Have you ever thought about how your kids view your marriage? Not what they hear you SAY about marriage but what they SEE in your marriage.
“Your child may or may not remember what you say, but there is a high probability they will become who you are.”*
So, the other day Steve and I were having a “discussion” while eating dinner. As we talked more and became more animated, I turned and saw that our 3-year-old son was watching us intently. My heart sank. Though our “discussion” wasn’t terrible on the grand scale, it definitely got our son’s attention and not in a good way. It wasn’t the words we were saying but the tone in which we spoke and the expressions on our faces that seemed to almost fascinate him.
Several days later, Steve and I were sharing a loving moment, hugging, in the kitchen. Our son saw us from the other room and ran into the kitchen. He squeezed his little body in between ours and joined in the hug. Then he literally jumped and danced around us, as if he was celebrating our little moment. It was clear that this affection had not only caught his attention, but was something worth celebrating.
I thank God for both of these moments, because they have helped to remind me that we, as parents, are the primary model for our children. God has gifted us with these children and it is our duty to live a life that glorifies God and leads our children on His path. Please note that it’s about how we LIVE our life, not how we tell our children to live life. They learn more by what we DO than what we SAY.
This does not just apply to children. Whether you have children or not, this rule applies to all people in our lives. They are watching how we live our life. As Christians, we are called to live a life that is pleasing to God and leads others to Christ. That includes our married life.
If our children truly become WHO WE ARE rather than what we tell them to be….ask yourself these questions:
- HUSBANDS: Does it make you smile or cringe to think of your son as the husband you are? Does it make you mad or happy to imagine your son being treated by his wife the same way you are treated by yours?
- WIVES: Do you experience joy or fear when you imagine your daughter treating her husband the way you treat yours? Do you smile or cringe when you picture your daughter being treated by her husband in the same manner you are treated by your husband?
If your answers leaned toward the negative, don’t fret. Take your concern to God. Ask Him to guide you. His Word is FILLED with clear instructions on how to do this marriage thing. Start with Ephesians 5:33. Talk to your spouse. Share that you want to work on building a healthier marriage.
If you were able to answer those questions with a smile on your face and joy in your heart, Praise God! But please don’t become complacent or prideful. We are never finished working on our marriage. Continue to seek God’s guidance and thank Him for leading you thus far.
I am praying that my grandchildren will be dancing and jumping in celebration of a beautiful marriage between my son and his wife-to-be. Until then, Steve and I have the privilege and duty of SHOWING him what it is to be in a God-centered, thriving marriage. With God, we know we can!
If you want more information about strengthening your marriage, please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org. We would be happy to recommend some great resources for marriage enrichment, education, or counseling.
*Quote by Boyd Bailey, Wisdom Hunters.