The Right Buttons

What God has Joined, let no one separate“Let the wife make the husband glad to come home, and let him make her sorry to see him leave.” – Martin Luther

“But at the beginning of creation, ‘God made them male and female.’ ‘Therefore a man shall leave his father and mother and hold fast to his wife, and the two shall become one flesh.’ So they are no longer two but one flesh. What therefore God has joined together, let no man separate.” – Jesus – Mark 10:6-9

Appertain: “to belong or be connected as a rightful part or attribute” – Merriam-Webster Dictionary

The divorce rate in the United States has been for a while now, somewhere around 50 percent. That means statistically, half the weddings you went to this past summer will end in screaming and tears. This after two people decided consciously that they could never love anyone more than the person they decided to walk the isle with. Why? How can love turn so quickly into hatred? We say that we learn more about the other person when we move in with them. We say that our husband or wife changed. We say all kinds of things. And there can be truth to those sayings. However, why do our spouses change? Why is it that the more we learn about them the less we like them? Could it be that we have something to do with them? For full disclosure, I have been divorced. I know how the progression of a relationship can build and crumble. I am also happily married now, I know how a healthy relationship can grow in beauty in love. There’s a saying that’s sometimes gets bandied about that goes something like this, “Other people aren’t thinking about you that much.” It’s usually used to imply that what we do doesn’t have as much affect on other people as we think, so worrying about how we make other people feel is in itself a little self indulgent. You and I have both had our feelings hurt and possibly shed tears over what someone said at times. So we know that’s not really true. However, we often treat the closest people in our lives a little like its true, if we’re honest at least. Maybe our wives are actually upset by their hard work being continually ruined by our piggishness. Maybe some husbands are angry because they’re continually treated like animals. Maybe we need to be more considerate of the cause and effect we have on our closest companions. There is no one we know who won’t crack when the right button is pushed at the right time with the proper amount of force. We know that. And how many times have we at least tried to find that button. Then we’re surprised by the result. I wonder how many relationships could be saved if we decided we would treat the other person with dignity? If we looked for the buttons that produce love and kindness, instead of the ones that produce a temper? We have the power to influence. We have the power to change another person’s life. Let’s use that power for good and not for ill. For many of us it will take a conscious and difficult effort. However, I pray that God gives us the strength to carry through with our love for one another. I pray that God leads us to the buttons that encourage and inspire. I pray that our loved ones will react in a way that reciprocates that change in our lives as well. Love doesn’t have to end. Relationships don’t have to fall. We can reject the statistics with a new perspective on relationship. “Till death do us part,” doesn’t have to be a dream. Let’s make it a reality.

Daily Journaling Questions:

  1. How did I help someone in kindness today?
  2. What did I learn today?
  3. What am I thankful for?
  4. Who did I love today?
  5. What am I dreaming of?
  6. What about today do I want to remember forever?
  7. What are my goals for tomorrow?

Thanks for reading,

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