Today was a cap on a really good week for us. Highs and lows, sure- but all around, a really good week of togetherness and sweet marital moments of joy. Goodness knows our schedules sometimes feel entirely opposed to one another- but still. This afternoon we ran some errands, which I wasn't really feeling up to, and my husband got me ready for-by saying ever so sweetly... "babe... do you want to go on an adventure with me? we'll make it fun."...
Highlights of our day thus far- chatting with our dear friend Oliver over homemade bacon-pancakes, dancing in the kitchen together to 'Barcelona' by Ed Sheeran (we're obsessed), and having a wrestling match like five-year-olds.
Yes, that last one is for real.
So as we were errand-running, we were all happy and relaxed and soaking in the limited time we had together. We decided to swing by the Gwinnett Heritage Center and Gardens... which is where we had our wedding photos taken.
After taking the shots below, we finished up and started back toward the car.
I let Lil (our dog) jump up into the backseat, and left her leash on. The next words came like this- "you left her leash on..." "I did, i do that sometimes when she's in the backseat" "you should take it off, cuz when you get home you'll forget that that leash stays in the car..."
Simple exchange right?
Not for me.
I already have a deep embarrassment, that i am forgetful. My husband, pointing out something that is very plausible (in an attempt to help me- i might add)... touched at this part of me, that i hate.
I felt he was assuming that i would forget, instead of saying "okay that's fine- but when we get home, let's remember to take it off and leave it in the car..."- which i felt would have been a positive way, to point out that i might forget- while giving me a chance to do the better thing.
* important note
I am married to one of the most kind, most patient, most genuinely caring and careful husbands in the world. I am in every way in love with him, and he with me... and he treats me with utmost consideration. Anyone who knows him, knows that this is nit-picky of me- because he hardly ever talks to me negatively. But even the best of lovers, can miss each other- because.... because, words.
Anyway. We spent the next hour or so, in mild conflict over the different veins of past-history and past conflicts that went into this little moment.
After we worked through a little, he graciously wrapped me up in his arms in the kitchen... and assumed a posture of grace, toward my overly- sensitive moment.
I think what i want (what a lot of people want) is to wake up in the morning and have their spouse (parent, sibling, roommate, friend)... treat them like the night was a reset button. Like every morning is an opportunity for change.
Before you dismiss me as idyllic... hear it like this.
Abba tells us that His mercies are new... e v e r y..... m o r n i n g . That every new day HE gives us new opportunities to love him correctly, and know him better, and adjust our days, weeks, and even years of past sin.
He doesn't quietly or bitterly hold on to the things we've messed up- he even tells us... "love keeps no record of wrongs.".
So while i am in no way saying my generous spouse, is at fault, and that he should love me more like this (which he totally does)... i am saying that what my heart was after- i think, most people would benefit from receiving.
Does your Mother give you the same lecture every few weeks about the same exact thing, or have the same quirky expectations she always has?
love her in it.
Is your husband critical or overly instructive in his words?
love him in it.
Does your best friend continue to give you unwanted advice?
love them in it.
Is your sibling a "boy (or girl) who cried wolf"?... where they can't seem to change an unhealthy pattern?
love them in it.
Is your wife incredibly forgetful, and often leaning on you to help pick up the slack in her abstract-random brain?
love her in it.
By no means, should we not address obvious patterns of sin, or be honest with those we love about what makes it hard to live with them. Bring on transparency. But also realize, that everyone wants to be seen with fresh eyes. I have been so judgmental of patterns in others lives before i got to know them... eventually, discovering the reasons they are the way they are. Some legitimate, some that need attention.
People already hear an inner-dialogue about what other people think of them. We have all heard... "oh that's such a you thing to do"... or "it was probably so-in-so... that is just like them". Because we put everyone around us, in little boxes. Boxes of their personality types, their habits, their desires, their issues. Often times we're right too- but sometimes we aren't. Most of the time it doesn't matter if we are or aren't - they probably just need honesty with tact, and then tons of kindness.
People evolve. People change. Most importantly- people grow.
If we are treating our relationships like Christ- we are calling sin, sin- but we are also believing the best, where history says believing the worst makes more sense.
We are recognizing that people are complex, and grace is so necessary.