Confessions of a Passively, Aggressive Wife

Every Sunday morning we struggle ’round here.  There is something about the whole “getting out of the door for church” thing that is seemingly impossible to do without meltdowns, malfunctions and major battles likening to the start of a next World War.  No matter how hard I try, we are usually late and forgetting something by the time we arrive in the parking lot.  Thankfully it has never been a kid.
So.  This little mama has been thinking and I am determined to overcome the plague of Sunday Morning Insanity.
My solution?  Prepare well on Saturday night.  Sounds simple enough, yes?

Step one.  Set out bowls and oats.

Next, spoons and clothes.  Coffee cups and creamer.  My necklace draped over its hanger and three little toothbrushes lay waiting for morning breath.

A straw bag parked by the door packed with a Bible, journal, chewing gum and an extra pair of undies (Luke’s, not mine.)

Feeling proud, can’t you tell?
I urged Brent to wake a little sooner and he did.  The goal…load van 8:30.  Depart 8:35.  Arrive 8:45.  Boys in classes 8:50.  Seated in service 8:55. Worship begins at 9.

At 8:35 I squeeze my way into the van.  Moving over Radio Flyer tricycles and bikes.  Pushing the shop vac to the side as I open the van door, the boys pile in.  Snap. Snap. Snap.  Done.
And we almost made it flawlessly…until I opened my mouth as we backed out of the driveway.
“Ugh.  The garage is such a disaster.  It stresses me out.  I can’t wait to get it cleaned up.”
Silent pause.  
Brent… talking slow and patient, but frustrated: “Babe, I know the garage is a mess.  I know you want me to mow the yard.  I know there are things around the house that we haven’t been able to get around to yet.  We have just been busy.  I promised I will do them.  And I will.  Your comments are directed at me and they are very discouraging.”
Silent pause.  Awkward.
Geez. I wish I had remembered to set out my shovel the night before.  So I could go dig a hole for my head.
He was right.  100% right right right.  I do this.  Passively express my disappointment about X, Y or Z to him through sly and generalized comments. And I do it on purpose.  
And usually he disregards them.
But not today.  Not this organized and beautiful Sunday morning.
My heart, so full of yuck, I couldn’t even respond.  It took me two miles to the red light before I could speak.
“I know I do that.  And I’m sorry.  Honestly, I am frustrated that we’ve been so busy.  I am frustrated that the grass is high and the garage is a mess.  That was my unmet expectation talking.  I shouldn’t say it that way.”
Silent pause.
My anvil heart sat low in my stomach.  Keenly aware of my sin.  My disrespect.  My selfishness. And my uncompassionate heart.  I reply, “But I do wish you had waited to call me out.  At least not on the way to church. Before worship.  Before we are to teach a class.”
Oh, but what better time to worship.  Sitting in the middle of my broken heart.  Bringing my pieces before God.  Presenting it all to him in unorganized fragments.
Today just might be a tearful offering.
And it was.

“As the deer panteth for the water so my soul longeth after thee.  You alone are my heart’s desire and I long to worship thee.  You alone are my strength my shield. To you alone may my spirit yield.  You alone are my heart’s desire and I long to worship thee.”

{tears.  tears.  and more tears.}
My spirit had not been yielding to the Lord.  But instead, my own agenda.

Believe it or not, my heart’s desire is Him.  Not a clean garage.

After the final song, I sat down and opened my journal for note-taking.  Written in the top corner of the page were printed these words…

Create in me a pure heart, God, and make my spirit right again.  Psalm 51:10 NCV

The words spoke to a deep place.  

Make my spirit right again.

Right Again (chadash):  To be new. To repair.
What an opportunity.  A new heart. Every day.  Every minute.  Every time I come before God, I have an invitation for heart repair.

I prayed that perfectly placed Scripture in my journal, swallowed all my pride and reached for Brent’s hand.  

Healing.  A broken piece being replaced.

This Sunday morning, it didn’t matter if I set the sugar out the night before, I wasn’t prepared for all of  this.  

More importantly than planning for breakfast, I need to be preparing my heart.  Panting for God as a deer for water.  Yielding my spirit to the One I desire.

The garage did get cleaned and the yard freshly mowed (Hey Brent…..If you’re reading, I love you and again am sorry.  Thank you for being so gentle and forgiving…and not kicking me out.  Some days, I deserve it.)

But better still, my priorities are back in line and my heart is made right again.

That is Grace.

Lord, thank you for your discipline.  Thank you for refining me and allowing me to bring my broken pieces to you in worship.  Create in us a clean heart, today.  Thank you that you offer to renew and repair us.  Will you do that right now, Lord?  Make our old, crabby hearts new?  I am amazed at the power you have to really do that.  Mmm. Lord, I yield my spirit to you.  I wait for you.  I listen for you.  I need you, Lord Jesus, like a deer needs water.  You are my strength and shield.  Amen.

4 thoughts on “Confessions of a Passively, Aggressive Wife

  1. This is an ironic post because the last 3 Sunday's have been more than a nightmare getting out the door and of my hubby and I can't seem to not be at each others throats by the time the car is in park! And by the time we get our boys checked and sit down distracted and frustrated are all we feel! And the car ride home is just as bad! I believe the enemy relishes in our Sunday morning behavior but at the core of the issue it's our selfishness! Thanks for the wonderful reminder!! I love reading!!

  2. I was just praying Psalm 51 today & thanking God for His words in Isaiah 43:18-19 (because I'm way to good at remembering the former things), "Do not call to mind the former things, or ponder things of the past. Behold, I will do something new, now it will spring forth; will you not be aware of it? I will even make a roadway in the wilderness, rivers in the desert." Believing for that new thing for us both! He has overcome; therefore we can, too!

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