Spouses, family members or in-laws (or future in-laws) who seem antagonistic are usually not as against you as they seem. You’re the target, the scapegoat for something else that’s bothering them. And the best, most permanently effective way make it stop is to get to the root of the matter. If you take their anger personally, you’ll be handicapped by your own emotional reactions.
Think of it this way: They’re experiencing some sort of earthquake, and it’s shaking them up, and it’s scary. The fault line might be very old or it could be a new crack in a life that they desperately wish would be safe, comfortable, and predictable. The bottom of the fault line is within themselves, not you.
What is changing in their world? They don’t hate you. They hate those changes.
God wants to be an influence that helps them. Very possibly, he wants to influence them through you. To accomplish this, you’ll have to (1) stop quaking in your own boots by listening to Jesus affirm you, reminding yourself that it’s God’s opinion of you that matters, not theirs; (2) forgive them; (3) view the situation from his perspective. Christ is going to make needed, positive, important changes.
Peaceful compassion is the only way to calm someone who thinks you’re the cause of their earthquake. After that, you’ve got a better chance of making a difference and leading them to the same peace the Lord has given you.
- Who is falsely accusing, condemning, or unrighteously angry at you? What might be a deeper, truer reason for it?
- Who is antagonistic toward your sweetheart? What might be a deeper, truer reason for this behavior?
Strengthen your relationship:
Help each other find the Lord’s peace by analyzing and identifying the changes that are upsetting the people you each named in the above two questions. Then pray together for them and ask the Holy Spirit to help you figure out how to help them find peace.
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© 2017 by Terry Modica of Good News Ministries
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