Last weekend, I got out our trusty, old fake Christmas tree and put it together. But when I plugged it in, I discovered that half of the lights in the middle section were dead.
I wanted to put new lights over the old ones, but my wife, Raquel, insisted that we remove the old ones first. I wasn’t thrilled about the suggestion. Nonetheless, an hour later, our fingers were sore from being pricked by fake evergreen needles, and we resorted to using scissors to chop off the lights, which were twisted all around the branches.
Get this, though: It wasn’t awful. In fact, we both had a good time making conversation as we removed the lights. You have no idea how far we’ve come.
If that had happened during our first year of marriage, we would’ve both been annoyed and short-tempered with each other the whole time. But something’s changed in the seven years since then: we’ve gotten better about working together. We’re not perfect (at all), but we’ve made a lot of progress with humbling ourselves and being more willing to do projects together without being so antagonistic and testy. Basically, we’ve discovered that teamwork helps us feel closer and can actually be fun, even if the project isn’t our favorite.
Having Fun Working Together
Our desire to do teamwork is actually cropping up in a number of areas now — in fact, I’ve got another example of some teamwork that happened between us last week. As some of you may know, I’m the interim editor over the Boundless blog, and last week, Raquel submitted a guest post. I had the opportunity to edit it with her, pray with her about it, and then see it do incredibly well with our audience.
The post, which is called “My Upward Spiral Out of Anxiety,” is one of my favorites the Boundless blog has featured during my time as editor (yes, I’m partial). It’s the story of a deep work the Lord has done in Raquel’s heart over the years. Here’s an excerpt:
The root of my anxiety is often a critical spirit that sees negative circumstances around every corner. Then my fears kick in, and I start feeling indecisive about important decisions, which leads to procrastination. And then before you know it, each drop of negativity, procrastination and frustration accumulates into a rushing river of anxious despair. But recently, God did something unexpected when I started drowning in anxiety, and I’m still in awe.
To read Raquel’s story, click here — it’s a great word for anyone who’s looking for a practical way to experience, through Christ, greater freedom from anxiety.