April 18, 2012

Source of Grief

Written by Wisdom Hunters

Thoughts from daily Bible reading for today- April 18, 2012

“When Esau was forty years old, he married Judith daughter of Beeri the Hittite, and also Basemath daughter of Elon the Hittite. They were a source of grief to Isaac and Rebekah. Genesis 26:34-35

Sometimes a child becomes a source of grief because they choose to marry someone who does not meet their parent’s approval. In fact, the more the mom and dad express their disapproval the more adamant the child becomes in dismissing his parent’s wishes. When relational equity is overdrawn the opportunity to influence another vanishes for a season. This season of distress and disagreement can permanently scar a family.

So, someone has to be mature in the face of immaturity. Even when we are insulted and rejected by an impetuous young adult with our same last name, we are obligated by God’s grace to rise above demanding our own way. Disowning (real or perceived) is not an option for a family full of love and forgiveness. Yes, rejection is painful—in the same way the Holy Spirit grieves over our unwise choices, so we grieve over our foolish child.

“See that no one is sexually immoral, or is godless like Esau, who for a single meal sold his inheritance rights as the oldest son. Afterward, as you know, when he wanted to inherit this blessing, he was rejected. Even though he sought the blessing with tears, he could not change what he had done.” Hebrews 12:16-17

Furthermore, here is a tender word of wisdom to adult children: honor your parents by asking their concerns over the person you love, whom you may desire to marry. Yes, you have the power to fill their hearts with joy by including them in your prayerful process, or you can drive a dagger into their hearts by rejecting their advice, just to spite them. Marriage is your decision under God and under the authority of your father and mother. Grief generated out of youthful foolishness is a relational plague to people bound by blood.

Lastly, look to your own heart and consider how you may have hurt your parents or wounded your son or daughter. Be intentional in building conversational bridges by seeking to understand and value their interests. Pray more and judge less, lest love gets lost in the confusing equation of shame plus blame. Forgiveness is the fuel that reignites a family’s love for one another. Humble yourself first and watch the grace of God work wonders!

“Make every effort to live in peace with everyone and to be holy; without holiness no one will see the Lord. See to it that no one falls short of the grace of God and that no bitter root grows up to cause trouble and defile many.” Hebrews 12:14-15

Prayer: How can I honor my parents in my decision-making process? How can I relationally invest in my adult child?

Related Readings: 1 Samuel 20:34; Isaiah 63:10; Romans 9:13; Hebrews 11:20

Post/Tweet this today: When relational equity is overdrawn the opportunity to influence another vanishes. #invest #relationally


  1. Lynn Webster says:

    Like the new format! While this particular theme didn’t seem to apply in a particular way, I appreciate so many of your devotional thoughts. Lynn

  2. Lydia Featherston says:

    I love the new email format! It is so much easier on my laptop.

  3. Rachel Guzman says:

    you always seem to answer issues that are going on in my life.

    Thank you so much for the daily information that I receive from your website. You are doing a great job in reaching people who are following God’s teachings.

  4. Laura M. Gardella says:

    I started reading Wisdom Hunters Devotionals a few months back, I am amazed at how each morning I check my email and they are right on target for what is going on in my life. I recently reconciled with my wayward daughter. After many years of bitterness and unforgiveness because of her “bad” behavior I choose to be the one to offer forgiveness because of my “bad” behavior and in an instant I was completely overcome with an amazing peace!!! The relationship with my daughter has been RESTORED!! and is better than I could of ever imagined 🙂 She said recently “Mom, I have felt like I was in jail the past 4 years and I just got out”!!! Bitterness with put you in jail. Praise God for his mercy and forgiveness. We MUST forgive because that is the essence of the Cross!! Thank You again for all you do. I have been blessed by Wisdom Hunters!!!! Laura

  5. A.E. says:

    Honoring your father and mother is written with the words ‘with all DUE honor’. Honor and respect are earned even by parents and it is not something they are DUE just because. Parents are still just people who are fallible; becoming a parent does not automatically make someone wise and good.
    You should have also written this from the perspective of good children and self-centered parents. All too often, parents think they are right simply because they are older – not true. Wisdom does not simply come from age.
    How about highlighting how parents with their selfish wishes are hurting and ‘driving a dagger’ through their children’s hearts? If my husband would have listened to his parents, we wouldn’t be celebrating our upcoming 20th Anniversary. As well, his cousin may have avoided the 2 failed marriages that his mother felt was in his best interest.
    I enjoy your daily dose for the most part, but you all to often only write from the perspective of the ‘good’ parent and ‘not-so-good’ child. It is just as often one as the other.

  6. Kmac4him says:

    When relational equity is overdrawn the opportunity to influence another vanishes. #invest #relationally
    I posted that tweet and still have a bit of an “OUCH regret” when it comes to this topic, which I failed in miserably with my youngest. I tried too hard to hold on to her and in the process of that, I hurt people, I hurt her “now husband” who got tangled up in my “control issues”! I lost valuable relational time with him that I can’t get back. BUT God, He is amazing in how He restores the days that we foolishly squander through doubt-unbelief. God restored our relationship and I believe has healed it… but the consequence of missed memories that could have been made is still a regret for me at times, even though the heavenly hindsight of God’s purposes at work in me, bring great joy!

  7. I ahve to be reminded of this often.But I do listen.

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