I feel it neccessary to tell my story. I have been unemployed from a full time job since March of 08. I am struggling now with being able to put food on the table. I thought things were going to go another way when I was let go at my last job.
I tried to take a chance at a venture with a family member. They needed me and I wanted them. So I made my first of many errors over the next few months. My wife told me not to do it. I didn't listen. I wanted the freedom that comes from owning your own business. I wanted the freedom to spend more time with my family.
To make matters worse I started taking financial responsibility for the business. I opened a bank account and put cell phones for the employees in my name. All this with my wife telling me not too.
After doing this things started going down hill. One of the other partners decided to leave us and go get a job. Then my other partner decided he wanted to go into something else and take all the equipment. This put a real strain on our family as it started to divide them.
The biggest issue was what it was doing to my wife and I. I thought I had been doing the right thing for my family. Trying to move ahead. Trying to do something more than I had. Trying to set us up for the future. Instead I was crushing the love we had together.
It took 8 months for me to start realizing that I hadn't done what I should have done. Listen to my wife and best friend. My dad had told me I was holding on to something big and at first I blamed my wife. Told myself it was the fact she didn't have faith that we would be ok. But then I looked into the mirror and realized the issue was with me.
I finally got it and it blew my socks off. I started to see I hadn't been listening to my wife. It was finally revealed that I not been a good husband. I had disrespected her and had not honored her as my wife. I was trying to help but instead I was driving a deep wedge between us. I had been slowly loosing my wife.
I went straight into the room and she was watching tv. She looked at me as said, "What is going on?", "What is wrong with you?". I had a crazy look in my eye. I told her I wanted to tell her something. I think she was a little nervous of what stupid idea I had next. But instead I emptied my heart to her. I told her how much she meant to me and how I had stomped on our marriage by not listening to her. I began weeping and the burden just lept from my shoulders. There was this moment of relief in our bedroom when I sought out forgiveness from my wife. My wife felt it and I felt it. This huge rush of fresh air hitting our marriage.
She forgave me that day. Today we are stil struggling with our finances. We are still having issues, as any couple does. But we now understand that we have to face them together. We have to respect each other and listen to each other. I have to be loving to her. We have been reading a book by the author of "Love and Respect", about communication. I am so glad I started reading it and my wife started reading it. We both now understand our roles in our marriage so much clearer now.
I have to love my wife unconditionally and she must respect me unconditionally. I hadn't done that for the last 8 months. I had not been loving or honoring. I had been selfish and prideful. The best words I have ever learned to say are these: "I apologize." I have found them to be the best two words ever in our relationship. When I am humble and say those words when we have issues. It takes a weight off. Sometimes I may even be right, but I have learned that if my wife gets upset and starts to get angry and bitter, I am wrong. I don't win if she gets so upset she says things to me that are hurtful and mean. I loose. I only win when we are at peace and we can love each other mutually.
These times are hard. I know personally. I still haven't found a job. I am only a part time student pastor. Which doesn't pay the bills. But I have the best person right next to me. Helping me, nuturing me, loving me and pushing me. I love my wife so much.
I encouarge you to let down your pride and look in the mirror. Are you listening to your spouse or are you just hearing yourself? Are you loving them they way they are supposed to be loved or are you expecting love from them? Look past your pride and say those two words that can be so powerful. I apologoize. I hope my story can lift your day up. Telling it helps me focus on what is important to me. My family.
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