What little girl didn’t grow up dreaming of a fairytale life, being swept off her feet by her handsome prince and riding off into the sunset to begin their happily ever after...I don’t remember any little girl dreaming of one day becoming…the evil step mother. The step mother, you know her from Cinderella, Snow White, and Hansel and Gretel, she is known for being jealous of her step children, seeking to get rid of them and to destroy them. No little girl ever dreams of becoming a step mother, because little girls want to be beautiful princesses who get swept of their feet.
As a young girl becomes a young woman, those dreams of fairy tales quickly begin to fade, most young girls, especially those not raised in the ways of the Lord, begin to spend so much time “frog hunting” that they forget that they were even looking for a prince. Those frogs, and some princes, begin to fall into the desires of the flesh rather than that of the heart.
There are different scenarios that lead to a child becoming a step child, sex before marriage, divorce, and death. None are easy for the child or children affected. Try, as hard as it is while “hate” and disrespect are being spewed at you, try to keep this in mind, when challenges arise. Ask God to give you wisdom in how to see things from the child’s point of view, ask Him how you can help the child, whatever the frustration, ask for the Lord’s help. Remember also that God has placed you where you are at, there is a reason and a purpose, and as my dad says, “nobody ever got stronger by watching a weight lifting completion.” One thing is for sure, a blended family will drive you to your knees, and that is never a bad thing.
The divorce rate in blended families is higher (nationally) than that of first time marriages…while the national divorce rate of first time marriage is at 40% it is at 60% for second marriages and 73% for third marriages. The stress of blending families is a contributing factor; but this stress is not a legitimate excuse. You might be hated, disrespected, lied about, blamed for things and situations out of your control, but you, dear reader, need to grab onto to the stamina that only Christ can give you. You can and must make your marriage and your blended family work, keep in mind, the majority of the “work load” falls on your husband, but before even giving the responsibility of the situation to your husband, you must give your family and all of your issues to Christ.
Before we continue on with some verses that could be convicting, I need to remind you of God’s daily renewing mercies and compassion, His unfathomable grace, His unlimited forgiveness, and His unmatchable love. Ponder these verses and bury them in your heart, believe them with all of your being, and ask the Lord to remind you of them, not just with the trials of Step-Mother and/or mother-hood come at you, but during any time that tries to cast angst on your life.
“22 Through the LORD’s mercies we are not consumed, because His compassions fail not. 23 They are new every morning; great is Your faithfulness.” –Lamentations 3:22-23 NKJV
“…“The LORD, the LORD God, merciful and gracious, longsuffering, and abounding in goodness and truth, 7 keeping mercy for thousands, forgiving iniquity and transgression and sin,…””- Exodus 34:6-7 NKJV
“6 But He gives more grace. Therefore He says: “God resists the proud, But gives grace to the humble.””–James 4:6/Proverbs 3:34 NKJV
“9 If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.”- 1 John 1:9 NKJV
“ 8 The LORD is merciful and gracious,
Slow to anger, and abounding in mercy.
9 He will not always strive with us,
Nor will He keep His anger forever.
10 He has not dealt with us according to our sins,
Nor punished us according to our iniquities.
11 For as the heavens are high above the earth,
So great is His mercy toward those who fear Him;
12 As far as the east is from the west,
So far has He removed our transgressions from us.” –Psalm 103:8-12 NKJV
“25 “I, even I, am He who blots out your transgressions for My own sake; and I will not remember your sins. 26 Put Me in remembrance; let us contend together; state your case, that you may be acquitted.” –Isaiah 43:25-26 NKJV
“8…for God is love. 9 In this the love of God was manifested toward us, that God has sent His only begotten Son into the world, that we might live through Him. 10 In this is love, not that we loved God, but that He loved us and sent His Son to be the propitiation for our sins…18 There is no fear in love; but perfect love casts out fear, because fear involves torment. But he who fears has not been made perfect in love. 19 We love Him because He first loved us” -1 John 4:8-10, 18-19 NKJV
God knows the truth, no matter how many lies are spread about you, no many how many “events” have been blown out of proportion and exaggerated and efforts to slander you and turn other family members against you, it doesn’t change the fact that God knows, and what he knows is all that matters. First and foremost, if you haven’t already, ask the Lord to give you a love for your stepchild(ren) that you have or would have for your own children, you cannot take the place of their mother, but you can love them like a mother. Those of us who have accepted Jesus Christ as our Lord and Savior, have been adopted into God’s family. Take some time a read these verses in full context:
Romans 8:14-17 NKJV
–“14 For as many as are led by the Spirit of God, these are sons of God. 15 For you did not receive the spirit of bondage again to fear, but you received the Spirit of adoption by whom we cry out, “Abba, Father.” 16 The Spirit Himself bears witness with our spirit that we are children of God, 17 and if children, then heirs—heirs of God and joint heirs with Christ, if indeed we suffer with Him, that we may also be glorified together.”
And Galatians 4:4-7 NKJV
- “ 4 But when the fullness of the time had come, God sent forth His Son, born of a woman, born under the law, 5 to redeem those who were under the law, that we might receive the adoption as sons.6 And because you are sons, God has sent forth the Spirit of His Son into your hearts, crying out, “Abba, Father!” 7 Therefore you are no longer a slave but a son, and if a son, then an heir of God through Christ.”
Now, (drum roll please) as promised, some verses that could cause *gasp* *sigh* conviction. (dun, dun, dun) Yep, I said the “c” word. Conviction is never popular is it, but it is necessary, how can we work on ourselves if we don’t allow God to show us where we need improvement. Do not run from conviction, rather embrace it, if God didn’t love you, He wouldn’t allow you to feel those icky feelings in the pit of your stomach that make you want to squirm out of your chair, and crawl out of your skin… When we are convicted, we realize we’ve been caught, and sometimes we have been caught doing something we didn’t even realize we thought or felt, it comes way out left field, and we are left going “Whoa! Where did THAT come from?”
We can’t have a book on step-motherhood without addressing the “D” word…Your blended family may not have formed because of divorce, but many do. Malachi 2:16 says
“ 16 “ For the LORD God of Israel says that He hates divorce, for it covers one’s garment with violence…”
The Hebrew word for “violence” is “Chamas” which Strong’s Hebrew Lexicon says is: “chamac khaw-mas' a primitive root; to be violent; by implication, to maltreat:--make bare, shake off, violate, do violence, take away violently, wrong, imagine wrongfully.”- Strong’s 2554, and “chamac khaw-mawce' from 2554; violence; by implication, wrong; by meton. unjust gain:--cruel(-ty), damage, false, injustice, X oppressor, unrighteous, violence (against, done), violent (dealing), wrong.” -Strong’s 2555.
Take a moment and read the definitions again, then look at the words that have been bolded, consider them when thinking of divorce, maybe you yourself had felt those things if you had been divorced, or maybe you, yourself felt those things when your parents got divorced. If you have felt that way, remember those feelings and consider that must be what your stepchild(ren) felt if they came from a home broken apart by divorce. This doesn’t cover stepchildren who have suffered the loss of a parent, or children who were raised by a single parent since birth. (This gets pretty deep, as there are a few scenarios we will have to look at on this topic, and will do so at another point.)
Jesus says in Matthew 19:3-6 NKJV
“3 The Pharisees also came to Him, testing Him, and saying to Him, “Is it lawful for a man to divorce his wife for just any reason?” 4 And He answered and said to them, “Have you not read that He who made them at the beginning ‘made them male and female,’ 5 and said, ‘For this reason a man shall leave his father and mother and be joined to his wife, and the two shall become one flesh’?(Genesis 2:24) 6 So then, they are no longer two but one flesh. Therefore what God has joined together, let not man separate.””
The same thing is written in Mark 9:6-9 NKJV
“6 But from the beginning of the creation, God ‘made them male and female.’ 7 ‘For this reason a man shall leave his father and mother and be joined to his wife, 8 and the two shall become one flesh’;(Genesis 2:24) so then they are no longer two, but one flesh. 9 Therefore what God has joined together, let not man separate.”” Infidelity was the exception, the case of abuse is not addressed, but I honestly feel that Jesus would not want you and/or your children to remain in harm’s way.
Now, let us explore Ephesians 5:22-33 NKJV, so we get an in context point of view.
“ “22 Wives, submit to your own husbands, as to the Lord. 23 For the husband is head of the wife, as also Christ is head of the church; and He is the Savior of the body. 24 Therefore, just as the church is subject to Christ, so let the wives be to their own husbands in everything. 25 Husbands, love your wives, just as Christ also loved the church and gave Himself for her, 26 that He might sanctify and cleanse her with the washing of water by the word, 27 that He might present her to Himself a glorious church, not having spot or wrinkle or any such thing, but that she should be holy and without blemish. 28 So husbands ought to love their own wives as their own bodies; he who loves his wife loves himself. 29 For no one ever hated his own flesh, but nourishes and cherishes it, just as the Lord does the church. 30 For we are members of His body, of His flesh and of His bones. 31 “For this reason a man shall leave his father and mother and be joined to his wife, and the two shall become one flesh.” (Genesis 2:24)32 This is a great mystery, but I speak concerning Christ and the church. 33 Nevertheless let each one of you in particular so love his own wife as himself, and let the wife see that she respects her husband.”
If you or your husband, or both of you have been divorced, remember the verses listed above these last ones, you can be forgiven, we can’t change what’s been done, but we can repent, learn and grow from our mistakes, embrace the love, grace, mercy and forgiveness of the Father, and begin to do things the way he intended. Your new mission, no matter how you came about it, whether this is your first, second or third marriage, your mission is to do all you can do to keep your blended family together. Your mission starts now, and it starts with prayer. Pray, pray, pray… God wants your family to succeed, the adversary, however, does not. The one behind the pulling apart of your family was also behind any family dynamic break-up that led to a blended family to begin with.
Your family can succeed, you can beat all odds, but it is almost impossible to do it without Jesus Christ. First and foremost He needs to be included in your marriage:
“12 Though one may be overpowered by another, two can withstand him. and a threefold cord is not quickly broken.” –Ecclesiastes 4:12 NKJV
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