These past two weeks have been a time of deep reflection for me.
My dad recently became critically ill and passed away on August 17.
In the days spent caring for my father, and being with my entire family (I am the youngest of 7 children), God spoke to my heart about the beautiful example my parents have been to me in the area of marriage. My folks, had my dad lived until November, would be celebrating 63 years of marriage.
In the days after my dad’s death (by the way, he is now home with the Lord Jesus Christ as he was a believer and sure of his eternal destiny!), many people asked my mom what the secret was to a long marriage.
My mom would then recount the statement made by my dad early on to her in their marriage.
My mom asked my dad, after only being married a short time, why he didn’t fight back when an argument would come to the surface.
My dad replied “If you stop to think about what we are arguing about, it really isn’t worth the energy.”
Simple words, but ones I can say my dad lived out. He was a man of few words.
Romans 12:18 says,
If it is possible, as much as depends on you, live peaceably with all men. (NKJV)
This verse is a reminder to me of who my dad was.
He concerned himself only with what he could control — his own actions. He dealt with Mom in a peaceable manner.
As a wife of 21 years, I still have much to learn.
I can easily become “nit picky” with my husband.
Yes, even argumentative.
If am I not careful I give a foot-hold to a contentious spirit when I feel wronged or even neglected.
God gently reminds me that I can have victory over problems that arise in my marriage.
In fact, I am not powerless against such issues.
I can, as far as it depends on me, choose to live peaceably with my husband.
The Word of God in Romans continues to guide me in doing this as verse 21 in chapter 12 instructs,
Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good.
What wife doesn’t want to overcome evil? How do we do it?
We overcome evil by doing good.
I am going to take this to heart!
So far as it depends on me.
My husband will benefit.
My children with benefit.
My marriage will benefit.
Compared to the marriage of my folks I am still a young ‘un.
But one thing I will always cherish about my Dad was his example.
In the good and bad, rich and poor – he held fast and committed to the end.
So far as it depended upon him, he lived in peace with Mom and all men.
Now that is a legacy and a lesson of love we can all learn!