By Sabrina McDonald
I was having one of those days. I woke up late, forgot some important deadlines, and it was pouring rain. I had to park a quarter of a mile from my building and walk. I had an umbrella, but about half-way there, someone drove by, splashing me from head to toe.
It was like a movie scene. As I stood there, speechless and unmoving, it struck me how funny it would be if it wasn’t happening to me.
There was only one thing left to do.
Laugh out loud.
I shook my head, slowed my walk, and lowered my expectations. It was going to be one of those days, so I could get mad or roll with it. I chose to roll with it.
I’ve noticed the days I’m most in control of my attitude are when I decide to lighten up. When I choose to laugh annoyances off instead of letting my circumstances irritate me.
The same holds true in marriage.
Occasionally, my husband unintentionally makes what I consider a critical comment. But I’ve noticed my best response is to wink or flick his nose and say, “You’re so adorable!” (Or something just as goofy.)
I’m being facetious, of course, but it’s better than getting my feelings hurt or yelling about his lack of appreciation.
Thankfully, one of the fruits of the spirit is self-control. I get to choose the way I respond to my spouse, despite initial feelings.
I’m not perfect, and neither is my husband. So I’m learning the importance of taking his (sometimes insensitive) comments in stride and laughing at myself.
And that makes for a better marriage in the long run. Especially on the days I need to lighten up.
The good stuff: For God gave us a spirit not of fear but of power and love and self-control. (2 Timothy 1:7)
- The next time your spouse makes an insensitive comment, take a deep breath, count to 10, and choose not to respond in anger.
- What’s one gracious, humorous phrase you could use to de-escalate when your spouse steps on your metaphorical toes?
- Ask God to help your self-control grow stronger.
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