Therefore let him who thinks he stands take heed that he does not fall.
~ 1 Cor. 10-12
You would think that much of my time is spent helping others see their positioning / standing within the things going on in their lives. However, the largest part of my days are actually spent making sure I am positioned and standing......not by my own strength - God help me if I ever feel so secure that I omit this!
Obviously we all have problems, real or perceived. And I am sure it comes as no surprise that it would be unusual for someone to come to me saying "I have a problem; and I am the problem. Can you help me?". Another commonality I find is that most problems are not yet real. What I mean is, the problem that IS real is the panic building in their mind and anxiety in their heart because they perceive they are not going to get something they desire, or be able to prevent an undesired thing from happening. Helping people comprehend that what we think or feel can be distorting reality can be a real conundrum!
Fortunately or unfortunately, I am no different from those I support, when it comes to finding areas where our human nature can override spiritual truths we believe. These distortions in perception are what cause our conflicts - both with others and internally. For instance when a woman comes to me very hurt and conflicted. She tells me she is devastated, heart broken, because her spouse isn't "loving" toward her and she doesn't understand because all her efforts are to make sure they have a strong loving relationship.. But, when I ask her how she is responding to him and she tells me she is stone walling him: hasn't cook dinner and has hardly spoken to him since yesterday. It is obvious there is spiritual, personal and relational perspectives needing reconciliation before we discuss anything else..
Have you ever noticed that we can be truly correct in our truth, but fully incorrect in our standing, or how we carry it out. The conundrum is: how can I be trying to obtain love, working hard toward making opportunities for love and then ending up without "feeling" loved? The problem isn't Love, nor is our biggest problem "how our spouse is acting". The problem is we want something for our self; it is about me, not about them. Do you see that? When we do not get what we want, we will utilize whatever ammunition is at our fingertips to motivate the other person to move toward what we want.. Sadly, God's will is a easy reach to manipulate people. We will discuss this another time.
So how would the conversation go with her, you ask? Usually, I would ask her if she has wondered if her spouse felt loved by her; and not generically, but by her actions. We would discuss how wanting to "be loved" is certainly not the same thing as "desiring to be in a loving relationship". Ending with reading the letter of James, focusing on chapter 4 would be a wonderful place to open up conversations of what she sees happening in herself, her husband, their relationship with God and each other. .
The bottom line here is this: When we say we are not being loved, are we consistently being loving? Do we, will we, take a pause to think about Love before we act / react? I do not know too many people who think they won the Spousal Lottery 24/7 , but please do not live as though they did with you or me. We all are standing on shaky ground, even on a good day. But I praise God that He is able to make us stand when we depend on Him to deal with our little self made conundrums.
Remember, it is all in how you look at things; get yourself out of the way and you can see a much larger picture!
I pray to make it through the end of this day without tripping over myself and I pray the same for you. And I ask that we can see from His perspective instead of our small view.
- In Christ,