Wrestling

“We never fight.” I have said it a million times. I have said it in defense of our relationship, to people we’ve just met, and while giving advice to friends. I am a peacemaker. I would rather concede than confront. And for most of our relationship, that has worked flawlessly. After all, Jesus said:

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So when I sensed a fight brewing, just threatening to bubble over all week, I feared that giving in would disrupt all peace in our marriage. It was threatening the harmony we had worked so hard to build. And I was willing to fight to keep that harmony.

But as He usually does, God had bigger plans for our Thursday evening.

We were in the bath, feeling everything but relaxed.

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It was on the tip of my tongue. I needed to say it. I was a river of words held back by a measly floodgate of fear. So facing my husband and mustering up courage, I released the flood.“What do you dream about?”

It may seem innocent, neutral, nonchalant. But with those words, I was really saying:

Your dreams aren’t the same as my dreams. Your dreams aren’t big enough for me. You aren’t doing enough to support our dreams. You aren’t paying enough attention to me and my needs and my dreams. You aren’t leading me.

He knew what I was saying as well as I did. And so it began. A slew of words and tears flooded our bathroom. We traded our gripes back and forth, becoming more vulnerable with each statement.

These were not mundane complaints or insignificant irritations. These were real, God-fearing, life-changing, heart-softening hurdles that we needed to overcome to continue running our race together.

The levy had broken. The water flooded in. Little did we know, our hearts were dry and parched and the flood was precisely what we needed.

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We weren’t fighting to prove ourselves right or the other wrong. We were wrestling, feeling each other out, testing our strength, and grappling with our weakness.

And through our struggle, God delivered the most amazing gift of all, the peace that surpasses all understanding.

The thing is, we can fight and still keep the peace. We can struggle without falling. We can quarrel and ultimately choose the same side. And we did. We chose God’s side. And our bath ended with a prayer of thanksgiving to the true Peacemaker, the only One big enough to actually keep peace.

So I am thankful that we do not actually “never fight.” Because without struggle, there can be no growth. Without a fire, there can be no cleansing. And a marriage in the fire is better than a stagnant one.

We awoke that Friday morning to a glorious sunrise after 4 days of dreary mornings.

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Still asleep, Jimmy rolled over and said to me, “God is with us this morning.” And he was so right. I felt His peace deep in my bones and knew this had been a gift from Him.

Two Thursdays later, the peace would be disrupted again. But that story ends with food. Continue reading in my next post!

You are loved so deeply. Shine on. 

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January 16, 2016

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