if it's not sin...
Accept one another, then just as Christ accepted you, in order to bring praise to God. Romans 15:7
Like I've mentioned before, Mr. H and I do a weekly devotional together most Sunday's. The book we've been going through is called Devotions for a Sacred Marriage by Gary Thomas. There have been many key points we've taken away so far.
This chapter really stood out to us. Too often we see our spouse or significant other and focus on their annoying habits and try to change them.
Thomas explains it perfect when he writes "The man or woman you're married to is his or her own person. Some things about him or her may not be to your liking, but if the things that bug you aren't sin, you have no right to demand that he or she changes."
Mr. H is always early. He always joking says, "If I'm on time, then I'm five minutes late." Silly right! I am actually an on time person too, but he can be a little extreme at times. There have been numerous occasions when we'll be needing to leave for something and he'll be standing at the door waiting for me to finish getting ready/freshen up my makeup/etc. Now, this really annoys me! I don't like to feel rushed!! And I know that he's already ahead of schedule so that bothers me even more. There was one time he had the door open and I wasn't even ready yet!!
He clearly knew I was annoyed, but instead of nagging at him to stop rushing me (which I've done in the past), the best thing to do is to let him know how irritated it makes me and ask that he wait until I'm ready to leave before standing by the door. And in return, I'll do my best to always be on time for him.
If it's not sin, I can't expect him to change it. The issue is really my issue. I can either learn to live with it or I can bring it up to let him know it bothers me and maybe he'll change his ways.
I think this is so important because you didn't marry another you. You married a different person. Each person has their own quirks, habits, sin and issues. If the things that bother you about your spouse aren't sinful, then you can't change him. Thomas states, "If you persist in trying to change things that aren't sin issues, you're going to make your marriage life miserable."
This just reminds me that Christ loves me for who I am at this very moment. Yes, there are things that I need to work on in my own life, but His love never changes. And like Christ I am to love Mr. H entirely, even the things that aren't sinful.
Mr. H and I have been blessed by a wonderful first year of marriage. I feel very lucky because we haven't had many issues arise so far regarding wanting to change each other's non-sin issues. However, it's in the back of our minds and I know it will help us in the future.
Next week I'll have a fun guest post...stay tuned!!