“A wife of noble character is her husband’s crown” (Proverbs 12:4, NIV).
“Adam and Eve were the happiest and the luckiest couple in the world, because neither of them had a mother-in-law.” — Anonymous
The quotation makes me laugh. It’s funny because it’s true. But why do mother-in-laws get a bad rep?
Honestly, the fact that I will one day have a mother-in-law wasn’t really at the forefront of my mind because I have somehow (subconsciously, I guess) always assumed that I would have the best mother-in-law in the world! That is my prayer. But something changed my mind when a mother at my church advised me to start praying for my husband and his family, because when I marry him, I marry his family as well. I listened.
Two things inspired me to write this letter. One was a Yoruba movie I watched yesterday. In it, a mother put a spell on her son because she didn’t want him to love anyone else above her. The other was the Proverbs 12:4 verse that really caught my attention while having quiet time.
As I think about what kind of mother-in-law I’ll have, I aim, starting now, to be my husband’s crown, adding to him. I pray my mother-in-law understands this.
Dear Mother (In-Law),
Thank you for raising a fine man! I know he will not forget the godly principles you have imparted on him.
As much as I love and respect my husband, I understand that you do, too. Mum, my desire is that you will be a source of guide for me, teaching me how to live with him, love him, care for him, etc. I desire unity in our family. I desire to call you Mum. It is my desire that you take me as your own daughter, love me, scold me, even discipline me.
I want to reassure you that I am not here to replace you or compete with you. But, as it is, God has given me the duty and privilege of being his help meet; this is my mission and priority. I pray I succeed in it everyday. I am his crown, not a crow. I submit, not overpower. I respect, not disgrace. I love my husband; I am the bone of his bones and flesh of his flesh. God joined us together in His own divine wisdom. God has allowed him to start his own family, and with God our side, we will excel and flourish.
Take me as your own daughter; I write to you as such. I appreciate you. I pray that God will continue to bless and honor you. May you continue to be your own husband’s crown. My hope is that I will be the best wife to my husband, as the Lord gives me strength and grace. I pray you will continue to pray for me– because when you do, you are also praying for your son.
Don’t forget: we are on the same team, mum.
Your Daughter (In-Law)
“See, I am doing a new thing! Now it springs up; do you not perceive it?” (Isaiah 43:19, NIV)
“Faith is the confidence that what we hope for will actually happen; it gives us assurance about things we cannot see” (Hebrews 11:1, NLT).
I need newness in my life!
My phone is dying, my laptop is dead, my clothes are worn and torn; I need a car, a job, money; I need to be fully funded by January but I am only 7% funded; student loans are piling up and I am just tired of Sallie Mae calling, emailing, and sending me letters; my body is in pain, my heart is heavy; I’m struggling with loneliness, heartache, self esteem…. I can continue but I’ll stop. It’s been the same story since the beginning of 2015; 2016 is almost here and I desire a new song!
It’s in this state of mind that I approached God. Immediately, the Isaiah 43 passage came to my mind. I love the NIV use of the word “perceive” because it’s God asking me, “My daughter, I AM doing something new with you, but why aren’t you aware of it yet?” I had no answer; I still don’t. But, God still extended His grace to me by calling my attention to today’s verse of the day, Hebrews 11:1. My response was what that boy’s father told Jesus, ” ‘I believe; help my unbelief!’ ” (Mark 9:24, ESV). I wasn’t trying to be smart with God, but I was being sincere.
I do want to perceive what God is doing in my life, but my myopic view makes it impossible to even imagine. Do you get what I mean? I do want to trust and believe and live knowing that God’s thoughts and plans for me are good, but it is hard when things seem unchanging. However, I can’t ignore God’s message to me to perceive (become aware, be conscious of the fact, understand, realize, look through the eyes of the Spirit) the work He is doing in me. I must also take it by faith and wait for the manifestation of His work and promises for me.
Therefore, I believe the newness I desire is coming– in fact, it is here! My car, my phone, my laptop, funding, clothes, job, money, vision, growth, self-love, etc. are here– I even desire to have new prayers requests, to stop asking for forgiveness for the same things! If God is my God, then I must believe that His perfect will (what I truly desire) for me is the best for me. All I need is a dash of faith, a whole lot of waiting, and an extra dose of keeping my heart on “whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable… excellent or praiseworthy” (Philippians 4:8, NIV). Changing old habits is hard, but even old dogs can learn new tricks!
So, I have a new journey, something I wasn’t looking for– but my God always knows what I need…