It’s 9:35 on Monday night, and tomorrow morning, I’m supposed to publish my next post on Spiritual Klutz. It’s already finished – a witty, sarcastic piece about a peculiar experience my wife and I recently had with a group of Christians we met for the first time.
About ten minutes ago, I proudly said to my wife, “Let me read the first paragraph to you.”
She listened, paused, and said, “I don’t think you should post that.”
“You think I should delete the whole thing?” I asked, incredulous.
“You haven’t even read the rest,” I said.
“I know, but I just don’t feel right about it,” she said. “Those are real people, and something feels wrong about you talking about them like that.”
“But I wrote it in such a way that no one could know who they are.”
“Okay,” she said. “I’m just telling you what I think.”
Three years ago, this conversation would have been the beginning of long, drawn-out argument – you know, how dare she have an opinion about my artistic expression or whatever. And she might have gone on a tear about how I was so resistant to her non-stop feedback. But four years into marriage, I didn’t say anything back, and she just dropped it.
It’s 9:53 on Monday night, and although I don’t enjoy trashing an entire post, I’m definitely not publishing that article. The more I think about what my wife said, the more I know she’s right. Sure, I worked hard on it, but there are plenty of people who work hard writing things that are better left unsaid.
The truth is, deep down inside, I wasn’t feeling right about that post all along, and I believe the Holy Spirit was trying to rein me in. But I effectively ignored His still, small, voice – that is, until He used my wife’s loving, respectful response as a megaphone.
It’s 5:58 on Tuesday morning, and after sleeping on it, I’m actually quite thankful I let go of the old post. As a result, there won’t be any of the guilty baggage that comes with objectifying other people for the sake of entertainment; there won’t be that nagging sense that I made a joke of other believers at God’s expense.
And I’ll be free of that baggage because, by God’s grace, my wife and I are changing. I’m starting to listen to her feedback without getting all huffy and prideful; and that helps her feel like she doesn’t have to make her point so forcefully. And she’s becoming more restrained in the way she gives me feedback, which makes me a lot more open to hearing it (plus, she’s been right so many times that I would be a fool not to listen to her).
To be clear though, I don’t always listen to her (even when I know she’s right), and she doesn’t always have the best delivery (even when she knows a kinder tone would be more effective). We still regress as a couple; but as we’re growing and changing, God is bringing good things into our lives, and sometimes He’s taking other things out – like that snarky article I was going to publish this morning. Thank You, God – and a big thanks to you too, Cariño.
Now THATS what I'm talking about!!
It's a beautiful thing. Keep pressing on! Remember that your enemy hates every second of those moments, while your Father says "Well done."
My husband proofreads all my posts… and I'm grateful for that. I enjoyed your thoughts in this post about growing in communication in marriage! Well said.
Why were you going to say such bad things about Jane ane me?
Well done. behind every successful man there is a wonderful Godly woman,
Good move – and thanks for the reminder to listen to my own wife/editor…
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