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jamccor
Member



Joined: 2006/1/5
Posts: 263
New Jersey

 Godly Advice Needed!

I need some advice on this ongoing situation since it involves my brother in-law, the brother of my wife.He is a trucker who uses foul language, drinks and smokes and often gets into trouble at the drop of a dime. I have been married for 8 years and used to hang out with him, doing some of the things he does. For many years, I was in a backslidden state never questioning what I was getting myself into, although I never took it as far as he did. Many times I didn’t even want to be in his presence but because my wife is best friends with his wife and is also her sister in law, plus the fact that she has children the same age as mine, made it a hard decision to make. I would just go there with my family and engage in light conversation as to not be tempted to do as I used to. Now that I have been enlightened and stopped backsliding, I now hate the things I used to do and the things he still does. It is even tougher to be in his company. Now, this wouldn’t be a hard thing to do if he was just a friend and not a relative, but because of the family relation and the fact that they live right down the road from us, we are in communion with them daily. Every weekend, he invites us over for a barbecue with all his neighbors. My wife always wants to go because they are our only real friends as well as family. My question is this: How do I go about being in his presence without offending him? I feel that if I tell my wife to go without me, it wouldn’t be good for our marriage or for our relationship with them.If I go,but keep away from him (avoidance) , then, he will get offended and I risk offending my wife also. I simply do not know how to get a resolution to this! I have prayed and prayed and brought up my new life to him, but he has no intention of changing his ways. His two girls are my god daughters and I talk to them about Jesus and all biblical things as often as possible.
My wife accepts me and the ways I have changed but she herself isn’t a Christian either.I have explained things to her, but she often accuses me of being “antisocial” when I am over there as that is the tactic I have been using. I am in a mess and I could use some practical, Godly advice.
I appreciate any and all information you can provide.
GOD Bless
John


_________________
John

 2007/5/29 12:06Profile









 Re: Godly Advice Needed!

Quote:
My question is this: How do I go about being in his presence without offending him?



He's not concerned about being offensive with his mouth, so why are you so concerned about offending him? Besides, if he does get offended he may stop inviting you over and your problem is solved.

Quote:
I risk offending my wife also



This is the sticky part. If your wife was saved obviously this would be easier.

Jesus said: [i]Mat 10:37 He that loveth father or mother more than me is not worthy of me: and he that loveth son or daughter more than me is not worthy of me.[/i]

Your first priority is to God. You must obey God first. Then consider your wife's feelings. Sometimes you will offend your wife when you're obedient to God. But God will honor your obedience.

Go to these family get togethers and take a Bible with you... or get a t-shirt with JESUS written on it in big letters. First thing that will do is help you to not join in, and it will set you apart. Either your brother-in-law will cease his fowl language, or he'll get confrontational. Dont engage. Just smile and be a loving soul.

Kill him with kindness. How can your wife be offended by that.

By the way, treat your wife like a queen! If you do that then she will honor YOU more than her family, and should your bro-in-law be confrontational, your wife will feel defensive of you, not the other way around.

But your first obligation is to be obedient to God. You cant control those around you, even your wife. The only one you can control is yourself. Obedience to God comes with sacrifice, there are no two ways about it. People will be upset with you, and even offended. Some will walk away.

The important thing is... even if you lose everything in this life, if you hang on to Him, you have everything.

Krispy

 2007/5/29 15:57
death2self
Member



Joined: 2006/9/28
Posts: 192
Washington DC area

 Re: Godly Advice Needed!

John,

This is a very painful situation and am (and still am to some degree) working through this. It hasn't been particularly graceful and still find myself praying through on some of the dynamics.

It's very easy to become a separatist but I realize that Jesus was in the world, but not of it so wouldn't he want me to be the same way?

Quote:
My question is this: How do I go about being in his presence without offending him?

I think this is not (in my view) the right question to ask yourself but would rather say, "How do I honor Jesus in the midst of being with this man?" In other words, your focus is on honoring Jesus, not so much whether you offend your brother-in-law. So you honor Jesus, by obeying what the Holy Spirit speaks into your heart.

I would recommend you pray and ask the Holy Spirit to show you how you can draw your brother-in-law's heart to Jesus. It's probably going to cost you some time, some money and who knows what else. How can I serve this pagan man that you've sent into my life? It's the love of God that draws a man or woman's heart to Jesus.

Blessings to you, it's joyous once we step into what the Holy Spirit wants to do...


_________________
Ed Pugh

 2007/5/29 16:02Profile









 Re: Godly Advice Needed!

Quote:
My question is this: How do I go about being in his presence without offending him?



If you don't want to offend him, or anyone ever again... deny Christ, makes jokes about Christians, drink, and do everything your heathen step-brother tells you to.

Brother, have you not "counted the cost" of following Jesus?

"If any man will come after me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross daily, and follow me. For whosoever will save his life shall lose it: but whosoever will lose his life for my sake, the same shall save it. For what is a man advantaged, if he gain the whole world, and lose himself, or be cast away? [b] For whosoever shall be ashamed of me and of my words, of him shall the Son of man be ashamed[/b], when he shall come in his own glory, and in his Father's, and of the holy angels." (LUKE 9:23-26)

"Think not that I am come to send peace on earth: I came not to send peace, but a sword. For I am come to SET A MAN AT VARIANCE AGAINST HIS FATHER, AND THE DAUGHTER AGAINST HER MOTHER, AND THE DAUGHTER IN LAW AGAINST HER MOTHER IN LAW. AND A MAN'S FOES SHALL BE THEY OF HOS OWN HOUSEHOLD." (MATT 10:34-36)

"Let the dead bury their dead: but go thou and preach the kingdom of God... No man, having put his hand to the plough, and looking back, is fit for the kingdom of God." (LUKE 9:60-62)

"Blessed are they which are persecuted righteousness' sake: for their's is the kingdom of heaven." (MATT 5:10)

 2007/5/29 16:03









 Re:

... easy, Corey. Let's encourage, not scold.

Krispy

 2007/5/29 16:15
jamccor
Member



Joined: 2006/1/5
Posts: 263
New Jersey

 Re:

I honestly do count the cost every time I visit him. I almost hope he is not around so I dont have to contend with him. I am shy by nature and in the past,alcohol would always blind me just enough to "fit in" for a few hours. I am aware that I need to carry my cross and maybe I am answering my own question here, but that may be my problem.That I dont want to carry it,even though I must. I realize that to love the world is to hate jesus. I have the head knowledge but I now must bring it to the heart.

GOD Bless
John


_________________
John

 2007/5/29 16:17Profile









 Re:

Quote:
I have the head knowledge but I now must bring it to the heart.



That can be the hardest thing. We all struggle with that. Even the Apostle Paul did. The struggle between the spirit man and the flesh man.

It's true, the spirit is willing but the flesh is weak.

But He has made you more than a conquerer.

Once you take that first step, and let it be known where you stand you will find it will be easier and easier to stand. Not the situation, but the ability to stand. He may become worse and even more confrontational! But once you establish the first victory, then you will notice the momentum shift and you will find it easier to be more vocal about your faith. It's taking that first step that is so intimidating.

But the enemy loves it when he convinces us to be silent. Open your mouth, brother, and kick the enemy in the head.

Krispy

 2007/5/29 16:23
iansmith
Member



Joined: 2006/3/22
Posts: 963
Wheaton, IL

 Re:

I thought of the book Pilgrim's Progress while reading your post. John Bunyan wrote the book about one man's journey through spiritual life in an alegory about a pilgrim.

The first half of the book is devoted to the husband and father... the second half is devoted to the wife and children.

You can read it here:
http://www.ccel.org/ccel/bunyan/pilgrim.toc.html

I got a copy at a used book store for 43 cents, it was worth it's weight in Gold and much more.


_________________
Ian Smith

 2007/5/29 16:38Profile









 Re:

KrispyKrittr said

Quote:
... easy, Corey. Let's encourage, not scold.



My apologies. This is why I try to include scripture when I try to make a point - because the Lord's far more eloquent than I.

jamcor said
Quote:
I am shy by nature and in the past,alcohol would always blind me just enough to "fit in" for a few hours.



I'm an ex-bartender - and during my lengthy conversion (still ongoing) you would not believe the kinds of abuse I suffered when a regular sitting at the bar would ask me, "Corey, what did you do last night?"

I'd answer, "I listened to a great sermon by A.W. Tozer, this preacher who lived way back in the 60's, about the Holy Ghost... and why some can't attain Him..."

He'd answer, "It's nice you've found something to believe in..."

Someone else would chime in, "Wouldn't Buddhism be a better religion for you?"

Then the attacks would start about how the Catholic Church burned witches and heretics... so did the Puritans... the Bible is sexist... etc...

I used to party with these folks, too. So it came as a shock when Jesus came in, and Old Corey left.

It's been a little painful for me to leave the bar industry - it's the only thing I know how to do. And though I'm a little fearful about what to do next - or how to get involved in ministry - I know I can't go back.

We cannot afford to compromise with the world.

"They that swear by the sin of Samaria, and say, Thy God, O Dan, liveth; and, The manner of Beersheba liveth; even they shall fall, and never rise up again." (AMOS 8:14)

We can't serve God and idols at the same time. And we can't intermingle with unbelievers like we used to... The tribes of Israel that looked back on Egypt were burned or swallowed up by the earth; the Jews that returned from Babylon brought back idols and that damnable Talmud; Lot's wife looked back on Sodom.

I'll pray for you brother.

 2007/5/29 18:38





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