Marriage in itself is difficult to adjust to, let alone a remarriage where you bring with you additional “family” from your past marriage. You don’t want to, and you didn’t intend to, but it happens.
After the honeymoon period starts to fade in the background, “regular life” starts to take place and you begin to see differences here and there that you hadn’t noticed in the same way before. Eventually those differences, along with quirks and habits, and yes, even children from a previous marriage begin to make themselves known, and demand your attention.
That’s when the work of being remarried begins. That’s when you decide if you will find ways to blend your lives together to make it work. Many couples begin their marriage by fighting about these things, and their children, and never get beyond that stage until it and they, finally works a wedge between them (and sometimes permanently).
But it doesn’t have to be that way. You can determine that you will work through your many differences and will find ways to blend your lives and families together, no matter what! But it will take determination, perseverance, prayer, self-examination, a call to maturity, and sometimes every ounce of strength that you have available for that particular season of your life, to make that happen.
“Stepfamily, secondary family, blended family, combined family, extended family, expanded family, nontraditional family —whatever you call it, it is work. And exactly how you work at it can be one of the most important determining factors of whether your marriage will become what you desire” (Drs Les and Leslie Parrott, from the book “Saving Your Second Marriage Before it Starts”).
Are you up for the challenge? We pray you are. And if you don’t think you are, we hope you will pray until you finally are. With Christ all things are possible.
If you are reading this after you have entered into your remarriage relationship, the vow you made on your wedding day demands that you do everything you can to “love, honor, and cherish” each other for the rest of your lives. What is past is past. But today is a new day to persevere through whatever challenges you may encounter to make your marriage a good one.
The Bible says in Ecclesiastes 5:4, “When you make a vow to God, do not delay in fulfilling it. He has no pleasure in fools; fulfill your vow.” You made a vow, now fulfill it. Do what it takes to make your marriage work.
It goes on to say in Ecclesiastes 5:5-7, “It is better not to vow than to make a vow and not fulfill it. Do not let your mouth lead you into sin. And do not protest to the temple messenger, ‘My vow was a mistake.’ Why should God be angry at what you say and destroy the work of your hands? Much dreaming and many words are meaningless. Therefore stand in awe of God.”
Pray, stand, and follow God’s leading in making your marriage the best it can be. And then you will stand in awe of God. We’ve seen and heard true testimonies of that happening repeatedly.
But it won’t be easy, as you’re already finding out. And when you add children from a previous marriage into the marriage mix —even when they are adult children (and you thought they would be “low maintenance”, only to find out the opposite), the work ahead of you is even more complicated. It’s been said about words to an old song:
“Love and marriage may go together like a horse and carriage, but love and remarriage aren’t as neatly complementary. The carriage may be so crowded that the horse has trouble pulling it” (Susan Kelley).
So how do you make this work? How do you “blend” your family together? You do it by persistence. You keep looking, working, praying, and finding ways to make it work. You “never give up” as Winston Churchill is so famous for saying.
As Albert Ellis said about marriage and the “art of love”, it “is largely the art of persistence.” You keep persevering and persisting, that whatever problem arises, you will, by the grace and wisdom you obtain from the Lord, get through it, around it, over it, beyond it, or whatever, to make your marriage and family life together the best it can be.
We pray that this web site will help you with that mission and that the articles, links, and suggested resources will also help you.
So, to assist you with one aspect of your “blending mission” we are providing a link below that will take you to an article posted on another web site that may help you with your adult step-children. Please click onto the link provided to read it:
The above article was written by Cindy Wright of Marriage Missions International.