How do we heal our families?

In this week’s lesson we learn about two brothers’ reconciliation after years of estrangement. One (Jacob) had great fear, even for his life, in meeting his brother (Esau) again. The outcome for these brothers was a successful reunion. “And Esau ran to meet him, and embraced him, and fell on his neck, and kissed him: and they wept.” (Gen 33:4) Any of us who have experienced painful family dynamics can feel the power of a reunion like that.

What principles can we learn from “The Family: A Proclamation to the World” that could help us repair some of our own family rifts? One place to start could be trying to see everyone as worthy of love and seeing each other’s individual worth: 

“All human beings—male and female—are created in the image of God. Each is a beloved spirit son or daughter of heavenly parents, and, as such, each has a divine nature and destiny.” (Paragraph #2)

Recognizing none will achieve perfection in this life, but all can work towards it, can help us with patience:

“… gain earthly experience to progress toward perfection and ultimately realize their divine destiny as heirs of eternal life.” (Paragraph #3)

Past, present and future family members can be together forever:

“The divine plan of happiness enables family relationships to be perpetuated beyond the grave.” (Paragraph #3)

Jesus Christ’s teachings are our best tools to be happy and successful at home:

“Happiness in family life is most likely to be achieved when founded upon the teachings of the Lord Jesus Christ.” (Paragraph #7)

Teachings like: 

“Faith, prayer, repentance, forgiveness, respect, love, compassion, work, and wholesome recreational activities.” (Paragraph #7)

How do we heal our families? Through Christ. 

“Restoring what you cannot restore, healing the wound you cannot heal, fixing that which you broke and you cannot fix is the very purpose of the atonement of Christ.” (Boyd K Packer, Nov 1995)

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