Three Phases of a War that Happens in Families
The War Families Find Themselves In – Part 1
It’s when a war or battle breaks out in a family that division and separation occurs, and even death. Anytime there’s a battle you have opponents, and oftentimes you also have casualties. You’ll have a side that wins, but you will also have a side that loses. Even if you win, you still suffer some losses. With this in mind, the war families find themselves in is the start of how a blended family is forged. The question remains what do we do when this occurs?
What It Means to Have a War in One’s Own Family?
The major prophet, Isaiah warned of a day where the people of Egypt would fight against themselves. He was specific, Egyptian against Egyptian, brother against brother, neighbors against neighbors, the city against itself, and the region against the region.1 Notice what he did not say, which one would normally expect when war breaks out. He didn’t say: Egyptian against Israelite, brother against sister, neighbors against foreigners, this city against that city, nor south region against the north region. Do you know how much chaos there is when the enemy is one of your own? How about one that you once loved? No matter who fights in such a battle someone you know and love will be impacted, harmed, and emotionally broken.
Before we continue, let’s define what it means to have a war, specifically a war within a family. War may seem like a harsh term to explain what happens to create a blended family, but it’s actually a suitable term. It’s a war that doesn’t happen on foreign soil, but one in your own yard. Listen to how the Internet explains what war is. It’s “an intense conflict between groups and is generally categorized by extreme aggression, using some type of force.”2
The Thought or Concept:
How does war begin in a family?
Continuing with the thought, we need to determine how it begins. How does war begin in a family? You see a war can’t start until two groups are formed and oppose each other. Generally a family is and should be one single group. It’s not until a family forms groups that a war within the family can ever be imagined.
The greatest leader of all time, Jesus says it this way: “a house divided against itself [brother against brother, neighbor against neighbor, and so on] will not stand.”3 Listen to His words, He says when a house, a home, a group, a family is divided within itself, it will not stand. The blended family comes from a group that was unable to stand; the people became divided groups. What’s left is the aftermath of the war that ended in the fall of a family. May I continue?
In this first set of lessons (“The War Families Find Themselves In”), our goal is to discuss this war that occurs and what happens as a result of it in its progression. Let’s define three phases of a war that happens in families.
- Declaration of War
Declaring war means something went wrong and out of that, something was abandoned. War has been declared and the battle is on to determine who’ll win this war. The goal of any war is to settle a dispute. It doesn’t mean that the dispute is worthwhile or even right versus wrong. The winner is the one who leaves with some sort of gain, while the loser has lost their right to the gain they desired.
- About the Battle
When the battle begins you will be forced to define or redefine what I call your own mix. You must define your mix. What am I really fighting for? When the battle is over, what does this look like for you? After you’ve done battle and the war is over, no side is left unscarred. Each side must rebuild that which was destroyed during the fight. We’ll visit that more in phase three. What will you need to rebuild, reshape, and reestablish now that you’ve been to war? Keep in mind that one major goal is to never have to go into battle ever again. Therefore, as you redefine who you are and how you’ll look on the other side of war, you’ll want to grow in such a way as to never find yourself on the battlefield with family ever again.
- Forming This New World
After the dust settles and the smoke fades, you’re in a new world with new rules and new ways of living, decide who you will be in the new world as soon as possible. I hate to tell you that life as you knew it is no longer an option after you’ve been to war. Everything has changed. Either something has been taken away, given to you, or both. At any rate, there is no more old world way of doing life and you must be ready for that. Who will you be in the aftermath of this family-war? Answering this will be the foundation of what you bring and can expect in the blended family that’s coming as a result.
Over the course of the next few weeks, we will do our best to outline what happens in the creation of a blended family and what we want to look out for that has the potential of returning you to the battlefield.
Today is Friday!
A blended family is of no one’s choosing, yet it happens. In this lesson we summarize what went wrong that creates a blended family, what becomes of your role, and who you become in this new world of blended-family dynamics.
Are you ready for a new adventure? Stay with us in our new lesson series called “The War Families Find Themselves In.” I know there are people you can think of who will find value in what we’ve shared, so pass it along. Thanks for visiting Kerry A. Clark & Co.
Reference #1: Isaiah 19:2 NLT, Bible.com, accessed October 12, 2020, https://www.bible.com/bible/116/ISA.19.2.NLT
Reference #2: “War,” Wikipedia, accessed October 12, 2020, https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/War
Reference #3: Matthew 12:25 NKJV, Bible.com, accessed October 12, 2020, https://www.bible.com/bible/111/ECC.4.8.NIV
All Scripture references used by permission, see Scripture copyrights.