I spend much time praying for families and relationships gone awry. Unfortunately the relational heartbreaks of marriage, difficulties seeking a marriage partner, and challenges encountered raising children--common potholes in the journey of life, have been endured by many of my visitors. These are more than bumps in the road, these heartbreaks can be defining experiences that imprint a person for the rest of their lives--it should not be this way, but it often happens! Some people, though shaken, emerge and are much better for the experience. Some never seem to get out of the pothole. What is a person to do? Give up? Is God unable to help? I believe there is much wisdom to be found in Scripture and in the writings of great Christian that provide light and help in the domain of family relationships. In the interest in helping families, I am going to accordingly start sharing quotations on this important subject from time to time.
"I die daily." 1 Cor. 15:31
"True humility is sown in the grave where self is buried."
"It is easy to humble ourselves before God and to use pious phrases in prayer, but humility before other people is the evidence, and the only real evidence, of our humility before God."—Alan Redpath
"Seek ye first the kingdom of God...." Matt. 6:33
“You will not be displeased with me for saying, that though you are dearer to me than the aggregate of all earthly comforts, I wish to limit my passion within those bounds which God has appointed. Our love to each other ought to lead us to love him supremely, who is the author and source of all the good we possess or hope for. It is to him we owe that happiness in a marriage state which so many seek in vain, some of whom set out with such hopes and prospects, that their disappointments can be deduced for no other cause, than having placed that high regard on a creature which is only due to the Creator. He therefore withholds his blessing (without which no union can subsist) and their expectations, of course, end in indifference . . . ”—John Newton
"Holy Father, keep through thine own name those whom thou hast given me, that they may be one, as we are." John 17:11
"The Lord would have His people labor for unity, and to answer the prayer of Christ. Here is our greatest hindrance. When we read, "The whole multitude of them that believed were of one heart and one mind," we understand that the agency of the Holy Spirit was doing its work on human hearts. Until the Holy Spirit is accepted and allowed to do its office work upon the heart, each individual will strive to become a center of influence for himself. But we know in our experience, that harmonious subordination to the Spirit of God is rest, and peace, and joy. Then think of the positive necessity of coming under this molding, transforming power, in order to enjoy heaven in this life, and eternal blessing in the future life." BTS, March 1, 1909
"Admonish the young women to love their husbands, to love their children," Titus 2:4
"My sister, bind your children to your heart by affection. Give them proper care and attention in all things. Furnish them with becoming garments, that they may not be mortified by their appearance, for this would be injurious to their self-respect. You have seen that the world is devoted to fashion and dress, neglecting the mind and morals to decorate the person; but in avoiding this evil you verge upon the opposite extreme, and do not pay sufficient attention to your own dress and that of your children. It is always right to be neat and to be clad appropriately in a manner becoming to your age and station in life." Testimonies, Vol. 4, p. 142
“I do not believe in the full faith of any man who does not extend the loyalty he professes to God to God’s people as well, who does not feel as sensitive to his brethren on earth as he does to his Father in heaven, who does not practise piety toward the Church as he does toward her Head, or find in her fellowshp and her service a joy and a gladness which is one with his deep joy in God, his Redeemer. Nay, is it not just in loving people who are still imperfect, often disappointing, and far from their ideal it may be, that in our relations to them we are to find the greater proof and test of our religious faith? George Adam Smith, from his sermon on Assurance
"The indulgence of parents, proceeding from an idolatry of their children, is one of the most common sources of ill-success. This was the ruin of Eli’s and of David’s children, and it is a cause which is constantly operating in a vast variety of forms; such as indulgence in appetite, in dress, in pleasures, in yielding to any obviously improper requests, and in seeking rather to gratify their present wishes, than to secure their future, their spiritual, and their highest good." Edward Bickersteth
"These commandments that I give you today are to be upon your hearts. You shall teach them diligently to your children. Talk about them when you sit at home and when you walk along the road, when you lie down and when you get up." Deuteronomy 6:6-7
"The Lord's curse is on the house of the wicked, but he blesses the home of the righteous." Proverbs 3:33
"I have long thought that though a good school is better than a bad home, a good home is the best of schools. Children are for the most part educated in temper and habits of all kinds, not by schools—but by companions, and here, all is contingency."
"Mere innocent pleasure is not a sufficient motive—the glory of God must be the end and aim of every attainment, or else it is a waste of time, and an abuse of talent." Legh Richmond