How Is Your Relationship With Your Mother-in-law?

Once blessed with a wonderful mother; twice blessed with my mother-in-law.

– Unknown

In my three years of marriage, I have yet to meet my mother-in-law. Surely, I have met her virtually through video calls but did not have the pleasure to connect with her face to face. Despite that fact, I already love her dearly. Movies and books portray mothers-in-law as someone who we should be terrified of or are insufferable. Moreover, this portrayal makes us think that relationship will be strain between husband and wife. The movie, Monster-in-Law, is an example of how media portrays the mothers of our spouses. This is unfair, is not it? Mothers-in-Law are branded and judged based on how the media feed the masses.

Bible Reading

Today’s devotional reading is from the Book of Ruth 1:16-17. Please, read our recent devotional from the Book of Psalm 131: Do You Carry Humility Where Ever Life Takes You?

Naomi, The Mother-in-Law

Naomi was a Jewish woman who sojourned to the land of Moab with her husband and two sons. Their family lived in Moab until her husband and two sons died, leaving her with two daughters-in-law. One of whom was Ruth. 

Since Naomi’s husband died, she was now responsible for her two daughters-in-law. Customs demands that as a mother-in-law, she was to provide a husband for them. But because she was old and can no longer provide a son for them, she entreated them to return to their mother’s house. For this reason that they can be married off and have a new family of their own. In Ruth 1:16-17, we can see the response of Ruth to her mother-in-law.

Ruth’s Love and Loyalty For Her Mother-in-Law

Genesis 2:4 summarized the design of God for a man and woman in marriage. While 1 Timothy 5:16 shows us the duties of children to their parents or in-laws. The conviction of Ruth is outstanding. She was even ready to accept Yahweh, God of Israel and forgo Chemosh, the pagan god of the Moabites. 

This decision did not solely come from Ruth. But, the Spirit of God stirred her heart to be loyal and take care of her mother-in-law, Naomi. Ruth’s example should be a guide to daughters and sons-in-law. We might have different situations, but how we treat our mothers-in-law should be the same as how we serve our mothers. I am sure that the fifth commandment, Thou shalt honour your mother and father (Exodus 20:12), does not only mean to our biological parents but also extends to our in-laws. 


This is the time for your journaling. Reflect on these questions. Ask the Holy Spirit to test your faith and your walk with Christ.

Examine yourselves, whether ye be in the faith; prove your own selves. Know ye not your own selves, how that Jesus Christ is in you, except ye be reprobates? — 2 Corinthians 13:5 KJV.
  1. Do you see your mother-in-law as what the media portrays?
  2. How is your relationship with your mother-in-law?
  3. Are you like Ruth towards your mother-in-law?
  4. What does your mother-in-law think of you?
  5. How can you show your love and loyalty to your mother-in-law?


Heavenly Father, we give praise to your majestic name. Thank you for our mothers and mothers-in-law. We pray for their health, safety and salvation. O Lord, Jesus Christ, thank you for saving us from eternal damnation. May the example of Ruth guide us as we relate to our mothers-in-law. Grant us Holy Spirit the same love and loyalty as Ruth had.

We pray in Jesus Name. Amen.

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