wanted to come by to see me and the kids. I was nervous because I didn’t want my brother to feel trapped but at the same time I wasn’t going to stop a chance meeting that had the pregnant potential to start putting our family back together again.
As my brother sat at my kitchen table and the doorbell ring, I watched him. I watched his demeanor and body language. I greeted my dad with a hug and felt his heart beating fast. He greeted everyone and came to my brother and I promise a miracle happened! It wasn’t exactly what I envisioned in my head, they both jump up, hug each other, we all cry and just like that everything is ok. But, we all know how realistic that is! Instead, they shook hands and spoke to each other. In that moment I looked at my brother who really looks and acts like our dad as he gets older and I was so proud of him. I’ve always been proud of him as a man but in that exact moment he amazed me beyond words. He wasn’t disrespectful, he didn’t cuss and he didn’t lash out. That more than anything gave me hope that our pieces, our family pieces are starting to fall back into place.
My dad stayed for over a hour holding his third grandson, Grayson that he had just met for the first time. Despite the past and his flaws, our dad is a good person. I have never doubted his love for any of us (there’s 5 of us.) I watched him play with Grayson, the baby that bore his last name and I thanked God for answering prayers. The ice has been broken, tension has been sliced and a path to forgiveness has been paved.
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