Wednesday, April 7, 2010

Being a Woman of Virtue is Hard Work! Sheesh!!!

                                     "The heart of her husband doth safely trust in her"
                                                              Proverbs 31:11

Happy Easter, dear Friends!

Wow! Lent flew by, but it seems like so much has happened in all of our lives during the past 40 days, doesn't it???  It was wonderful stepping away from all the technology that I allow myself to become chained to, but I've also been reminded during these days of the ways that it can bless us. So many times during the past month I've wanted to look into something or ask friends a quick question via email or facebook and then remembered that I couldn't! I had to start doing things the old fashioned ways- I picked up a phone that WASN'T my/a cell phone for the first time in AGES! Old school can be awesome, my friends! :)

Sooooo, at some point during my reflections this past month the Lord put some basic things on my heart that I really felt would be a great reminder to all of us. Allow me to set the scene-

Paul and I only have the opportunity to be in our own home for five days after being on the road for five or six weeks. As much as I try to box up and store things while we are gone, we still seem to have woodland creatures [MICE] that seem to get in and take up residence in our kitchen while we are away. I can't tell you how stressed this can make me. I feel like I have to sanitize every square inch of my counter tops each morning just in case anyone decides to lay a piece of toast on a spot that a little four legged fellow had run over during the night. Where is this going you ask?

A few weeks ago, Paul was home and we had some friends over. I had come in from shopping and Paul was cooking something on my unsterilized stovetop. As he was lifting a spoonful of pasta to his mouth, a noodle fell on the stove. I saw my dear husband's hand grab the noodle and begin to eat it! I freaked out! Dropping what I was carrying, I reached for him trying to grab the possibly contaminated noodle while yelling at him to put it down! Like a slow motion scene from The Matrix, I could see the shocked faces of my friends in my peripheral vision.

Here's what was going on in my head:

A. Don't let Paul get sick by putting a mouse contaminated noodle in his mouth!

B. Don't let my friends know that my kitchen has a family of mice dwelling in the same vacinity as where I will be preparing their food!

C. Don't let my friends think I'm crazy!

D. Oh, shoot! Now they are sure to know I'm nuts!

E. Oh, shoot, shoot, shoot!!!! I just yelled at my husband as though he were a child in front of our friends!!!!!

F. Bad wife!!! Bad, bad, bad wife!!!!!

The situation was quickly explained by a blushing moi, but even as I lay in bed that night, the scene replayed in my mind. Though my intent was for the good of my husband, my actions were not good. I mulled it over and resolved to try to make some changes in my speech.

Woman are often told to be "Virtuous Proverbs 31 Women" but that can be easier said than done. It sounds so pretty to read and imagine being a perfect wife whose "value is far above rubies"- it isn't easy and I think most of us have a very hard time watching our words. It takes a true curbing of the tongue to be a virtuous woman!

I think most all of us have seen women speak to their husbands as though they were children. We shake our heads and know that its wrong, but many (dare I say most of us!) have moments of weakness were we fall and do this same thing!

Perhaps we struggle with the tone we use with our spouse or we talk publicly (in front of them or behind their backs) about our spouse's shortcomings. Some make jokes about a spouse's faults or just say things that hold elements of negative truths.

This is not good, ladies!

I know its not something that any of us want to intentionally do, but it is a very easy slippery slope to fall down. How can our children, family or friends respect our husbands if they see us setting an example of belittling. We will have a hard time showing respect once we set off on this path. Yet, when we speak with love at all times, we are constantly reminding ourselves, our children and our friends of how worthy of respect these great men are. Our words and actions MUST build up our husbands at all times!!! When a man knows that he isn't being spoken down to, he will want to work harder to earn that respect. He will be uplifted! In this way we too will be built up and our marriages, family lives and friendships will become stronger.

Our friendships, too? Yes, when a girlfriend knows that you aren't the type of woman that gossips about your own husband, she will be able to trust you as well. Everyone needs a friend in their life who can be there at times when we need a shoulder to cry on or whose judgement we can trust in difficult times. Be that kind of friend by setting an example in the way you treat your spouse.

This is a longer post than I had intended it to be. It is mainly to remind myself of my own life goals, but I hope it is a reminder for someone else who, like me, falls short in this area from time to time. God has blessed me with a man who is MORE than I ever dreamed of and I pray that I never take him for granted. Not even for a single moment!

Moral of the Story: Always keep your kitchen clean! (That's a laugh!)

God bless, friends! Enjoy this beautiful spring weather!


That Married Couple said...

I think this is really important! It's most difficult for me when we're joking around with friends, but I really do not want my husband to be the butt of my (or anyone else's) jokes. I think as long as we are aware of this, we can improve to the point where we really only show love and respect to our husbands.

Paul and Annie said...

I totally agree. It can be sooo easy to joke around in ways that are inappropriate. I really struggle with that too, but I am praying that God gives me the grace to bite my tongue! :) My dad taught me when I was little to always "stop, think about what you want to say and then speak"...ummm, yeah, still working on that one!

b said...

I agree with you. Scott and I LOVE to bicker. We grew up in families that loved to play "Devil's Advocate" with each other. Funny enough, our parents were never on opposing sides. If they teased each other in front of us, it was over our heads! It's tough to curb that instinct to bicker for fun in front of the kids and friends. But we've gotten pretty good at giving each other that look that says, "I know you want to tease me!" and laugh anyway. It kind of makes it more fun to bicker in secret so you have inside jokes out in public!!!

BTW, I despise hearing women refer to their husbands as another child. I love taking care of Scott's home needs and God knows how much he does for us! Perhaps our focus as women should be what our husbands do for us, and not what we do for them. At its best, marriage is a contest to "out love" each other, and part of that is appreciating the effort of the other.

Paul and Annie said...

Beautifully put B!!!! I love the idea of trying to "out love eachother". Thank you for sharing that reminder!

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