*I did say this was marriage month…so I am deviating from the love story today.*
One aspect of marriage that is often the trickiest, is how to respond to conflict. I am in NO WAY claiming that I am good at conflict resolution, let’s face it, I am the one that most often creates the troubled times in our relationship. However, I do feel like God has given me a tool that I try to use more and more each time my blood begins to boil.
My arsenal is filled with one predominant weapon. It is designed to bring about compassion and love in me, to overwhelm me…and to cause that compassion and love to spill over to Bart. The way I access this tool is by asking one simple question to God.
“How do you see Bart right now?”
The truth is that our God loves us more than anyone could ever comprehend. And I also believe that He wants us to love like He does- and He knows that will only happen if we ask for it, run after it (Him) and seek this love out. So whether I’m boiling mad or just a little annoyed with Bart (this works for any conflict with anyone), I try to ask the simple question. Do I ask all the time? No, I wish.
But the most precious gift is the answer. Because God loves Bart so much, He is going to show me insights that my husband didn’t/can’t/won’t share because of many reasons- namely it’s usually that he doesn’t see it himself. That is what marriage is about…coming up under your spouse and pushing them to deeper love with God by encouraging and honoring and speaking truth and life into their hearts.
The times that I choose this way of conflict resolution are always the sweetest. I get to see God’s perspective of my soulmate, and in the midst of the drama, I melt. Jesus is so good about shining the spotlight on the perfect places of my husband’s heart, and therefore showing me the truth.
I’m telling you, the enemy wants nothing more than for me to stomp away from an argument and seethe in another room, spewing angry thoughts and words into thin air; helping me prepare my comeback speech about how I’m so right and my husband is so wrong. And believe me, I have done this countless times. But inevitably, this leads to even more pain and delayed resolution.
I hope I can look back in 20 years and say that asking God this question is my normal response to conflict…but in the meantime, I am thankful that God has shown me such a precious way to love my husband and get out of the way for Holy Spirit to strengthen our marriage.