Life Story - Sheila Murphy
The process of creating a blended family requires a person to go through a lot of changes. Sometime these changes can be difficult to adjust to and this is especially true when it comes to new and changing relationship that affect us during the process. Some of these relationships can seem like a blessing while other can see to more of a trial than a blessing. But, how can we address these changes? To help us look at this topic further we will read a Life Story from Sheila Murphy. Sheila experienced this very process and as a result has some very good insight on what a person can do when they are faced with these situation and new relationships.
I was asked to write to you about blended families from my personal experiences. My credentials for writing to you are not my own but I give all glory to Jesus. He has instructed me every step of the way, and even when I have made mistakes, He has never forsaken me.
We have nine children all grown up now, and miraculously this family which is made up of a diverse group of individuals have come together. I could give you story after of story of meeting obstacles, and working to bring this large group of individuals together, but one story covers a principle that I use every day to meet the challenges as they present themselves.
Early in our marriage a scripture kept coming to me over and over.
“Be angry, and do not sin; ponder in your own hearts on your beds, and be silent. Selah.”
Psalms 4:4, ESV
I do not have a problem with anger so I thought, “What a good verse, it is so simple yet full of wisdom. I thought, “I’ll store that away, I’m sure it will be helpful to someone.” What I did not realize at the time is that the one who would need help would be me. The verse kept coming up in the weeks to follow. I would hear it on the radio, or randomly open the scriptures and read it. I did not occur to me that God was giving ‘me’ a warning.
The enemy comes to lay a trap and how easily we fall into his traps, even when we are warned by the Holy Spirit, and given instructions on what we should do.
It was a casual family “get together”, when one of our grown children said something that made me very angry. Did I then separate myself, and be still to pray, asking Jesus how He would have me handle this situation? No, even though I had been warned, I opened my mouth, and spoke in my anger. It did not go well! I knew I had sinned. The scripture said be angry and sin not. Being angry was not the sin, what I did with it was the sin. I now understood that the Holy Spirit had been trying to help me avoid the trap the Devil had set. I fell right into his plans, which is to divide and separate families.
After this it took time and damage control, believe me I paid for my failings, but even worse my wonderful husband paid, and He had done nothing wrong. The good news is our Lord Jesus is a God of new beginnings and each day is a chance to do things better.
What I learned and hope you can take away from this is that God is active and wants to be involved. If we listen to Him we can avoid situations that will only bring pain. He wants to help you in what might seem impossible, like bringing a blended family together. I ask Jesus daily and specifically as situations present themselves. I trust that He is active and involved, and I just need to hear and obey it is the best way to deal with all the diverse situations that come up. Jesus has all the right answers. FYI, you may have to be still and listen. Take your questions and concerns to Jesus, hear Him.
I do want to leave you with one last thought. Most of us have read Corinthians 13 the love chapter. We often hear it at weddings, but it is appropriate for a family. Love covers a multitude of sins.
“If I speak in the tongues of men and of angels, but have not love, I am a noisy gong or a clanging cymbal. Love is patient and kind; love does not envy or boast; it is not arrogant or rude. It does not insist on its own way; it is not irritable or resentful; it does not rejoice at wrongdoing, but rejoices with the truth. Love bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things.” Corinthians 13:1, 4-7, ESV