In the book, they write that "More than biting your lip, more than clapping a hand over your mouth, patience is a deep breath." Now, I used to be a very patient person, before I had kids. I joke that childbirth snapped something in me and made me more aggressive and less patient. No, I can't blame that on childbirth. (The stretch marks are another story!) As I've gotten older, I've become lazy in attitude. It's easier to let the words fly when my husband angers me, than to take a deep breath. Why is it easier? I believe when I take a deep breath I have to look into my own heart and examine my motives. That is way more complicated than just spouting off and blaming someone else for my reaction. However, when I take that deep breath, I'm treating my husband with respect and understanding. This will promote peace and trust in our home. By the way, I believe this will also work with children. How often have I snapped at my children in the stress of the moment, only to be met with whining and crying? Anger breeds anger. I'm starting to see a pattern. Taking a deep breath and asking God for guidance before reacting will save a ton of heartache in my home. This will take some heavy duty praying and practice for me, but I'm willing, Lord. Pray for me, please? Patience is a beautiful word, but definitely a hard pill for me to swallow.
Kindness comes a little easier for me. Often though, I get so busy with the everyday duties of parenting/homemaking that I forget to do those little things which will let my husband know how much I appreciate him. He works hard. He is a great daddy and a wonderful husband. I want him to realize I notice all the things he does for our family. I feel valuable and treasured when he does those things for me...and wouldn't it be awesome for him to feel those things too? Kindness cultivates more kindness. Isn't it interesting how that works? What would it mean to my husband for me to ask every day how I could best pray for him? There are endless possibilities to kindess. Perhaps, I'll bake his favorite cake or make his coffee or iron his clothes (I don't iron much. I'm dangerous with a hot iron)...maybe I'll write him a thank you note, so he will know I am absolutely certain he is the most wonderful man in the world. It's exciting to contemplate what ideas this will inspire. And here again, I believe this will work with children as well. Doesn't the world need more kindess?
Patience and kindness are so essential in a marriage, but so easy to overlook. It's time to get serious about our marriages. With the foundation of family crumbling around us, don't you think we need to put on our armor. If we fail to diligently care for our marriages, Satan will slither in and try to destroy them. I will fight tooth and nail to keep this family whole and healthy. It all begins with my relationship with my husband....and in turn, our children will also reap the benefits. How amazing is our God?