I’m so excited to introduce our first guest contributor, Abigail Larson. You can find her blogging at OurSureAnchor.com.
Seven weeks ago, my husband, Andrew, began a rigorous six-day-a-week workout routine.
To go along with this lifestyle change, he started packing a one-quart Mason jar of water around the house with the goal of drinking a gallon every day.
I didn’t mention it to Andrew, but this started to bug me. The jar comes to bed with us, sits at the dinner table with us, and generally ends up within arm’s reach of wherever Andrew is functioning at any given point in the day.
A few nights ago, I was cleaning the house while Andrew was gone and I came to the coffee table, which is decorated simply and exactly the way I like it. Right in the middle of my homey centerpiece sat a half-empty Mason jar, on one of my special coasters.
For a fleeting moment, I considered marching it straight to the kitchen sink, dumping it out, and forever hiding all the jars. I couldn’t really explain it, but this new habit was just plain getting on my nerves.
As a wife of two years, in some ways I’m still getting used to living with my husband.
We have diverse preferences, tastes and quirks, and they all seem to combine to bring out the selfishness in me. I’ll never forget what my dear friend Cindy shared with me at my bridal shower. “Your job isn’t to change your husband, but to love and embrace everything about who he is. You are getting a package deal. You can’t pick and choose what you’re going to love and what you’re going to change about him. It’s all a part of who he is.”
As I stood in my living room giving that jar the evil eye, God worked in my heart and reminded me of what an amazing gift I have in Andrew. When there is so much to be thankful for, how could I waste energy and attitude griping about something so insignificant? Right then and there, I intentionally changed my perspective from loathing the jar as annoying to embracing it as endearing. And guess what? Now, a few days later, every time I spot that silly jar, I can’t suppress a smile. Instead of bothering me, it reminds me of the treasure that Andrew is. It makes me glad that he is healthy and fit. It encourages me to be thankful that I have a husband to pick up after and to care for.
It’s just a Mason jar, but now it represents so much more.
Of course, this is a trivial example of something that really shouldn’t have irritated me in the first place. But the idea of embracing my husband as a package deal, with all his qualities and quirks, is a reminder I need on a regular basis. It’s down to earth, practical, and easy to apply. It helps me respond to the little bumps and jolts on this marriage road with grace and affection instead of resentment.
I’d challenge you to take the annoying quirks about your spouse and choose to see them as endearing qualities. It can be surprisingly hard for us ladies to let go of small things we’re just itching to “fix,” but in the end, it is freeing for us, and our husbands feel more loved and appreciated for who they are.
What are the Mason jars in your marriage? Can you turn them into something to love?