In marriage, we are not only united with our spouse, but also our in-laws. The Bible shows us that our relationship with God comes first, followed by our marriage and then our extended family – not the other way around. There may be times when we will have to honour God above our parents-in-laws and need His wisdom on how to handle potential conflicts or misunderstandings in a gracious and loving way.
(See Chinese versions: 简体中文 > 姻亲 | 繁體中文 > 姻親)
Genesis 2:24 ESV Therefore a man shall leave his father and his mother and hold fast to his wife, and they shall become one flesh.
A prayer over our relationship with our in-laws
“Dear Heavenly Father,
Thank You for choosing my parent-in-laws for me and Your perfect plans for us all.
I repent of the times I have submitted to family pressure to place human relationships above my relationship with You. The only relationship I have for certainly for all eternity is with You, oh Father in Heaven.
Matthew 22:30 ESV For in the resurrection they neither marry nor are given in marriage, but are like angels in heaven.
God, Your ways are higher than ours and You will work all things perfectly according to Your will. I choose Your ways over mine, even though I might feel conflicted, frustrated, angry, bitter and resentful at times. Convict my heart to look at what You can do in my extended family, rather than what they have done to me or expect me to do. I submit my views and heart to You Lord first and foremost.
Proverbs 15:33 ESV The fear of the Lord is instruction in wisdom, and humility comes before honor.
Isaiah 55:8-9 ESV For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways, declares the Lord. For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways and my thoughts than your thoughts.
You have called us to stand as ministers of reconciliation in Jesus’ name for Your glory. Please show me what this should look like for my family. I want to die to my own ungodly reactions and fleshly tendencies, and obey Your Word. I ask for Your protection against any scheme of the enemy that has been set up against reconciliation and peace in my family.
2 Corinthians 5:18-19 ESV All this is from God, who through Christ reconciled us to himself and gave us the ministry of reconciliation; that is, in Christ God was reconciling the world to himself, not counting their trespasses against them, and entrusting to us the message of reconciliation.
At the same time, please show me how to draw healthy boundaries around my relationships. If You call us to give up some things in order to bring Your glory, I will do so willingly. Father, thank You that Your rewards are for those who persevere, even if it comes at a cost. Nothing I lose will compare with Your goodness towards us!
Hebrews 10:34-36 NLT You suffered … and when all you owned was taken from you, you accepted it with joy. You knew there were better things waiting for you that will last forever. So do not throw away this confident trust in the Lord. Remember the great reward it brings you! Patient endurance is what you need now, so that you will continue to do God’s will. Then you will receive all that he has promised.
I confess and repent of all judgements and ungodly words that I have said against my in-laws. In the name of Jesus, I expel the spirits of anger and pride from my heart.
May I continue to be transformed by Your Holy Spirit and learn to honour my extended family of in-laws with godly patience, humility and grace, so they will eventually see that Jesus, Your Holy Spirit lives in me. May they see the Light of the world through my attitudes, words and actions.
Exodus 20:12 ESV “Honor your father and your mother, that your days may be long in the land that the Lord your God is giving you.
Luke 14:26 NLT “If you want to be my disciple, you must hate everyone else by comparison–your father and mother, wife and children, brothers and sisters–yes, even your own life. Otherwise, you cannot be my disciple.
I welcome the work of the Holy Spirit and invite You to restore my spirit and continue to fill me with love and wisdom from above. I ask all this for Your glory.
In Jesus’ name, amen!”
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