A blended family mom… you are in a difficult position. Statistics do not provide a resounding ray of hope that your marriage will be around to celebrate your 20th anniversary. From a compilation of articles I gathered from Google, I found condensed statistics of divorce in marriages as such: 41% divorce probability in your first marriage; 60% divorce probability in your second marriage and 73% in your third marriage. I’m telling you, this doesn’t look good for my husband, Dan – I’m his 4th wife!
First of all, divorce is not something that God wants for His children. That being said, we can lay claim to the beautiful verse in Psalm 103:12 where it says that God has removed our sins as far from us as the east is from the west. So He has taken those choices and situations of our lives, and given us a new day – a new opportunity to walk in a way to glorify Him.
That’s where my heart is – to help you see this opportunity of a life time to glorify God, to come along side of couples that are having a hard time seeing their way in a marriage that seems impossible. I want you to see that your feelings are real and valid and know that there are many, many others that have gone through this before you. I want to help you to see a clearer path to victory in your marriage and blended family.
Second of all, as we draw nearer to Christ, we realize that Jesus needs to be the foundation in our homes and in our marriages. Having a husband and a wife who value a spiritual walk with God also enhances those dismal divorce statistics.
I can tell you honestly that Dan and I have an awesome marriage because of Christ. Oh, Dan is a great guy… and I’m not so bad myself, but Christ is the foundation that makes all the rough spots in our marriage – divorce proof. Our foundation of Christ has a 100-percent success rate!
It isn’t always easy for us humans to utilize the power that we have through Christ. So when things get tough, I’ve just got to lean on the fact that God knows exactly where I am and He will provide the wisdom, love, guidance and encouragement needed to gain victory through the trial.
So, now you’re in a blended family and you are trying to build this marriage and family on Christ, and defeat the odds. I’d like to give you a road map so that you may travel a bit easier and have a clearer vision of the journey.
I want to speak to you about priorities. Let me explain. Our first priority is God. In Matthew 22:37-38, Jesus tells us, “‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.’ This is the first and greatest commandment.”
So we know that we are to build our lives around loving God – makes no difference whether we are married or single.
Once married, though, we now have additional priorities. Ephesians 5:22 tells wives to submit to your husbands. Ephesians 5:25 tells husbands to love their wives – just as Christ loved the church – even to the point of giving up his life for her.
Now the children – an outcome of the union of man and woman – are the next priority. But now, you’ve been through death or divorce and have remarried. Here is where it gets fuzzy.
When Dan and I got married, we were not each other’s priority. We both have kids so you can imagine that when push came to shove, we were not standing on the same side of the fence. I was a bit more understanding in this area because I had come from different circumstances in my past, and wanted Dan to be my priority and knew that this is how God set up marriage.
My first husband died – so my feeling towards marriage was til death do you part. But as Dan’s 4th wife, he came from a place where he didn’t know how long this marriage would last so his children were his priority. Understandable. But not the way God intended.
So, I encourage you to talk with your spouse about the importance of being each other’s earthly priority. It is definitely not easy, but if you will talk about it, and pray about it and earnestly try to walk in it, you will find it easier to be understanding with each other. You will make conscious efforts to place each other as a priority.
The children will see your priorities and actually find security and comfort of knowing that your marriage isn’t based on them. It took Dan about 5-6 years before I knew I was his priority. That’s a long time, but God gave me the understanding to realize where Dan had been before and that he needed my patience and understanding.
This is probably a big area where blended family marriages fail. When we are in the most sacred and binding relationships and then our partner chooses their children over us… that can crush our spirits and our marriages so quickly.
So try to see the bigger picture. Try to picture where you spouse has come from in his life. Ask God to give you the understanding needed to hang in there until you can both walk in your marriage the way God intended – with Him.
I love that old song I grew up singing in church… “my hope is built on nothing less than Jesus’ blood and righteousness. I dare not trust the sweetest frame but wholly lean on Jesus name. On Christ the Solid Rock I stand, all other ground is sinking sand … all other ground is sinking sand.”
Build your life and marriage on the only foundation that is unshakable – whether it’s your first marriage or your fourth. It’s a new day and a new opportunity.
Blessings in Your Blending!