I used to resent making my husband’s lunches – even though I was the one who offered to do it and Greg never really asked me to do this for him. I made a peanut butter and jelly sandwich for him on the days he worked, sometimes with an apple, too – which was all he really wanted. But he never ever made lunch for me when I worked. (Insert my old scowling facial expressions here.) Of course, I don’t think I really asked him to – except maybe once – and it was with so much contempt. 🙁 Sometimes I even threw some verbal barbs at him because of my bitterness over the issue – and many other little things about which I cherished resentment.
Now I have a very different attitude. SO THANKFUL! God has radically changed my heart.
Now – I thank God that He has blessed me with Greg. He is a gift to me. Marriage is a gift. I get to be Greg’s wife. I get to be married to him. I realize that this life is short and that tomorrow is not guaranteed. I am thankful to have ways to bless him – even something as small as making his lunch for him. I have spoken with enough widows to know that if something were to happen to my husband tonight – I would sure miss him! And I would WISH I could make his lunches again or clean the bathroom for him again or pick up a pair of dirty socks or whatever. Now I give with a joyful spirit – not out of duty or resentment – but because I am filled up with Christ and want simply to bless Greg – expecting nothing in return.
I also notice that Greg does tons of things for me and our family without resentment. He takes care of all the yard work – I don’t help at all with that. He does all of the massive renovation projects around our house. I don’t contribute anything other than helping to sweep up or helping with the painting sometimes. He goes under the house when the sewage line is messed up or the garbage disposal line becomes disconnected. He handles the vehicle maintenance. All without one iota of resentment. And that was even before God changed my attitude.
If I am giving with resentment in my heart – that is a big problem. Something needs to change! Either my giving or my attitude.
- Do not eat the bread of a man who is stingy; do not desire his delicacies, for he is like one who is inwardly calculating. “Eat and drink!” he says to you, but his heart is not with you. Proverbs 23:5-7
- “The King will reply, ‘Truly I tell you, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers and sisters of mine, you did for me.’” Matthew 25:40
- The point is this: whoever sows sparingly will also reap sparingly, and whoever sows bountifully will also reap bountifully. Each one must give as he has decided in his heart, not reluctantly or under compulsion, for God loves a cheerful giver. 2 Cor. 9:6-7
I had no idea that I was being stingy or that God counted the way I treated Greg (and others) as if I was doing those things and having those same attitudes toward Him. The way I treat others and my attitudes toward them is a tangible indicator of my love and attitude toward God. I was a reluctant giver. I gave with strings attached – with lots of expectations for what I wanted in return. That is not God’s kind of love.
- Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres. Love never fails. 1 Corinthians 13:4-8
Most days, I make Greg’s lunch. However, if I don’t have time to make lunch for Greg these days, I simply respectfully say something like, “Honey, I’m crunched for time today. Would you please take care of your lunch today? Thanks!”
God spent a lot of time with me going through my thought life. He showed me how I was listening to the enemy – the accuser – about Greg. And how when I held on to resentment and bitterness, I opened the door of my heart to the enemy – allowing him to come make a fortress in my heart. I let him use my thoughts, my tongue, my attitudes, my words, and my actions to try to destroy Greg. I didn’t realize the source of my thoughts at the time. I thought it was just my own thinking – not temptations from Satan. But all of that ugly sin poisoned me, separated me from fellowship with God, and destroyed my husband and our intimacy on many levels. NOT WORTH IT!
I invite you to check out a few posts about these kinds of issues and we can definitely talk more about them together:
- How I Handle the Toilet Seat Being Left Up and Other Quandaries
- Posts about Bitterness
- My Demon – about the ways that the enemy tempts us to think wrongly about our husbands and how he then gets a foothold in our hearts
- How Satan Would Love to Destroy Your Marriage Through Your Thought Life
- “Taking Our Thoughts Captive” – a Peacefulwife Youtube video
- Why Do I Have to Change First?
As a woman who knows Christ and who submits to Him as LORD, I don’t have to be controlled by my sinful flesh anymore. Praise God for Romans 6! I am now dead to my old sinful self and to sin and this world! I can choose to invite God’s Spirit to control me completely. Then I don’t have to be a slave to sinful thoughts and lies of the enemy. I can recognize those poison thoughts and shoot them down in the power of God’s Spirit in me and resist that temptation and fully submit every thought to Jesus.
As you allow Christ to radically transform your heart, mind, and soul – you won’t even have to think those resentful, bitter, disrespectful thoughts toward your husband, God, or anyone else when you have repented of them and invite God to teach you His amazing wisdom and His love and grace.
- “The only humility that is really ours is not that which we try to show before God in prayer, but that which we carry with us, and carry out, in our ordinary conduct; the insignficances of daily life are the importances and the tests of eternity, because they prove what really is the spirit that possesses us.”
― Andrew Murray, Humility
- “How different our standard is from Christ’s. We ask how much a man gives. Christ asks how much he keeps.”
― Andrew Murray