Tuesday, March 28, 2006

How To Avoid 800 Arguments (At Least)

Elizabeth's comments to my last post reminded me of certain, rehashed, pathetic arguments Tom and I have had.

There's the one where Tom asks to have some space, and I would get all wild-eyed offended, believing he didn't love me as much as I loved him--totally not realizing I get lots of space each day at home, but he gets almost none at work.

There's the one where I lecture Tom over and over because he forgets to lock the back door, when I simply could have just locked it myself. I could have simply closed the bedroom closet door,too--without squinty-eye-lecturing Tom--when he constantly left that door open, exposing the mess inside...

And, of course, there's the one where Tom thinks the guy in the old movie is Spencer Tracy, which triggers, yet again, this typical livingroom scene:

Debra: "Are you crazy? That's not Spencer Tracy. That's just some Grade B actor. I know Spencer Tracy when I see him and that's certainly not him."
Tom: "Yes it is."
Debra: "No it isn't!"
Tom: "Yes it is."
Debra: "No! It isn't! And when this movie is over, I'm going to run down to the computer and the IMDB website and I'll prove it isn't Spencer Tracy."
Tom: "Fine."
Debra: "Fine."

(Please tell me we are not the only couple who has done that...)

Of course, there are the times I would have rather died than let Tom have the last word, the last dollar or the last cookie... And sadly, there were the years I spent more time and effort putting 1 Corinthians 13 into practice with my friends and church people and those out on the highways and byways of Life than I did with my own husband.

But I think God finally got pretty tired of all that. And one year, there came a day, a time, when I realized it wasn't that I needed more teaching... I'd gone to thousands of church services and seminars and Sunday School classes and I'd been taught and taught and taught. I knew the right things to say and do and be.

I'd been taught, but I hadn't been changed. There is a huge difference.

And only God could change me. So beginning that one year, I finally let God catch up to me... it was like He caught the back of my collar and s-l-o-w-e-d m-e d-o-w-n. He shuffled all the cards in my Priority Box so that the Come Away With God card was always the one on top. And in those times... in those places... during those hundreds of hours (yes, literally hundreds because, boy, did I need help)... He changed me as only His presence could change me...and continues to do so.

Bricks are still crumbling, falling down from all the Pride Walls I'd built up... and when barriers come down, everything looks clearer and brighter...

...and the all the teachings you could barely hear through the huge, thick Pride Wall, well, they start to make sense...

.... not just to your head, though, but to your heart, because the Son is shining now and you're being taught by the Best...

...and changed by Him, as well.

And now, it's the old arguments which no longer make sense. They appear as jibberish and they can even make you laugh.


"You will show me the path of life; in Your presence is fullness of joy, at Your right hand there are pleasures forevermore." ... Psalm 16:11

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