Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Family Dynamics

I suspect that most families are at least a little strange to those on the outside, and mine is no different.  For the most part, we are a fairly loving family, but we have our differences, especially about religion.

My mom is a very loving person, and she has faith in God and Jesus.  Her faith is not really Biblical, though.  She's made comments to the effect of "I don't know how the Jews could believe in God when all they have to go by is the Old Testament," siting how wrathful God is portrayed there.  Her image of God comes mainly from the New Testament, but even that text is not solidly grasped.  It's not that she hasn't studied the Bible.  Quite the contrary, she has.  Through her studies she has come to realize that the New Testament writers were not writing infallibly, but that does not discount the true nature of a loving God.

My dad's another story for another time.

My younger sister appears to be lukewarm in her faith.  Or perhaps easy-going is a better description, and one which matches her usual personality (although, she does have her moments of the opposite).  I don't think she bothers studying the Bible beyond what she gets from Sundays at church.  She takes everybody as they are, and takes her faith as it is as well.

My older sister is inching further and further out on the extreme religious conservative scale.  Believing in Biblical infallibility, she has become a young earth creationist.  She also has home-schooled all of her kids to keep them away from inappropriate, un-Biblical influences.  She has always been more of a strong-willed authoritarian to some degree, and the way in which she believes aligns with that.  This is not to say that she is not nice, because she is nice, but just that if you do something which is wrong in her mind, you will probably find out about it.

Then there's me.  I've gone from lukewarm faith, to drifted away, to giving an earnest attempt of faith, to drifting away again, to finally deciding to read the Bible for myself.  I've become fascinated by the Bible, but (as you all know) it is not because I think that God is so amazing.  On the contrary, I think it is amazing that anyone believes the Bible.  I have let my mom and my sisters know about my lack of belief, without beating them over there heads with it.

With these dynamics in play, I tend to be the peacekeeper of the family, trying to smooth over the differences.  Meanwhile, my older sister is presently distancing herself from our mom because of her disapproval of our mom's recent actions.  I joke with my mom that Jesus' prophesy in Matthew 10:34-36 has come true, and I gently try to prod them along toward reconciliation.

If there is a God, maybe I'll get blessed for my work in keeping our family together.  ;-)

I find it kind of funny that my mom normally turns to me as her reference when she is trying to find some particular verses in the Bible;

No comments:

Post a Comment