Tuesday, February 25, 2014

Post to a Know-It-All Wife

The thought I had on marriage this morning - specifically on how wives see their husbands - is not new in the vast and varied studies on the matter, so why it struck me deeply for the first time, I cannot say.  (Though the enduring phrase "terminally dense" does leap to mind.) But once it sprung to my consciousness, converting next to a whisper on my lips, it took root and began to germinate.  So the hope is, if I write about it, surely it will flourish, yes?  Ready for it?  My relationship thought for the morning was...

"Focus on what they are instead of what they aren't."

I know, I know, I really don't want to even hear it myself.
But I've gotta address it, if only for myself.  So here goes.

I've heard this phrase many different times in many different ways through many different marriage philosophies purported through the ages.
There are times I've adhered to it and times I have not.
There are times I've been so affronted by the sheer inability of my spouse to see my perspective that I've decided to not be kind anymore or confess my own responsibility for actions and consequences (enter our discussion last night).
There are times I've lain down, a doormat, keeping the peace simply out of utter hopelessness that he would change. (Aka, apologize.)
You see, none of these actions are the right choice.
Because we're both miserable at the outcome, even when one spouse seemingly "gets their way."
It turns out inconsistency is not truth and justice is not love and cowardice in marriage is not fear of God. 
Who'd of thunk it?!?  

Of course, for all of you women who are reading this and rolling your eyes (don't worry, feel free...I've felt the same way in the past and probably will again somewhere down the line), you may be in the midst of an internal (or outward!) battle for right on your side.  I've been there...I know how helpless that can feel.  I'm not suggesting that you roll over and happily take another kick in the pants.  But neither can I advocate for a perpetual state of unforgiveness.  Again, been there...done that...got the tattered, black T-shirt.

Enter the phrase: 
"Focus on what they are instead of what they aren't."

So, where will I direct my focus?  After all, what is he not?
He's not a woman or a nurse or an empathizer or a sentimentalist?
"Yay!" and "Boo-Hiss!" all at the same time.
Okay, what else?
He's not a philanderer or a pathological liar or a drug/alcohol addict or an abuser.
Most difficult realization of all, though, is one that should seem obvious:
He's not ME.  
Therefore, he doesn't think like me, act like me or need like me.
(How dare he?!?)

So, what is he?
He's loyal.
He's true.
He's calm.
He's a problem solver.
He's hilarious.
He's a hard worker with an incredible work ethic.
He's flawed and scared sometimes.  
(This may sound like a "what is he not" to you but for me, it is a saving grace...a glimpse into his very humanity, his vulnerability.)
He's incredibly bright and talented, capable and creative.
He's a steadfast father and helpmate.

Most importantly, however, I must always remember, he is sacred.  
He is sacred to me.  
He is sacred to our Father.  
He is sacred to this family.  
And without his differences and foibles, he would be too much like me and we would eventually reach a crossroads of a different sort.  

"Focus on what they are instead of what they aren't."
Focus on what he is rather than what he's not.
Just as our Heavenly Father does each day for me.

{This was repeatedly on my heart this morning, 
so I have to think it was there to share.  
Praying for a season of Godliness in my marriage
 and those of all I know and love.  
Praying for my focus to be on all good things.
Praying in gratitude for my beautiful husband.
Thanks for reading.}


  1. Beautiful reflection on marriage! Thanks for sharing. I hope I remember those words for a long long time!
    God Bless,

    1. Amy, I'm so mortified! I just realized I never responded to your comment. Argh!

      Thank you so much for the kind words. To write something and have someone say they hope they remember your words...well, it's just such grace to hear it. So thank you. I was able to visit your site and poke around your lovely words and pictures for a while. What a beautiful family you have! I had a "waahhh" moment when I realized your Hugh's middle name is Joseph...the name of my dear father who passed 2 years ago this May. It is a beautiful, strong name...yes, the name of Jesus' earthly father. And my son's middle name as well. I'll pray great favor for your family and hope you have a minute or two with your busy little ones to visit me again here soon.

      Many blessings to you and yours!