Fight of the Week: Marriage Can’t Be Your Everything

Fight of the Week Michelle Lindsey August 7, 2013

Sometimes I feel unimportant to my husband

“I am not on your priority list. In fact, I am not even in the ink of the pen, that you write your priority list with.”

This is what I slowly said to my husband this week as he was sitting at the table, doing homework. Yes, it sounds a little dramatic, but I felt a million miles away from him, and he didn’t seem to even notice. He had just returned from traveling for two weeks and was behind in school. He was grouchy, tired, and felt overwhelmed. When he did speak, his words were laced with impatience and frustration. He scowled and said snappy things to me, and I simmered . . . angry that he would act this way.

As miserable as I felt, I am sure he felt equally bad. How do I know this? Because I could tell by the look on his face. I knew deep down he really wanted to stop being short with me, but he had seventeen lectures to listen to and a paper due at midnight. For some reason, he was not able to snap out of it.  I was on my own. And that made me even more upset.

It’s hard to navigate through difficulties when you are stumbling in your relationship with your spouse. It is during these times, I am reminded that I cannot and should not make my marriage my everything.  If I make it an idol, and view it as my only source of happiness, I will be sorely disappointed. My marriage can’t rescue me, sustain me, or fill me with peace. I have to have something more than my husband to draw strength and contentment from, because at times, Scott just won’t cut it. He is going to fail me. There are moments when I wish I could breathe fire across the room. That’s how my marriage makes me feel sometimes.

God is with us as we walk through difficulty

The best thing I can do is take my eyes off of Scott and place them on God. My marriage is a wonderful tool God uses to change me, sharpen me, and bring him Glory, but it isn’t my source of peace and total satisfaction. Besides, nobody wants to have that kind of pressure on them. I don’t want to be responsible for Scott’s happiness, and I am sure he feels the same way about me. I am also going to have bad days, and will lash out and hurt him. He has to lean on God for his ultimate support during those time when I don’t  have grace spilling out of me. We have to point each other back to the Cross when we fail, and model repentance to each other and our children, knowing that God is walking with us through the tough times. 

I would love to tell you that my husband came to me, and swept me into his arms and apologized for making me feel unimportant. That would be an awesome ending to this post. No, he is still writing his paper with a pained look on his face, and his hair is sticking straight up. I can’t say I feel head over heels in love tonight, but I can say I have a deep peace that surpasses a bad day. I might even be over-the-moon-happy tomorrow, but my worth in Christ didn’t change at all while my emotions went back and forth.

I know God loves us just as much when we are crabby as we are kind and loving.  This allows me to step back and give my husband time to come around. It keeps me from pointing out his faults, because I have plenty of my own. It refrains me from making rash decisions and creating more hurt in my marriage. God shows me how to love when someone isn’t being very lovable, because I am loved so much. In fact, right now I should probably bring Scott a tall glass of ice water and a snack . . . since he’s clearly feeling out of sorts.

“We love because he first loved us.” —1 John 4:19

That’s the kind of love we should be aiming for.

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