Think about your family of origin. Who was a part of your life from day one? This would be your parents and other family members who were consistently around. Next, who came into your life in the first fifteen years or so? That would be siblings and cousins and those who married in. Now, who left your life between birth and the time you eventually left home? Maybe a parent or a sibling or someone in your extended family.
As you think about those people, especially those who lived in - or were supposed to live in - the same house with you, what was the impact each of them had on your life? When most of us look at our family of origin, we have mixed feelings. Some people had a positive influence on us and were great models that God used to help mold us into who we are today. Then there are others that may have had the opposite, or near opposite, effect on us.
The look back was to set the stage to talk about your marriage today and how your family of origin may or may not be a distraction. When you married, it was like opening a new book in your life. I like to look at marriage this way instead of a new chapter in your old book. Why? Because you need to leave your family of origin and embrace your new life with your spouse. For a marriage to really be healthy, you, your spouse, and your family of origin need to view your marriage as a separate entity and not an extension of your family of origin. Once you do this, you are redefining those relationships for you and your spouse. You can set boundaries if needed and do whatever else is necessary to put your marriage ahead of your family of origin. Two questions for you today. First, is your family of origin a distraction in your marriage? Second, what boundaries do you need to set to protect your marriage?