What is Family? With the Teachable Spirit

» Posted by on Aug 7, 2014 in teachable spirit | 0 comments

What is Family? With the Teachable Spirit

While he was still speaking to the people, behold, his mother and his brothers stood outside, asking to speak to him. But He replied to the man who told Him, “Who is my mother and who are my brothers?” And stretching out His hand toward his disciples, He said, “Here are my mother and my brothers! For whoever does the will of my Father in heaven is my brother and sister and mother.” –Matthew 12:46-50

What was so attractive about the disciples that he would choose to be with them rather than his mother and siblings?
Was Yeshua (Jesus) brushing aside his biological family?
What is family to the teachable spirit?

Breakfast with Natalie, Ty (Tiberius), and Isaac Van Mechelen in Oakland, California, July 2014.

Breakfast with Natalie, Ty (Tiberius), and Isaac Van Mechelen in Oakland, California, July 2014.

During a counseling session a few years ago, the concept of creating your own family was brought to my attention. The idea was to determine what your highest values were, what you wanted to experience in a family, and to seek those individuals in your environment that fit the characteristics you identified. This seemed rather odd to me at the time, but when my values became more concrete with the solidifying of my purpose, I found people emerging who really fit the description of my “family.”

My daughter, Amy, holding Ty (Tiberius), her nephew, Oakland, CA, July 2014.

My daughter, Amy, holding Ty (Tiberius), her nephew, Oakland, CA, July 2014.

Some of those values and characteristics included:

  • Peace loving
  • Communication
  • Accepting
  • Open minded
  • Flexible
  • Hard working
  • Kind
  • Energetic
  • Enthusiastic
  • Easy going
  • Supportive
  • Respectful
  • Humility
  • Gratitude
  • Thankful
  • Cheerful
  • Relaxed
  • Positive
One of my students from Everest College, Niiaja Richie, who continues to be my friend, August 2013.

One of my students from Everest College, Niiaja Richie, has become a member of my “family,” August 2013.

This process rather amazed me. I find myself very attracted to individuals who share my same values and have difficulty being with people who are not, including members of my immediate family. I love them very much, so it was disconcerting at first, until I remembered this passage of scripture from Matthew. God brings people together for a particular purpose.

My new "family" God has given me to fulfill His purpose on this earth; Douglas, Grace, Ian, and Jeremy, Nairobi, Kenya, October 2012.

My new “family” God has given me to fulfill His purpose on this earth; Douglas, Grace, Ian, and Jeremy, Nairobi, Kenya, October 2012.

This purpose typically has underlying values that align with fulfilling “the will of the Father.” Family is less important in relationship to this purpose, unless, of course, you are in that stage of life where they are one and the same; meaning that you are raising a family, and that is His will for you right now.

My children, Amy and Isaac, on the occasion of my birthday, Tacoma, Washington, June 2014.

My children, Amy and Isaac, on the occasion of my birthday, Tacoma, Washington, June 2014.

Until recently, my motivation and determination was focused on raising my family and seeing them settled into the purpose God put them on this earth to fulfill. Finishing this project took nearly 30 years, as I have addressed in a previous blog. I am grateful that I had that opportunity, accepted it willingly, and completed it with gusto! As Paul said,

I have finished the race.

–II Timothy 4:7

…at least in regard to what I started with my children. Now God has called me to a different task, another purpose, that most likely I will not complete in this life time, but just get a good start on it, then turn it over to the next individual God calls to carry the baton.

The smiling face of our department chair and my office partner, Thomas Perry, April 2014.

Thomas Perry, my supervisor and office partner has become a member of my “family,” Everest College, April 2014.

Remember, Yeshua (Jesus) stayed with his parents until He was much older. Authorities vary as to what age He began His ministry, but until then, the “will of the Father” was to be at home working in the family business beside His earthly father and eating dinner with His mother and family every night. Once He began His ministry, He detached Himself from His family and created a new family, which he handpicked–all 12 of them.

There is a time and a season for everything. The teachable spirit is open to God bringing together the right mix of people, creating a family, as it were, to fulfill a specific purpose on this earth. Sometimes it feels as if those people you hang out with that have similar values are more of a family to you than the individuals that you grew up with that are part of your biological family. Just as the disciples were an eclectic bunch of people, the company you enjoy may be very unusual, too. Somehow, you cannot escape the joy of their presence because you share the same values and purpose. God designed it that way.

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