Christmas Cheer and In-law Drama
I don’t know if you’ve ever gone through any drama with your in-laws during the holiday season (or any time for that matter) but I just wanted to drop a few lines of encouragement.
It used to be really bad for me, and sometimes still is, but the anxiety that came from a dreaded family gathering used to overshadow my holiday cheer.
Holiday gatherings on my side of the family and my husband’s side of the family were tumultuous and uncomfortable, at best. His family didn’t like me, and my family didn’t like him.
I always tried so hard to play along just to get along. Someone please tell me I’m not the only one who felt like that was the only way to get through the holidays season.☺
Here are some truths that helped me work through some of the difficulties my husband and I have experienced with our family relationships:
- Your validation comes from Christ. No one else’s opinion of you will determine your value, because God has already decided that you’re worthy of His grace and love.
- The Lord has blessed us with the gift of peace. There’s a difference between peace that comes from getting along with in-laws when they’re being nice, and the peace that comes from knowing and trusting God. No one can steal your peace. Guard your heart and mind.
- Hurt people, are the ones who hurt people. When someone is rude or disrespectful, it’s usually because THEY have a problem, but you are not the problem! Most likely, they are already struggling with something that has nothing to do with you at all, but you view their rudeness as something personal against you.
- Try to see the good in people. Remember, no one is all bad or all good. Everyone has a mixture of positive and negative attributes. I would always try to remember something nice they did for me, and if they usually weren’t very nice to me, I’d think about something nice they did for someone else.
- Someone will almost always say something stupid. This is nearly impossible to avoid. I usually expect someone at the dinner table to say something inappropriate whether they mean it or not.
- You can only develop a relationship with someone as far as you can extend your reach, and the other person will have to meet you halfway. If they don’t want a healthy relationship with you, at least you know you did what you could.
- It’s not a sin to speak up and say how you feel. Your point of view is valid, and if you believe that you’re being singled out or treated unfairly, you can tell your truth.
- Last, but not least, always side with your spouse. Communicate with your relatives by letting them know that your spouse is here to stay.
You don’t have to focus on someone else’s dysfunction and toxicity. You can accept them as they are, knowing that they are the only one who can change themselves, no one else can do it for them. If they haven’t grown to a level of maturity that helps them to have simple common courtesy and politeness…that’s on them. And just remember, the enemy will use anyone to create division in your marriage.
For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Savior, which is Christ the Lord. – Luke 2:11
The Lord has blessed us all with the gift of joy, and when we feel discouraged, we know we can put our focus on Christ.
We are praying for you and your family!
As we had mentioned at the top of this email, our book, “12 Prayers for Marriage” is available now, and for Christmas we’re including another one of our ebooks along with it for free.
Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!
Pesa and Whitney