‘…A man leaves his father and mother and is joined to his wife…’ Matthew 19:5 NLT
After arguing for hours, a couple drove along in silence. Suddenly they passed a barnyard filled with mules and jackasses. Sarcastically, the husband asked, ‘Relatives of yours?’ The wife replied, ‘Yes, in-laws.’
Marriage was God’s idea, and it was a good one. Picking up the theme, Jesus said, ‘A man leaves his father and mother and is joined to his wife.’ In marriage, ‘two’s company, three’s a crowd!’ So here are Ten Commandments for being a good in-law: (1) Thou shalt love, honour and respect the couple. (2) Thou shalt grant them independence, resisting the urge to show them ‘a better way’ of doing things. (3) Thou shalt be loyal and not criticise them, for, ‘[God] will apply to you the same rules you apply to others…’ (Matthew 7:2 GNT) (4) Thou shalt not find fault: ‘Do not judge others, so that God will not judge you…’ (Matthew 7:1 GNT) (5) Thou shalt not outwear thy welcome, and always call before thou showest up at their dwelling. ‘Don’t visit…too often; they may get tired of you…’ (Proverbs 25:17 GNT) (6) Thou shalt not expect them to visit thee too often. (7) Thou shalt refrain from giving unsolicited advice: ‘Stupid people express [themselves] openly, but sensible people are patient and hold it back.’ (Proverbs 29:11 GNT) (8) Thou shalt not talk about how thou wantest grandchildren unless they are already on the way. (9) Thou shalt respect their home decorating taste even when it differeth from thine. (10) Thou shalt pray for them daily and without fail. If you are an in-law who doesn’t want to be viewed as an out-law, live by these commandments!
SoulFood: Jer 31-32, Mark 3:7-19, Ps 103:13-22, Pr 10:14
The Word for Today is authored by Bob and Debby Gass and published under licence from UCB International Copyright 2012