Recently, I've been struck by the resemblance between my five-year-old daughter and my three-month-old son. They look remarkably alike, especially in their baby pictures. In fact, all three of my biological children have a strong resemblance to each other. And my two adopted children, who are siblings by birth, also look incredibly alike....some people even ask if they're twins. I know that genetically speaking, it should be no shock when siblings look like each other, but I just think it's cool. It gives families a sense of belonging to one another.
Even more interesting to me than physical characteristics are the mannerisms we share in our family. And this crosses the genetic lines. My eleven-year-old son, even though he was adopted (at age seven, for that matter), has developed the same dumb sense of humor as my husband and me. Sometimes he says things that are so stupid, I just can't help but grab him up in a big bear hug. He makes me so proud! Some of our other kids have budding senses of humor, too, and it's hilarious when our toddlers find the same things funny as we do.
Our kids mimic us in other ways, too. I love books, they love books. Daddy loves sports, they love sports. We love music and performing, they love music and performing. Their voices have the same inflections as ours. They use the same phrases as we do, make the same facial expressions, and use similar hand gestures. They even pray the same way we do. True, we don't all look alike, but we've become recognizable as a unit, and our words, mannerisms and actions scream to the world:
"We are a family!"
But I'm part of another family, too. God's family.
God's family members certainly don't all look alike. We don't dress alike, have the same interests, or live the same lives, but our words, mannerisms and actions should still show the world that we're a family. As followers of Christ, filled with the Holy Spirit, our character qualities should be the same:
Love, Joy, Peace, Patience, Kindness, Goodness, Faithfulness, Gentleness, and Self-Control.
Easy things to list, harder to live out on a daily basis. But as difficult as it may be, the fact remains- these are the qualities that identify us as belonging to the family of Christ.
How much do you resemble your family?
"But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control; against such things there is no law." Galatians 5:22-23