Sunday, August 8, 2010

Love in action.....

I'm going to admit something here. I'm going to show you that I have a bad side. I try not to show just how "bad" I really am on my blog, but today I will.

I keep in touch with people from my past. I won't say much more about that, because I don't want to identify anyone and hurt feelings. Most of the people in my life, past and present are Christians, and most are women.

Now, as women do, they are sharing links with me. I get e-mails from them with links to articles and videos. I see on Facebook all sorts of messages written to Christian women. They talk about being a good wife. They share insight into how to live out your faith in your home.

And, here is where the admission comes in. I'll admit it, those links, those videos on how to "love your husband" and "respect" him frustrate me so terribly. I can feel my blood pressure rising. I know my veins are constricting and my heart rate increases. Isn't that horrid???

I'm trying to figure out why. Part of it is that I allow myself to read the articles and watch the videos. I usually don't get very far into it before I have to stop myself or I might have a coronary!

I'm thinking the thing that bothers me so much is this. It's shallow. It's ridiculous. It's ..... I can't even think of a word.

Why do we need to hear women who have children ages 10 and 7, women who have been married for 12 years, explaining what it means to "love your husband", to "be a help meet"? I remember what life was like 12 years into marriage. I was head over heels in love with my husband, life was fun, I enjoyed caring for my little kiddos, we traveled and we went on dates. It's easy to love your husband at that stage of life.

Here is where the rubber meets the road. Have you invested in your relationship? Have you prepared yourself for the future? Are you strong enough to stand through life WITHOUT your husband? Sure, we should learn to love and depend on our husbands, but more importantly, are you a COMPLETE ADULT? Can you make decisions and do you know what you believe? Are you training your children to be adults? Or are you training them to be perpetual children?

We never know what the future holds. 12 years into our marriage, I had no idea what was around the corner. I had no idea that just a few short years later, I would be called upon to do things I thought was still decades away for us. We entered the twilight years 20-30 years ahead of schedule.

Here is my advice to young married women. Enjoy your husband! Invest in your relationship with him. Listen to him, and give advice to him. Be a help to him. Not nagging certainly, but don't be afraid to say what you think and feel. He has a wife for a reason. If you have an idea, share it. Let him be who he is, let him go with the men and let him do man things. You take time for you, be a woman, try new things, have opinions, think deep thoughts.

And, start now----- raise your children to be adults. Give them room to grow and be who God created them to be. Encourage their interests until they find their passion. Invest in their passion and teach them what they need to know in order to serve GOD. Give them responsibility and teach them to learn from their failures. Let them fail, and love them through it.

Love really is action. It's doing when you just don't think you can another day. It's respecting his health care decisions because he has a right to choose. It's standing up for yourself and saying no to bad behavior. It's taking time to care for yourself, so that you can care for others. It's listening, sharing, being there when no one else is. It's lonely days and terrifying nights. It's facing the future knowing that it may be bleak, but Jesus is THERE, just as He is HERE. It's understanding that you may find yourself stretched to the very end of yourself. It's walking away when you need to and running back again to throw your entire self into another life. It's deep breaths when you want to cry or scream. It's clinging to Jesus when there is nothing left. It's doing the right thing no matter who it goes against. And, it's giving of yourself til it hurts in ways you never dreamed it could.

1 comment:

Living on Less Money said...

I need God's grace when it comes to allowing my husband to make his own health care decisions. I've overruled him several times in the past and should have listened to him. I let fear take hold of my heart. :(