Sister-In-Law Problem

Q. My wife’s sister is driving me nuts. She has 5 kids, but cheated on her hubby and now she’s 45 years old and lives in her mom and dad’s basement. She’s unemployed, on food stamps, etc.

Her behavior is consistently erratic, she has an attitude like everyone owes her something, and I’m getting tired of it. She’s got kids that smoke weed and get arrested, etc. Her oldest is around 24 and constantly yells at her and makes her cry. Her family is a complete and utter disaster. Do we keep being nice to her or do we get tough and say enough is enough?

A. Spend some time in Matt. 18:15-18, where the procedure for handling cases like this is laid out, and I think you’ll find your answer. The parable of the Unmerciful Servant that follows is about forgiveness, but the two are placed together to show that while forgiveness is mandatory, no matter how many times you’re sinned against, leaving yourself open to perpetual abuse is not.

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