My husband has a “shed” where he keeps his computer, exercise equipment, and any other “dude” thing he owns – complete with the head of an eight-point buck mounted to the wall. Truthfully, this “shed” is a man-cave – and it’s not a “shed.” It’s a detached addition to the house.
I have a love-hate relationship with the “shed,” to be honest. I love it because it allows him a place to keep his “dude” things and gives him time away to refocus. I hate it because sometimes I can feel abandoned when he’s in the “shed.”
Not long ago, we talked about this. “I would love for you to join me,” he said.
This never occurred to me.
We wouldn’t necessarily be interacting with one another but we would indeed be together.
And this is precisely what Chapter Thirteen of The God Empowered Wife is all about.
Quiet companionship suggests a level of maturity and love in a relationship – it’s “together” time and “together” time is important.
Yes, there are times when you do want to interact. But then, there are also times when you just want to be together either reading or watching a TV show or responding to email.
It’s the time together, the quiet familiarity, that can help bond a marriage even stronger.
Chapter Fourteen, entitled “Two Steps Backward” begins a new section of TGEW called “Going Deeper.”
And this section, my friends, is where the rubber meets the road.
On page 134, Author Karen Haught says, “. . . if I was angry, it was because of his unkindness; if he was angry, it was because of his immaturity. It was his fault, regardless. My anger was based on how good I thought I was, how I felt I was being dishonored, and what I wanted. That’s called unrighteous anger and it usually points to an idol of the heart.”
Can I just tell you how often I shake my fists at God and lament about all of Jason’s shortcomings and how God needs to change him and how and soften his heart and convict him that he is indeed wrong?
Because of course . . . it’s not me. It’s him.
I once heard someone say that when you point your finger at someone, you have three of your own fingers pointing back at you.
It never fails . . . within minutes of my lamentations regarding my husband’s need to be changed, God points out how I add to the problem.
It’s as though He’s saying, “Well, maybe so, dear daughter. But see . . . that’s between Jason and me. You don’t worry about that part because we’re working on our own thing together – just like you and I are working on our own thing together. So now . . . let’s get to work on you . . . ”
Marriage is not about making us whole. It’s about making us holy.
I’ll end with this wisdom from Karen found on pages 139 and 140:
“Marriage is more like a rock tumbler – a place where two people bounce around together, knocking the rough edges off each other, and being sanded smooth by the grit of the Holy Spirit. It’s one of God’s most important tools for making men and women more holy and it’s not easy. But it is glorious.
If you don’t understand that, you will inevitably want to escape when marriage gets hard, hoping to find someone else who will make you less angry or less irritable. Someone, in other words, who will bring out less of your sin.
That kind of thinking betrays a lack of understanding of God’s ways. He doesn’t allow you to have struggles in your marriage because He wants to harm you. He allows them because He knows exactly what you need in order to reveal the sins and idols you can’t see in yourself, overcome them, and share more greatly in His joy and fellowship.”
And all God’s people say “Amen.”
So for our discussion today, pick one to answer (or more!):
1. If only ____________then I would be happy. (Your answer is a clue to your idols.)
2. What makes you angry? How do you typically react when you are angry? Is it difficult for you to see your part in a situation?
3. What do you enjoy doing? What does your husband enjoy doing? Can you do them together?
4. Talk about anything that struck you from either Chapter Thirteen or Chapter Fourteen.
We will discuss chapters 15 and 16 next Monday. Our time together will end on Thursday, July 31. BOO!