Sometimes I get so angry with my husband that I can’t even begin to explain what that anger feels like.
I get incredibly frustrated. Like I just want to pull my hair out. Literally. Anything to take my mind off how angry I am.
Sometimes I play these scenes over and over in my head. Husband comes home from work. I yell at him. He sort of yells and responds, we hug and forgive and then things that I want to change will change. And I tell myself it will be fine. That we’ll figure it out.
I go to bed and romanticize what the future holds for my marriage.
Then reality hits at 6:00 when Husband walks through the door. I yell at him. He doesn’t say anything. I fume. He still hugs me and then moves his attention to Bubby. Guilt washes over me. I’ve unloaded on my husband with my toddler’s eyes glazed over, startled in the corner.
It only seems natural to move on with the evening as I robotically finish dinner while Husband and Bubby set the table. I’m spitting mad everything is moving forward as if my outburst meant nothing. Dinner is eaten, table is cleared, dishes put away. Anger still pulses through me as Husband and Bubby laughingly work their way upstairs to start their bedtime routine.
When these scenes unfold in our home, the emotions I feel inside are like a whirling hurricane, never really settling. For a time, the winds subside and I laugh with Husband about Bubby’s exciting, new discovery that day. Or time will go by as I put aside my anger because I can’t fight the urge to draw close to my him while my baggage waves in the distance.
But when that hurricane makes its appearance, I hardly recognize myself.
The wife I allow myself to be in those moments is one I am ashamed to admit even exists.
She is full of resentment, unforgiveness and a selfishness that she wrestles with on a daily basis. A selfishness that points all the mistakes back to my husband. A selfishness that keeps records of wrongs. A selfishness that I allow to silently and slowly eat away at the fruit God has planted in my marriage.
The aftermath is unbearable at times. I am overcome with guilt and unworthiness, that I find myself nodding along in agreement with all the lies Satan whispers.
Why is it that as we struggle in our marriage, being a failure becomes our new identity?
Why is that when we have challenges and trials that we think something is wrong with our marriage? That we have somehow fallen too far from God’s grasp?
I’ve read a few times in the Bible about marriage being hard (read about that here). There’s a passage I come back to when I’m wading through the aftermath of my selfish self. Jesus is talking to his disciples and says “Not everyone is mature enough to live a married life. It requires a certain aptitude and grace. Marriage isn’t for everyone…But if you’re capable of growing into the largeness of marriage, do it.” Matthew 19:11-12
And that all too familiar whisper from Jesus wraps around my heart, reminding me that the struggles I’m walking through is how we grow into the largeness of marriage.
Having an angry, frustrated heart says that I am still hearing from the Lord as He continues to mold me, bringing forth aptitude and grace, little by little.
The anger and remorse I feel shout that I am still growing in Him and growing as a wife. The raw emotions that come and go mean I am still sensitive to His Holy Spirit as He gently picks me back up again.
The anger I have today is redeemed and literally washed away by His blood. The trick I fall for is believing I’ll never have that angry feeling again.
But we’re humans who need God’s grace. And we forget the victory we have in the Lord, a platitude we easily spout off at times, forgetting the magnitude of what that means in our marriages.
So the challenges will continue to come and anger will take on a new face. The hurricane will hit a new target in my heart.
Ray Bradbury once said that we are all cups, quietly and constantly being filled. The trick is knowing how to tip ourselves over and let the beautiful stuff out.
And while these seasons of our marriage challenge me to the core, they remind me that I am a vessel of the Lord’s and He is continuously filling me, shaping me.
Thankfully, I don’t always have to try and figure it out. When I let the ugly out, God redeems it for beauty.
Thankfully, when the hurricane comes and goes, God is still standing in the aftermath and I realize He’s been holding me the whole time.
Read more posts about Marriage:
When Your Spouse Starts to Feel Like a Roommate
A Love Letter to My Husband
Is it OK to Love my Husband when I Don’t Feel Like it?