Perfect Day

Thursday, February 28, 2013

Not long ago, I experienced one of those few-and-far-between "perfect days".  I hope you know the kind.  The sun was shining, everyone woke up fairly well-rested and not screaming from a bad dream or in a state of utter chaos like most days.  I drank my coffee while it was still hot, I got to shower, and I didn't have to suck-it-in when I put on my jeans because they were in that perfectly-broken-in stage of the week somewhere between getting washed a few days ago but not-yet-disgusting-enough to be in need of laundering.

As the sun broke through the sky, I watched my husband swing our daughters (as they begrudgingly took turns) and caught glimpses of heaven as their laughter erupted to and fro, to and fro.  Their shadows dove deeply into the pavement of the sidewalk and a cool breeze clutched my arm reminding me how lucky I was to get to wear short sleeves outside in the middle of February.

As I lay in bed that night, I couldn't help but sigh and just say over and over in my head "Thank you, Jesus, thank you Jesus, thank you Jesus" in one of those non-chalant-yet-completely-sincere prayers where I want nothing more than to drift from perfect day into perfect dream and be swept into a rejuvenating state of rest with hope to wake up feeling just as grateful.  Indeed, I felt blessed.  Overwhelmingly blessed.  Too-good-to-be-true blessed.

And, this is exactly the perfectly vulnerable state that I was in when the first lie of the night crossed my mind.  "This is too perfect.  Something bad is coming."

I don't know about you, but sometimes I get superstitious with my prayer life.  I'll be blabbering along honestly with God, when all of a sudden I catch myself bargaining with Him.  It's like He doesn't already know that I'll screw up again, or like I can suddenly earn the gift of His grace in my life - both of which are big fat whoppers.  Lies.  Falsehoods.  And a complete distortion of how my life actually looks from God's perspective (which, in short, is something like "I love you.  Stop trying to deserve it.  You don't.  That's why I invented grace.  The end.")  There's nothing I've done to earn where I am, why would I think the future would work any differently?  It seems to be simple human nature (sin, that is) that keeps me drifting towards the notion that "If I just do ABC, then XYZ is sure to happen."  The fact that this might not be true when it comes to life, is exactly what had me unsettled.  (This is the when-bad-things-happen-to-good-people part of life that we do our best to avoid in this world.)

I woke up in the middle of the night nearly debilitated by my worry.  I spent much of the night fraught with dread.  The "What ifs?" crept in and soon manifested themselves into full-blown hypotheticals spinning out of control.  I kept praying and praying and somehow my mind would drift back into a tormented thought of terrible questions, concerns, and doubts.  I found myself sick with despair that all this goodness might just be a cruel way of "waiting for the other shoe to drop" and that surely, something devastating must be in my path for all of this blessing to be here in my lap for the time being.

I couldn't help myself.  I got out of bed, paced around the house, checked my phone, prayed some more, and physically and audibly (literally, as if I was shaking his grip off my arms) said "In the name of Jesus, Satan, you have no power over me."  I wish I could tell you some incredibly wild, movie-like story of how angels appeared or a light shone or how I instantly burst into tears with the feeling of peace that surpasses all understanding.  But, I can't.  It didn't.  Instead, I returned to bed, confident in hope; but frustrated and tired.

I still couldn't sleep.  And when I can't sleep, I think.  This is good and bad, seeing as I get a lot of thinking done...but, it is wearing and rarely productive.  However, as I kept praying and asking God to separate His truth from my feelings, clarity began to set in.  Yes, today was beautiful.  No, I may not deserve it, but that does not mean I don't fully get to engage and enjoy in the blessing that it is.  Yes, God is good.  No, every day will not go perfectly.  Yes, God is good.  No, I will not go through this life without pain.  Yes, God is good.  God is good.  God is good.

I was under attack.  Some of you out there might think I'm just nuts, but the truth of the matter was that Satan would want nothing more than to steal my present joy, especially when I start giving God the credit.  I have no idea why my girls are healthy and my marriage is happy and I love to write - but they are and it is and I do.  If you've read this blog for long at all, you know that NOT every day is perfect (HA! far from it) but, this little gem in my week was a noticeable blessing and it snowballed into my great big appreciation for all that God has given me and redeemed in my life.

And it all could disappear tomorrow.  And still...  God. Is. Good.

Before I finally drifted back to sleep, I had to cling to the one truth that was all I really had to satiate my worry for the night:  Jesus is all I have, Jesus is all I need, Jesus can't be lost.  (Okay, maybe that's three truths.) But, it is the essential truth that my heart as a human mother and wife struggles against.  Of course I love my children and husband beyond all reason.  I can't imagine my life without them and when I start to go down that unfathomable path of worry like something might happen to them it only leads to destructive thoughts that paralyze my future completely.  But, I can't live like that!  Nor do I have to!

We are not called to worry.  We are not called to control.  We are not called to be the answer.  I have to let God be God (thank goodness!) and count one final blessing:  that I get to live in the freedom, under the protection, and with the privilege of allowing God to churn out the utmost goodness out of my life however HE deems best.  It won't always be comfortable or understandable, but He is faithful to make the most of it no matter what.

This is a lot to swallow at three in the morning.  It's taken more than one sleepless, worrisome night for me to be able to (over the years) get better and better at distinguishing truth from feelings.  I have a loooong way to go, and many worries to wage war with, this I am sure.  But, in this constantly shifting world that throws unpredictable challenges my way, I'm on-my-knees-grateful that I have a God who is eternally good to turn to when my irrational two-in-the-morning-mind starts churning up concerns about hypothetical problems in days that don't yet exist.  (I mean, really, how ridiculous does that sound in the light of day anyway?)

2 Timothy 1:7 
For God has not given us the spirit of fear, but of power, and of love, and of a sound mind.

I don't know if I'll sleep well tonight or let my thoughts wander into worry.  Sometimes it is easier said than done to focus on truth than sit in the familiar feelings of anxiety.  It often feels justified because we are worried about such "valid" things (children, marriage, money, health, future)...but, the reality of my relationship with Jesus reminds me that it is simply NOT mine to worry about.  I'm not in control.  I'm not the answer.  I can't prevent every tragedy or know the best for my future (let alone anyone else's.)

So, mind-of-mine, rest tonight!  Embrace the freedom and joy of the perfect day.  And be just as bountifully-grateful tomorrow when the imperfect days ahead roll out the same bit of promise as it did today:  God is good.


Tuesday, February 26, 2013

Naming a child is an unrecognized act of grandeur.  I mean, a baby pops out, you name it, and people instantly begin to judge you and your baby according to whatever moniker you've chosen to bestow upon said child.  Occasionally you get the "what a beautiful name" comment.  You might receive an "Oh, I know a child named that" or an "Interesting, how do you spell it?" kind of shrug.  But, overall, people hear your name, judge it, then move on.  It's really that simple.

However, as much as people may move on, it didn't relieve me of any of the burden when it came to naming my own children.  I painstakingly deliberated over a zillion options and, like many of you I'm sure, was still a little hesitant when I uttered aloud for the first time.  I mean, who was this new little creature, after all?  How in the world did I know she was a Matilda or a Daphne?  Nevertheless, my husband and I had anchored ourselves to their names for all time, ready to defend our choices and proudly claim them as our heiresses.

Fast-forward several months.  The prideful art of bestowing the perfect name quickly crumbled in our home.  Don't get me wrong, I wholeheartedly believe in the consideration that was taken in granting our daughters the all-too-thoroughly-wrought-over names they were given.  But, after a few days of no sleep and lots of bodily fluids, the pristine luster of the name announcement starts to dwindle in its sparkle and practicality takes the reigns.  Enter:  the nickname.

When we named Matilda, I fully took nicknames into account.  In fact, one thing I loved about the name Matilda was the versatility of it; and so, shortly after she started showing us her personality, Tilda, Tilly, Til, Matil, Tildy, Tildy-toes all started to show up on the scene.  Many versions of Matilda's name have found their way into our normal vocabulary and even she herself would refer to her name as "Tilda Hazel Darling Pardy" if you asked her.  Though, we do call her Matilda a good 90% of the time, it came ripe with many options for nicknaming.

Daphne was not so easy.  In fact, one of my hesitations (if any) in naming Daphne was that I was worried about finding an easy nickname.  Nevertheless, I figured that was the least of my worries, and I knew that only time would tell when it came to discovering what might erupt from our naming games after meeting her.

A few days after her arrival, her dear father started calling her Daffodil.  This was lovely.  This made my heart soar.  This conjured up sweet images of yellow-dotted fields of wildflowers and sun-shiney days full of happiness.  Daffodil...what a sweet nickname.  As time would have it, however, in the rush of the day, the quickness of activity, and the silliness of the Pardy wasn't long before Daffodil got shortened to "Dil".  A hop and a skip, and she's "Dill Pickle" and now...just one jump we are today, calling her PICKLE nearly half the time.

My sweet Pickle.  You got it.  My baby's nickname is officially Pickle (until it morphs into something else, anyway).  Evidently, that's what's stuck for now and we've all just eased into it so naturally that it didn't hit me as weird until the other day when Matilda was blatantly yelling out to her in public and a lady actually turned to my husband and fearfully asked "That's not really her real it?"

Oh my Pickle!  :)

Nicknames are a hilarious and atrocious and bewildering thing.  They can come from anywhere for about any reason and instantly connote (or denote) a world of ideas that may or may not be true.  Chances are good that somewhere along the lines, we've all been called something we'd rather wish everyone would forget, and I just hope and pray I can keep this Pickle-thing sweet and copacetic until another evolution of her name appears.  Cause it always does.

I come from a long line of nicknamers.  My own nicknames ranged from Boo or Boola-bird to the wildly shocking "Em".  I have no idea where Boola-bird started or why.  To this day I might punch you in the face (consider yourself amply warned) if anyone dared call me it.  I always hated that name and didn't even like Boo until I read "To Kill a Mockingbird" and even then cringed at the sound of it.  I've always been fine with alterations of my actual name - any version of Emmy, Em, whatever have suited me fine.

Whatever we're called, we each get a chance to actually define what it means.  Sometimes I wonder if my girls will grow up to hate their names or ask to be called something else.  Sometimes I wonder what their friends will call them, either to their faces or behind their backs.  Sometimes I worry about how they'll respond to what others call them - if they'll shirk away from name-calling or if they'll stand up for themselves and own it with powerful assertion.  I don't know.  I might never know.  Maybe it won't even matter.

It's hard to say what my Tilly and Pickle will grow up to be.  By this time next year their names could have taken on whole new depictions of what their into or how they act, or even the letters of their names could jumble up into a new word that makes no sense to anyone else.  It doesn't really matter.  As silly as it may sound when we yell out Pickle, all I care about is that goofy grin waddling her way into my arms.  She. Is. Awesome.  And, as long as she knows that, she's going to be redefining the gherkin for ages to come.

That's something to relish forever.

Love Letter

Thursday, February 14, 2013

Happy Valentine's Day!
The sugar-coated, chocolate-covered, giant-teddy-bear-holding-a-dozen-roses day that every couple looks forward to with romantic nostalgia and a bit of chagrin.  Ain't love grand?

Of course it is!  And we don't need a specific day of the year to necessarily STOP and tell our beloved that we adore the socks off him, do we?  Nevertheless, February 14th comes but once a year and we are reminded that all our loved ones, especially our spouses are treasures beyond our wildest imaginations.

As I gaze at my beloved and give thanks for the time we have together, I can't help but let my mind wander to the future, hoping that my girls will be as blessed as I am to have found (or, been found by) a Prince Charming all my own.  Times like these, I pray for the handsome devils that will one day sweep my girls off their feet and have them swooning with joy and naïveté.  I pray often for my future sons-in-law, and pray that I accept them into our family with thanksgiving when the day comes.

But, lately, as I'm in the midst of changing diapers and putting my toddler in time-out for shoving her sister, and stirring macaroni and cheese for the third time that week, and trying to get that stupid Winnie the Pooh theme song out of my head....sigh...a new thought struck me:  Who is raising these Prince Charmings?  And so, I started to pray for my future sons-in-law's parents.  (You follow?)

I figure, somewhere there is a couple raising a small chap (or, conceiving one soon) that are most likely very similar to us.  Even if they are older or younger or live in another country...chances are good that we are experiencing a lot of the same things as new-ish parents in this modern world.  Somewhere, some mom is raising my daughter's husband.  Somewhere, a dad is being the example to his son that will model the father that raises my grandchildren.

And so, on this love-fest of all days, I give you an unconventional love letter, but one I write with the utmost sincerity - and I hope it will inspire you to write your own!

Dear Parents-of-my-future-son-in-law:

Chances are good we don't know each other, and even if we do, it's beyond our wildest imaginations that our children will end up together.  Nevertheless, we are (as I'm supposing your son is around the same age as my daughter) in the thick of parenthood!  It's hard, isn't it?  It's not as glamorous as TV commercials make it out to be, and it's much harder than our mother's ever warned us.  It's exhausting and unpredictable, and rewarding in the strangest and most unexpected ways - a hug here, a silly compliment there, maybe a smile as they drift off to sleep.  But, we are all doing our best to just keep them alive and teach them to be kind and love others well.  

I am doing my best to raise a wife for your son.  I want her to be strong, but not controlling; independent, but vulnerable; relentless with compassion, while steadfast in the truth.  I often question my methods, but seek Jesus to be the ultimate model for how we operate our lives as a family.  I love my husband, and I'm so grateful to have a partner in life who helps shape the world for our daughter so that she can know there are men who hold her best interest in mind and what that truly looks like.

I pray for you often.  I have grand love for you, and I frequently think about how you are probably somewhere, equally frustrated as you change an ornery baby's diaper, just like I am.  I completely empathize with your day-to-day exhaustions!  But, I pray they are not too much for you to bear, and when they are - that you seek Jesus to help guide you.  

I pray that you put your marriage above your son.  So many times, we hear in this world how "our children should always come first" and that anything else is considered selfish.  This is preposterous to me!  It is silly to think that putting your marriage first and putting your child's needs first are two different things. In fact, they are certainly one in the same!  You are raising a future husband, a future father, and I pray that you are modeling a Christ-centered union for him to witness, absorb, and someday reflect.

I pray that you ask for help when you need it.  I pray that you have a community of faithful friends that surround you and lift you up with encouraging words.  I pray that your physical needs are met, and that the economic stresses of this world are recognized as simply that - "of this world" - and that you are able to place your hope and value in something much greater and eternal.  

I pray that kindness and empathy are esteemed in your home.  I pray that you are honest and vulnerable as parents, able to admit your faults and be a testimony to your son of what true success looks like.  I pray that you are fulfilled in your work and your hobbies, that you are pleasant to be around when you get home from a long day.  I pray that you find balance and joy in the mundane things of life - since we all have to do dishes and laundry and clean up after our little rascals, I hope you feel honored in the smallest of tasks.  I'm thankful for you providing those small things to my future son-in-law day in and day out.  Your provision will teach him to appreciate these same things in my daughter someday.  

I pray that you pray for me.  I need it!  I pray that you consider my daughter's family and traditions and background as you get to know her someday.  I pray that you pray for her, and that you are somewhere hoping she is as eager to learn about Jesus as you are hoping for your own son.  I pray that you pray for our children's purity and faithfulness.  

I hope that you not only look forward to meeting my daughter, but me and my husband as well.   That we can worship together side-by-side as our children say "I do".  That maybe we can be friends one day, holding hands in a waiting room with eager anticipation of our own grandchild.  That we can grow old together as a newly woven family and look back on a life that God blessed so richly.

I'm already thankful for you.  I pray for you expectantly, with a grateful heart that God is providing you the grace and mercy that you need as you journey through this life and through the parenting of your son.  On this, a day of love and romance, I pray that you feel the unconditional yearning that God has for your heart, that you know and rely on Him alone, and that you feel the presence of my prayers of protection over you both.

With love,


The Princess & The Papa

Tuesday, February 12, 2013

Ever since I can remember, I always wanted to be a husband and a father.  

I remember thinking about the type of dad I would be and always hoped that I’d be a positive influence that didn’t inspire too many “daddy-issues” in my offspring.  I can remember wanting to take my daughter out to a father-daughter something-or-other.  I can even distinctly recall hearing about a father-daughter dance and being absolutely crushed by the sweetness of the mere idea. 

Finally, this past Saturday evening I was able to take Matilda out on a Daddy-Daughter Date… at Chick-fil-A!   I don’t know how often they do them, but every once and while, Chick-fil-A will offer a special little hour where a Dad can bring his little lady and enjoy a special meal. 

First things first, I love Chick-fil-A!  I eat there probably once a week, I’ve been known to go twice from time to time, so I was fully onboard.  It was really quite simple, I traded a few emails with the store owner and Matilda and I were signed up for some quality time and some quality chicken. 

On the night of, Matilda dressed up in full Princess Belle regalia, and I did my best to keep up with a yellow shirt and pink tie.  To have my sweet girl so excited and so dressed up to just hang out with her goofy Dad just made my heart swell!  Seeing the complete joy in her eyes as she gazed into mine while Em took photos was a beautiful treasure.  I told her she looked lovely and then we were off. 

We got to Chick-fil-A a bit early, so we just listened to music in the car while Matilda sang Alicia Keys and when our time arrived, we walked hand-in-hand through the front door and I was blown away at how much of a big deal this event was.  The tables and chairs were covered with pristine white linens and dark pink bows, each table had a lovely matching flower arrangement and there was even a photographer there to capture the special moment. 

Other dads were present as well, and there was quite a range; dads with newborns to dads with girls in high school.  Everyone looked legitimately happy to be there – even the junior high girls – so I knew I was in good company. 

We were led to our table-for-two, I ordered my usual (a spicy chicken sandwich, fries, and a Dr. Pepper) and Matilda ordered the six-count nuggets and a Sprite.  Then we just sat and talked – well talked as much as you can to a 3-year old who is just overwhelmed with excitement! 

“Matilda, what’s your favorite animal?”
Being influenced by the “Eat Mor Chikin” cow, she of course responded with “Cow!” 
“What’s your favorite song?”
Then she began to sing “this girl is on FFFIIIIRRRRE!” 

And then she took a few minutes to tell me this strange anecdote about how Mommy was simultaneously saying that the baby was funny, but that she wasn’t funny when it began dawn on me that her experience in life is still so fresh.  She only has so much that she can talk about, but it is the whole world to her, and darn it, she is going to tell me ALL about it.  The world is opening up so fast and so far and so wide for her that she is simply just trying to get it all out. 

So I listened to her tell the story about Mommy and the baby and giggled alongside her when she was being funny and sincerely hoped that this moment we were experiencing together would be one she would never forget, and of course, one of many to come! 

So, for any Dads out there, my simple advice is: Just Do it!  As a man, I know that my mission is to love my wife well, knowing that the love I give will then overflow into the way Emily mothers.  But, I realized I was missing the fact that I could love my little girls directly – and you know what, it was proven to me that they crave that affection as well.  So again dads, as Michael Jordan would implore you, Just Do It! 

Finally, for the Mom’s out there, I would have never known about this had Emily not told me about it!  So, if you hear of something like this, just sign your man up.  He will thank you.  I can pretty much guarantee that your man will be into it (if not, please refer him to me, seriously) because not only will he get his special time, there’s also no pressure to plan a thing!  Just throw on a tie, show up on time, and enjoy a night out with the other best girl in your life.    

- Josh (Pardy MAN)

On a Roll

Tuesday, February 5, 2013

I'm one of those insomniac-freaks who, when I find myself lying awake in bed at 2:30 in the morning, I can't just continue to lay there until I fall back asleep.  Most likely (as is the case tonight) a little thought will snowball into a bigger thought until it finally rolls up into a giant ball of something insuppressible.  That being said, it is the middle of the night and I'm supposing this post is meant to be learned by me (always) and heard by one of you out there since the Holy Spirit won't seem to let me go back to sleep until I get it out!  (Sometimes these things just happen, so here we go.)

After a long, tiring day with the girls, the last thing I want to do before crawling into bed and vegging out in front of a brainless CW show is have to do one. more. chore.  I had spent the day catching up on mountains of laundry (which is no small task when you live in an apartment community where you don't have your own washer and dryer in your unit and it involves two toddlers, a roll of quarters, and dozens of little baby socks just waiting to get lost).  We had taken a nice long walk in the morning, and spent much of the afternoon playing with a neighbor friend.  Overall, it was a pretty good day, but all I wanted to do was take a shower, fold those ridiculously-full baskets of laundry, and say "Sayonara" to the day!

As I got out of the shower to get my jammies on for the night, I looked down, only to discover what every wife despises seeing:  an empty toilet paper roll.  And, as if pulled from an old script of "Everybody Loves Raymond", my tired brain jumped to the first annoying conclusion it could muster:   Are you kidding me?  Does he think it just magically appears there out of nowhere? Would it KILL HIM to EVER change a toilet paper roll???

My husband had suddenly become target one of the night.  But, before I could even roll my eyes in annoyance, it struck me, out of nowhere, as if Jesus was standing in front of me with His own arms crossed and eyebrows raised and retorting right back at me, "Emily - would it kill YOU?"

A flurry of questions jumped into my head.  Was I even actually annoyed at my husband?  Was he even the last one to use the toilet paper?  Am I just too lazy to do anything about it but not tired enough to let him off the hook?  Am I seriously going to nit-pick a battle over something that I use to wipe with?  And the biggie....What are MY toilet paper rolls for him?

This last one perplexed me a bit.  Just as it annoyed me that he never changed the toilet paper roll, there MUST be things that I did/didn't do that got under his skin in exactly the same way.  What's more, how many things were "magically appearing" throughout my marriage that I was taking for granted on a daily basis?  That was a frightful thought, as I begin to imagine how I couldn't possibly begin to add up the number of things I wouldn't even know I would miss if he stopped doing them.  These are the unseen blessings, the thankless tasks, the forgotten favors that I so easily lose sight of as exhausting days of parenthood and normal life take their toll on our relationship.

So, I changed the stinking toilet paper roll.  And, it didn't kill me!  Amazing.  I took a deep breath and exhaled the cobwebs of the day, doing my best to blow away the silly annoyances that were extremely fleeting and totally unwarranted.

I understand that little things like toilet paper rolls can feel like jabs of disrespect at the end of a long day where the last thing we all feel like doing is taking care of one-more-freaking-little-thing.  I get it.  But, it's amazing to me how Satan can use something so ridiculously minuscule to set me off, and then I have the power to turn it into an actual "issue" or not.  And you know what?  It's not.  It's in the "don't sweat the small stuff" category of life that is simply not worth bickering about.  Change the stupid toilet paper roll and reserve your energy for more worthwhile details!

So, the next thing I decided to do is one of those rare moments where I would highly recommend being in a neutral state of mind before you take on the challenge; I asked my husband to name one of my toilet-paper-roll-habits.  Something non-volitile.  Something I could actually apply effort to.  It's very rare that we have critical assessments like this.  Team Pardy (as we so endearingly refer to our marriage) believes strongly in what we call "Playing Favorites" and focusing on the positive strengths of what we bring to our relationship.  But, in this particular case, I wanted to know something silly that I could get a heads-up about.

As soon as he said it, I was completely NOT surprised.  "Maybe the water glasses on the nightstand?"  I had to laugh.  YUP!  Guilty!  I had a terrible habit of every single night getting a glass of water to take my vitamins before bed and only drinking half a glass and NEVER remembering to return it to the kitchen.  By the end of the week, there are very often 4 or 5 half-full glasses of water on my nightstand.  (If you've ever seen the movie "Signs", I joke that I'm just like the little girl in that movie who always leaves her glasses of water around the house!  Haha!)

But, my hubby brought up a great point after reminding me of my silly habit.  He said, "The thing is, when it comes to things like toilet paper rolls or water glasses, you never notice those things until you need them.  It's not like every time you use the bathroom or go to get a drink of water you're going to thank someone for putting something where it belongs anyway.  It's only when it's out of place do you decide to make an issue of it, so it becomes only a device for the negative."

Too true!  (I know, I know, you're amazed at our stimulating conversations about toilet paper and water glasses at the Pardys!)  But seriously, this is what made me really start thinking about those unseen blessings I am not even aware enough of to know that I'm taking them for granted.  My husband locks the doors each night, he makes sure our cars are up-to-date on their oil changes, he updates my iPhone's software, and a zillion other things that I have no idea about.  Once I started thinking about all the little things he does that I would have to do if he wasn't around...well, a toilet paper roll began to look exactly as it should:  like a stupid toilet paper roll, and not as a personal jab of disrespect.

Too often, I find myself wanting to plead my case for "Don't-you-know-how-much-I-do-for-this-family" in my head (or worse, out loud).  Seriously, if that was a tv game show, I bet nearly every housewife out there would apply to be on it and each of us would walk out carrying one of those giant checks or a new car with a big red bow on it.  As wives, we are champions at belittling and nagging - we can do it in our sleep with our hands tied behind our back and blindfolded we are so good at it that we can do it all day with even the best of intentions, silently driving a wedge into our marriage.  (You can admit it, it's a safe place here, I won't tell.)  But, don't you think your husband might feel the same way?  Don't you think he is thinking about all he does for the family too?  Why wouldn't he?  Wedge-wedge-wedgie-wedge-wedge.

This is marriage, not a contest!

Valentine's day is just around the corner.  In a world where married love is unattractive and flings and fantasies are flaunted at every turn, it's easy to lose focus of what truly matters.  Satan would love nothing more that to use the most ridiculous things (like toilet paper rolls, I mean, c'mon!?!) to drive a wedge between Christian couples.  He must have been laughing with malicious joy when I fell into the trap of blaming my husband for a completely non-issue-lack-of-tissue!  Good grief.  But, I got stopped in my tracks and made a choice, and the entire evening took a new spin because of it.  Instead of going down the road of bickering or going to bed totally annoyed, we had a good laugh about our differences and I stayed awake thinking about what a blessing my husband is to me.

I'm not married to a perfect guy.  He has annoying habits and his wife blogs openly about them - let's think about this!  Haha.  (Say a prayer for the chap, will you?)  None of us married flawless people, but we all have a choice to look for the good in our spouse.  As Valentine's day approaches, I'm going to spend this next week looking for those hidden treasures in my man.  I'm unaware of so many of the tiny, totally-taken-for-granted things that he must be doing to keep this family going, and I'm going to ask God to show me what those little things are.

Until then, I hope you'll drift off to sleep tonight counting your blessings in your mate.  If not your mate, then your loved ones around you who want to support you in life.  Look for the hidden treasures this week.  And for heaven's when you change that toilet paper roll.

Proudly designed by | mlekoshiPlayground |