Marriage gets messy. It’s like I’ve said before, we are broken people who marry other broken people and wonder why this becoming “one” can be so hard.
When you cohabitate with another human, who happens to share in your jacked up and a mess-ness then life is going to get messy. We start to notice things we never thought we cared about. I never even realized how much that ONE plate in the sink could affect my ability to go to sleep at night. I’ve heard before that when you get married, it’s like looking in a mirror because you can’t hide your quirks, your flaws, or your pet peeves. We can’t hide how selfish we actually are. “Here I am, in all of my glorious jacked up-ness. LOVE ME!”
For me, it’s like the way I feel when Daniel doesn’t close a drawer all the way, EVER, feels very similar to a dripping faucet on my brain. Much like the Bible specifically says, a nagging wife is like a dripping faucet. I think the Bible says this because God knew how different men and women were created to be, and yet, we are still supposed to serve and love one another in marriage, creating a home of peace. When we are nagging away, I think men hear the Charlie Brown teacher voice, ” Wah, wah wah, wah wah.” And here I am saying, if you would just acknowledge that I asked you to take the trash out, then I wouldn’t have to repeat myself multiple times resulting in me yelling irrationally, “Daniel! Can you PLEASE take out the trash NOW.” He’s like, wow, calm down crazy person.
I pride myself on not being “that” wife. I’m so laid back and so cool, I just never feel the need to nag (Daniel just fainted reading that because it’s so not true). I tried, and I’ve failed many times. But thank goodness that as husbands and wives, we are constantly growing. Thank goodness for the power of sanctification in our lives to be less selfish and more self-less. Thank goodness that how we begin a marriage doesn’t mean that’s how it will always be. We grow and learn one another and learn how to love one another better.
The Pray, Don’t Say Concept – When I was doing youth ministry, I will never forget a story that one of the moms told me. She told a story about how she had it on her heart to adopt after they had their first child. She felt so strongly about it and kept asking her husband about it, so much that he ended up feeling like she was “nagging” him to adopt. After time, her friends told her to pray, don’t say. She stopped mentioning adoption completely and just started to pray for her husband’s heart for adopting. She prayed and prayed, and one day out of the blue, the husband approached her and told her he wanted to look into adoption. Can you imagine her response, “I’m sorry, what?!”
After I heard this story, I’ve started applying it to my own marriage. We often diminish the power of prayer in our lives. Or if you are like me, I want to talk about it until I’m blue in the face with like every friend that will listen before I stop and think, “Oh yeah, I should totally pray about this.” What I realized after almost six years of marriage is that I can’t MAKE Daniel feel the same way I feel about anything. I can’t talk him into it or NAG him to death to comply. At the end of the day, all I need to do is pray. God is the creator of marriage and becoming ONE. God placed you two together and if you’re a believer, you both have the same Holy Spirit in you. That means whatever God lays on your heart, He can work in your husband or wife’s heart too. That also means that God cares for your marriage. So take those desires to Him, lay them at His feet and just pray. I promise that God can and will either change your own heart through the power of prayer or change his.
“casting all your anxieties on him, because he cares for you.” 1 Peter 5:7
So ladies, pray don’t say. Anytime I have something on my heart in regard to Daniel or our marriage or even a conviction I’ve been having, I have started intentionally NOT saying, and praying, praying, praying. I’ve seen it so many times how God shows up and turns hearts in a way I never could, no matter how convincing I think I am.
We all may have legitimate frustrations, legitimate needs that he or she isn’t fulfilling. But God can move mountains, He can raise people from the dead, and He created us all. I believe that our creator can heal marriages, but also, even in the small things, I think God works in those things too. Let’s be intentional about praying for our marriages, praying for specifics, and see how God moves.