I’m married to an imperfect man. I could list some of these imperfections, but I would hate it if he pointed out all of mine for everyone to see so I won’t do that to him. But he is imperfect. He had messed up on little things and he has messed up on big things. His imperfection gives me a lot of power. I have the power to choose how I respond to him.
I could point out every flaw, keep a scorecard, belittle him to his face and behind his back and so on. In the moment it might even make me feel better. But in the long run, all that serves is to tear down our marriage. And then how could I ask him to overlook and forgive my many, many, many imperfections?
This week on the third or fourth time that I read all the way through Philippians I started reading it as if I, like Paul, was talking to someone else instead of reading it as God talking to me. That really convicted me on how I look at others, especially my husband. Here’s some of the verses that stuck out to me.
“And I am certain that God, who began the good work within you will continue his work until it is finally finished on the day when Christ Jesus returns” (1:6) God’s not finished with Jeff yet so I shouldn’t expect perfection.
“I pray that your love will overflow more and more, and that you will keep on growing in knowledge and understanding. For I want you to understand what really matters, so that you may live pure and blameless lives until the day of Christ’s return.” (1:9) Am I praying for Jeff like this? What if I silently prayed this first when he messes up… perhaps it would help ease any anger or frustration.
There’s so many more that I won’t go into… but I’ll leave you with one that when I read Philippians as God talking to me definitely applies when you’re married to an imperfect spouse. (which I’m suspecting anyone married is…)
“Whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable – if anything is excellent or praiseworthy – think about such things.” (4:8) Let’s not spend our time dwelling on our spouse’s, or children’s, or co-worker’s, or friend’s imperfections. Let’s trust God to “continue his work” on those things while we think on their great qualities.
Jeff is kind, thoughtful, funny, fun to be around, picks out great gifts, a great listener, loving, romantic, an involved dad, forgiving, blind (he must be because he tells me I’m beautiful…), athletic and a great encourager.
What are the great qualities in those around you?