This weekend was a busy one for us. The boys and I returned home from a beach trip on Thursday, which meant I had to lesson plan all day Friday and Saturday. Our schoolroom was not ready (not to mention we’re still not unpacked throughout the house from moving). Bo worked Saturday and drummed for our church’s Freedom Weekend and Sunday morning service. We hosted a table at our Connect Lunch Sunday and had small group Sunday night. Oh and today (Monday) is our first day of school and Broox’s birthday.
Before we left for our trip, I’d mentioned to Bo that there was food and trash upstairs from the boys and their friends that I didn’t have time to pick up. An air mattress was in the schoolroom. Also, Bexley still needs his dresser put together that we got from ikea. Well, when we returned from our trip, it was time for me to tackle school planning. I go upstairs Friday and see everything is still exactly where it was when we left. Food and trash still upstairs. The air mattress has become the puppy’s toy. The dresser is still in its box. Laundry hasn’t been touched since we left and now we have a week’s worth of dirty clothes on top of what was already dirty when we left.
I was annoyed.
So when Bo gets home to greet me Friday, I’m still annoyed. And he could tell. So I go off….”The trash is still upstairs along with the food, the air mattress is in the school room, Bexley’s dresser is still in the box, and I’ve been doing laundry all day and still have three loads left ON TOP of having to finish my lesson planning!”
Now he’s annoyed.
Now mind you, one of the things I really try to do is give Bo a loving welcome every day when he comes home from work. No matter what our day looked like, it’s something the Lord convicted me of previously, and it’s important to me that he gets a positive welcome home.
Welcome home failed.
The wonderful thing about my husband is he makes me talk. I’ve always been the one to want to dwell in my anger and frustration, but he challenges me to communicate, which is ALWAYS a good thing. So we talked through it and he apologized.
But here’s the thing. I didn’t feel right about it. I prayed about it and asked God to show me why I felt the way I did. And he showed me.
Bo didn’t owe the apology, I did.
I was being selfish. If I had said no to other things previous to our trip, I probably would have gotten my lesson planning done before we ever left and not been so stressed after the trip. I should have realized how much Bo worked while we were gone and that he certainly didn’t want to work some more when he got home (he worked from 6 am until 9 pm most evenings and midnight one night). Oh, and do you remember I said I mentioned to him there was trash and food upstairs? Yea, I never even asked him to pick it up. I just assumed that he would after I mentioned it was up there. So not only was I being selfish, I put unrealistic expectations on him.
As I’m writing this, it seems so silly and petty. But it’s these little things that can add up to cause great damage to a marriage when left unresolved. And I know I’m not the only one that deals with selfishness out there!
I was reminded this morning from Ephesians 6:12 that “Our fight is not against flesh and blood,…but against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms.”
Priscilla Shirer puts it this way in her Armor of God bible study, “Your real enemy – the devil – wants you to ignore the spiritual reality behind the physical one. Because as long as you’re focused on what you can see with your physical eyes, he can continue to run rampant underneath the surface. The more you disregard him, the more damage he is free to do. The enemy may be invisible, but he is not fictional. He is very real, and very persistent, waging war against us constantly.”
May I challenge you to communicate with your spouse daily? If you make communication a daily habit, it will be much easier to communicate when you really don’t feel like talking. That’s most often when we need to communicate the most!
Lord, help me to daily lay myself down and serve my spouse before I serve myself. It’s easy for me to do it when my day has been good, but man I have trouble doing it when I’m stressed or tired. Help me to push my selfish tendencies aside. I acknowledge that creating a servant’s heart is a process, but I’m willing to take the steps. Thank you for my husband and all that he does for our family! In your holy name, Amen.