“What’s wrong?” he asks.
“Nothing,” she says.
“No really, you seem upset,” he inquires.
“I’m fine,” she replies.
How often do we do that with our husbands? Or others, for that matter?
I have finally stopped saying I was fine when I wasn’t.
So don’t ask me how I am unless you really want to know.
We are missing an opportunity to breathe life into our relationships when we don’t communicate how we really feel. Proverbs 14:25 spoke this to me recently, even though it seems a little out of context.
Granted, I know my feelings cannot be trusted – my heart is as evil as yours (no offense, but check Matthew 15:19 and remember we’re all the same! 🙂 ) but we also falsely communicate when we say we are “fine” when everyone (including us) knows otherwise.
And it’s one of the ways we teach others that we are really a “doormat,” btw.
“What’s wrong?” he asks.
“Thanks for asking. I guess I’m feeling slighted. I worked really hard making a nice dinner, and I realize I’m being selfish, because I know I should be just fine with serving you guys whether you say anything nice, help me clean up, or nothing at all. But when everyone just left me at the table alone, without saying thanks, or picking up their plates and carrying them to the dishwasher, I felt taken advantage of,” she softly replies, without being sarcastic, not dripping contempt non-verbally, without name-calling.
And if he still doesn’t get it?
“I would feel like a princess if you would lead the kids in picking up after dinner. I think if you participate, making it fun, and have them all help, it will teach them that the wife of the home is a position of value. I’ll also feel better about working to prepare meals everyone loves if you encourage a, ‘thanks, mom,’ or something,” she gently says, smiling at him.
Or maybe, she just launches into the work, and says, “Hey guys, come on over and let’s clean up these dishes together!”
Or maybe, she just does the clean up herself, and doesn’t think twice about it, because it just doesn’t matter to her.
But regardless, notice the lack of emotional vomiting rooted in judgment.
Also notice the lack of criticism or contempt.
And how else will this guy you married have an opportunity to “rally the troops” and corral them back to the table to “Thank mom for the nice dinner she prepared,” and, “Let’s clean up!” and be the man of the house if he’s not told the truth?
Many husbands won’t need us to communicate like this – remembering that it’s not about us, and not missing the great opportunity to serve without expectation, I challenge wives to FIRST die to self, asking God for the right thoughts, correct attitudes, and servant’s hearts.
And then, when you have a few planks out of your own eyes, I’m going to dare us today to be honest in our relationships – choosing to be more mature first, begging God to help us grow up and see the world and people the way He does.
Double dog dare you to read His Word for yourself, seeing what He might communicate directly to you today, triple dog daring you to comment, share, or “subscribe” and continue this journey with us!
We love having you here.
In the words of Winnie the Pooh, “It’s better with two.”
Love to you,
Oh, and if you got this as an email forward from a friend who cares about you and your family, know we’d love YOU to join us on this journey. The road is long and hard, and often paved with tears, but worth traveling – and you’re not alone.
You can get marriage TIPS! articles, a free copy of my eBook, 101 Ways to Respect Your Husband, and other marriage info here. I’ll be taking down the 101 Ways eBook in the next week or so and putting up a new eBook, so grab it while you can. We promise not to share your email with anyone, ever. You’ll get just one or two TIPS! articles a week, plus a blog post as they come, usually 1-2 a week.
If you are just joining us, these might be of interest, too. When done with The RESPECT Dare book, you can learn how to respect others and yourself, helping them become more respectful, also: