Family and our Relationship with God
Father God, Jesus, and the Holy Spirit
God is the one who created us. When we look at the complexity of His creation, we realize that there is no way that we can fully understand Him. But He has revealed aspects about Himself so we can get to know Him better and better. And though He is one, He is also three – therefore our relationship with Him involves connection with all three. We may be more familiar with one of these than with another, but we should invest in all three relationships: with Father God, with Jesus, and with the Holy Spirit.
God’s idea of family
God created humans as men and women, both in His image. This means that He is neither masculine nor feminine but you can find both roles within Him. He made us fruitful and created the concept of family.
Family involves three main roles: father, mother, and siblings. These roles work together to meet our needs – for love, protection, comfort, identity, etc. If these needs are met in the way that God imagined them, then we grow up in a perfectly healthy environment. Unfortunately, in our broken world this is never the case. Some of these roles are lacking or distorted. When our needs aren’t met, this leaves wounds in our lives. All of this affects how we view relationships, how we view our family, how we view ourselves, and how we view God.
The connection between God and family roles
How we experienced our family roles shapes how we see God, both positively and negatively. Some examples: If we had a distant and absent father, we might have a hard time relating to God as a close and loving father. If nobody was protecting us, we try to protect ourselves. If we were abandoned by our friends, we might believe that Jesus will also abandon us. Conversely, if we received a lot of comfort from our mother, it will be easier for us to understand how the Holy Spirit comforts us. Here we can see some of the connections:
|God||Main role||Earthly family|
Creator who gives identity, provider, sustainer
|Protection, identity, provision||Father|
(and male authority figures)
'God with us', friend, brother
|Communication, friendship, fellowship||Siblings|
(and friends, peers)
We’re born again through Him, counselor, comforter
|Comfort, nurture, teaching, acceptance||Mother|
(and female authority figures)
Becoming free from wrong ideas of God
Often we know the truth of God in our head and we agree to it, but we do something different. Our actions and attitudes show what we actually believe deep inside. There is a difference between what our mind says and what our heart believes.
This is because our hearts haven’t experienced that truth – it is blocked by hurts that made us believe lies. The good news is that God knows what these hurts and obstacles are, and He can help us identify them. Once we forgive and renounce the lies, He can heal and restore us. He brings our heads and hearts into alignment and we can then experience the freedom that comes from His truth.
This process starts with asking God questions. As He reveals areas of hurt, we respond: forgiving our father, our mother, and our siblings/friends. Then God can help us to identify the lies we started to believe because of the hurt. We continue by repenting from agreeing with these lies, and ask God to reveal the truth to us.
By applying these truths our relationship with God will grow, and we will be able to interact with God in ways we couldn’t before.
God loves families. We were not made to operate or grow alone – we suggest you use the support of a good helper. Sometimes we have believed things for so long that we don’t even realize they are lies. Another person can help us identify these things and lead us into freedom. Please share with your helper what is going on inside your heart and mind, or if you’re feeling uncomfortable in any way. If you’re ready to engage in a conversation with God, you can start like this:
1. Father God, I want to know You better. Would You reveal yourself to me right now and show me where You are and what You are doing?
2. Is there a lie that I’m believing about You? If so, what?
3. What do I need to forgive my earthly father for?
- Forgive your father (See worksheet “Forgiving Step by Step” for details).
- Example: I forgive my father for ___ and for allowing this lie into my life.
4. God, I’m sorry for partnering with that lie; please forgive me. I reject the lie that ___ .
5. Father God, what is the truth instead?
- Speak out that you accept it and thank Him for this new truth.
Go through the steps in a similar way for Jesus and the Holy Spirit:
1. Jesus, I want to know You better. ...
3. Who do I need to forgive (e. g. siblings/friends)?
1. Holy Spirit, I want to know You better. ...
3. What do I need to forgive my earthly mother for?
As God leads, you can also ask a more general question: “Who do I need to forgive for this lie that I believe?” For example, a lie about Father God might have come through teachers, other relatives, or other authority figures such as leaders or bosses. This may be the case for Jesus and the Holy Spirit as well.
Write down the truths that God reveals. Read and repeat them daily until they settle into your heart and you are living them out. Holding onto and learning to apply these truth is key to becoming healed and growing in your relationship with God.