The words date back to the Garden of Eden.
“That woman you gave me – she gave me the fruit from the tree and I ate it.” (Gen. 3:12)
Ever since, husbands have blamed their wives (and God) for many of their problems. “If she would just….”, “When she….”, etc., etc. It seems almost like an automatic response to why our situation is the way it is. Men find it very easy to blame “Eve” for screwing things up.
Have you ever blamed your wife for your situation, your feelings, your hardship or your consequences? Obviously, she isn’t perfect and both husband and wife share responsibility – but here is a sentence I want us all to ponder:
My wife doesn’t cause me to be the way I am – she reveals the way I am.
If your response to your wife is unloving, is she to blame? Are you justified because of her words or actions? Or, is God using her to reveal to you where your own heart is? Was Adam correct when he said Eve gave him the fruit? Yes. Was he also correct when he said that she was responsible (and therefore to blame) for making him eat it?
Adam knew what God told him about the fruit. He was responsible for his choice, and his action – not Eve.
We know what God tells us to do too: “love your wife as Christ loves the church and gave Himself up for her” – “live with your wife in an understanding way” – “let no unwholesome word proceed out of your mouth…” – etc.
Sometimes your wife will make you so upset you just want to cuss. Sometimes she just rubs you the wrong way; doesn’t meet your expectations; doesn’t treat you with respect; or just drives you batty. In these times I want to encourage you (and me) to look past her and ask God what He is trying to reveal to you about the current condition of your heart. How is your intimacy level with Him in those moments? Are you walking in the Spirit or in the flesh?
The Holiday season can be one of added stress and busyness. It is easy to get emotionally frayed and to become slack about walking deliberately with Jesus every single day – which together can lead to some additional tension in the marriage.
Remember – “I am responsible for my response”.
No matter how your mother-in-law treats you, or your selfish sister acts, or the kids don’t respond to your heart-felt gifts – or how your wife speaks to you – you are responsible for your response. Is there something in your heart that God is revealing that needs to be dealt with (selfishness, pride, anger, resentment, unforgiveness, etc.)?
Let’s allow the Prince of Peace to rule and reign in our heart this Season, and respond to those around us as He would. This season is, by the way, all about Him.
Live through us Lord.