If you’d like to see other blogs who are participating in this book study, head on over to Knee-Deep in Munchkin Land for the link-up.
I think the thing that stood out to me most in this chapter was the following quote:
How can I tell my children that God’s promise of reconciliation is secure when they see that my own promise doesn’t mean a thing?
If you read my recent post about Santa, you already know that the example Husband and I set before our children is of the utmost importance to us. But I hadn’t thought of it in this particular context.
As Gary stated, we shouldn’t keep our marriage together “for the kids.” We should keep our marriage strong because it’s our duty as Christians to fulfill the commitments we made to God and each other. Everything else will fall in line with that. And that includes being an example of redemption and love not only to our kids, but to other people as well.
I never really thought of my marriage as an example of Christ’s love to others. But honestly, you can tell a lot about a couple by the way the interact with each other.
We’ve all been in the presence of a couple we were pretty sure had placed a fight on hold when they got out of the car (and maybe we’ve been that couple before). We’ve also probably all been around a couple who didn’t interact with each other at all for an entire event. (Awkward.) And we’ve all seen the couple who must be touching each other at all times. (And frankly, that’s just weird.) But you know what I mean. You can fake a lot of stuff in front of other people, but you can’t fake much in front of your kids. They see everything.
I am all about being real, sometimes to a fault. We don’t do “fake” at our house very well. So it stands to reason that we are real in our everyday relationships in our house. But it’s important that we be the right kind of real.
We need to allow our kids to see that while we mess up sometimes, we always forgive and love. And when we disagree in front of the kids (because it’s going to happen), we must strive to do so with love and respect toward each other. I always want my kids to know that even when I don’t agree with Husband, I respect him as the head of our family and he is the authority God has placed over us. I can’t teach those principles if I don’t first believe them and then lead by example. We all know that “do as I say, not as I do” doesn’t work.
One day, I hope that my kids can say the following: that we love God. That we love each other. That we were always real in our relationships, and that we led by example. Because when we do that, everything else will fall in line.