When you come into a marriage with poverty and a broken heritage:
How do you move from the economic class of renter to “Home Owner”, without selling your own soul, selling out your own goals or killing that marriage?
How do you bring a shattered past to support the present?
When no gifts are left to you:
How do you say thank you for good gifts when they come?
When a parent abdicates responsibility, antagonizes the wounds, and then a sibling speaks in half-truths, and falsely accuses, in order to hide the embarrassment of wrong doing:
How do you forgive?
How do you defend?
When the hand-downs and opinions are always accusations, cruel measurements, and covert put downs:
How do you understand yourself and your own worth?
How do you breathe?
When the hands that were designated to be helpers don’t help:
How do you ask for help?
When people are moulded by manipulation and won by charm and false appearances:
How do you bless and not fall to the temptation to impress?
When you forgive and are not forgiven:
How do you engage or disengage properly when others refuse to do the same?
Perhaps a good place to begin is here:
- Talk with the Lord
- Learn carefully
- Care carefully
- Put into service the paradoxes of thanksgiving and of forgiveness
- Be brave
Don’t let that shattered heritage take root, or bring the echoes of resentment into your marriage. Reject the cycle of abuse. Reuse the useful things you have. I.e.: take stock, then do what you can with what you’ve got.
Aim to bless rather than impress[i].
Talk with the Lord. He is a working God, active caring and in pursuit of the broken.
Listen carefully because the ‘insight into divine matters is like a seed that needs to grow into a mature plant…Mature knowledge does not come quickly or easy…it takes time to penetrate profound matters and make them our own’[ii]
Trust and ‘humility must be the order of the day’[iii]
Learn carefully because ‘God’s leading is experienced as His Spirit fosters movement towards the truth, despite our mistakes and errors…we must be both hopeful and sober about the possibilities’[iv]
Care carefully because you are carefully cared for far beyond the extreme void, that makes you torn and breathless. Look at the blessings that do exist and count them, no matter how small, each one has significance.
There is no emptiness to His care. Give him permission to move you from an intensive care unit to a tender care one.
Put into service the paradoxes of thanksgiving and of forgiveness; losing in order to win[v], where the world measures success by appearance. Your success is measured by God in the victory and bravery of His Son, who is and was and is to come. Maintain boundaries and remember that forgiveness does not mean returning to a place of ignorance.
Be brave because beauty and light is found beyond the seemingly unbreakable walls of fear and dark loathing.
Weeping may tarry for the night, but joy comes with the morning. – Psalm 30:5