Hello, my name's Deanna. And I'm a wife.
I'm a wife who loves her husband with her whole heart. I'm passionate. Supportive. Encouraging.
But I'm also a yeller. I'm a smasher. I'm a let's-fight-it-out-now-so-that-rage-doesn't-consume-me-later type of wife.
Recently I came across a line in a book called "You and Me Forever" by Francis Chan. The line prompted me to write this blog post. It reads:
"The way we love our spouses should make the love of Christ believable and true."
Here's a bit more context: Francis Chan and his wife are talking about marriage and how God chooses to reveal Himself through His people. We are called to represent Him to the world around us. That includes revealing Himself through marriages.
If I can be honest, that line is a terribly scary thing in general. And my first thought: No wonder the world is far from God. Christians are seriously as messed up as the rest of humanity, plus we often judge others but don't judge ourselves. We condemn patterns of behavior in others but don't strive to change our own sinful patterns. We struggle in secret with the same sins that others display openly. If we're supposed to represent God to the world, WE SUCK.
Now let's add marriage on top of that. Wow. Marriage. The thing that brings two sinful people together, puts them in a cramped living space, makes them promise to put each other first forever and ever and then lets life wash over them like the tide rolls in and out. Marriage. That thing that so many people give up on.
Thankfully, marriage also refines you. It humbles you. It changes you. And if it doesn't, it should.
My husband keeps me grounded. He sees things differently than I do. He teaches me how to love people better. He teaches me how to be sensitive. How to be patient. How to be detailed. Without him, I'd still be that blunt, judgmental know-it-all who doesn't think before she speaks. Let's be clear, I am STILL all of those things, but he's constantly helping me learn a better way to speak truth and love without making people feel like unfriending me on Facebook.
As I reflect on our marriage, I wonder HOW people see us. Do they see Jesus in us? Sure, we serve together at church, but sometimes we come with pouts on our faces. Yes, we walk arm-in-arm through Target like two 90-year-olds, but sometimes we barely say a word to each other because we're irritated by each other. It's true that we strive to be united in front of others, but sometimes I can't help but be derailed by his selfishness nor he by my impatience. And when we get angry at each other in public, it shows on our faces. We can't hide it.
Nevertheless, I hope that in our good moments and in our bad moments, people look at our marriage and think, something's different. I hope they see a love and a dedication that can only be explained by Jesus' grace and love. I hope they see two imperfect, REAL people who display that the journey to follow and be like Jesus isn't always easy, but it's worth fighting for.
It's worth fighting for.