The Covenant Trash Can List
My husband is near perfect. I could give you an amazingly long list of all the things I love and admire and respect about him. A looooong list. I truly mean it when I say that the best part of my life began the moment we were married.
He does have a tendency to forget to put the trash can out for the pick-up.
One afternoon I was grumbling about this habit...
"He forgot to take the trash can out to the curb. Again!"
Grumble, grumble, grumble...
Rumble, rumble, rumble...
"Why can't he remember to take the trash can out?"
I even sent a text that went something like: I just made it to the curb with the can for you. You are welcome. Again.
Jeremiah and I have been married for 9 years, and together as a couple for 15. Even as I write it out it is hard for me to believe it has been that long. I know I am not alone in admitting that after a certain amount of time together it is really easy to let little things about your spouse irritate you. Habits, quirks, tendencies that were once adorable become...well...not so adorable.
If we are not careful, those irritating things become the focus of your thoughts about your spouse...forgetting all the truly great things about them.
I realized (thank you Holy Spirit) shortly after my grumbly afternoon that I was wrong in my thoughts and actions towards Jeremiah. I was focusing all my thoughts on this ONE negative about my husband and ignoring, overlooking, and not appreciating the MULTITUDE of positives.
It's easy to get to that place as it just sort of sneaks up on you.
Proverbs has a lot to say on the issue:
It is better to live in the corner of a housetop than in a house shared with a quarrelsome woman. Proverbs 21:9
It is better to live in a desert land that with a quarrelsome and fretful woman. Proverbs 21:19
A continual dripping on a rainy day and a quarrelsome wife are alike. Proverbs 27:15
You just gotta love the way Proverbs puts things...BAM, ZING...An arrow straight to the heart.
I wrote a list in my journal that I affectionately termed my Covenant Trash Can List. I wrote out all the things I loved, liked, respected, admired, and enjoyed about Jeremiah. I have a shorter list that I keep in my head. And I humbly asked the Holy Spirit to bring it to mind when I began to focus on the wrong things about my husband.
We take captive every thought to make it obedient to Christ. 2 Corinthians 10:5
It's not foolproof or perfect, but it is amazing the difference in my attitude and affections toward Jeremiah when my heart is focused on the right things.
p.s. I should clarify that it is now a rare thing for our trash to be forgotten! Who knew?!