So, the past two months or so have been rough. I allowed some financial strains to get the better of me at times. The disappointment I deflected onto my husband caused me to question for a moment if I was bipolar. One moment I’d be nice, the next I’d get snappy. I allowed some toxic thoughts to become toxic emotions that then turned into toxic attitudes which inevitably led to toxic behavior. The Bible talks about, “taking every thought captive.” I know now the amazing benefits of this notion when truly applied. It may seem weird at first, because how many of us think, about our thoughts? We just let it flow: the thought (stage one) creates an emotion (stage two), then an attitude (stage three), then a behavior (stage four) and nowhere in between that process do we think to stop it at stage one. Only 5% of us realize the negative thought will lead to other negative outcomes and that it needs to be stopped. But most of us ignore the rising smoke until it’s turned into a wild-fire. And that, it what happened to me.
Yesterday my husband told me something in regards to our finances. Automatically, I got a thought, an emotion and an attitude, and just acted. One, two, three, boom. Just like that [totally ignored the advice James gives in the Bible, “be quick to hear, SLOW to speak and SLOW to get angry.” It wasn’t until the silence after our raised voices and the down-trodden demeanor on my husband’s face did I realize I shouldn’t have acted on my emotion which was created by my thought. I’m quick to forgive and say sorry, but he left for work quiet and hurt. Married women, if you are in the situation I was in yesterday, occasionally or regulary, you need to apply this principle. And here’s the simplest way I believe to start.
After praying, I went to work. Quite quickly, with my mindset being completely focused on my job, I was totally fine with a smile on my face as usual. I had written a verse down, “God, create a clean heart for me and renew a steadfast spirit within me. Restore the joy of Your salvation to me, and give me a willing spirit.” I looked over it a few times during the day and determined that when I got home, I would write my hubby a letter. Not so much an apology, although I threw an “I’m sorry,” in there, but more importantly, a letter of support and encouragement, a letter letting him know, no matter what I said that morning, I honor and respect him. He knows I love him, even in that moment of anger, but what he did feel, was that I disrespected him and didn’t believe in him. Wives, wanna be on the fast-track to divorce? Start making your man feel like you don’t respect who he is. I’m not saying divorce is all our faults, but in most cases, the blame goes both ways. But see, like my pastor said, the day before I hurt my husband, we wives have the power to completely build up our man and make him feel like Captain America, or the power to completely destroy him and make him feel dishonorably discharged.
I sat down and wrote him a letter, conjuring up the memories at to why I fell in love with him and all the things about him that make him great and man oh man did that spark a change in me (a good fire). When I spoke to my husband after I got of a meeting it was like the fight earlier never even happened. I asked him if he recieved the letter and he sure did. He was very pleased and was like, “You really think that?” That night we had a nice time in the bedroom as well =)) and shared some good laughs and prayed together before we went to sleep. So, I HIGHLY suggest if you have been fighting with your husband to write him a respect letter. Ask nothing of him, simply tell him what you respect him for and what you’re thankful of from him. Then, when he does something you’re not too pleased with, take that thought captive. I already had to do that and my did it help. It was interesting, it was like fighting myself:
“The sinful nature wants to do evil, which is just the opposite of what the Spirit wants. And the Spirit gives us desires that are the opposite of what the sinful nature desires. These two forces are constantly fighting each other, so you are not free to carry out your good intentions.”-Galatians 5:17
But, if you’re, “directed by the Spirit,” you’re not obligated to do those evil and hurtful actions towards others. Start crowding out the bad thoughts with good ones. How do you do that?
“Fix your thoughts on what is true, and honorable, and right, and pure, and lovely, and admirable. Think about things that are excellent and worthy of praise.”-Philippians 4:8
“Don’t copy the behavior and customs of this world, but let God transform you into a new person by changing the way you think. Then you will learn to know God’s will for you, which is good and pleasing and perfect.”-Romans 1:2
In other words, it may sound old school, but read your Bible. I suggest reading a chapter of Proverbs a day and writing down one or two verses that really speak to you. And definitly check out what Jesus says and how he thinks and acts. Talk about the perfect role-model and positive thinker. He was called “Teacher” for a reason. But even deeper than that, if you have only known Jesus as just that, simply a teacher, I suggest you cry out to Him and ask Him to be who He wants to be in your life. With a simple invatation, He will change your world and the worlds around you. This whole controlling your thoughts thing isn’t easy. You need divine help. But, like the religious leaders back then said to Jesus, “We know you are not a respecter of persons,” he really doesn’t care who you are, where you’ve been, or what you’re doing now, all He cares about is loving and wooing you. Give Him a try and I promise, no matter how dark your world looks now, He will make it brighter than ever before. God bless.