Sunday, June 21, 2009
SAFE !.......at home.
I am enjoying the last biscuit with strawberry-rhubarb sauce dripping off of it and reflecting on this past week that Joel and I had all to ourselves. I was able to attend Sunday school and the worship service so I am home-bound for church tonight doing what I usually do.....watch Cleveland Baptist's service online. (Thank you Janelle!) With it being Father's Day, and with the 32 week mark stretching right in front of me tomorrow, I was bound and quite determined to do something, anything for him. Abb and I decided to make some biscuits to go with the sauce a sweet friend gave us yesterday, and so we did! I will be so glad when this little one is in my arms and I am off the couch.....or blue chair!
This last week was really special in so many ways. Yes it was our 10th Anniversary, but it was the longest stretch of being "alone together" that we have had in literally 10 years! And what did we do with all that time???? We talked, and talked and then when we were finished we talked some more! Something that just breaks our hearts (Joel and I) is that couple's just don't talk....period. They become what we affectionately call, "business partners." They swap itineraries, meal times and call it an afternoon. Within the last two weeks, talking to two women I asked them, "Is there ever a time where you just talk with your spouse and enjoy their company, etc.?" And the response was, "No." Hmmm.....
We talked about the kids, what we need to work on, what is going well, where we would love to see God use them. We talked about the garden, the house we are looking at, a few passages of scripture we were each reading that week and had a thought on, and so on. And this week we realized that many couple's do not talk, or "hide" things one from the other, you know, the ACTUAL price of something you bought..... because they do not feel that they have a "safe" place with their spouse.
Isn't it humorous that when you are "dating" you come to the end of your courtship anticipating marriage and feeling like you know all there is to know about each other. NO ONE could know more than you know about them. You then spend the rest of your life learning more and more about them each day that passes. Before you are married, you can spill your heart out to this person, and they will spend countless hours listening to you explain the most tedious things, because they have and interest in you. You can share very personal feelings because you KNOW that they can be trusted and hence in all of this you have found a precious "safe spot" with them.
And then the years go ticking by, and you lose that "safe area" for some reason or another. Oh you have a conflict, a crisis and you are hurt, he is hurt, and you lose trust in them and stop "opening-up" like you used to. You are afraid of what they will say, afraid of judgement or criticism and decided to ask someone else instead. Now this is the same person that you wanted to spend the rest of your life with and now you are enduring one another and not rejoicing with the one person on the whole earth that God has ordained for you to have a fellowship with like no other. Hmmmm.....
I have that safety with Joel. And we protect that with our lives here on Haywood. Sad to say, but I have seen that we wives are usually the ones who make our own bed and have to lie in it. We embarrass our husbands, look down on them, try to make them spiritual, and even disrespect them in many many ways. For instance, you are in the car, running late for that Summer party at so-and-so's house. You are unsure if he REALLY knows the way to get there. A short drive and then he turns around, another short distance and he is turning around in another gas station of all places. Yep, you do it. You ask him for heaven's sake to just stop and ask for directions, reminding him over and over that you are going to be late and you HATE being late. Sound realistic? It is. It has been me. You???
In reading a great book I noticed two errors in what I was doing in this scenario. I was a) questioning his judgement and skill, telling him in a very real way that I DID NOT TRUST HIM and needed to do this myself, and b) I was disrespecting his position and degrading him making him feel worthless.
Then in a few days we wonder why he just won't "talk" about anything. I think we build our own barriers and wonder why our husbands are not climbing over them to meet our emotional needs. We get angry and disrespect him more, build a higher barrier and eventually meet occasionally at the little window at the bottom of the wall to chat a few minutes before going to bed. You know, the only person you can change is yourself. No matter of belittling or asking, or telling or nagging will make your spouse into the perfect person you always dreamed they could be....like you for instance right? The more I work on me and allow God to chip off my rough edges, and the beam in my own eye, the speck in my husband's seems insignificant.
The second thing I asked two women recently was if they "ever had a time of reconciliation with their husband." You know, a time of complete forgiveness on both parts. Again an overwhelming, "No."
You look at us, our hilarious pictures in the park, kissing for our own photography, and you laugh. We did too! :-) You say, "Yeah yeah, you have been married a whopping 10 years?????" And you would be correct. But you know what??? We have a "safe spot," Joel and I.
Believe you me, we don't have it all together. Joel IS married to me remember? And Christ is to be at the center of this equation. Marriage is not to make you "happy," but to make you "holy," one preacher stated at our church, and he is dead right. I see some couples who are miserably tolerating each other at Denny's, at church, at the park. I want to just go over to them and say, "Is what you are doing right now in your relationship workin for ya? If not, why don't you find that "safe spot" again????"
I pray that God gives us many many many more wonderful years together. I am forever thankful for my husband taking a bus kid from the Cleveland suburbs and making her into a homemaker, and showing me the love that Christ has for his church.
Are you safe at home??
Pr 21:31 The horse is prepared against the day of battle: but safety is of the LORD.