I want to begin this blog post by saying that I come to you as a student of God’s word. I am ever learning, ever praying, ever seeking His answers. I am by no means in a position to be a teacher. I’m a talker, a think-out-louder, a sharer. All of my blog posts are written in that spirit. TRUTH has become a motto for my life. Without HIS TRUTH, I am nothing. My life would have no meaning. Because of HIS TRUTH, I matter. We all do! God cares about all of us. He cares that we choose relationship with Him over relationship with the world. I will always be a student of this relationship, eager to share what I am learning.
Several years ago I read a blog post where someone described choosing a word for the year. This word was a theme for their quiet time thoughts and the driving force behind what they studied. Five years ago, I chose the word TRUTH. I chased TRUTH, sought TRUTH, pleaded with God to give me TRUTH, no matter what the cost. The word for that year ended up being my word for three years. Apparently TRUTH takes its own time, revealing itself in small doses as you are ready to hear it. TRUTH is kind of like an onion. It reveals itself layer by layer.
TRUTH became much bigger than I realized it would be. Before I had ever read about choosing a word for the year, I had FAITH. I studied what it meant to be FAITHFUL. I chose to have babies as they came as my worship to the Lord, my giving of my life over to Him fully. It was my act of worship. Of FAITH. Of TRUST.
TRUST came after FAITH. TRUST was tough. FAITH (believing in the unseen, the physically unsubstantiated) may seem, on the outside, to be difficult to wrap one’s mind around. But TRUST. TRUST was much tougher! TRUST meant walking out my FAITH. And that’s where I am now.
Remember my post about regrouping? In spite of loving each other deeply, David and I have always argued way too much. We have had a few short seasons in marriage when we didn’t argue as much, but, inevitably, we always get on each other’s nerves and the bickering starts again.
Whatever it is that we are disagreeing about is usually real, relevant, important. Recently,the arguing has gotten even worst. Somehow, I fell into the trap of arguing to stand up for what is right. I came to the belief that it was ok to fight back, as long as I was defending something noble, something true, something right. But, every time I looked into my children’s eyes, something. didn’t. feel. right. My soul has felt so unsettled. I have spent many years praying to the Lord, asking Him for some sort of revelation that will “fix” this part of David and I’s marriage. No matter how sincere I was in the desire to stop arguing, eventually, I would get frustrated with whatever discussion David and I were having and verbally let him have it.
Several weeks ago, I resolved to start reading my bible every day. Before I even get out of bed in the morning, before I check Facebook, Instagram or email, before I speak to David or the kids, I read a couple of chapters on my phone. I chose to start with my favorite book of the bible: James. I was trying to outsmart myself. I have resolved to read the bible many times before and always F-A-I-L, eventually losing interest because I prefer to go through the bible bible-study fashion, with a topical book of some sort walking me through. Last week, I made it through James and 1 Peter and found the perfect prescription for my arguing with my husband. Check this out:
“In the same way, you wives, be submissive to your own husbands so that EVEN IF ANY OF THEM ARE DISOBEDIENT TO THE WORD, they may be won without a word BY THE BEHAVIOR OF THEIR WIVES as they observe your CHASTE AND RESPECTFUL BEHAVIOR. [emphasis mine]” (1 Pet 3:1-2 NASB)
There is more, but for now, I have to stop and just let this part seep in. It is so heavy. I have read this before, but it never hit me as hard as it did this morning. For whatever reason, I always thought this verse was directed at unbelievers. I am sure it came from some sort of misunderstanding during my single days. I probably thought it didn’t apply to me and the verse was most likely being used as a supporting verse for some other topic. Either way, after 15 years of marriage, I realize that I didn’t understand that verse AT ALL.
And that’s how we arrive at my word for this year: PRESENT. God. Abba Father. He’s always present. Always watching. Always cares. Always provides. He gave me the answer to David and I’s arguing when I was ready for it. I would love to be able to paint a rosy picture and say that David and I aren’t arguing any more, but, alas, I am human. This fifteen year old bad habit is dying a slow and painful death. I am working on it. Overall, I am better. Things are definitely less stressful over all. When I blow it, God is there to comfort me, to remind me that He isn’t dependent on my perfection to complete His good work in both me and my husband. He simply loves. And forgives. And that is enough. I follow His example, and strive to do the same.