For the Christian, it is an opportunity to recognize and bring healing to negative family influences of the past, in order to stop them from being passed on to future generations.
We do this primarily by falling in love with Christ more each day; all the healing in our life flows from this love relationship. We need to spend time with Him daily so this happens. The key to deeper love is trust in and surrender to Christ.
Wherever we are, God can bring great good; usually there’s at least one person in the family system who will–with God’s grace–stop their negative behavior from being passed on.
Whether the negative behavior is through our own fault or through the sins of our ancestors, God can heal and bring great good from the situation.
The best way we can do this is to begin with ourselves; we need to forgive ourselves for whatever we’ve done, tell God that we’re sorry, and promise Him that with His grace we’ll change any negative behavior. Speaking to a priest or minister helps with this resolve and with the spiritual healing that then begins to take place.
We probably will never know the ancestor in our family system who started this negative behavior because it often goes back many generations–although we may witness it in ourselves or another member.
A simple plan might be:
1. To promise God that we’ll not pass this trait on to the next generation by letting it stop with us (e.g., alcoholism);
2. To daily send a blessing of love and forgiveness to anyone in our family system who started this.
We don’t need to know. God knows. He sees our heart.
Our response is to trust and surrender.