The day I married Dan, I became a wife, stepmom, and “bonus” grandmother. The next day, we all moved in together, and I believe I just went numb for the next year or so. I do remember bits and pieces of trying to put a household together, trying to let my husband lead, trying to encourage my kids that this new family was going to be great, and trying to figure out how much parenting Dan’s kids actually needed. Let me tell you that with all my ‘trying’, I wasn’t really successful in any area.
Thank goodness God is patient with me and has never given up on me. He showed me time and time again that baby steps in certain directions eventually led to relationships forming, my marriage becoming stronger, and through day by day journaling – a book was born.
Dan and I led a study in our Sunday School class by Dr. Randy Carlson called Unlocking the Secrets of an Intentional Life – When Getting by Isn’t Good Enough. The key verse for his study is Ephesians 5:10, “Figure out what will please Christ and then do it.” (MSG)
I wished I would have had this book when we first got married and was blending our family. Dr. Carlson writes that “Intentional living is the road less traveled; ‘common sense’ in a world that’s gone crazy; and the Christian’s mandate.” He goes on to challenge you to make a “commitment today to One Thing for 30 days that will glorify Christ, benefit yourself and break the cycle of good intentions.” Your One Thing goal needs to be specific, measurable, realistic, and have a deadline.
So Dan and I and our class did this. We each found one thing in our lives we wanted to change. One man in our class committed to encourage his wife five times a day. Another decided to cut calories in half to lose weight for better health. I committed to 15 minutes daily to research and start writing a new book. Small steps. One thing. Intentional living.
What would this look like in your blended family? What if you committed to saying something positive or praying over your step kids when you said goodnight to each of them – for 30 days? What if your One Thing was to put a small note of encouragement or scripture in their lunch boxes? What if your One Thing was to plan and provide a family game night once a week along with fun snacks?
Take some time today to think about one thing that you can easily and intentionally do for the next 30 days that would help you extend your love over your step children and bring about stronger relationships.
I will tell you that the first week didn’t go so well for me. Week two went better; I had a plan and was encouraged by others that were taking the plunge. I want to encourage you also.
What are the results of being intentional and doing just One Thing? Well, I wrote a chapter in my next book and my husband lost several pounds! Why don’t you see what One Thing will do to change you and your family!
Blessings in Your Blending!