Well here we are at Friday and a special Friday it is because we are celebrating Russ’s birthday today.
Perfect day to wrap up this little mini-series on marriage.
When I got the idea I just jotted down five things off the top of my head so today we finish with the simplest and one that definitely works in all of our relationships and words we share publicly and privately.
I read this one in Stormie Omartian’s “The Power of a Praying Wife” many a moon ago as she recommended spending time in prayer before you speak to your spouse about something that is potentially dicey.
Succinctly we can remember this one with “Pray before you say.”
I found this extremely effective in both our marriage and parenting.
I remember one day when our first born was an older teen and we had one of those conversations that didn’t go well. I don’t remember the details, but I remember being very upset and hurt and angry which meant I needed to go for a walk.
Our family knew well that when mom just got up and walked out the door that was probably what she was doing.
Walking, fuming, rehashing and praying.
We have a humorous incident that brings a lot of laughter now at a certain meal when John was going through a phase about the way other people eat and he made a face at me for the way I was chewing my dinner. I believe the story goes, I threw my hamburger down on my plate and left the house for a long walk. Apparently the pickle flew free of the bun and no one even dared to laugh as it landed on the table.
But I digress.
In the conflict with our Rachel that day, I walked and I prayed and I walked and I prayed and finally I had peace and I went home. This was a standout moment in the Pray before you Say and not the norm, but she met me at the door and apologized and we had a nice conversation and I never got to say all the words that had come after I prayed.
However; my fondest memory of this is that unbeknownst to me, my beloved husband must have been doing this as well.
Because during the season when our house and lives turned upside down with the arrival of my health-declined parents and aunt that had us scrambling to find care and housing and close out their homes; our life was so fraught with so much sudden drama I was wondering how in the world to tell people what was going on.
As I pondered this over the course of the first week, I finally went to Russ and said that I had been praying about what to share to keep people in the loop and decided that no explanation was necessary.
Our closest friends knew the extent of the crisis and that would be enough. I felt released from having to apprise everyone of the details and we would just move through the trial on a need to know basis.
My wonderful and wise husband leaned back in his chair and just said he had been praying about that very thing for me and was relieved to hear that I had come to this conclusion.
I was stunned.
That man had been praying behind my back before he said a word to me.
And to this day as I stew about things and mull things over, I smile and feel an easing of my anxiety because I am pretty sure he is praying quietly, too.
I hope you have enjoyed some thoughts this week about things we have found to be helpful in our marriage. Life is way too short to spend it always in conflict. A little give and a little take and a lot of grace is so very helpful.
And yes, if you know Russ Reimer, you know that he spent the better part of yesterday asking me to run every conceivable random errand with him just to see if I would say, “sure.”
Did we laugh every time I looked up with a puzzled expression and then answered with “sure.”
Sure we did <3
Have a blessed weekend. You are loved.