Touchy Situation...

Discussion in 'Pastoral Ministries' started by PastorSBC1303, Jan 1, 2005.

  1. PastorSBC1303

    PastorSBC1303
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    I am looking for your thoughts on the following situation that is taking place in my family.

    My mothernlaw is a long time faithful believer. She has raised 4 daughters for the most part on her own, and each of them are faithful the Lord and living for Him. Back in September, her sister (my wife's aunt) died from a long battle with lung cancer. Less than 2 months after her sisters death, my mothernlaw was actively dating her sister's husband. And now she is basically living with him, probably 4-5 nights a week, and engaged to him.

    My wife and I, and 2 of her sisters have some major problems with this situation. As first of all, although he claims to be a "Christian", he has shown absolutely no fruit in his life, and for a good part of that time claimed to want nothing to do with God and church, but now that he is dating my mothernlaw he is all of a sudden back to being a "Christian". Secondly, he is a very materialistic "me-first" type of man. And I can slowly see my mothernlaw changing her views to these as well. The latest word is that he is buying her a new corvette to cruise around town. Third, in some strange way it is as if this guy has made my mothernlaw his former wife. As he has given her all of her old clothes, her cell-phone, etc. Lastly, she has been serving in a leadership role in her church with children in Sunday School, while yet in her personal life she is basically throwing her nose up at God and living in sin. Not to mention she is setting a bad example for her daughters and granddaughters.

    My wife and her sisters, and I have all talked to her about the situation and basically she is in denial mode and doing everything she can to justify the situation, and claim that this is her time to be "happy".

    I guess my question is, what can I do as her sonnlaw and as a pastor? I have prayed about this constantly. And after praying, I did place a phone call to a deacon in her church whom I am close to from growing up in that church, and whom she has greatly respected and looked up to her in walk. He was concerned about the situation as well, and didn't realize the extent of the situation. He said he was going to pray about it and talk to her.

    Just looking for any words from you pastors out there who have seen and done it all... :confused:
     
  2. go2church

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    Question: If they were married sometime tonight would that change your opinion of the situation?
     
  3. LRL71

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    What comes to mind about this is that you might want to confront her yourself first. I fully believe in the method that the Word of God lays out in handling situations like yours (see Matthew 18). I am in no way a pastor, although I have had a lot of college and seminary training. I would encourage you to speak to your mother-in-law yourself, and if she is unwilling to repent from her sin, then you and the deacon, with a couple of other persons should confront her. Keep praying that God will change her heart, although if one does not show fruit in this life that they know the Lord, then it is likely that she isn't saved. I hope that this helps somewhat, and I am glad that you have come to share this with others-- others who probably have more insight into something like this.
     
  4. LRL71

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    go2church,

    That's a valid question! Whether or not they got married tonight may have some bearing, but the facts laid out indicate that a pattern of sinful acts have been committed and need to be dealt with.
     
  5. PastorSBC1303

    PastorSBC1303
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    go2church:

    Well if they were married it would take away the problem of them basically living together and setting a bad example. Yet the other problems would still exist. From my perspective, they would be unequally yoked as she is a believer and I am pretty certain he is not. And the problem of materialism is still there as well and how she is changing herself to meet up with his thoughts, etc.

    So to answer you, it would help the situation if they were married, but the problem would still be there.
     
  6. blackbird

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    It might take away the problem of them basically living together and setting a bad example---but---there is still unrepented of sin of adultery in their lives that needs to be dealt with!!

    See, thats the problem now-a-days! No repentance--no confession of sins---just "get married" and everything will be "erased"---I don't think so!!
     
  7. Shiloh

    Shiloh
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    You should go to your mother-in -law along your wife and talk to her about your feelings....and than pray! You have NO right to call a deacon in another church and tell him to deal with a person in that church. As a pastor I would be upset if you did that to one of my deacons and I'm sure you likewise.
     
  8. aefting

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    Since you have already talked with her about the situation, I would get her pastor involved and not a deacon. Her pastor should remove her immediately from all her ministry positions until she has repented from this sin. He can then begin the church discipline process with her in accordance with their church procedures in hopes of bringing about repentance and restoration.

    Andy
     
  9. gb93433

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    Having been a pastor and dealing with a similar situation make sure the pastor has the support of the deacons on this issue. I found out the hard way in a church that loved each other along with their sin like one big happy family. They went against me.
     
  10. PastorSBC1303

    PastorSBC1303
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    Shiloh:

    You must have not correctly read my original post. I said very clearly that I, my wife and her sisters have all talked to her individually about this situation.

    Secondly, after praying very much about the situation I felt led to contact this deacon in her church. And I did not tell him to deal with this situation. I called for counsel from him as I greatly respect his walk with the Lord. The pastor of the church was not available to talk to at the moment, but he will be talked to as well. The deacon told me he was going to pray about this, talk with their pastor, and then go and talk to her.

    So you might want to reread what I wrote, I think you jumped to some conclusions before understanding what happened. But I appreciate your comments.
     
  11. dianetavegia

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    I'm not a pastor but this grandmother would not be allowed around my children while living in unrepentent and open sin!
     
  12. menageriekeeper

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    Having seen this in my extended family, I'm going to tell you that there is probably nothing else you can do, right now.

    It seems she has made up her mind that she is going to follow this course, and that is just what she is going to do.

    Your choice now is how to still be there for her when reality hits and still protect your family from her sinful example. Remember that sin is pleasurable only for a season and then the consequences will come. And as a Christian she will have God's chastening to deal with as well. He's not just going to let her continue in her way without a fight.

    Your wife needs to gather her sisters and confront her together. They'll need to meet prior and be clear on what issues they want to address and what is going to happen if Mom doesn't change her act. If they can all be united on this they'll have a better chance of getting her to listen.

    Be prepared, however, for her to reject what they have to say. It may then be time as Diane says to remove her from family gatherings where the children are. Make sure you are not seen as meddling in her life and causing her problems. Her church will figure out what she is up to quite soon, they probably already have some idea. Let them deal with her on their own. If you are seen as meddling, it will only make it harder for you to support her when things finally fall apart.

    Eventually the bubble will burst, picking up the pieces won't be pretty. Be sure to prepare yourself, your wife and her sisters for this eventuality.
     
  13. dianetavegia

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    Your terminology... 'her turn to be happy'... sounds like there was some jealousy of her sister's lifestyle and instead of love, this fella has a quick and easy replacement for his lost wife and granny has all those things she coveted before.

    This won't last.
     
  14. Gwyneth

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    Pray for this woman, lift her up before The Lord, and love her.
     
  15. Gwyneth

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    and , while we`re at it perhaps we should take a look at the daily Bible reading on the BB and note this :-
    "For me, the next striking feature of the genealogical record in Matthew is that there are four women mentioned: Tamar, Rahab, Ruth and the wife of Uriah whom we know to be Bathsheba. Typically, Jewish genealogies omitted all women and indeed the author passed over notable possibilities such as Sarah, but he included three who were guilty of shameful acts and/or were outside of Israel. Tamar in genesis 38 posed as a whore and tricked her father-in-law Judah into fathering her twin sons. Rahab was the prostitute of Jericho who brought her family into the community by assisting the invading army of Joshua. Ruth was a Moabite, a descendant of Lot's daughter's incestuous union with her father. Bathsheba commited adultery with David when Uriah was off at war.

    That Jesus was descendant of such stock may have discredited Him with some of Matthew's audience but the message is sent loud and clear that all facets of mankind were included in God's great plan of salvation. Not only were the highly esteemed Abraham and David listed here, but the sinful representatives of the past also were present. Salvation is an act stemming from the Grace of God, not a man or woman's merit. Through this genealogy we see Christ related not only to the Jews and the chosen, but to all of mankind."
    John chapter 8 verse 7
    John chapter 8 verses 10 and 11
     
  16. go2church

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    The balance of maintaining a relationship yet at the same time being truthful about the situation will be a difficult one at best. I really don't have much advice other then a few things that I guess you might want to keep in mind. Probably stuff you thought of already thought off. I

    It is tough being alone especially if you are used to having been with someone for a long time and there may be a fear of loneliness driving some of the behavior you are seeing

    There is no doubt in my mind the Corvette buying ability seems very attractive to your mother-in-law, especially if they are of they are approaching the Golden years. Security in the Golden years is huge.! Of course assuming they are approaching the Golden years

    The normal courtship period that we would expect is not really needed considering they have known each other for a number of years. At least form their perspective.

    Just things to keep in mind. I have found that if I can view things from the other persons perspective it helps come to some vaild solutions rather then just criticism. I have to tell you I don't envy your situation and am praying for you.
     

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