My dear friend Sabra places salve on the wounds of hurt and pain in marriage everyday. Her and her husband, David, are following the call of God on their life as they pour nourishment and encouragement into hearts that beat for each other in marriage. They remind us that we can have a loving, passionate marriage. Enjoy her words today….
It was all set to be a romantic evening at home with my sweetheart. I had been working all day and looked forward to some quiet time with my husband. It started so well. And then it quickly went downhill…
He said just a few words I didn’t want to hear, and feelings of frustration and anger immediately spewed out of my mouth with such force it was like dousing a candle flame with a firehose. Needless to say, what was to be a wonderful evening turned into a soggy mess of silence, tension, and regret.
Have you been there?
Our feelings can quickly get us into trouble and the words we say become like daggers to the heart, hurting the one we love most and ruining what could be sweet times together.
Proverbs 12:18 says: “There is one whose rash words are like sword thrusts, but the tongue of the wise brings healing.”
My words that day were like a sword thrust to my husband’s heart. My feelings of anger came from a selfish desire to have things go my way. I was thinking only of myself and not of the need behind my husband’s words. I wasn’t expressing love, and I wasn’t being lovable.
If I had only kept my mouth closed and listened to everything my husband had to say, I might have heard the Holy Spirit speak to my heart and fill it with compassion and understanding. Then I could have spoken with words of wisdom and love—words of healing.
James 1:19-20 says: “Everyone should be quick to listen, slow to speak, and slow to become angry, for man’s anger does not bring about the righteous life that God desires.” (Boy, do I need to memorize this verse!)
When we feel those negative emotions start to rise and we’re tempted to lash out, that’s the time to listen, to be silent at first, and pray for wisdom. Allowing God to calm our spirit and guide our response will bring healing through words of love and grace.
A good guideline for speaking is found in Ephesians 4:29: “Do not let any unwholesome talk come out of your mouths, but only what is helpful for building others up according to their needs, that it may benefit those who listen.”
Feelings of frustration and anger are bound to come. But they don’t have to come out our mouths. Instead, let’s follow these biblical commands to guide our hearts and words to be full of love and grace:
- Keep mouth closed.
- Listen with an open heart.
- Pray silently for understanding, love, and compassion.
- Then, speak only beneficial words to build up your husband, according to his needs.
If I had a do-over on our romantic-evening-to-be and had followed these steps, I bet that flame would have become a roaring fire instead of a soggy, extinguished mess.
As always, God’s ways are best!
May He fill all your words with love and grace,
Sabra Penley is a woman who loves the Lord Jesus and strives to bring Him glory each day, although she’ll tell you most days she falls short. She married her sweetheart 37 years ago and they have two grown kids—a son and a daughter (who just got married). As a new empty-nester, Sabra looks forward to a simpler season of life—taking life one day at a time, living with less, and finding joy in the details. Together with her husband, David, she writes a blog about living married life according to God’s Word at Simply One . You can also connect with her through twitter at @SabraPenley and Pinterest at savedsaver.