I remember a story Joyce Meyer told once about how she and her husband were having a fight one afternoon when the doorbell rang unexpectedly. Joyce recounts how when she opened the door to see her pastor standing there, she was able to immediately switch from being angry at her husband to all smiles and joy in front of their pastor. Her point was that we do have the ability to change our words and our way of acting on the spot if it matters to us. And in this story, her pastor’s impression of her counted.
Leading up to Christmas, my partner and I have had moments of being a teeny bit tetchy with each other. Letting end-of-year-ness rattle our cages. We were snapping and speaking to each other without care.
And then my better half made this observation ….
He said we need to remember to talk to each other like we would talk to our children since when we talk to our children or any child for that matter, we naturally do that with care and consideration. Literally, our words are delivered with “kid gloves.”
In contrast, when we’ve been in a relationship for a long time, we can become complacent about the words we use with each other. We can find ourselves agitated over the smallest of things. Things that if one of our children did, we would either overlook or if a comment was needed, would be spoken with love and patience.
I needed to hear this. And together with Joyce’s story, reminds me that at any moment, I can be softer, gentler, and more patient.
Do not let any unwholesome talk come out of your mouths, but only what is helpful for building others up according to their needs, that it may benefit those who listen. Ephesians 4:29 NIV
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