In the movie “The Family Man”, actor Nicolas Cage was shown his life with relationship and without relationship and he ultimately decided for life with relationship, he said “I choose Us”. Life is full of choices, we make them everyday… …
...do we choose relationship with our spouse and kids before others...choose to come home everyday and bond, choose career and recreation with family in mind...after a disagreement do we choose Us or choose to be right?
No amount of money or success or excitement experienced without your family, will ever replace having amazing close relationships within your family… I challenge you to “choose Us”.
I have observed that if anyone says they are going to leave their partner there is a certain element in any work place who will take them out for lunch, slap them on the back, say ‘way to go’, ‘you’ll be so much better without them’, ‘write them off forever’.
However, I have observed that that same crowd is often going online or going out every weekend looking for the perfect relationship. If being on your own is so much fun, how come those same people are looking for a new relationship every weekend?
It is so important to celebrate our togetherness, not listen to bad advice from people who are actually lonely and leading an unfulfilled life.
(Gary Chapman, 2010)
...find out so you don't 'throw' love past each other...
Just a little reminder that at this time in your life you need to look after each other more than ever, even while you are looking after your baby. Life may be a little topsy-turvy, short on sleep, long on things to accomplish in a day, and just seeming to be 24/7 work, but a little love for one another will go a long way. Don’t forget to show love according to your Love Languages, and take a look at this Crazy Cycle and Energizing Cycle.
LOVE AND RESPECT...When men and women show each other both love and respect it is Energizing, when they don't, it produces a Crazy Cycle that affects everyone.
Michele Weiner-Davis* is a therapist who used to listen to couples, hear their problems, not getting along, making each other mad, etc., and she would say
“Yup, you have a case, I think you should leave and carry on with your life”. However, after 15 years of saying this to people, she realized that no one actually was getting on with their life – they were still attached. Besides she found that when they carried on to another relationship they had to do a lot of work to make the second relationship work…so she concluded that it is worth putting the same amount of work into the relationship you have. This is a gift you can give yourselves and your baby.
*Divorce Busting, Michele Weiner-Davis
When we were on a ride in Disneyland, we went through a very dark, frightening tunnel, we weren’t expecting it. What if, in the darkest spot, I had turned and blamed those with me… it was probably their fault I was on this ride… what if I had thrown them out of the boat?
About 5 minutes later we burst out into the most beautiful sunshine, and we were able to carry on with the rest of a pleasant day. If I had tossed them out of the boat in the dark time, I would have come back into the sunshine alone and lonely, and the rest of my day would have been less pleasant because things are way more fun when shared. Life is like that…when life comes back out into the sunshine, it is nice to be together, not alone and lonely.
It is a very profound thought to realize that no storm ever lasts forever…not the worst wind storm, not a tsunami, not even the ‘perfect storm’. This applies to life as well, when a ‘storm’ comes up in life, it will never last forever, so hang on, and put your hand in God’s hand… stay connected to your family and community, and ride the wave.
Sometimes a storm will alter the landscape forever…so in life, some things may never be the same, but they will become part of your story going forward after the storm has passed.
Remember God ‘s promise , “I will never leave you or forsake you” (Hebrews 13:5).
If as a parent you find yourself in a position of being on your own, still choose Us, trust God and trust yourself, you can do it!
I was raised in a single parent home by an amazing father from when I just turned 9 years old. My mom died, leaving dad with 5 kids under the age of 9. We had help from the side lines from an aunt and uncle, however, dad stuck with us. Later in life he told us that he chose not to remarry because he didn’t want to have to decide between a spouse and his kids (not a rule, just his musings). As a godly parent he lived a life of integrity in front of us kids. He always came home from work at the same time, we could depend on him to be there. We sat down together for meals…other kids were welcome and many remember meals at our house, and being welcome and not judged. He snagged us to read at least a verse of the Bible together at meals (we were an active bunch!). He also kept us plugged into a great church for our spiritual teaching, and plugged into a great church community, and I found that from that community God provided a ‘mother’ for me whenever I needed advice or to learn a skill. Dad taught us with stories…he was not a big talker, but if we wanted to do something questionable, he would tell us a story of one of his friends who had done the same thing and how it turned out…often when he was finished, we would just say, ‘oh bother, that’s not worth even trying’.
So grateful for my dad to do 'going it alone' well, and if you are in this position, just want to say 'you got this!'
We have all heard the Golden Rule - ‘do to others what you would like them to do to you’. Conversely, if you don’t want it done to you don’t do it – this is a rule to live by for families……for example…if you would freak out if someone was so angry that they drove off and didn’t come back for hours – if that would scare you silly whether they are alright…just make up your mind that you will never do that to anyone in your family. If you wouldn’t like it, just don’t do it.
Remember….Anger is controllable! For example…if a person is screaming mad and the phone rings, do they pick it up and scream into it? Maybe, but probably not – usually they pick up the phone and say ‘hello’ in a sweet voice, have the phone conversation and then maybe go back to screaming afterwards. I rest my case …anger is controllable.
In the book “Love Must Be Tough” (not the same as ‘tough love’), Dr. James Dobson says …how a person acts when jilted may determine whether the relationship gets restored (whether they act as a victim or with self esteem). It is important to speak up and take a stand when things are truly not functioning, but always with a view to reconciliation, giving each other a way back instead of writing each other off.
“Forgive us our trespasses as we forgive those who trespass against us”(Lord’s Prayer)...If we don’t forgive we just ‘rent out space in our head’ .
Some say ‘forgive and forget’ – we can forgive but we can’t forget, only God can do both…but we can forgive and not hold the other person accountable anymore (throw away the list). Forgiveness is like giving someone a ‘get out of jail free' card. Give each other a way back...
If you need a few minutes of peace…instead of toppling your whole family over, just figure out how to take a few minutes…
In the movie Shrek Forever, all Shrek wanted was a few minutes…he was overwhelmed with the busyness of family life, kid duties and house duties to the point of not being able to think…so he traded his soul in order to have a few minutes of peace… he lost everything he had, then he realized how important it had all been to him, how much he loved and valued his wife and family. Because it is a movie he managed to fight to get it all back…but it doesn’t always happen in real life, sometimes if you give up important stuff too easily, you might not get it back.
The point is that when you need a few minutes, be creative and find a constructive way to take a few minutes of peace.
We most often think of jealousy as a negative and dysfunctional thing…sometimes a form of abuse.*
However, there is a positive, functional form of jealousy that exists between healthy couples…he/she is mine and I am proud of them… where two people care enough to be involved in each other’s lives, and care enough to make the effort to keep the other’s affections, care enough to not lightly let the relationship go.
*About abuse – if a person is being abused physically or emotionally, it is important to get out, get safe, and get help. True abuse should be distinguished from pseudo-abuse, where two people are both being annoying to each other and invading each other’s space.
Within a relationship, sexy is awesome and amazing.
However, if you are in a stable relationship and someone else catches your eye as sexy, it is probably an illusion. Often they are abused or an abuser. They will probably not be there when you need them, and then they will be on to someone else. If someone else looks much more wonderful than your spouse, it is also probably an illusion.
Protect yourself against victims and victim-takers…have good habits, don’t let yourself get wedged into situations that are difficult, not even for work.
In the movie ‘The Family Man’, actor Nicolas Cage’s friend explains to him that he should not step out on his wife. He says “ …dealing with fire here. The Fidelity Bank in Trust is a tough creditor…you make a deposit somewhere else, they close your account FOREVER!"
What do you want people to say about you at the other end of your life, what effect do you want your life to have on those following you…begin with the end in mind. Start by imagining you have a family photo album filled with photographs taken ten or twenty years from now. Picture Christmas dinners, birthdays, graduations, and how nice it is to be together in an ever-changing world. Like the movie ‘Back to the Future’, what you are doing this moment is shaping your future. If you want intimacy, caring and companionship five, ten or thirty years from now, start making it happen now. Start creating the good old days right this moment.
Steven Covey-7 Habits of Highly Effective People
The Iroquois “7 Generation Law” says, “In our every deliberation, we must consider the impact of our decisions on the next seven generations”. The Bible says, “His truth endures to all generations”*Live wisely together, thinking also of the generations to follow you.
WISDOM… generations of blessing follow faithfulness
A wise woman builds her house, a foolish one tears it down with her own hands.(Proverbs 14:1))
A wise man holds his tongue. Only a fool blurts out everything he knows.(Proverbs 10:14 LB)
How does a person become wise? The first step is to trust and reverence the Lord? Only fools refuse to be taught. (Proverbs 1:7 LB)
By wisdom a house is built, and by understanding it is established; by knowledge the rooms are filled with all precious and pleasant riches (Proverbs 24:3)
CONSEQUENCES…generations of destructive habits follow unfaithfulness
…..Someone always finds out…’whatever you have whispered in private rooms will be shouted from the housetops’ (Luke 12:3) or like Louis L’Amour the Western writer says ‘someone is always randomly looking out from behind a curtain and notices what is going on’, there is no such thing as anonymous.
…..It hurts you, both men and women…It’s a bit like putting live fire into your own belly and hoping it doesn’t hurt…’can a man hold fire in his belly and not be burned? Can he walk on hot coals and not blister his feet?...but the man who commits adultery is an utter fool, for he destroys his own soul. Wounds and constant disgrace are his lot’ (Proverbs 6:27-33) (Interestingly, disgrace and contempt are often given to those who are caught stepping out on their relationship)
----It brings poverty…‘An illicit affair will bring a man/woman to poverty and may cost their very life’ (Proverbs 6:26))…..look around…some form of poverty almost always follows for either or both after a split-up
MAKE A LIST: Each make a list of what you loved about the other when you first met. ·
If you have trouble in life, instead of turning and blaming each other, stand and link arms together against trouble, and include God in your linked arms.
“A person standing alone can be attacked and defeated, but two can stand back-to-back and conquer. Three are even better, for a triple-braided cord is not easily broken”. (Ecclesiastes 4:12)
I have made cord before… one strand of string can be quite easily broken. If you wind two strands of string back on itself it is quite strong, but when you get it up to three strands then there is strength. Include both of you and God in making the cord for the warp and weave of your life and you will be stronger for both the celebrations and the tests of life.
We choose Us, and we choose You. Please be the third person in our relationship Who holds us together. As we each get closer to You, we will get closer to each other. Help us to continually choose our relationship over other people and other distractions. Help us to keep each other safe, physically, emotionally and spiritually, and help us to make our kids feel safe by the way we treat each other and them.
Please give us wisdom how to really show love to each other.
In Jesus’ name we pray,