May You be glorified Father. A few evenings ago my wife and I were watching a show on TV. One of the plots focused on a husband and wife and an outsider. The wife had previously been sick and spent an extended period of time away in a sanitarium. There she came to be friends with the doctor who was treating her and the back story is that they had many conversations, in the course of her stay, they both enjoyed. She is back home now with her family and the everyday life of being a wife, mother, house keeper and doing a modest hair dressing business as well. The doctor comes to town the purpose being to make a final follow up on her condition and confirm all is well, but in retrospect, maybe that wasn’t the only reason. She invites him to supper at her home to meet her family and enjoy some company and he comes. In the course of the evening the husband and two sons look on as the doctor and she carry on in very spirited and animated conversation, from time to time trying to insert a word or two but to no avail. The boys get up and go to their room leaving the husband feeling like a lone outsider. The guest leaves and the husband wants to know what’s the big deal about this guy. This leads to, she does have a mind and can think. He, the other, speaks to that and it is enjoyment for her. He, her husband of course is angered, jealous, for now evidently, he is somehow deficient. They end up turning away from each other, he wounded in pride and she resentful because what had been enjoyable for her had turned into a point of contention and questioning. The following day is the final examination. Doctor gives a good bill of health and begins to reveal his feelings for her. The moment of realization, the moment of truth, the moment of choice and without hesitation or confusion she corrects his misconception about her life and happiness. She didn’t dwell on his thoughts about her and for her or entertain imaginings of the more fulfilling life she would experience with him, that he painted, or try to justify those thoughts by the way her husband had spoken to her. Instead she declared her love for her husband, her children and her life with them and how valuable and fulfilling that was to her. There was a part of her that had a longing and she wanted to satisfy it but turning away from the life and people she loved and who loved her to someone else was not an option. That was the truth she spoke and it silenced the man. That kind of loyalty is priceless. That kind of declaration gives life to a husband. I don’t know. Maybe she was living in that mindset that Paul speaks of when he said “I have learned to be content regardless of circumstances….” Maybe she saw her life as having hunger but also fullness, of having need but also abundance, of wanting and of having more than enough. Maybe she had the presence of mind and the patience to know that her husband loved her and they would work out their mutual needs and desires between themselves. As it turns out in this case, her husband did indeed love her and once he got over the sting of hurt pride he realized he had learned something more about his wife and used that knowledge to be a better more demonstratively loving husband to her. Are we as husbands able to humble ourselves and accept that we don’t know everything about our spouses or maybe just aren’t thoughtful at times, and that though learning can sometimes be uncomfortable, we make a sacrifice of our pride and utilize that knowledge to help our spouses feel increasingly more fulfilled? “And this is my prayer: that your love may more and more overflow in fullness of knowledge and depth of discernment…” Philippians 1:9 CJB. Father, may our love grow us to fuller knowledge and deeper understanding. May our knowledge and understanding grow and strengthen our love-- to Your glory and praise. In Yeshua’s name we pray, Amen. May God’s love be in us all. Elder.
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