Relationship With Others 101: Families

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Connecting With God

Mind whom you date when you’re single

When you’re single, you can serve God with fewer distractions (1 Corinthians 7:6-7)

  • The idea of a “soul mate” or “the one” is a Hindu belief and isn’t biblical

Marriage is an exceedingly challenging experience, but unwisely marrying guarantees a lifetime of misery (Proverbs 21:9)

  • Deeply consider your romantic relationships because any of them could lead to marriage
  • Imagine that person never changing and ask if you can live with them for the rest of your earthly life

When dating, abide by standards of healthy relationships

Don’t date or have relationships with non-believers (2 Corinthians 6:14)

  • Your entire spiritual life is incompatible with them
  • Observe their lifestyle more than what they say (Matthew 7:15-20)

Anyone who places anything above God is worshiping an idol

Addicts value their substance more than any partner

  • Addictions can include alcohol, pornography, prescription drugs, video games, and television
  • That person needs significant help, but your devotion won’t determine whether they want to change
  • Leave them if they don’t change genuinely and permanently after you’ve directed them to a recovery group

Materialistic women will force debt on men for what they want

  • They will lead men to financial ruin, especially after they’ve married
  • Leave them if they’re unwilling to learn healthy financial principles

Some women maintain unhealthy codependent ties with their families

  • She hasn’t broken her ties from her parents (Genesis 2:24) and will only permit a family life that involves her extended family
  • Deliver an ultimatum that they’ll eventually have to choose you or the family and follow through on it

Selfish people manipulate and use you as an object

Self-absorbed people care way too much about themselves

  • Self-absorbed men might be overly concerned about image or only talk about themselves
  • Self-absorbed women continually show their superiority and try to enforce it
  • Some of them are church leaders with hidden motivations
  • Their self-worth only gives room for themselves in a relationship

Sexually promiscuous people use sexuality to gain attention, love, and power

  • Sexually promiscuous women often dress provocatively and flirt openly
  • Sexually promiscuous men usually date many different women at once
  • They haven’t yielded their sexuality to God and often have no reservations against premarital sex
  • Some of them are on church worship teams
  • Unfaithfulness before marriage stays unfaithfulness after marriage

Liars have actions, lifestyles, and a past which doesn’t line up

  • Someone with secrets has a habit of hiding them
  • More responsibilities in the future will create more issues

You can’t motivate deadbeat men to do anything for anyone

  • One of the most severe warning signs comes from his unwillingness to care for his children from a previous marriage
  • If he doesn’t take care of his current responsibilities, he won’t manage future ones
  • Only God can motivate deadbeat men to take more action

Lazy men are perpetually unwilling to work

  • Each person should work according to his or her ability (2 Thessalonians 3:10)
  • If he doesn’t treat a relationship like a partnership, he’ll drag down his spouse

Avoid men who refuse to grow up and take care of a home

  • Some men don’t know how to cook, clean or iron their shirt
  • A childlike adult needs a mentor before a relationship

Some people enjoy making life unnecessarily difficult

Controlling people have to micro-manage others’ lives

  • Controlling men talk down to others, demean women, and impede God from working
    • A man unwilling to treat his wife as equal will oppress her later (1 Peter 3:7)
  • Controlling women have severe trust issues
    • An unsubmissive woman creates constant conflict once married (Ephesians 5:21)
  • Some insecure and prideful people may sound spiritual or quote Scripture
  • Leave them alone for God to break them

Argumentative and contentious women let unresolved bitterness guide their lives

  • Singleness is better than the constant conflict (Proverbs 21:9)
  • Conflict-inducing people must manage their own lives before they can pursue a relationship

Physically abusive men can’t control their anger when it boils over

  • Never rationalize others’ abusive behavior, even if you want to
  • Marriage with a rageaholic is a minefield of avoiding their outbursts

Contributing to a family takes effort and discipline

Your spouse is your first earthly priority, so love her deeply

  • Don’t dilute or distract with pornography or other romantic possibilities
  • God always hates divorce, though infidelity is the spiritually permissible grounds for it (Matthew 5:31-32)
  • If your unbelieving husband stays married to you after you’ve given your life to the Lord, don’t divorce them (1 Corinthians 7:10-16)

Your children are your most significant ministry until they become adults

Every parenting rule applies

  • Lead them through example
  • Your children will see how much you love the Lord
  • They will also know whether you’re genuinely living for Christ

Teach your children about God

  • Tell them frequently about what God has done, both in your life and in the Bible
  • Teach them the importance and value of God’s Word
  • Train them to love and serve the Lord fully

Someday when they are ready, you’re responsible for leading them to accept Jesus as their savior personally

Parenting is a decades-long project

  • Don’t try to rush or “force-feed” what you want them to know

After you see them off someday, accept that they could get killed for their faith in the Lord

God created a specific design for families

A marriage relationship symbolizes Christ and the Church (Ephesians 5)

  • The man is the head of the household (Ephesians 5:22-24)
    • God created men for leading and women for supporting that leadership
    • Though many churches find it controversial, God prophesied women would desire to control their husband (Genesis 3:16)
  • A woman should be a husband’s primary concern (Ephesians 5:23-33), but men have a difficult time valuing unsubmissive wives

Children should obey their parents, but fathers shouldn’t provoke their children (Ephesians 6:1-4)

  • Spoiled children bring shame to a family (Proverbs 29:15)
  • Children learn how to obey their parents through discipline (Proverbs 29:17)
  • Fully forgive an adult child who comes back after rebelling (Luke 15:11-32)
    • The adult child, however, still has to reap consequences of their poor decisions

The Bible isn’t universally clear about extended family but emphasizes spiritual family as more important (Ephesians 2:19)

Next: Church Involvement