Find Your Peace Before You Speak
Yesterday in church my darling husband punctuated at least a third of his sentences with the phrase, “Know what I mean?”
I was tempted to start making tally marks in my notebook, but I refrained. The pastor at our parent church used to jingle the change in his pocket while he preached to his wife’s chagrin. In the spirit of believing the best of all of you, I expect none of you are EVER irritated, embarrassed, or annoyed by anything your husbands do, right?
My urge to tally up my husband’s repetitive phrasing stems from my own selfish nature. Had I yielded to it and come after him from that place of irritation, I would have been setting the stage for a battle royale. I would have hurt his feelings, bruised his ego, and given the enemy of our souls a place to dig away at my husband’s confidence as a minister of the Gospel. How do I know? Because I’ve done it before.
If we are irritated, aggravated, or annoyed by something our husbands do, it’s our responsibility to grab our own souls by the collar and deal with our emotional reactions before we attempt to communicate with them. Why? Because when I allow irritation to dictate my actions, I’m not walking in love.
Usually, when I deal with my own heart first, I realize my frustration and aggravation has no real substance. It’s just me, being cranky, hormonal, or supersensitive. Other times, once I’ve cleared out the choking cloud of annoyance, I find a real issue that needs to be addressed — not for MY sake, but for my husband’s sake. At those times, finding peace with myself, with God, and with my husband before I speak up is crucial! Having a calm heart and a gentle tongue allows me to approach the subject with the right motivation, and opens my husband’s heart to receive what I have to say.
She opens her mouth with wisdom, And on her tongue is the law of kindness.
Prov 31:26 NKJV
A wholesome tongue is a tree of life, But perverseness in it breaks the spirit.
Prov 15:4 NKJV
A gentle answer turns away wrath, but a harsh word stirs up anger.
Prov 15:1 NIV
Someday, (I hope) I’ll be mature enough in Christ that my husband’s quirky pulpit habits won’t distract me from his message. In the meantime, I’ll strive to keep my mouth shut until I’ve purged myself of those childish responses!
(Originally posted at The Pastor’s Wife Speaks.)