Photo by Matheus Amaral on Unsplash

Yours, His and Ours – Part 1

Although I don’t have a blended family, as a pastor, I have encountered several such families. And, like all family relationship’s, every family has unique challenges. I have seen some remarkable blended families doing remarkably well. And of course, I have seen sad families as well. At the risk of generalising here are a few thoughts that may help you in your blended family (and really, in all families):
Shame and guilt; nasty twins.
These nasty twins, shame and guilt, often present themselves in all families. And the best way to deal with them is to separate the rascals. Shame is about what you believe about yourself. Guilt is the result of what you have done. Shame will say, “you’re a bad person and that’s why your first marriage failed”. Being a “bad person” is why you are failing in being a lousy spouse and parent. Guilt will say, “you’re at fault for the failure of your marriage”.
The best way to resolve guilt
Is by  owning your part in a situation. This starts by resisting the temptation to blame others. Others do impact your situation. But, freeing yourself of guilt happens when you own your part. Try not worry about what others have done.
Shame

Shame and Guilt do nothing for You

Owning your own stuff is liberating. It gives you the power to move on, and in some situations, you will be able to learn and change. As long as you are blaming others you will always be subject to their power and behaviour. I have met too many people who failed to get healing because they refused to detach from their past.
Shame is a different little animal.
Shame is what you believe about who you are. Shame likes to disguise herself. And, she takes on many disguises; anger, judging others, consuming of food and stuff, and so on. Shame needs a transcendent encounter. Forgiveness is the greatest shame destroyer. Added to that, forgiveness is also one of the finest life-givers. When you feel forgiven, you are able to forgive. And this forgiveness changes everything.
Here are some steps to forgiveness?
  • Make sure have some personal space.
  • Still your thoughts and heart.
  • Find a comfortable posture. Some people may want to kneel. Kneeling has the “surrender” posture. It is not essential to kneel.
Now, ask God to forgive you by:
  • Telling him in your own words what you have been through.
  • Tell him in detail how all this makes you feel.
  • And then say, “God, forgive me for my part, and help me to forgive those (mention them by name) who have hurt me”.
Try this, even if you don’t believe in God. Let me know how it went in the comments, or drop me an email.
Being Human is living a full, guilt and shame free, blended family life.