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Delighting in my God, I desire to dwell in His pleasure and to help others experience true delight.

"Delight Yourself in the Lord;
And He will give you the desires of your heart.
Commit your way to the Lord,
Trust also in Him, and He will do it.
And He will bring forth your righteousness as the light,
And your judgment as the noonday.  
Rest in the Lord and wait patiently for Him;..." Ps 37:4-7a

Friday, February 1, 2013

NOT Becoming the Proverbial Hated Mother-in-Law

I haven’t written in my blog for some time now.  It wasn’t a purposeful sabbatical on my part.  Life just happened and squeezed it out of my routine.  I don’t know if I will be able to achieve my goal of twice a week anytime in the near future, but I do hope I can take some time now and again to practice encouraging others through this blog.  I am delving in again with this week’s five-minute-Friday word:  afraid.

We all have things that we are afraid of.  If we sat and thought about them all the time, it could be terribly debilitating, and is for some.  But there are day to day things that do nag at one that can also be a distraction and are best to just tackle and address.  For me most of those things that I am afraid of are relational.  I am afraid I am not doing enough.  I am afraid I might offend or hurt someone somehow.  I am afraid I am not being who I should be to adequately be Christ’s representative to those around me.  I find a daily pow-wow with God keeps me humble and at peace with these fears.

There are other relational things I am afraid of as well on a more immediate basis, and that is what I will just write for five minutes about today.  

So here goes.

I am about to become a mother-in-law in a few months.  It is something I have thought about for long before my kids were even old enough to consider marriage.  I didn’t want to become the proverbial mother-in-law, with fangs and claws, hated by all.  Why is your mother someone you hold dear, well, some of us at certain ages anyway, but all of a sudden when you think of the mother-in-law, someone dear to you’s mother, you have this image of the one no one wants to have around.  It is that image I am afraid of having an association with.

Apparently I am not alone.  I decided to look into this and talk to folks about it.  This is not an unusual concern.  Of course mother-in-laws are not evil meddlers who are always in your business, but they are certainly characterized as such.  There are tensions that arise in all relationships because other relationships develop and change the relationship you had, whether that be adding children to a family, or adding a husband or wife to the familial equation.  Even new friends or business associations change how we may relate to others we already have a relationship with.  

Being determined not to become that image, I may be swinging the other way.  I do want to continue to have a relationship after all with my son and future daughter-in-law.  The change one undergoes as a parent is hard.  First we are given this responsibility for this new person that we know very little about how to handle.  We have to take on someone who is totally dependent on us for everything their physical, emotional, and spiritual well-being.  As we get a handle on what we are doing, we have to train them how to be independent of us.  Then we have to learn to let go and take on the role of advisor.  Before you know it, even giving advice is unwelcome and considered meddling.  

So I am determined to tread carefully, to try to only give advice when asked and even then cautiously, and to NOT, under any circumstances, become what I fear, a hated, meddling mother-in-law.  

Five minutes:  STOP.

The Lord has created us for relationship.  There is nothing more important than our relationship with God first, and then our relationship with others, foremost those closest to us in our family.  If we invest much of ourselves in those relationships, it can be bitter-sweet as we experience them changing in all of the forms that change takes.  Yet if we keep our eyes on the Lord, and let Him work in us, stretching and refining us through these changes, it is an incredibly rich growth experience.  

                        Five Minute Fridayhttp://christianmommyblogger.comMissional Women


  1. Good stuff Mom, got a lot of respect for this. Takes guts to acknowledge fears. Sure you'll be a great Monster-in-Law...I mean, Mother-in-Law ;-) love, Luc

  2. love your transparency maria. and the reminder that god has created us for relationship. he will bless and build the ones we invite him to be a part of. took a moment to pray for you! xo --kris

    1. Thanks Kris for stopping by and thanks for the prayer. Maria

  3. We're always growing, aren't we? I know you'll be a wonderful resource of help and encouragement for your adult children.

    1. Thanks Heidi. You are always an encouragement to me. God bless, Maria

  4. You'll be great, just be yourself.

    1. Thanks Jen. I appreciate your encouragement. God bless, Maria


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