Joey and I have been married for a little over two and a half years. While that is certainly not time enough to make me any kind of expert, it is most definitely enough time to make plenty of mistakes and maybe learn something from a few of them ;). This post is a little random amidst many baby posts but these thoughts have been rolling around in my head for a while and I want to finally process them. So here we go :)
1. I can say with almost full confidence that the number one thing I have realized I need most in order to really thrive in my role as Joey’s wife, and same for Joey as my husband, is humility. The humility to forgive. The humility to say “I’m sorry” — honestly, for me sometimes those words feel stuck in my throat and I have to force them out. The humility to really believe that I am not always right.
2. Similar to that point, forgiveness is a major key. Joey is much better at this one than I am. I am constantly impressed, encouraged and challenged by how quick he is to forgive. He almost always takes the first step towards me emotionally when we are in conflict. While I want to shut out, he remains open. While I often am tempted to forfeit connection with him to stay in my hurt, he wants connection with me more than he wants me to know how much I hurt him. He forgives so well. If our marriage is anything to be admired, I promise you it’s because of him. Well, Jesus in him :). And I mean that with honest sincerity.
3. Obviously 1 Corinthians 13 pretty much sums it up perfectly. But one part that has really stuck out to me in these years of marriage is: “Love bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, and endures all things.” The Amplified version, I believe, in the second phrase says that love is ready to believe the best in everyone. I have tried to make this one of my main core values in my marriage. There’s something about being so close with someone that makes it so easy to be nit-picky and critical of that person. The verse about taking out the log in your own eye definitely applies here. In my role as a wife I have the power to build Joey up or tear him down like no one else can. When I believe the best about him, pray for him, and choose to see the good, Joey can really thrive in his role as a husband.
4. Joey and I are very different in the way we give and receive love. I am all about words of affirmation, and he is all about acts of service and quality time. I have not only learned more how to show my love to Joey in ways that mean a lot to him, but also that even though Joey needs to grow in verbal affirmation, he shows me he loves me in so many ways that I miss if I’m not careful. I have learned to recognize and appreciate the things he does for me.
5. Most of all, becoming more like Jesus and being controlled by the Holy Spirit rather than the selfish desires of the flesh is the answer to pretty much any problem or conflict. Repentance, forgiveness, laying aside of self, and producing the fruits of the Spirit by the Spirit are key. Marriage is sanctification kicked into higher gear. And I am a much better person for it.
I love you, Joey! Thanks for loving me, believing in me, serving me selflessly, and for being a great best friend. Most of all I just enjoy living life with you. There is honestly nobody else that I want to be experiencing the highs and lows of life with.