death to me, life to love. this is the mantra, i’m convinced, to prepare my heart and mind to build a stronger, more joyful, more loving marriage. the further forward we walk, though, the more aware i become that the more i fight for me, the less it seems my husband is motivated to do so. this love and marriage thing begs me to dig deeper, learn more, give more.
the thing is, i’m married to a man who’s naturally pretty sacrificial. the whole “laying down your life” thing never seemed hard for him. he’s more than willing to wash dishes, scrub floors (on his knees, no less), take out garbage and wash laundry. without being asked. still, i complain that he doesn’t step up enough. doesn’t lead the way i envisioned when, starry eyed with young love, i said, “i do.” so i stomp my foot, and i demand what i want. i demand that he “step up,” and free me from overcommitments, and say out loud where we’re going next, and tell me how much he loves me, and how pretty i look, and what a good job i did on my latest project.
even further, i tell God what i want – nay – i demand it. like my once-preschool-kiddos, i pout my bottom lip and i let Him know that i want answers, and now, and when i don’t see them i’m angry and quick to lose trust.
remember when you were a little kid, and you had to learn the word, “share?!” “NO, MINE!” screamed your little heart, because you wanted to hold on to the sticky candy in each fist, or the raggedy ann doll, or the barbie… this, i do still, when i make clear to my husband, to my Papa, that my wants and “needs” must be met, and now. only what is truth? that the harder i hold on to “mine,” the less happiness there is for the hoarding. when i loosen my fists and offer my gifts, my love, my service, my heart, great joy abounds. and it seems multiplied for the sharing.