you know, i don’t write too often about the ins & outs of my marriage.
if we’re in a rut, i usually don’t feel like airing our dirty laundry to the world or complaining publicly. if we’re doing awesome & on top of the world, well, i don’t want to come across as boasting either. so, i usually just keep the marriage stuff locked up for the most part.
it’s also my way of respecting what he & i share together.
he trusts me; i trust him. the last thing i’d ever want to do is damage that.
we recently had a tiff that started like a trickle and ended in a torrent. i confess, i was the one harboring the offenses and when offenses build up, they ultimately get out of hand, and you find yourself thinking, “how on earth did i get here?!” “how can this ever be fixed?”
well, i can testify that when you think there’s no fix, no hope, no end to the firestorm that started with just a few ill-spoken words…
God can fix it. God can heal it. God can turn it around.
thank God for my husband’s maleable heart that truly seeks Him.
if it weren’t for that, we wouldn’t be where we are today.
if you struggle with words, like i do, and you say things that only seem to make matters worse when upset with your spouse, i strongly suggest you read james chapter 3…”taming the tongue.” it will hit you hard, but it is worth it. like a rudder changes the course of a mighty ship, so a tongue can change the course of a life. a bitter tongue can set a relationship ablaze, but a humbled tongue, can steer the ship back to peaceful waters.
i read a post today written by one of my favorite christian women/authors, Lysa TerKeurst, and it really gave words to our recent situation. i thought i’d share it with you. it’s a good one. like Lysa, we talked out the kinks and things turned around. take care of your relationships, and be sure not to let them unravel in your emotional haste.
The Unraveling of a Marriage ~ Lysa TerKeurst
I had a favorite sweater I loved wearing. It wasn’t too bulky but was still warm and cozy. The only problem was the threads were loosely woven together. It would snag on things, so I had to be ever so careful when I wore it.
I was always mindful of the delicate nature of this sweater so I could protect it, make it last, and enjoy wearing it time and again.
Until one day I was in a hurry. I grabbed some things I needed for a meeting and rushed to my car. I tossed all my stuff over to the passenger seat, including a spiral notebook. A spiral notebook whose metal binding wire had gotten caught on my sleeve. As I pulled my arm toward the steering wheel, the notebook came with it and pulled a huge snag in my sweater.
I unhooked myself and assessed the damage. Based on what I saw, I should have taken the sweater off, put something else on, and later taken the time to repair the snag the correct way.
But in the rush of all I had going on, I made the tragic decision to do what seemed easiest in the moment. I snipped the lose threads and hoped for the best. That tragic decision started an unraveling process that ended the life of that beautiful sweater.
Recently, my husband and I got into an argument. In front of the kids. Over something so stupid. Right before we were about to head out the door to go on a date.
In the heat of the argument he announced the date was off. He no longer wanted to go. And honestly, I no longer wanted to go either.
I wanted to go sit in a coffee shop by myself and make a mental list of all the reasons I was right. All the reasons he was wrong. And justify my perspective. But it’s at this exact moment of resistance that an unraveling can begin.
Doing what seems easy in the moment often isn’t what’s best for the long term.
I pushed for us to still go on our date. It wasn’t fun. It wasn’t easy. There were tears. There were awkward stretches of silence. But we pushed through the resistance we both felt, and eventually talked.
Talking through the snags. The pulls. The things that threaten to unravel us.
There is a delicate nature to marriage. It’s so easy to forget that. It’s so easy to take it all for granted and stop being careful. Stop being mindful. Stop being protective.
The unraveling can happen so quickly.
What’s something you can do today to invest wisely in your marriage? To be mindful of your mate? To protect your relationship?
For me? I had to apologize. The right way. By admitting I was wrong and asking for forgiveness. Repairing the snags the right way… tying a knot and tucking it back into the weave of our relationship fabric.
Isn’t it funny that when we get married it’s called “tying the knot”? For us, this wasn’t just an act at the altar. It’s something we have to do over and over again.
By Lysa TerKeurst
looking forward to a lifetime with him.