Advice Columns

February 26, 2014

Ask God to help you let go of negative feelings about your daughter-in-law

DEAR BILLY GRAHAM: We spent Christmas with our son and his wife, and I came away wondering if she’s really the right wife for him. She’s so different from us, and we just didn’t feel comfortable around her. They seem happy, but should I say something privately to him? — R.L.
DEAR BILLY GRAHAM: We spent Christmas with our son and his wife, and I came away wondering if she’s really the right wife for him. She’s so different from us, and we just didn’t feel comfortable around her. They seem happy, but should I say something privately to him? — R.L.

DEAR R.L.:

No, I can’t think of any reason why you should do this, and I hope you won’t. The Bible says there is “a time to be silent and a time to speak,” and this is a time to be silent (Ecclesiastes 3:7).

After all, what good could possibly come from such a conversation? What would likely happen if you did say something negative to your son about his wife? You’d probably hurt him or even offend him; he might even get so upset at you that he’d never invite you back.

Do you honestly want that to happen, especially if she becomes the mother of your grandchildren? The Bible says, “It is to one’s honor to avoid strife” (Proverbs 20:3).

If your son and his wife are happy, then thank God for bringing them together. Pray for them also, that God will bless them and draw them closer to each other — and to himself. Ask God also to help you love your daughter-in-law as you should, and to take away your negative feelings.

I also hope you’ll examine your own heart and ask yourself why you feel this way about your son’s wife. Is it simply because of a difference in personality? Or is it something deeper — perhaps jealousy or resentment, because you feel she’s taken your son from you?

God’s pattern for marriage hasn’t changed since he first gave it to us: “That is why a man leaves his father and mother and is united to his wife, and they become one flesh” (Genesis 2:24).

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