The topic of marriages and relationships can be a very touchy topic. Most often because we are always up in arms about who is credible enough to give advice or speak on this topic. I’m doing it. But I am going to share parts of me in the process.
I messed up
So, let me be honest, it's rare that I REALLY drop the ball on things within my marriage. I say that very confidently because I take the business of my marriage pretty serious. I am careful with my words and I respect my husband because I want to be respected. Also, I want what I want, when I want it so, I try to treat him well. Also, I don’t desire a sour friendship with my husband. That’s draining.
However, I am human and I dropped the ball one night. I gave an arbitrary return time that I would come home from an event and unbeknownst to me, the man would be thoroughly upset and disappointed. I apologized for my late arrival, as it was definitely later than I had stated. However, for him, that didn’t quite fit the bill. It was obvious.
I dropped the ball. I completely disregarded our time and disrespected it.
Here is why I was pissed. You see, he’s always late. My tardiness was not intentionally wrapped in disrespect, I was caught up at an event, I would even go so far to call it a work event. I personally felt, how dare he be upset when he is master lord of tardiness. However, that's not the point. I MESSED UP and I had to own it.
Now, why is it hard to own our selfishness and mistakes in a marriage? Most times, its for the very reasons I had begun to go on a rant. We begin to get caught up in the past and we completely negate what’s happening in real-time.
Now, don’t get this twisted, I can be pretty hard on my husband. I challenge him and I have high expectations of him because I know its in him. So, with that, I can really press buttons.
Marriage is hard work and for some idiosyncratic reason, we can have a tendency to do marriage like its easy or a dictatorship where one person runs the show.
It's a partnership. It's a relationship. It's teamwork. Its hard work. It's Friendship.
I have learned and is steadily learning, we have to be the change we seek, President Barack Obama couldn't be any more accurate. We can sometimes place unrealistic expectations on our spouses without considering our own unpropitious behaviors. The Nerve Right? All is not lost and here is how we can work towards inserting the change we seek. With a President Barack Obama flare.
“We Cannot Abandon The Field of Religious Discourse”
Keynote address at the Call to Renewal Conference
Washington, DC, June 28, 2006
Marriage is all good until problems arise and we talk about religion. When religion is mentioned we insert a lof ‘Buts” and we begin to talk about “how times have changed since biblical times.” My faith keeps me grounded and I remind myself of my position as a wife and my position as a woman and how I ultimately can change the trajectory of the outcomes of some situations. I equally hope men understand their position and how they too have the power to be the change they’d like to see. Basically, lean into principles from the good word to help you through some of those times. Do not abandon some of those religious concepts because they actually do help.
“Open Hearts. Open Minds. Fair-Minded Words”
Remarks at Norte Dame Commencement
South Bend, Indiana, May 17, 2009
Having an open mind will indeed help you prevail. When we encounter issues we close off our hearts and minds because we want to only hear and do the things that we feel validate our feelings only. I’m with you and I get it. However, it's important that we are slow with our words and consider the thoughts of our spouse (this is not a wife only thing, this is a WE thing). When we open our hearts and minds to the other person's perspective it will change our relationship with our words.
“If nothing else, that knowledge should give us faith that through our collective labor, and God's providence, and our willingness to shoulder each other's burdens, America will continue on its precious journey towards that more perfect union.”
“I Am Here To Say They Are Wrong”
Remarks on the economy
Osawatomie, Kansas, December 6, 2011
There are so many opinions about our marriages and relationships and we allow them to take up space in the very presence of the home in which they don’t reside in. Why do we do that? Your marriage is yours. It's not your relatives or your friends. There will be naysayers about your love and how you do your marriage, and I am here to say they are wrong. Use discernment and wisdom, not everyone is credible. We have to be accountable so don’t allow others to tell your story.
“We shouldn't be weakening oversight and accountability. We should be strengthening oversight and accountability.”
“Put On Love”
Remarks at the National Prayer Breakfast
Washington, D.C., February 5, 2015
Listen. We are married because of love. While love alone cannot sustain the marriage, it is a heavy piece that brings us back to one another. However, there may be times when we are not particularly feeling loving. We have to remember to PUT ON LOVE. Love is the armor. It is the glue. Putting love on can look like vulnerability. It can appear to be weak or giving in. It's not. Its the courage you need to keep your marriage going.
“If we are properly humble, if we drop to our knees occasionally, we will acknowledge that we never fully know God's purpose. We can never fully fathom His amazing grace.”