The story of Romeo and Juliet is very romantic. Their families hate each other, but nothing can extinguish their flame. Everyone wants a love that strong, but if you care about your life, or at least your inner peace, consider your families well!
It is true, when we are starry eyed in love it seems that the whole world is fading around us. Now, this wonderful moment is a small percentage of a couple’s life. The vast majority of the time you will not be alone in your marriage. When you marry your partner, you also marry all of their family and best friends. Before saying “I do”, it is necessary to consider the entourage of your spouse.
Let us be clear: the family has no say in your decision. You are an adult and it is up to you to make your own choices. The Bible says: “Children, obey your parents in the Lord: for this is right.” (Ephesians 6.1 KJV) Some mothers (and therefore mothers-in-law) dare to use this verse to manipulate their children’s decision. So it’s good to remember that even if you are still your mother’s son or daughter when it’s time to get married, you are no longer a “child”. So you no longer have to blindly obey your parents.
On the other hand, the Bible also says: “Honor your father and mother, which is the first commandment with promise: that it may be well with you and you may live long on the earth.” (Ephesians 6.2-3 NKJV) The word “honor” here comes from the Greek “timao” meaning “to give value, to revere”. In other words, you don’t have to obey them, but you must respect them and make sure they are well treated.
The apostle Paul specifies that doing this assures us a long life and some happiness. Even if the decision is your’s alone, if you abandon their opinions, you will have a difficult and confrontational life. Even though the verse Genesis 2:24 says that the man will leave his father and mother, the reality is that they will always be around! It is, therefore, best to consider them before committing your life.
For example, if a young woman is not accepted by her fiance’s family, it would be wise to reconcile the relationship between her and the rest of the family before marrying. A wedding will not change anything in a climate of conflict. The young woman will not suddenly be accepted by her mother-in-law because she wears a ring on her finger. Even if she carries a child, the problem will not disappear anytime soon. Honoring parents in this situation means taking the time to chat with them to see what can be done to change negative feelings. It will not always be possible, but we must take the time and effort, otherwise family reunions will be very long and warlike.
Before you get married, also take note of the parents who are too close to their son or daughter. If the mother (because it is often her) dictates all the comings and goings of her son, she will not change after the wedding! This can lead to great territorial wars that no one wants to endure. Before marrying such a man, ask yourself if you are really ready to enter this fight. Do not marry and then hope that your spouse (or mother) will change after the wedding. Keep in mind that your spouse may never change, when making this decision. Are you ready to live the rest of your life in this climate? It’s your choice!
Finally, there are also distant relatives, those who live in another country, for example. Before you get married, take the time to calculate what it will cost, in time, effort and money, to take care of your elderly parents if they live on the other side of the world. Such an expense will prevent you from realizing some of your dreams. Are you ready to make this sacrifice?
Calculate what it will cost you before building a relationship. “For which of you, intending to build a tower, does not sit down first and count the cost, whether he has enough to finish it.” (Luke 14.28 NKJV) Living as a couple without the blessing of the family, or with a family burden is possible, but so much more arduous. Think hard about it before you swear fidelity to each other.