Earlier in the year my husband and I had an argument that started as a frustration with family (most likely his wink wink) and spiraled downhill from there as I dredged up all the things that were wrong leading up to this disharmonious moment. My uncanny ability to remember every detail of past years is cute when recalling our first date and baby milestones, but most certainly is obnoxious in battle for my opponent. Some days it’s definitely a curse in my husband’s eyes.
For the first time in almost 10 years, we went cold turkey communication. I mean seriously we just were not talking. We texted while in the same room with refusal to use any vocal cords. Real mature stuff here. Now we were civilized in front of our children and we even had a houseguest during this time who didn’t have a clue we were plotting how to leave the other one with the children. Yes, you read that right. I will leave you. With the children. So there. I win.
One morning I woke up and opened the devotional I was reading. After giving myself a spiritual high five for keeping up with my Jesus time and thinking “boy does my husband need to sit down with the Word of God” the club of humility whacked me right between the eyes with this link to Crystal and Company’s site regarding harmony.
I literally was blown away in reading about harmony. Having a tranquil home is where we show our true hearts in action when we say we accept God’s grace and therefore ,His peace.
And not “tranquil” as in Martha Stewart sea foam green walls, white sofas and Vivaldi playing through the home. Tranquil as in harmony so when you cross that threshold you see that the folks inside are on the same team by being respectful during disagreements and mutually supportive of finding common ground.
In college I knew in marriage I would hold my own in any major – or minor – disagreement and we would delightfully co-champion as two mutually exclusive leaders. CEO #1 and CEO #1. Dual Presidentships. Two at the helm. Dos Dictators so to speak. No way that degrading “S” word would enter my household! To me the word “submission” was like nails on a chalk board. Nothing gets my ire up more. And in being totally honest I’ve always had a tough time with the verses citing biblical submission. In fact my immediate mature reaction is to stick my fingers in my ears and loudly repeat “I can’t hear you I can’t hear you!”
Ephesians chapter 522 Wives, submit yourselves to your own husbands as you do to the Lord. 23 For the husband is the head of the wife as Christ is the head of the church, his body, of which he is the Savior. 24 Now as the church submits to Christ, so also wives should submit to their husbands in everything.
Tipping the scales of power is not healthy for either spouse. Even in the creation story it’s about Eve brought to life as a help mate – not a “door mat.” The spousal role is key support. You will notice if the help mate isn’t there or on board things fall apart very quickly. Why? A help mate brings joy to their partner. Greater results occur simply because two are better than one.
However, if we re-frame our world centric view we will see that marital partnership is as close to experiencing God’s love as we humans can get. We can share God’s love to our spouse by giving grace, by loving beyond our human capacity and putting another first. Grace allows us to be so in sync with one another that we trip on one another’s shadows. Our desire becomes pouring our own selfishness out to make room for another’s dreams, hopes and goals so the help mate term isn’t about making yourself less but making your relationship more. Crafting your together as “two-gather.”
Lysa Teurkheurst from Proverbs 31 asks: “is your marriage prayed for more than it’s talked about?” That got me. She has a 5-day prayer you can say for your husband, which changed my mindset on seeing my spouse as who I should be praying for and cheering on. Which is a prayer goal that goes both ways.
If Christ was loving on that disaster of a church despite themselves, then husbands have a tougher agenda when told to be like Christ. If our piece is respect then their piece is loving us as an active willing choice despite ourselves. Not an obligation or chore just because we are getting along. In the hard and trying times when I’m throwing a dishrag at him and repeating myself for the umpteenth time to his dismay, his love must mirror the love of Christ. Who has it tougher I ask?