How to Treat Children’s Marriage
Being a Gatekeeper to My Daughter’s Marriage, I Insisted on Her Choosing a Spouse Her Equal
One day, my daughter suddenly called to say, “Mom, let me ask you something. What’s your requirements and demands for your prospective son-in-law?”
Hearing her words, my heart gave a jump. I thought, “Could it be that she is choosing a partner? If so, then I must check up on it and ensure her choosing a suitable one. Think about my husband. He doesn’t have much education and our family backgrounds are different so we always have disagreements that lead to arguments. Living in this kind of a quarrelsome household half my lifetime, I feel so tired and depressed. How can there be any happiness in such marriage? So, I certainly can’t allow my daughter to walk my old path. She has graduated from college and has a steady job, so she should at least marry a boy who is equal to her in education and family background, who is of quality and breeding, and pursues the same goal as she does. Only in this way can she have a happy marriage.”
Thinking of this, I said to my daughter solemnly, “At the very least, his educational level should be the same as yours or higher than yours. His family is not required to be so well off, but should at least be like ours. And, he mustn’t be a boy from a single-parent family. …”
I spoke out my thoughts in one breath. Yet, “Oh,” was all my daughter said, after hearing my words. And then she changed the subject.
After hanging up, I could not settle down. At night, I turned and tossed in bed, thinking, “Evidently, she has found a partner, and was trying to sound me out about it on the phone. What’s he like? What if he fails to meet my demands?” I thought and thought; finally, I was determined that I must pay strict attention to this matter and that it won’t do if she finds a partner not her equal.
Some time later, when my daughter called again, she asked me, “Mom, is educational level really that essential to finding a marriage partner?” “Of course!” replied I, without thinking. “It represents one’s civilizational quality and credentials, as well as one’s status …”
Before I could finish my words, my daughter cut in, “Mom, one’s educational level doesn’t equal his quality, and having a high level of education doesn’t necessarily represent having high quality or breeding. Aren’t people who have talents but no virtue a dime a dozen? People of high scores and low abilities can also be found everywhere. You’ve met more people than I have, so you ought to know it better than me. …”
Then, I was simply not in the right frame of mind to listen to what she said anymore. I had dimly perceived that her boyfriend was quite far from meeting my demands. I could tell that his educational level must come short of my basic requirement. Otherwise, my daughter would not be telling me that one’s educational level does not equal his quality and credentials.
I Flared up at My Daughter not Choosing Her Husband as per My Requirements
Afterward, as I thought the matter over and over, I felt worried about my daughter; thus, I picked up the telephone and called her. I said, “Daughter, don’t ask me about my attitude toward your boyfriend anymore. Just tell me about him.” After a pause, she told me all about him. It was so awful that what I was afraid of came to me after all. It turned out that the boy, who was three years junior to my daughter, had only received junior middle school education. His mother died of leukemia when he was 11 and then his father remarried, so he was left to live with his grandparents. He was then a manual worker in the workshop of my daughter’s company. … My daughter’s words dealt me a severe blow. I suddenly got a headache and almost fainted. I felt at a loss for a moment and nearly cried, my hands trembling with anger. My daughter choosing such a partner was so unexpected that I did not know what to say to her.
When I came to my senses, I, who had never got angry at her, spoke to her loudly, in a lecturing tone, “You’re attempting to act against me! Why wouldn’t you listen to me? You’ve witnessed how I have suffered from living with your father, haven’t you? Over these years, I have had no one to listen to my grievances. So, I don’t want you walking my old path!” I just gave vent to my anger, completely disregarding my daughter’s feelings. Knowing I was very angry, she explained to me anxiously, “Mom, mom, please listen to me. I know perfectly well that you’re saying this for my own good, but please believe me, the boy is really nice. Mom, don’t worry. I’ve graduated from college and have insight. What I care about is his character. Though he doesn’t have a high educational level as I do and has grown up in a single-parent home, he is mature and stable, honest and sincere, and steady and considerate. ... I’ll bring him home someday, and I’m sure when seeing him you’ll like him.”
She tried all her best to communicate with me, but I just wouldn’t listen to her. I could not keep my emotions in check any longer that my tears poured forth; then I steeled myself to say to her, “Stop. I don’t wanna see him. If you don’t listen to me, then never call me mom again!” As soon as I finished, I hung up.
God’s Words Turned Around My Erroneous Viewpoint
A good many days had passed, and my daughter didn’t call me up, my heart growing heavier. Although I was well aware that my daughter, who was so sensible and filial, would not disown me because of my words, I also knew she would not give up her own decision lightly; thus my heart ached, and I didn’t know what to do next. Then the words I had said kept resounding in my head: “If you don’t listen to me, then never call me mom again!” I thought: She will not abandon her decision, but does it mean I have to give in? I was more at a loss. …
Weak and powerless, I knelt down before God and prayed in tears, “O God! My daughter has now found a partner like that, this is unacceptable to me. I feared that her marriage would be unhappy as mine is. O God! I am in pain now, may You help me understand Your intentions.”
One day when I was practicing spiritual devotions, I read the following God’s words, “Born into such a filthy land, man has been severely blighted by society, he has been influenced by feudal ethics, and he has been taught at ‘institutes of higher learning.’ The backward thinking, corrupt morality, mean view on life, despicable philosophy, utterly worthless existence, and depraved lifestyle and customs—all of these things have severely intruded upon man’s heart, and severely undermined and attacked his conscience. As a result, man is ever more distant from God, and ever more opposed to Him.” “Though in this evil age people are constantly bombarded with distorted messages about marriage, which create even more additional requirements and give people all sorts of baggage and strange attitudes, any person who has experienced marriage knows that no matter how one understands it, no matter what one’s attitude toward it is, marriage is not a matter of individual choice.”
After reading these words, I came to realize: Following our corruption by Satan, we have strayed further and further from God, and as a result, now we have no correct outlook on life or values, but completely live by Satan’s philosophies. Due to the influence of Satan’s erroneous thoughts and viewpoints, such as “Men fear getting into the wrong line of business, while women fear marrying the wrong man,” “A marriage between two families of equal social rank is perfect,” and so on, I subconsciously regarded them as positive things, taking them to be the standards of a happy marriage. Directed by them, I kept demanding that my daughter find a partner with a high educational level, with credentials, and from a good family, and I also thought only such a man is of cultivation and breeding, and that only by marrying such a man can my daughter have a happy marriage. When my daughter chose a partner that failed to meet my demands, I completely disregarded her feelings and went so far as to threaten to disown her if she would not listen to me. My so-doing caused both of us suffering; wasn’t this all brought by my being bound and controlled by Satan’s viewpoints? While I have believed in God, I didn’t completely believe in the sovereignty of God, nor did I obey His orchestrations and arrangements. My contamination by Satan’s rule of living was so deep, yet I was totally unaware of that. I was too blind and ignorant.
Then, I saw more God’s words, “Marriage is an important juncture in a person’s life. It is the product of a person’s fate, a crucial link in one’s fate; it is not founded on any person’s individual volition or preferences, and is not influenced by any external factors, but is completely determined by the fates of the two parties, by the Creator’s arrangements and predeterminations regarding the fates of the couple.” “A marriage is not the product of both members’ families, the circumstances in which they grew up, their appearances, their ages, their qualities, their talents, or any other factors; rather, it arises from a shared mission and a related fate. This is the origin of marriage, a product of human fate orchestrated and arranged by the Creator.”
Finishing reading God’s words, I finally understood: I can’t even decide my own marriage, how can I decide my daughter’s? Am I not too arrogant? Marriage is something arranged by God according to the fates of the two parties, and each will play a role in it. Every marriage arises from a shared mission of the couple, and it is not determined by their external factors; neither can it be changed by man’s volition or man’s efforts. This is determined by the authority of God. However, living according to the viewpoint “A marriage between two families of equal social rank is perfect,” I believed that only when the couple are equal in educational level as well as family background can they share common topics, and only then can they have a happy life. Doesn’t my thought contravene the fact of God’s dominion over all things? Am I not resisting God’s sovereignty and arrangements?
At this point I became aware that I had been disobeying and opposing God all along by living based on Satan’s viewpoint on marriage. This not only caused me to live in pain, but also made my daughter feel tied up and restrained. Then, I was overwhelmed with regret and guilt, and I prayed to God silently, “O God! I was so foolish and numb. I have believed in You, yet I was ignorant of Your sovereignty, and still lived by the poison of Satan, always thinking that a boy with a low level of education and from a single-parent family is not the right guy for my daughter, who has graduated from college and is so virtuous. I was fooled by Satan, thus living in agony. God! Now I’ve understood whether it is my marriage or my daughter’s, they are all dictated and ordained by You, and not up to anybody. God! I’m willing to obey Your arrangement.”
Entrusting My Daughter’s Marriage to God
When I learned of God’s intentions, the clouds that had gathered in my heart finally cleared away. I was willing to entrust my daughter’s marriage to God, not to worry about it, but to obey God’s orchestration and arrangement. Afterward, I went along with my daughter’s wish and personally went to meet the boy. Through contact, I found that as my daughter had said, the boy was of good character, mature and steady, and particularly sensible, which was not like what I had imagined: a boy with a low educational level and from a single-parent family is lacking caliber and breeding. The fact gave a direct counterattack against my erroneous viewpoint. At that time, I felt so fortunate that I had the guidance of God’s words, which timely prevented me from wanting to hinder this marriage.
After my daughter was married, my son-in-law particularly cared for and loved my daughter, and their life was happy and blessed. And just as my daughter had said, I very much liked the boy, who was really excellent. Especially, little did I expect that being dedicated to and down-to-earth in his work, my son-in-law gained the approval and admiration of his company leaders and colleagues and was then promoted from an ordinary manual worker to a key technical worker of their company, a permanent employee in charge of giving technical guidance. Seeing my son-in-law, who was just an ordinary man, could be so excellent and good to my daughter, I was greatly surprised.
These facts helped me see how absurd and ignorant my viewpoint was, and that my imagination was not the truth, but was contrary to the arrangement and orchestration of God. This is a strong counterattack against my erroneous viewpoint. It was the law of survival, “A marriage between two families of equal social rank is perfect,” that Satan has instilled in me that brought me suffering. Nevertheless, after I examined anew my viewpoint, and sought and obeyed God, I saw that the marriage God arranged for my daughter was perfect, and at the same time, my erroneous viewpoint was corrected. I’ve practically experienced God’s love and salvation for me, and thus felt gratitude to God.
That I could put aside my prejudice against my son-in-law was the outcome God’s words achieved on me. Moreover, I have truly felt that only by obeying God’s orchestration and arrangement can we feel steady and peaceful in heart. Just as God’s words said, “When you truly know, when you truly come to recognize that God has sovereignty over human fate, when you truly understand that everything God has planned for and decided for you is a great benefit, and is a great protection, then you feel your pain gradually lighten, and the whole of you become relaxed, free, liberated.” From my personal experience, I’ve seen only the truth can resolve the erroneous viewpoint Satan has imbued with me, and that it is the truth that has brought me light and made my heart released and liberated.
All the glory be to Almighty God!