Monday, June 12, 2006


Loving a person just the way they are, it’s no small thing…
There’s a lot of pain in reaching out and trying
It’s a vulnerable place to be
Love and pride can’t occupy the same spaces baby
Sara Groves and Gordon Kennedy off of “Add to the Beauty”

Okay, I admit I knew it would be hard, but I had no idea how hard it would be some times… There are so many times when I want to just scream, ‘that’s it! We’ve tried this. It doesn’t work… and I just want out.” Which is NOT to say I don’t love my husband, but love and pride don’t work together… They just don’t. And being married let’s you know just how mean and small and ugly and selfish and proud you really are inside. If you didn’t know it before you dove-tailed your life and heart and body and future to this person, you sure know it after that first year… That first wonderful year where almost everything was just delight and pure magic. Too soon “Wow, I never even would have thought of doing anything that way!" and "how wonderful.” becomes “what an idiot! when did you turn your brain off?!" and "where do you think the money is coming for this new stupidity…”

Loving my husband and living with him often means giving up the high ground and my need to be right. It means accepting and then admitting out loud that I’m wrong when I’m wrong. It means making space in my understanding of me, in my concept of us- space for who he is and all that entails, wonderful things- like new songs and stars and exploring how things are made, and awful things- like his sins and anger and impatience and selfishness and spending money on things I see as foolish… Knowing that while I’m working on making room for him in my life and heart and dreams of the future, he’s also trying to make space in himself for me, my dreams and hopes and sins and ugliness… Knowing that he sees me more closely and intimately than anyone but God, who made me and can search my thoughts and knows what I’m going to say before I say it.

And frankly, I can’t do this- I can’t love this person I’m married to me like I love myself- I know this. I want what’s easy and feels right and good- I want to sit on my butt and let everything just flow to me like a river- happiness and success and money and escape from pain and hard work… Let me sit up on a throne and have the world bow to me, saying, “how right and beautiful and perfect are your thoughts and ways and will.” Ha! And I know how ridiculous that it! The only way I can do this is by saying “help, God! Love this man through me, ‘cuz there’s not enough left of me in between the sin and selfishness and self-righteousness and pride to put him first.” And that’s what true love is really, putting the other person first. How on earth can I do that? Even when I try I fail, ‘cuz I keep offering what I’d want, not what he really needs and wants.

All I really can offer is a promise to stay and work it out. The vow that I won’t leave when it gets ugly, and that I will let God’s love keep us together, keep us growing into the people He knows we can be. I will let God keep cutting off the ugliness and edges no matter how much his knife hurts, no matter how scared I am that there will be nothing left of me as his knife cuts deeper and deeper. My love, I’m here to stay…

“Hold on to me, I’ll hold on to you
Let’s find out the beauty of seeing things through
Loving a person just the way they are that’s no small thing
It’s the whole thing
Loving me just the way I am it’s no small thing
It takes some time”
Sara Groves and Gordon Kennedy off of “Add to the Beauty”


Ash said...

I can so relate! My husband and I will be married 8 years in July! I can't believe it! We have just recently begun to communicate honestly! We spent the first part of our marriage just being "polite" - "passive-aggressive" to each other. Well, it finally got to the point where we were both willing to start complaining. We said we would be honest about our feelings but would not say things out of anger or to intentionally hurt. Our house was no fun for about 6 months! But, we made it... at least until the next round. I understand the need for a contract and a promise before God, otherwise, it would be much easier to make an emotional foolish decision and bolt. Some days, my husband looks like a stinky alien from outer space. Other days, he is my dream man! Go figure... needless to say... I understand! Marriage would not be easier with anyone else, with exceptions. I view my marriage kind of like a video game. Each level gets a little harder but the bonus round is awesome. Divorce and new marriage... all the way back to the beginning of the video game! No thanks! I am happy where I am with my imperfect teddy bear. Too much?


becca said...

not too much... :)
This is a rough time for us right now and tensions are HIGH. We're both praying we just get through it. Jake's making some big decisions about pulling out of school and where we're moving and it's just yucky. We're trying not to take it out on each other, but we fail at that sometimes.
Anyway, it's HARD, but NO WAY am I going to quit this one and try again with somebody else... no way.